How Stanford Wins the National Championship in Football

Because Stanford has three losses, it makes the BCS championship very unlikely due to the cruelty of computer rankings. My scenario focuses solely on the AP championship, which is influenced by momentum and the appearance of playing well. #14-ranked Stanford would need solid, convincing wins against Cal, Notre Dame, and then in the bowl game for any of the following to matter. To say it’s a long shot would be a gross understatement, but here it is:

#13 Penn State loses to Michigan State 11/21 (or Stanford leaps over them with two convincing wins over Cal and Notre Dame)
#12 Oklahoma State loses to either Colorado (11/19) or Oklahoma (11/28)
#11 Oregon loses to #18 Arizona on November 21, or to Oregon State on 12/3
#10 LSU loses to either Mississippi on 11/21 or Arkansas 11/28
#9 Ohio State loses to Michigan on 11/21 — or loses in the Rose Bowl to Stanford
#8 Pittsburgh loses to un-ranked West Virginia on 11/27
#7 Georgia Tech loses to Georgia on 11/28 and/or loses the ACC championship game
#6 Boise State loses to any of Utah State, Nevada, and New Mexico State and they will likely be forgotten
#5 Cincinnati loses to an awful Illinois team on Friday, diminishing the face-off between Pittsburgh and Cincinnati on December 5th
#4 TCU loses to either Wyoming (11/21) or New Mexico (11/28)
#3 Texas would likely have to lose twice for Stanford to pass them. A loss against Kansas or Texas A&M and then a loss in the Big 12 championship game should do it
#2 Alabama has a stunning loss to non division 1-A Chattanooga (11/21) or just gets beat by Auburn (11/27) and Florida (SEC Championship Game)
#1 Florida loses to Florida International and Florida State, then beats Alabama,
or Florida loses to Florida State and Alabama

The two biggest obstacles seem to be that we need embarrassing losses from the Big East leaders (Pitt and Cincinnati) and SEC powerhouses (Florida and Alabama). But if all these things happen, there is reason to believe that our team would be ranked #1 in the AP Poll going into the bowl game and would likely hold onto the AP Championship with an impressive win.

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