An upset to some. Predictable to others. But it is still a great matchup. Who came out on top? Before we get going, here are the ground rules again.
- As we have been preaching all season (big thanks to Lambeth Field writer brodonnell), it is a 16 team bracket with each conference having an automatic qualifier plus 5 at-large selections.
- They are seeded by the BCS rankings. Hey they got to be good for something!
- First round and Quarterfinal games are played at the higher-seed sites.
- We got help from National Sport Ranking, who run simulations of over 50 sports and teams from decades worth of teams.
- Each matchup was simulated a minimum of 25 times with the later rounds simulated up to 100 times.
- Then each team was put into a bracket formation and simulated to generate box scores consistent to the previous simulation results.
- The stories generated are a representation of how the game would play out based on the box scores.
PLEASE NOTE: This is for informational purposes only and on any given Saturday, any team can win. But with the number of games simulated, we have a very good understanding how it would play out.
To everyone who has helped and commented on this series, thank you again. So here it is: your BPS National Champion.
#4 Stanford 44, #1 Oregon 39
It was an all Pac-10 matchup in Texas Stadium between Oregon and Stanford. The previous meeting, Stanford jumped out to an early lead before Darron Thomas scored 4 touchdowns en route to a 52-31 point blow out. But Stanford was determined not to have that happen again, and if that was to happen, Andrew Luck needed to be the go to guy. But this time, Oregon was the team ready to put away any thought of the upset. The Duck defense jumped on Luck quickly and picked him off on the first two Cardinal possessions and turned them into Darron Thomas touchdowns (one passing, one rushing) and a 14-0 lead.
By half Luck had partially redeemed himself and went into halftime tied only down 21-14. Out of the half, it turned into a back and forth between the two teams. Both Thomas (292 yards, 2 TD; 54 yards rushing, TD) and Luck (379 yards, 3 TD; 59 yards rushing 2 TD) were outstanding, but it was two Darron Thomas interceptions in the second half which lead to a Stephan Taylor and Luck rushing touchdowns and Stanford had regained the lead 42-31. LaMichael James (103 yards, TD) added his only score of the game with 2:43 to go, and after they converted 2-point try, Oregon was only down 42-39. Stanford got a great kickoff return, but Oregon had all three time outs left and forced Stanford to kick the ball. The Cardinal angled it out of bounds and but Oregon on their own 2 yard line with 61 seconds to go. On the first play of the ensuing possession, Stanford blitzed their linebackers and forced James out of the pocket. As he was trying to get out of his own endzone, he trips on the NexTurf and falls down in the endzone for a safety. This left the score at 44-39, and a jubilant Luck gets under center with no way for Oregon to stop the clock. Stanford pulls off the improbable win.