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TCU-Boise State Match-up Protects BCS Conferences

Can anybody who's watched Texas this season say without a doubt in their mind that Texas is the 2nd best team in the country? They struggled to beat an Oklahoma team, that lost Sam Bradford during the game and was without super NFL prospect, tight end Jermaine Gresham the entire season. They also struggled to put away Texas Tech and Texas A&M. The lone outstanding win they had was a 41-14 clobbering No.14 Oklahoma State, who has yet to beat a team that finished in the Top 25 in the past two seasons.

Then came the Big 12 championship game against Nebraska and Ndamukong Suh. The Cornhuskers have one of the best defenses in the country, but Texas looked awful the entire game and were aided on their game-winning drive with 55 yards penalty yards. They still managed to nearly squander this opportunity by inexplicably running a play during which time expired before an instant replay put a second back on the clock allowing the Longhorns to kick their way into the BCS championship game.

Take a look at TCU's schedule and results on the other hand. They beat ACC runner-up Clemson on the road, a notoriously difficult place for road teams to win. They also beat a solid Air Force team on the road and schooled No. 15 ranked BYU, again on the road, by a score of 38-17. Their biggest win on the season was a 55-28 demolition of the No. 23 ranked Utah on national television.

I can't tell you for sure that TCU is better than Texas, but looking at each team's schedules, quality of opponents and margin of victory, the Horned Frogs' resume looks a bit better than Texas'. However the voters decided to once rewards the bigger team in Texas, not the biggest one.

Instead we will watch TCU and Boise State, who also finished undefeated, in the Fiesta Bowl and wonder if given the chance would those teams have been able to compete against Alabama in the naitonal championship game. It is also something to think if Big East champion Cincinnati deserved a spot in the championship game over Texas as well. Texas' ability to push an Alabama team that manhandled Florida in the SEC championship game is in doubt.

There are people trying to defend the decision to pit two non-BCS conference team in the FIest Bowl rather than match them up against teams like Georgia Tech, Iowa, Cincinnati or Florida. How else can we ever determine how good a team like TCU or Boise is? We will only be left to watch their match-up and then watch again next season while inflated conference perceptions cloud the reality of who the best teams really are.