- Associated Press - Sunday, October 30, 2011

Not long ago, it seemed the regular season might end with a logjam of undefeated teams at the top of the BCS standings.

Who was going to be beat Wisconsin? Or Clemson? And wouldn’t Oklahoma waltz into Stillwater on Dec. 3 for a Big 12 battle of unbeatens against Oklahoma State?

Now after two weeks in which the number of undefeated teams has dropped from 10 to six, one loss doesn’t seem like a death sentence for a team’s national title hopes. Hear that LSU and Alabama fans? And Boise State getting into the BCS championship game isn’t such a long shot anymore, either.

The fifth-ranked Broncos nearly had one of the great off weeks in the history of college football.

Landry Jones and No. 7 Oklahoma throttling Kansas State 58-17 was good news, but certainly not unexpected. Kansas State raced to a 7-0 start by making the most of a roster that has some limitations. The Sooners exploited those shortcomings and the Wildcats might be looking at more of the same at No. 3 Oklahoma State on Saturday. Jones threw for 505 against the Wildcats. Conservatively pencil Brandon Weeden in for 350.

Still, any time an undefeated team from an automatic-qualifying conference loses Boise State fans should smile.

The Broncos had to be glowing for a while Saturday night. Tevin Washington and Georgia Tech’s option offense confounded No. 11 Clemson in a 31-17 victory in Atlanta.

The Tigers, who were poised to pass the Broncos in the BCS standings, now move to the back of the line.

It would have been noteworthy, too, that Ohio State beat Wisconsin on a late long touchdown pass, but considering Michigan State did the same to the Badgers a week earlier only the Big Ten race was further muddled by the conference’s latest fantastic finish.

Speaking of the Big Ten, the only team undefeated in that league is No. 16 Penn State (8-1, 5-0). Who saw that coming three weeks ago?

As Clemson was coming apart, Southern California had Andrew Luck and No. 4 Stanford teetering. A rare telegraphed throw by Luck was returned 33 yards for a touchdown by Nickell Robey to give USC a 34-27 lead with 3:08 left.

Luck, not in the least bit flustered, led Stanford back to tie, then to a 56-48 win in triple overtime.

“We talked about fighting adversity,” Stanford coach David Shaw said. “I didn’t know there was going to be this much adversity, but the kids fought through, and I love them to death for it.”

If form holds, Oklahoma State and Stanford will jostle for a spot in the national title game against the winner of Saturday’s mega-showdown between No. 1 LSU and No. 2 Alabama in Tuscaloosa.

But Stanford’s defense had issues against USC and Oklahoma State’s defense has had issues against pretty much everyone _ ranked 111th in the nation.

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