How the "Chirp" does Ball State make a bowl game?

Posted on November 18, 2011

0



After coming off a heartbreaking loss to Northern Illinois, where a win would have solidified the Cardinals place in a bid for a bowl game – and made the week leading into the game against Toledo a lot less nerve wrecking for Cardinal fans who are looking at it as a “If we win there is a chance we make it to bowl game, loose and kiss our dreams good bye” game. But what if I told there was a way the Cardinals  could loose the Toledo game and still make it into a bowl? What if I told you there was a scenario out there, where a mid – major school with a 6-6 record trumps the odds, laughs in the face of the NCAA who obviously made this idiotic rule to have it be 6 wins and your eligible for big football schools like Florida who every once and awhile have a down year (5-5 at this point) just so they can make a quick mill because they know the school is as green as their Gator mascot? What if I stopped writing in rhetorical questions and told you about this possibility? You’d like that right? Well, it is all written below!

TheRun Down

  • 120 teams in all of Division 1 Football
  • 35 bowl games.
  • 70 Teams are invited 
Statsto Date (As of 11/17/2011)
  • There are 54 bowl eligible teams(Including Ball State)
  • 30 teams are ineligible to receive abowl bid. (Meaning they have more than 6 loses, or got in trouble like USC)
  • 36 Teams still vying for a bowl bid.
  • Of those 36, 11 of them have 6 loses,while the other 25 only have 5 or less.
For statistical purposes, those36 teams will be split up into two groups – Fringe Teams (Don’t have 6 loses ordon’t have enough wins against D1 schools) and ‘Nearly on your death Bed Teams’(have 6 losses). Below is a table of those teams. The teams in italicsmeans they are going head to head with a team in the box before the regular season is completed.
Nearly on death Bed Teams
( 6 losses)
Fringe Teams
(Less than 6 Losses or not enough wins against D1 schools)
Independent
Navy (4-6)
Conference USA
Marshall (4-6)
Eastern Carolina (4-6)
UCF (4-6)
MAC Conference
Kent State (4-6)
Mountain West
Colorado State (3-6)
Pac 12 Conference
Washington State (4-6)
SEC
Tennessee (4-6)
Kentucky (4-6)
Sun Belt Conference
North Texas (4-6)
WAC
New Mexico State (4-6)
ACC Conference
Wake Forest (5-5)
North Carolina State (5-5)
The U aka Miami (5-5)
Big 12 Conference
Missouri (5-5)
Texas A&M (5-5)
Iowa State (5-4)
Texas Tech (5-5)
Big East Conference
Louisville (5-5)        
Pittsburgh (5-5)      
Connecticut (4-5)
South Florida (5-4)
Syracuse (5-5)
Big Ten Conference
Purdue (5-5)
Northwestern (5-5)
Conference USA
UTEP (5-5)
Pac 12 Conference
UCLA (5-5)
SEC
Florida (5-5)
Vanderbilt (5-5)
Mississippi State (5-5)
Sun Belt Conference
Western Kentucky (5-5)
WAC
Hawaii (5-5)
Utah State (4-5)
Mountain West
Wyoming (6-3)
Air Force (5-5)
MAC Conference
Eastern Michigan (6-4)
Below is a table telling you which ofthese italicized teams are playing who.Teams in Gray, have 6 losses. Non gray is FringeTeams.

By the basis of thisand using logical reasoning (if a gray plays a gray team, automatically oneteam will be eliminated from bowl eligibility) by seasons end 3 teams will beeliminated (as there are three games where a highlighted gray team isplaying another highlighted team, and they are Marshal vs. East Carolina,East Carolina vs. UCF and Tennessee vs. Kentucky)So now the field ofteams vying for a bowl bid is automatically down to 34 at the least, but UCF beats East Carolina who beat Marshall, than it gets brought down to 33. 

That said there areother games where a non-gray highlighted team is playing a highlighted team. Inthose situations Ball State will obviously be rooting for the non- grayhighlighted team to win, and those games are the following: Kent State vs. EasternMichigan, Colorado State vs. Air Force, Colorado State vs. Wyoming, Vanderbiltvs. Tennessee, North Texas vs. Western Kentucky, and New Mexico State vs. UtahState.
With these set of games,it brings us some interesting possibilities when combined with highlighted vs. unhighlighted games. For example Tennessee is in both of these sets, and the bestcase scenario would be that it loses to Vandy and beats Kentucky, eliminating afoe as well as their selves (this has a 25% chance of working). 33 teams now drops to 32. Now then let’s says all goes ourway and every highlighted team loses to an unlighted, (inthat scenario, who’s each individual game’s outcome happening in our favor has a50% chance of happening) 32 nowdrops to 28, (count only ColoradoState once.) But there is also the strange placement for Louisville, who beforeseasons end plays two games against fellow Fringe Teams, (Connecticut andPittsburgh.). So let’s say they lose both those games, a different Cardinalfootball team will be eliminated dropping the count from 28 to 27. This has a 25%chance of happening.
But what if I told there was a scenario in which everysingle one of the gray teams, as well on their death bed teams are eliminated,including those big major SEC teams Tennessee and Kentucky? That’d be awesomefor BSU right? Well there is one out there and it is this: 
Marshal plays East Carolina;East Carolina wins and eliminates Marshal. East Carolina later goes onto toplay UCF, and in UCF winning, East Carolina is eliminated. Meanwhile if East Carolina beats UCF when they place, UCF is gone. Meanwhile KentState plays Eastern Michigan before season’s ends, and if Eastern Michiganwins, Kent State is eliminated. Colorado State meanwhile is playing againstWyoming and Air Force, and in both games they are predicted to loose, so CSU isnow eliminated. Meanwhile with Tennessee, in the scenario written above, loose to Vanderbilt, they are eliminated, beat Kentucky and Kentucky is eliminated.  North Texas loses to Western Kentucky and theyare eliminated. And last but not least, New Mexico State loses to Utah State,and they are eliminated. However there are still two on their death bed teams left, Navyand Washington State. Meanwhile Navy plays San Jose State at San Jose State.While SJS is 3-7, they have been highly competitive, and except in four games,all of their losses have been by three points or less (meaning they could justas easily be 7-3), so SJS could pull it off at home. Navy is now gone. But let’ssay Navy wins, Navy still has to play the always heated Army Navy game, whereArmy would like nothing more than to spoil their season.(And while I know wedestroyed Army, I’m pretty that teams is bi-polar, I mean they beatNorthwestern a Big 10 school, and coming from a Big 10 household – I am fromMinnesota and my dad’s a gopher’s fan – that means a lot because in today’s age,the Gophers have taken the place of Northwestern in being the other rag doll inthe Big 10 alongside Indiana.)Meanwhile Washington State is now the only sixloss team left, and their next two games are against bowl eligible teams, sothey have a reasonably high chance of losing at least one of them. 
With 11teams now eliminated out of the original 36in this scenario, only 25 teamsare left vying for bowl eligibility, and the magic number is 16, because currently there are 54 bowl eligible teams.Of the 25 remaining teams, all of which arefringe teams (less than 6 losses or not enough wins against D1 schools) theseare left.


Wake Forest (5-5)
North Carolina State (5-5)
The U aka Miami (5-5)
Missouri (5-5)
Texas A&M (5-5)
Iowa State (5-4)
Texas Tech (5-5                                                
Louisville (5-5)
Pittsburgh (5-5)                                                    
Connecticut (4-5)
South Florida (5-4)
Syracuse (5-5)  
Purdue (5-5)
Northwestern (5-5)
UTEP (5-5)
UCLA (5-5)
Florida (5-5)
 Vanderbilt (5-5)
Mississippi State (5-5)
Western Kentucky (5-5)
Hawaii (5-5)
Utah State (4-5)
Wyoming (6-3)
Air Force (5-5)
Eastern Michigan (6-4)


Now it comes down topredictions and guessing. Below are some predications I made which I think makesomewhat logical sense. In this, it eliminates 6 out of the 25 remaining,bringing it down to 19 teams.

Iowa State: of theirnext three games they play highly ranked schools (#2Oklahoma State, #5 Oklahomaand #13 Kansas State, with all of the games except for the OSU one, on the road.)So the likelihood of the Cyclones pulling off an upset is slim, so I ampredicting they lose their next three games eliminating them from BowlEligibility (Side note: if they win one of these, they are in over us, easily.Sorry but if you beat one the Big 12 powers and have 6 wins, bowl people are puttingyou in a game) 

Louisville: Final twogames are away and against fellow fringe teams in the big east Connecticutand USF.
Connecticut: Eventhough they help us by beating Louisville, there final two games are againstsome the best teams in the big east, Rutgers and Cincinnati. 
Texas Tech: They areplaying at Missouri and playing against #22 ranked Baylor at a neutral site.Makes it a relatively high chance they will be eliminated.  
Syracuse: loose to Pittbecause Pitt beat South Florida 44-17, Cuse lost 37-17 to USF, and play Cincinnatiwho beat Pittsburgh.   
Eastern Michigan: Eventhough they have 6 wins, two of their wins came against DII schools Howard andAlabama State, and only one of those wins count towards your record. So reallyfor our purposes, their record is 5-4. Now then, we hope they beat Kent Stateand kick them out, and even though that brings them to 6 wins, as long as they loseto Northern Illinois the next week, it doesn’t matter because we beat them inthe head to head matchup, so they won’t make it over us.  
After those six teams, Icould not fine anymore reasoning to eliminate three out of the remaining 19 teams. That said, with only three needed to be eliminated, obviously that has a chance of happening.(And I am aware of the possibility that another don’t get eliminated, and that boots Ball State out of the bowl picture, which would suck.) 
However the chancesof all this stuff that has been written happening, is slim to none. It was justfor kicks. But in all honesty, the best way to ensue BSU makes a bowl game isif they beat Toledo. That said if the unspeakable happens and they lose, atleast we know there is a possibility out here in which they make it. Even if it is next to impossible that all goes accordingly in our favor.
Advertisements