clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

BCS Non-Conference Performance

Earlier today, in putting forth his first draft BlogPoll ballot, Brian @ MGoBlog posited a theory: the SEC ain't all it's cracked up to be this year. Take it away, sir:

The events of the past few weeks have caused me to radically revalue the SEC. To wit: it sucks. (For the record, the Big Ten also sucks. The Pac-10 is where it's at this year.) When Mississippi State takes down two supposed contenders, your conference is not good.

Brian goes on to provide a rundown of the SEC's out-of-conference travails with fellow BCS schools in support of his argument. I didn't necessarily disagree with Brian's point, but I was curious what other BCS conferences' rundowns would look like. If the Mississippi State transitive wart theory hurts the SEC, I'm curious what warts might plague other conferences.

So let's take a look:

Big 10

Pac 10: 2-1
Big 12: 0-2
Big East: 2-0
SEC: 0-0
ACC: 0-1
Non-BCS Losses: 4
Non-BCS Losses By Contenders: 1
Impressive Wins: 1
CONCLUSION: There is The Horror that was the beginning of Michigan's season to account for. When the team that gets rolled by Oregon and tripped up by Appy State is running through the conference just fine, that's perhaps cause for concern. Brian concedes this point, of course. The Big 10 ain't all that this year. (And I do subscribe to the idea that Michigan entered some bizarro world for two games before returning to being a real football team again.) Aside from Michigan's early misstep, the other notable point is the lack of quality out-of-conference wins. Half the conference relies on Notre Dame being a quality win each year. Not the case in 2007.

* * * *
Big 12

Pac 10: 0-2
Big East: 0-0
SEC: 1-2
Big 10: 2-0
ACC: 2-2
Non-BCS Losses:  5
Non-BCS Losses By Contenders:  1
Impressive Wins: 2
CONCLUSION: Kansas, Texas, and Texas Tech don't have any out-of-conference BCS opponents on their resumes. Colorado, which has dispatched of both Texas Tech and Oklahoma, lost to Florida State in Boulder. The Cowpokes were smoked in Athens and terrible in a loss to Troy. Oklahoma's thrashing of Miami was impressive, and Missouri gets a nod for their win over Illinois, but it's slim pickings beyond that. The Big 12 may be better than last season, but it's definitely relative.

* * * *

Pac 10: 0-1
Big 12: 2-1
Big East: 1-2
Big 10: 0-0
ACC: 2-1
Non-BCS Losses:  0
Non-BCS Losses By Contenders:  0
Impressive Wins: 3
CONCLUSION: Brian's got this pretty well covered.

* * * *
Pac 10

Big 12: 2-0
Big East: 1-1
SEC: 1-0
Big 10: 1-2
ACC: 0-0
Non-BCS Losses:  5
Non-BCS Losses By Contenders: 2
Impressive Wins: 3
CONCLUSION: It gets messy here in the Pac 10. ASU has a nice win over Colorado, Oregon pummeled Michigan, and Cal dispatched Tennessee with relative ease. There are some definite warts, though: Oregon State, 31 point losers to Cincinnati, have defeated Cal. UCLA managed to lose to Utah by 38 and Notre Dame period, but own victories over Oregon State and Cal. USC's premier non-conference win is against a fast-sinking Nebraska team, and they lost to Stanford (who lost UCLA by 28 and TCU by 2).

* * * *

Pac 10: 0-0
Big 12: 2-2
Big East: 2-4
SEC: 1-2
Big 10: 1-0
Non-BCS Losses:  2
Non-BCS Losses By Contenders: 1
Impressive Wins: 4
CONCLUSION: As bad as the ACC's perceived to be, they do have four solid wins - one from Virginia, one from Miami, and two from Florida State. Beyond that, it gets ugly.

* * * *
Big East

Pac 10: 1-1
Big 12: 0-0
SEC: 2-1
Big 10: 0-3
ACC: 4-2
Non-BCS Losses:  2
Non-BCS Losses By Contenders: 0
Impressive Wins: 5
CONCLUSION: At least by non-conference BCS performance, the Big East has as much or more to be proud of as anyone. If UCONN had gotten by Virginia, this really would be interesting. Though Pittsburgh and Syracuse are doing their parts to reinforce the notion of deep suckitude in the Big East, the rest of the bunch haven't fared as I'd have thought. Louisville could have made this conference resume something pretty if it hadn't wet the bed against Utah and Kentucky.

* * * *


Meh, I got nothing grand to conclude here. I pledged before the season not to get caught up in conference superiority wars, and I won't start now. Consider this a presentation of data above all else. I'll let folks do with it what they will; for me, it's helped me rethinkink my BlogPoll ballot a bit. I've got a couple teams over- and under-valued. Of course, that's how this conversation got started in the first place. And that's why I do enjoy the BlogPoll so much - we're actually encouraged to talk out our theories.