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BCS Selection: Clearing up Confusion

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This is a rundown of the BCS selection process and where Texas Tech fits into that. Let me start off by stating that it is highly, highly unlikely that Tech can make a BCS bowl at this point. With UT in the top 4 and not in the Big XII championship game, it virtually means "game over" for Texas Tech's BCS hopes.


Read on after the break to find out why

The blockquotes are from the selection rules on the BCS's own site (provided by Fox Sports). You can see that here.

The first thing to remember is that there is only one way that the BCS will allow more than 2 teams from the same conference. That is if the #1 and #2 teams in the final BCS standings are from the same conference and are both not the conference champion.

No more than two teams from a conference may be selected, regardless of whether they are automatic qualifiers or at-large selections, unless two non-champions from the same conference are ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the final BCS Standings.

It doesn't look likely that this will happen since we are a ways out of the #2 spot, sad story there

Automatic Qualification 1. The top two teams in the final BCS Standings shall play in the National Championship Game. 2. The champions of the Atlantic Coast, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-10 and Southeastern conferences will have automatic berths in one of the participating bowls after the 2008 through 2013 regular seasons.

These are the first two things that happen and this is where the Sooners would first qualify were they to win Saturday. If they manage to lose to Missouri, both Missouri and UT would qualify under these two provisions (UT in the top 2, Missouri as the Big XII champion).

5. If any of the 10 slots remain open after application of provisions 1 through 4, and an at-large team from a conference with an annual automatic berth for its champion is ranked No. 3 in the final BCS Standings, that team will become an automatic qualifier, provided that no at-large team from the same conference qualifies for the national championship game.
6. If any of the 10 slots remain open after application of provisions 1 through 5, and if no team qualifies under paragraph No. 5 and an at-large team from a conference with an annual automatic berth for its champion is ranked No. 4 in the final BCS Standings, that team will become an automatic qualifier provided that no at-large team from the same conference qualifies for the national championship game.

In short, teams #3 and #4 become automatic qualifiers if there is space left (with 10 slots, this will almost always be the case unless both #1 and #2 are non-champions, a non-BCS team and Notre Dame become automatic qualifiers). This is how UT is most likely going to qualify, provided OU does beat Missouri. UT qualifying here, would eliminate TTU from any possible BCS bowl. That's it, the end of it. If UT is in the top 4 of the final BCS, there is no chance whatsoever of TTU going anywhere beyond the Cotton Bowl.

I did see one possibility that allows TTU into a BCS bowl: Alabama and Florida play in a close game while USC blows out UCLA and OU blows out Missouri. Texas not playing drops them to #5. This opens the smallest door for TTU to be available to a bowl, should they so choose. In all honesty, I doubt that anyone would choose TTU over UT, larger market and all that.

So there you have it. TTU is heading to the Cotton Bowl. Unless OU loses to Missouri and they choose to take OU over us.