In a blog posted earlier today, BCS guru Jerry Palm essentially says the race between Texas and Oklahoma is too close to call in terms of guessing which school will wind up ahead of the other when the BCS standings are released later this afternoon.
Palm wrote on his website, CollegeBCS.com, that Texas' jump to third in today's coaches poll -- passing Florida in the process -- stands as "great news" for the Longhorns. But OU's inevitable climb in the computer rankings, spurred by the Sooners' 61-41 road victory over Oklahoma State on Saturday night, makes this anyone's ball game.
Oklahoma moved to No. 1 in today's Sagarin rankings, ahead of No. 2 Texas. Last week, Texas was No. 1 in Sagarin and OU was No. 4. At stake is a berth in next week's Big 12 championship game, which will go to the team that finishes highest in today's BCS standings. Last week, Texas finished second in the overall computer rankings and OU was third.
Based on the elements released earlier today -- the coaches poll and the Sagarin rankings -- here is Palm's latest take as we prepare for Fox's release of the BCS standings between 3 and 3:30 p.m.:
"If my computer projection is right -- and that's a big if -- Texas would need to lead Oklahoma by 31 points in the Harris poll to win the division. If they are tied in the computers, Texas only needs a two-point lead in Harris. If Texas leads by .01 in the computers, the Longhorns need to be within 26 points of OU in the Harris poll. They were 21 behind going into the weekend, which would be good enough in this case."
In other words: It's anyone's ball game, an hour before the official announcement.
_ Jimmy Burch