Notre Dame has surpassed the Florida Gators and the Oregon Ducks to move into No. 3 in Week 10's BCS rankings. The Fighting Irish impressed humans and computers alike as they defeated the Oklahoma Sooners in Norman on Saturday night. ND has a real shot at the BCS National Championship, as a loss from No. 1 Alabama or No. 2 Kansas State could propel them into the title game.
The Irish are getting a bump so far from their schedule, as wins over Stanford and OU have helped them with the computers. Notre Dame will have to hope that USC can stop losing, as the Trojans are the only real schedule-boosters left for ND.
Oregon sits just behind the Irish at No. 4. The Ducks are No. 2 in the Coaches Poll, but have yet to play a tough schedule. That will change with Stanford, Oregon State, and USC down the stretch. Notre Dame may need to hope for a Ducks loss, otherwise Oregon may jump them.
Oregon's still very much in the running, however -- even though they've been losing ground in the standings for a couple weeks now, their schedule is back-loaded. They have USC, Stanford and Oregon State still to go, plus a likely Pac-12 Championship Game appearance. Four quality wins could put the Ducks into the title game over other unbeatens, but we've still got a long way to go.
The full BCS Top 25 heading into Week 10, via ESPN:
Fun facts, via the National Football Foundation:
• First-time school(s) in the BCS Standings: Louisiana Tech. A total of 86 schools have appeared in the BCS Standings since they were created in 1998.
• Schools debuting in 2012 BCS Standings: No. 20 Nebraska, No. 22 Arizona, No. 24 Oklahoma, No. 25 Louisiana Tech.
• Dropped out of BCS Standings: No. 15 Rutgers, No. 22 Michigan, No. 24 Ohio, No. 25 Wisconsin.
• This week marks the first time in the history of the BCS Standings that five teams from the same conference have been ranked in the top 10: SEC - No. 1 Alabama, No. 5 LSU, No. 6 Georgia, No. 7 Florida, No. 8 South Carolina. The conference also extends its streak of having at least one team in the No. 1 or No. 2 position in 35 of the last 36 BCS Standings, dating back to Dec. 2, 2007.
• Kansas State has reached its highest-ever ranking at No. 2. The previous high was No. 3 for five consecutive weeks from Nov. 9 through Dec. 6, 1998 and last week's ranking on October 21, 2012.
• Notre Dame ties its highest-ever ranking at No. 3 (2002). The Fighting Irish have been in the top five for three consecutive weeks, the first time that has happened in the BCS era.
• Louisville has cracked the top 10 of the BCS Standings for the first time since Dec. 3, 2006. The Cards' position at No. 10 marks the first time a Big East team has been in the top 10 since Cincinnati (No. 3) in 2009.
• Five schools moved up four or more positions from last week's Standings: Louisville (16 to 10), Clemson (18 to 13), South Carolina (13 to 8), Georgia (10 to 6) and Texas A&M (20 to 16).