In the latest results of the Discover Fan Loyalty Poll, many have voiced their opinions as to just who is the best college football team in America. While many agree with the current BCS Standings and AP Top 25 as far as which team is No. 1, they happen to differ greatly throughout the rest of the top eight teams. But after looking at the Discover Fan Loyalty Polls, as well as the BCS rankings, there appears to be a chance that at least one of the top teams will get upset this weekend.
The question is, which team stands the best chance of getting upset on Saturday? That all depends on how you look at some of the key matchups.
The Alabama Crimson Tide holds the top spot across the board. They are No. 1 in the Discover Fan Loyalty Poll, the BCS Standings, the AP Top 25, the Harris Poll , etc. You name it, and Alabama is No. 1 in the nation. While they have faced an easier schedule than any other top SEC team so far this season, their next two games are their biggest challenges. That starts with a home game against the Mississippi State Bulldogs, who are 7-0, just like the Tide. While I do not see Alabama losing this game, it stands worth watching.
The No. 2 team in the Discover Fan Loyalty Poll differs from the BCS, as the fans still feel as if the Oregon Ducks are second best. With a home game against the Colorado Buffaloes on tap on Saturday, it is highly unlikely the Ducks drop their first game of the season this week.
At No. 3 sits the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. While the Golden Domers may not want to hear this, I feel their game against the Oklahoma Sooners on the road this Saturday night gives us the best chance of one of the top eight teams in the Discover Fan Loyalty Poll dropping their game. The Irish are strong defensively, but they have not faced any team with the explosive offense possessed by the Sooners.
The next team comes with a bit of a caveat. The Ohio State Buckeyes are 8-0 and No. 4 in the Discover Fan Loyalty Poll, but they are unranked in the BCS Standings. It is not because the pollsters do not believe that Ohio State is a talented team, but rather the fact that they are ineligible for postseason play. The BCS does not rank teams who cannot play in a bowl game. Still, they face a stiff test in the Big 10 with a game against another team ineligible for postseason play, the Penn State Nittany Lions.
Before we take a look at the bottom half of the top eight teams in the latest Discover Fan Loyalty Poll, take a look at where some of the fans would prefer to watch these teams play this weekend, as well as what they may do if their team is trailing late in the game.
The fifth ranked team in the Discover Fan Loyalty Poll is the Florida Gators, who are No. 2 in the current BCS Standings. The Gators have overcome an absolutely brutal schedule over the past few weeks to remain undefeated, but they will have to face another top 10 team this Saturday against the Georgia Bulldogs. This is always a tough game for both teams, in the battle known as the World’s Largest Cocktail Party. The Gators are very talented, but the Bulldogs have looked solid in every game but one, so this one has a chance at an upset. Still, I would favor Florida in the end.
At No. 6 is the Kansas State Wildcats, who also have another very difficult game on tap on Saturday. They will host the Texas Tech Red Raiders in a game that could hit a total of 100 points by the third quarter. These two offenses can put up points in bunches, and it features a pair of Heisman Trophy quarterback candidates in Collin Klein of KSU and Sage Doege at Texas Tech. I like the Wildcats, but the Red Raiders should not be taken lightly by any means.
The LSU Tigers come in at No. 7 and have their bye week this weekend. They stand no chance of an upset. They do, however, face the Alabama Crimson Tide in what could be billed as the game of the year next Saturday night.
Finally, at No. 8 in the Discover Fan Loyalty Poll is the Oregon State Beavers. They will have to travel to face the Washington Huskies in one of the latest kickoffs of the evening, and it may be more difficult than many people think. The Huskies are not ranked, but they are not bad either. The Beavers are expecting quarterback Shane Mannion to return, but he could be rusty. I certainly would not bet on an upset here, but it is another game that bears watching just in case.
* The 15-week Discover Fan Loyalty Poll is conducted by Rasmussen Reports, a nationally recognized leader in polling, who gathers sentiment by phone from 800 college football fans who follow games at least once per week on television, radio, in person or online.
Discover launched the Fan Loyalty Poll to give die-hard fans a platform to showcase their dedication and love for their favorite college football team leading up to the 2013 Discover BCS National Championship Game and 2013 Discover Orange Bowl. Each week the poll will offer new questions about what college football fans are thinking this season.
Beyond title sponsorship of the 2013 Discover BCS National Championship Game and 2013 Discover Orange Bowl, Discover’s commitment to college football includes relationships with ESPN and Notre Dame Football on NBC.