Computers keep Oklahoma No. 2 in the BCS

Monday, November 15th 2004, 11:56 am
By: News On 6

Oklahoma remained second in the Bowl Championship Series standings Monday, holding off Auburn because of a stronger computer ranking.

Southern California is still No. 1 with a grade of .9808. Oklahoma's grade is .9621, and Auburn's is .9350.

Last week, the Sooners led the Tigers by .0567. Now, Oklahoma's lead is down to .0271.

The Tigers made up lots of ground on the Sooners in the polls on Sunday, tying Oklahoma for second in The Associated Press Top 25 and getting within two points of No. 2 in the coaches poll.

The polls each count for a third of a BCS grade. A compilation of six computer rankings make up the other third, and according to the computers Oklahoma is the best team in the country.

USC's is second in the computer rankings and Auburn is third.

The top two teams in the final BCS standings, which will be released Dec. 5, play for the national title in the Orange Bowl on Jan. 4.

The Trojans, Sooners and Tigers are all 10-0.

Auburn surged on the heels of its 24-6 victory over Southeastern Conference rival Georgia on Saturday. Oklahoma beat Nebraska 30-3, but appeared to be hurt in the polls by recent close calls against Oklahoma State and Texas A&M. The computers, however, have been partial to the Sooners' quality wins away from home in the Big 12 and strength of schedule.

California (.8522) is fourth, Texas (.8140) is fifth and Utah (.8062) is back in the sixth spot, after slipping to seventh last week.

The unbeaten Utes are trying to become the first team from a mid-major conference to earn a BCS bid. They can lock up a spot by finishing in the top six. Utah is .0568 ahead of seventh-place Michigan with a game to play against Mountain West Conference rival BYU on Saturday.