BCS Ratings: Stanford drops, Baylor chasing Ohio State

The battle for No. 3 in the BCS ratings got more interesting this week as Baylor pulled to within .0013 of Ohio State.  The Buckeyes still have a lead in the polls, but Baylor has the advantage in the computers.  I still like Ohio State long term as long as the voters stick with them.  If Baylor doesn't pass the Buckeyes in the polls this week, they never will.

Stanford lost to USC, but still stayed in the top 10.  Voters have the Cardinal just outside the top 10, but strong computer rankings still have them ninth overall.  Oklahoma State is ninth in the polls, but still behind the Cardinal in the overall rankings due to poor computer rankings.  The Cowboys figure to get a boost big time if they can beat Baylor at home this week.

Michigan State isn't getting much respect for a one-loss team from a major conference.  The Spartans are 13th in both polls and 15th in the computer rankings.  Ohio State is rooting hard for Sparty to win out so the Buckeyes can have a game that resonates on the national radar.  Michigan's indifferent play reduces that game to a big rivalry, but nothing more.

Northern Illinois made up some ground on Fresno State this week, but considering the Huskies picked up their biggest win of the season and the Bulldogs had a bye, it wasn't as much of a move as you might have expected.  Oddly, NIU fell some in Wolfe's computer rankings.  They lost six spots and their overall rating number was lower.

Duke is now 8-2, in control of its own destiny in the ACC, and just on the outside of the BCS top 25.  The Blue Devils are one of three major conference teams that have never appeared on an official release of the BCS in its 16-year history.  The others are Indiana and Vanderbilt.  A win over Wake Forest this week ought to change that.

CBS Sports Senior Writer

Jerry Palm started writing about sports on the Internet right after Al Gore invented it. He was the first to bring RPI out in the open and is one of the pioneers of predicting the March Madness bracket.... Full Bio

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