The Cardinals simply did not have the schedule strength to keep up with the best teams from the power conferences.
The Jeff Sagarin ratings, one of the six computer systems used in the
Louisville's only chance was to go undefeated and then pray all the other top schools lost once, or maybe twice.
A 38-35 loss to
“It doesn’t damage them at all,”
Louisville's loss, though, did have a ripple effect throughout the BCS.
The highest rated champion from a league outside the top six earns a bid to one of the major bowls if it can finish in the top 12 of the BCS standings.
But there is another clause that grants that champion a bid if it finishes in the top 16 and ahead of a champion from a major conference.
No. 17 Fresno State (
Louisville’s loss, however, means there is a good chance an undefeated Fresno State or Northern Illinois can finish in the top 16 ahead of the
Northern Illinois used this BCS clause last year to earn a bid to the
The Huskies finished No. 15 in the final BCS standings ahead of
There won't be this kind of excitement starting next year, when the selection committee will simply award a major bowl bid to the highest champion from the so-called "Group of Five" conferences.