Stanford Coach David Shaw is doused with Gatorade as the clock ticks to zero… (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles…)
Off we go into the last season of the Bowl Championship Series, an era that has seen Rankman pluck No. 1 names like Leland Stanford out of the Oklahoma State Cowboy's hat. Longshot choices have been made dating to the pre-BCS year of 1997, when Gerber-fed Rankman picked North Carolina as his preseason No. 1 and then got incredulous patched-in phone calls from Mayberry and Mount Pilot. It sparked a like affair with Coach Mack Brown that followed him to Texas and lasted until last season's Oklahoma loss. One year Rankman picked Boise State and, despite the hoots, it was a much better choice than USC was last season. So fasten your Ramblin' Wreck seat belts for one last BCS standings train wreck before the first four-team playoff train wreck. Good luck to all the competitors, and also Colorado.
1. Stanford. Ties to Pop Warner youth football developmental league paying dividends at last!
2. Alabama. Can't be No. 1 if McCarron rated only third-best SEC QB by all-knowing coaches.
3. Ohio State. FC Columbus ready for BCS Cup after going 12-0 in "friendlies" last year.
4. Oregon. Rick Steves of PBS says he was paid $25,000 for bogus "Let's Go Greenland" tour guides.
5. Georgia. Team tailor came up five yards short every time he measured for new uniforms.
6. South Carolina. Highlight of end-of-training-camp party was everyone climbing up Jadeveon Clowney.
7. Clemson. Green Day on team's title prospects: "Wake me up, when September ends."
8. Louisville. Hugh Hefner (in pajamas) says Cardinals have an easier weekly schedule than he has.
9. Florida. Offense continues 12-yard program after fan-ordered 30-day rehab stay at "Gainesville Acres."
10. Northwestern. Going with retro white helmets to rekindle gory days of the 1970s and '80s.
11. Texas. Bevo replaced for opener by Beyonce in bikini wearing David Ash's jersey.
12. Boise State. Rankman would have picked Broncos to win every conference they almost joined.
13. Michigan. Urban Meyer says Michigan doesn't deserve to play Ohio State twice.… Wait, that was 2006.
14. Florida State. Sprint race is on after Jimbo "Talladega" Fisher names Winston the starting QB.
15. Louisiana State. Don't miss the band's first halftime show: "Tribute to Baton Rouge District Court Judges."
16. Nebraska. One of nation's most electric offenses faces a dead-socket defense every day at practice.
17. Arizona State. Coach says this could be best team he has ever coached for more than one year.
18. Oklahoma State. Rankman thinks this two-QB team should play USC in the Indecision Bowl.
19. Oregon State. Wazzu! writer challenges Yahoo! writer's claim that Riley is best coach in Pac-12.
20. Notre Dame. Coach Kelly moved his cot to grotto after naming Rees starting QB for Temple.
21. Texas A&M. First 100,000 fans for Rice opener will receive signed Johnny Manziel burp bib.
22. UCLA. Mora asks maintenance man with ladder to come in and slightly lower expectations.
23. Fresno State. Rankman is very high on this team mainly because of coach what's-his-name.
24. Wisconsin. Topping goals for 2013: Become first six-loss school to earn Rose Bowl bid.
25. Oklahoma. "Belldozer" rams through Stoops' office door after not being named starting QB.