Football Ranked No. 14 In The First BCS Poll

Oct 22, 2001

Miami, No. 1 in the AP media poll and the coaches' poll, was fourth inrankings that determine which teams will play for a national championship atthe Rose Bowl in January.

The Hurricanes, thanks to a first-half schedule ranked 92nd of 115 teams,were behind Oklahoma, Nebraska and UCLA in the first Bowl Championship Seriesstandings released on Monday night.

Unbeaten Miami is on the outside looking in because its first five opponentshave a combined 8-19 record against major colleges. The second-half schedulegets tougher, with season-ending games against Washington (5-1) and VirginiaTech (6-0).

'I don't need a computer. Teams are going to fall,' Miami coach LarryCoker said. 'The month of November is as critical as December. We saw threeundefeated teams fall last week. The only thing we can control is to make surewe're not one of them.'

The BCS rankings are based on a formula that incorporates the AP poll plusthe USA Today/ESPN coaches' poll, eight computer rankings, strength-of-scheduleand number of losses.

New this year are bonus points for a win over a team in the BCS' top 15.Final standings will be released Dec. 9, with the top two teams playing inPasadena on Jan. 3.

With the standings out a week later than originally planned, the timingcouldn't be better for the BCS - the Sooners (7-0) visit the Cornhuskers (8-0)on Saturday.

Oklahoma and Nebraska are ranked 2-3 in the AP poll and coaches' poll thisweek.

Virginia Tech is fifth in the BCS standings, followed by Texas, Michigan,Maryland, Tennessee and Washington State. Rounding out the top 15 are Florida,Washington, Oregon, Stanford and South Carolina.

Oklahoma still has games left against Tulsa, Texas A&M, Texas Tech andOklahoma State before a Big 12 title game, where a rematch with Nebraska ispossible.

'With our schedule, if we win out we don't have to worry about what the BCSis doing,' Sooners coach Bob Stoops said. 'We just put our emphasis onwinning.'

Says Nebraska coach Frank Solich: 'If you're able to play great footballand win every game, you'll be there in the end.'

Expect lots of shuffling in next week's standings.

Besides Oklahoma-Nebraska on Saturday, UCLA (6-0) visits Stanford (5-1),Florida (5-1) plays Georgia (5-1) in Jacksonville, Fla., South Carolina (6-1)is at Tennessee (4-1), Maryland (7-0) at Florida State (4-2), and Oregon (6-1)at Washington State (7-0).

Oklahoma had 3.06 points in the BCS standings - 2 for poll average, 1.50 forcomputer-rank average, 0.56 for strength-of-schedule, zero for losses and a1-point bonus deduction for its win over Texas on Oct. 6.

The bonus award it based on a sliding scale from 1.5 points for beating afirst-place team down to .1 for a win over the 15th-place team.

Nebraska had 6.40 points - 3 for poll average, 3 for computer rank average,.40 for strength-of-schedule, zero for losses and no bonus-point deduction.

UCLA had 8.34 points, Miami 12.01 and Virginia Tech 13.88.

The Sooners are first in four of the eight computer rankings, Nebraska andUCLA split the four remaining first-place spots.

Miami is second in two computers with a low ranking of 13th from another.

The BCS, chaired again by ACC commissioner John Sword, was created threeyears ago to create a national title game without instituting a playoff.

Champions of six conferences - the ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-10and SEC - qualify for a BCS game, and two at-large teams are selected to fillout the field.

In the first two years of the BCS, the teams that played for the title alsowere ranked 1-2 in the polls. Last year that changed, with No. 1 Oklahomaplaying No. 3 Florida State. No. 2 Miami, which beat Florida State, ended up inthe Sugar Bowl against Florida even though the Seminoles and Hurricanes bothhad 10-1 records.

The eight computer polls are operated by Richard Billingsley, KennethMassey, David Rothman, Jeff Sagarin, Scripps-Howard, Seattle Times, Peter Wolfeand Wes Colley.

AP Football Writer

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