Boise St. or TCU more deserving of BCS berth?
Here's talking points for Broncos, Horned Frogs supporters
The BCS looks ready to welcome another team from outside the six automatically qualifying conferences into one of its major-money bowls this January. And this year's chase has some drama.
Who would be more deserving: an unbeaten Boise State out of the WAC (with a win over potential Pac-10 champ Oregon) or an unbeaten TCU from the Mountain West (with a tougher overall schedule)?
Here are some talking points from both teams:
Five reasons to love Boise State
- 1. Offensive line: There might not be a Ryan Clady in this bunch, but the Broncos' front five have blocked well for the run and the pass. BSU has allowed only five sacks in seven games. "The numbers don't lie," receiver Austin Pettis said. "That's a really good sign."
- 2. Improved defense: The Broncos built their reputation on high-powered offenses and talented quarterbacks (we mean you, Ryan Dinwiddie). But this year's defense, which held Oregon to eight points, includes stars at corner (Kyle Wilson) and defensive end (Ryan Winterswyk).
- 3. Kellen Moore: The great QB play hasn't gone away, though. Moore is the nation's most efficient passer, and he's thrown 21 touchdowns against two interceptions. "He reads coverages so well," Pettis said. "I don't think I've ever seen him confused."
- 4. Homefield edge: BSU, 67-2 in its stadium since 1999, can count two key reasons for its blue-turf success. Tight quarters put rowdy fans virtually shoulder-to-shoulder with players. And the Broncos practice in their stadium almost every day. "We never play better than on that field," Wilson said.
- 5. 13-0: Boise's toughest remaining games come at Louisiana Tech, plus home games against Idaho and Nevada. None of those teams should come within two touchdowns of the Broncos. The early BCS rankings show being undefeated scores big points, and Boise will finish without a loss.
Five reasons to love TCU
- 1. Alabama 2.0: As is the case for the top-ranked Tide, a reliable running game and another great defense, led by star lineman Jerry Hughes (9 sacks, 10.5 tackles for loss in seven games), can carry the day. "They're playing with a lot of confidence right now," Colorado State coach Steve Fairchild said on a teleconference.
- 2. Dalton's better: Junior Andy Dalton, a third-year starting quarterback, looks like the passer and leader TCU has long lacked. "He's not flashy," SMU coach June Jones said on a teleconference. But he knows their scheme and doesn't do things to beat himself.
- 3. Defensive reinforcements: Linebackers Jason Phillips, Robert Henson and Stephen Hodge, stars on the '08 defense, all got picked on the NFL draft's second day. The losses worried coach Gary Patterson until replacements Daryl Washington and Tank Carder, both linebackers, kept TCU at its normal high level.
- 4. League reputation: The Frogs beat Clemson and Virginia in September. BYU upset Oklahoma in the opener. Utah is 2-0 in BCS bowl games. Any MWC champ should rank among the nation's elite. "Our conference is stronger than the WAC," BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said on the MWC teleconference. "I don't think there's any argument about that."
- 5. Head-to-head: Need a tiebreaker? TCU and Boise State, with similar lineups and coaching staffs, met in last year's Poinsettia Bowl. The Frogs won, 17-16, handing the Broncos their lone loss in the last 18 games.
© 2013 Sporting News
CFT: Senior receiver Wilson Van Hooser is transferring from Tulane to help care for his ailing mother.
DPS: Alabama head coach Nick Saban was recently trash-talked by colleagues, and he tells Dan Patrick he wishes he was spoken to in private prior to the insults.