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Look for FSU/Va. Tech. in Sugar Bowl

The Associated Press

Unless a Big Red computer virus strikes in the next week, college football has itself a perfect matchup for the national championship – No.

Saturday, November 27, 1999

Unless a Big Red computer virus strikes in the next week, college football has itself a perfect matchup for the national championship – No. 1 Florida State vs. No. 2 Virginia Tech.

The Hokies (11-0) all but clinched their spot in the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 4 by completing a perfect regular season with a 38-14 win over No. 22 Boston College on Friday. The Seminoles (11-0) punched their ticket to New Orleans a week ago with a 30-23 victory over No. 5 Florida.

If the matchup holds – the final Bowl Championship Series standings are released Dec. 5 – it will mark the first national title showdown between perfect teams ranked 1-2 since 1995, when Nebraska beat Florida in the ’96 Fiesta Bowl.

Standing in the way, barely, is No. 3 Nebraska, the Big Red. The Cornhuskers (10-1) needed overtime to pull out a 33-30 win over unranked Colorado on Friday, and they still have the Big 12 title game against No. 7 Texas (9-3) on Dec. 4.

How that result impacts the final BCS standings is unclear. The BCS standings are based on several factors, including computer ratings and strength of schedule. Florida State-Virginia Tech can’t officially be sealed until the final numbers are in and BCS coordinator Roy Kramer announces the results next Sunday about 4 p.m. EST. The next BCS standings come out Monday.

”I think Virginia Tech being in the big game is the right thing to do,” Tech coach Frank Beamer said Saturday. ”No one has questioned Florida State. If Florida State belongs, we certainly belong.”

After Friday’s results, the odds heavily favor the Hokies.

Entering the Thanksgiving weekend, Virginia Tech led Nebraska by .63 points in the BCS standings. The margin is sure to increase on Monday because Tech beat a Top 25 team by 24 points, and the Huskers beat an unranked team by three points in OT. In the world of the BCS, margin of victory counts, meaning the results will affect both team’s strength of schedule and might influence computer ratings.

Beamer, though, is not a big fan of computers. He says games have to be looked at from an emotional standpoint, too.

”Maybe we’re making something a little more complicated than it needs to be,” Beamer said ”We’ve got to be careful about computers.”

Onward to the rest of the matchups …

The three other BCS games – all with payouts of about $12 million per team – are clearly defined:

-Fiesta (Jan. 2): Tennessee vs. Big 12 champion Nebraska or Texas.

-Rose (Jan. 1): Big Ten champion Wisconsin vs. Pac-10 champion Stanford.

-Orange (Jan. 1): Michigan vs. SEC champion Alabama or Florida.

The Crimson Tide (9-2) play the Gators (9-2) in the SEC title game in Atlanta; and the Huskers play the Longhorns for the Big 12 title in San Antonio next Saturday.

Also Saturday, Marshall (11-0) – the only other Division I-A team with a perfect record – shoots for the Mid-American Conference title when it plays Western Michigan next Saturday. The winner goes the Motor City Bowl.

In Saturday’s only two games among ranked teams, it was: No. 6 Tennessee 38, Vanderbilt 10; and No. 20 Georgia Tech 51, No. 16 Georgia 48, in overtime.

Here are projected matchups for the other bowls:

-Citrus (Jan. 1): Michigan State vs. Alabama-Florida loser.

-Cotton (Jan. 1): Texas vs. Georgia.

-Outback (Jan. 1): Purdue vs. Mississippi State.

-Gator (Jan. 1): Georgia Tech vs. Miami.

-insight.com (Dec. 31): Boston College vs. Oklahoma.

-Independence (Dec. 31): Arkansas vs. Colorado.

-Sun (Dec. 31): Oregon vs. Minnesota.

-Liberty (Dec. 31): Southern Mississippi vs. Colorado State.

-Peach (Dec. 30): Clemson vs. Mississippi.

-Micronpc.com (Dec. 30): Virginia vs. Illinois.

-Humanitarian (Dec. 30): Boise State vs. Louisville.

-Holiday (Dec. 29): Kansas State vs. Washington.

-Music City (Dec. 29): Kentucky vs. Syracuse.

-Alamo (Dec. 28): Penn State vs. Texas A&M.

-Motor City (Dec. 27): Marshall-Western Michigan winner vs. BYU.

-O’hau (Dec. 25): Oregon State vs. Hawaii.

-Aloha (Dec. 25): Wake Forest vs. Arizona State.

-Mobile Alabama (Dec. 22): East Carolina vs. TCU.

-Las Vegas (Dec. 18): Fresno State vs. Utah.

The Southeastern Conference should end up with eight of its 12 teams in the postseason; the Big Ten has seven of 11 teams in bowls.