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BCS Rankings: Week 12's Effect On Bowl Schedule

With two games in progress between ranked teams (Texas A&M/Nebraska and Mississippi State/Arkansas), it's difficult to accurately forecast the impact of Week 12 on the BCS standings and bowl schedule. The Week 11 games thus far have yielded no upsets, though some significant games have been played.

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The top three teams in the BCS standings (Oregon, Auburn and TCU) are all on bye weeks this week. Boise State, who is ranked third in the AP and USA Today polls, gained ground on TCU in the BCS standings last week and should continue to do so this week. Boise State shut out Fresno State, winning 51-0 on Friday night. More good news came for Boise State on Saturday when Virginia Tech clinched a spot in the ACC Title game, beating Miami 31-17. Boise's win over the Hokies in Week 1 looks better by the day.

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Les Miles and his LSU Tigers survived a scare against Ole Miss today, coming from behind in the fourth quarter to win 43-36. This keeps the Tigers hope for an at-large BCS bid alive, though voters in the polls may see this as a relatively weak win and may penalize them for it. It will be interesting to see if Stanford or Wisconsin, who cruised on Saturday, move past the Tigers. If Nebraska beats a ranked Aggies team this week in a convincing fashion, they could perhaps find themselves ahead of the Tigers.

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Also noteworthy is Pittsburgh's win over USF today. Pittsburgh, who is 6-4 on the year, is currently in line to represent the Big East in one of the BCS bowl games. There is a realistic chance that the Pittsburgh Panthers will play in a BCS bowl game with four losses while a one loss misses out. 

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.