Teddy Bridgewater certainly put on a show and launched his Heisman campaign in style against Ohio. But for his team, it was but the first in a series of low-impact, low-return matchups.
Louisville is stuck at No. 14 in the simulated BCS standings after the first week, and don't look for the Cardinals to make much of a move either in the polls or the computers anytime soon. They face FCS Eastern Kentucky next, and then Kentucky and Florida International before opening American Athletic Conference play against Temple.
The full simulated standings:
|28||39||Penn State ^||0.0000||37||4||0.0027||24||22||16||0.160||0.0542||B10|
|32||34||San Jose State||33||12||0.0077||0.0000||17||0.090||0.0326||MWC|
Keys: Pvs = Previous Week; Coach = USA Today Coaches Poll; AP = Associated Press Poll; Md = Median ranking of 24 computer ratings; JS = Jeff Sagarin; KM* = Kenneth Massey MOV; RB = Richard Billingsley; Cp Avg = Computer Average; Yellow indicates top team in BCS conference; Orange indicates top team in non-BCS conference.
Explanation: This rankings method is a simulation of the actual BCS standings with the following variations: 1) The AP Poll is used in place of the Harris Interactive Poll, which is not published until after the first weekend of October; 2) Three of the six BCS computer ratings are available - Jeff Sagarin, Kenneth Massey and Richard Billingsley; 3) The other three computer ratings - Anderson & Hester, Colley Matrix and Peter Wolfe - will not be available until mid-September or October, so they're replaced by the median ranking of 24 computer ratings.
^ Penn State is ineligible for inclusion in Official BCS Standings
Only one of Louisville's opponents is ranked above No. 55 in the Massey Ratings, which has Louisville at No. 40 currently. In the other two BCS computer rankings currently available, the Cardinals are No. 29 (in Jeff Sagarin) and No. 12 (in Richard Billingsley). But the high ranking in Billingsley is nearly meaningless because of its high frequency of being discarded by the BCS formula (each team's most extreme rankings are tossed).
Another national title contender facing considerable headwind early in the season is Ohio State, which despite being ranked No. 2 in the Coaches Poll and No. 3 in the AP Poll finds itself only No. 6 in the simulated BCS standings. The Buckeyes also have an impact-free nonconference schedule that features FCS Florida A&M and San Diego State, which was trounced in its opener by FCS Eastern Illinois.
But at least Ohio State should get decent amount of help once the Big Ten schedule begins, even though it will miss Nebraska and Michigan State, two of the better teams in the conference. The Buckeyes will be able to hang on to their lofty poll rankings as long as they keep winning and just by virtue of being in the Big Ten, their computer ratings will not continue to sink.
The same cannot be said for Louisville, which faces the prospect of going 12-0 and not coming close to playing for the BCS title. Then again, we're getting way ahead of ourselves.
Louisville and Ohio State notwithstanding, we do have a few high-impact BCS games in Week 2, and here they are (rankings in simulated BCS standings):
No. 5 South Carolina at No. 11 Georgia (4:30 p.m. ESPN): Last week's opener at Clemson was not a do-or-die game for Georgia, but this week's SEC opener certainly is. A Bulldogs loss will surely eliminate them from the BCS title chase, if not a shot at the SEC championship game. Steve Spurrier has owned his old rival at his new school once again, having won the last three to improve to 15-5 lifetime against Georgia.
No. 12 Notre Dame at No. 17 Michigan (8 p.m. ET, ESPN): In the final Big House matchup in the foreseeable future between those
storied rivals, possibly more than just semantics are on the line. This is one of the two toughest road tests for Notre Dame this season (the other being the season finale at Stanford), and Michigan Stadium has simply been the Big House of Horrors for the Irish, who have lost six of the last seven there, the last two in excruciating fashion.
No. 10 Florida at Miami (Noon, ESPN): This rivalry has definitely gone non-storied, this being only the sixth time these schools have met since 1987 and the last maybe in a long, long time. This game certainly means more to the Hurricanes, who are trying to rebuild the program and reestablish their national profile. The Gators simply have bigger fishes to fry in the SEC and a loss here wouldn't even cripple their national title hopes.
San Jose State at No. 4 Stanford (11 p.m., Pac-12 Network): Stanford is the only ranked team that did not play last week and its season-opener is far from a cakewalk. Mike MacIntyre rebuilt the Spartans program and led them to an 11-2 record in 2012 before moving on to Colorado. The Cardinal barely held off San Jose State, 20-17, in last year's opener, and can ill-afford to overlook their next-door neighbor this time around.
No. 2 Oregon at Virginia (3:30 p.m., ABC/ESPN2): Mark Helfrich made his debut as Oregon coach last week, but does it really count when the Colonels of Nicholls State fell in the Oregon forest while you were still searching for Fox Sports 1? This week, his high-powered Ducks will take their show on the road against a Virginia team that might not be such a pushover, after an upset win over BYU in its opener.