In something of a surprise, Alabama, a 9-6 loser to top-rated LSU Saturday, fell only one spot to No. 3 in Sunday’s latest Bowl Championship Series standings, with Stanford retaining the No. 4 spot.
Oregon is No. 7.
The Alabama-Stanford placement immediately raises the question of undefeated Stanford’s fate going forward vis a vis Alabama. Brad Edwards, ESPN’s BCS-projections guru, said the Cardinal “will be just fine” if they beat Oregon Saturday.
As it stands, Stanford is being dinged hard by the computers for a relatively shaky schedule to date. Stanford’s overall computer rating — a third of the BCS formula — is only No. 7, and one computer, the Kenneth Massey reckoning, has the Cardinal No. 10.
Stanford overhauled Oklahoma State in the USA Today coaches poll this week and is now No. 2 there, and it moved up to No. 3 in the Harris poll, with Alabama fourth. The Cowboys have the No. 2 BCS spot, and presumably would make the title game if they keep winning.
Still to be determined are a host of possibilities if there are several one-loss teams vying to make the BCS title game. But Alabama, falling only to No. 3, is still viable for a potential rematch against LSU. The Tide fell to No. 4 in both human polls of the BCS but is No. 3 in the computers.