Before the Southeastern Conference sorted out who will play Notre Dame for the national championship, Oklahoma positioned itself be part of the BCS lineup _ one way or another.
No. 2 Alabama and No. 3 Georgia played in Atlanta for the SEC title and a trip to Miami to face the top-ranked Fighting Irish in the BCS title game Jan. 7.
Earlier, the 12th-ranked Sooners won 24-17 at TCU to finish the regular season 10-2, with at least a share of the Big 12 title.
On Friday, Stanford grabbed a spot in the Rose Bowl and the chances for a BCS buster dwindled.
Northern Illinois’ 44-37 victory in double overtime against Kent State on Friday night gave the Huskies the Mid-American Conference title, and ended the Golden Flashes’ BCS hopes.
Kent State needed to move up one spot in the BCS standings to No. 16 to earn an automatic bid. Northern Illinois came into the weekend 21st in the standings. The Huskies have a chance to get into the top 16 and get into the BCS, too _ but it will be tough.
Kent State’s loss could be Oklahoma’s gain. If neither of the MAC teams nor Boise State, which was playing Nevada, earns that so-called BCS buster bid, the Sooners (11-2) look like a logical choice to be selected, even if No. 7 Kansas State locks up the Big 12’s BCS bid Saturday night.
The Wildcats need only to beat No. 23 Texas at home to earn a spot in the Fiesta Bowl. A loss would send Oklahoma to the Fiesta Bowl and have Kansas State hoping for an at-large bid only a few weeks after being No. 1 in the BCS standings.
No. 8 Stanford locked up the Rose Bowl bid by beating UCLA 27-24 on Friday night and will play the winner of Saturday night’s Big Ten championship game between Wisconsin and No. 14 Nebraska.
No. 13 Florida State and Georgia Tech were playing in the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game later for a bid to the Orange Bowl.
Louisville earned the Big East’s BCS bid by beating Rutgers on Thursday night, 20-17.