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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Does Northern Illinois deserve the Orange?

Of course not. It's really a stupid question to even ask. Northern Illinois is 24th in the BPR, 34th in the power rankings.

NIU lost to Iowa. Iowa is terrible. Oklahoma lost to Kansas State and Notre Dame; LSU lost to Florida and Alabama; Georgia lost to South Carolina and Alabama; Texas A&M and South Carolina lost to Florida and LSU. If you're going to look at non-BCS conference schools, Utah State and San Jose State with two losses are much more deserving.

But idiots depend too much on counting losses and miss the fact that NIU's schedule is devoid of talent. They played two BCS conference teams, but it would have been hard to pick weaker BCS conference opponents (Kansas and Iowa), and they lost to one of them. As it stands right now, NIU has played zero teams in the top 30 in the BPR, 1 in the top 40, two inside the top 50 and five inside the top 100. That's terrible.

Now that we've established that, let's talk about why they might be deserving. The Huskies have outscored their terrible opponents by 21.8 points per game, 5th best nationally (1 spot behind Texas A&M who has the nation's 3rd and 6th toughest schedules by SOSBE-becoming bowl eligible-and SOSUD-going undefeated, vs. 122nd and 104th for NIU). Jordan Lynch leads the nation in NEPA (although he's still behind Manziel in NEPA/game). And . . . that's it. I've got nothing.

NIU can only hope the Florida State that showed up against NC State and the Techs will be playing in the Orange Bowl, and not the FSU that played the rest of the games.

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