Blog Entry

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

Posted on: July 14, 2011 12:20 pm
Edited on: July 14, 2011 12:45 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli

After getting my new copy of EA Sports' NCAA Football 12 on Tuesday, I took the time to simulate the entire 2012 season to see what the video game thinks is going to happen this year. In order to make things realistic, I even went through all the trouble of updating rosters to reflect what they currently look like.

That meant moving Russell Wilson from NC State to Wisconsin, removing Terrelle Pryor -- not to mention benching the suspended Buckeyes for the first five games of the season -- removing WaShaun Ealey and Caleb King from Georgia's backfield and so on and so forth.

No need to thank me, it was a labor of love.

So how did things turn out?

Well, it looks as if we'll once again have a non-BCS school finish the year undefeated -- the only school to do so -- but it's not Boise State or TCU. In fact, Boise State finally got its shot at a national title, but it couldn't come through.

Who did?

Let's find out. First we'll start with the conference champions (Records don't include conference championships or bowl games).

ACC -- North Carolina 9-3 (6-2)

Big 12 -- Texas A&M 10-2 (8-1)

Big East -- South Florida 9-3 (6-1)

Big Ten -- Wisconsin 11-1 (7-1)

C-USA -- Houston 12-0 (8-0)

MAC -- Western Michigan 10-2 (7-1)

MWC -- Boise State 12-0 (7-0)

Pac 12 -- Oregon 9-3 (7-2)

SEC -- South Carolina 11-1 (7-1)

Sun Belt -- Troy 10-2 (8-0)

WAC -- Fresno State 8-4 (7-0)

And how about those BCS bowl games? Well I'm glad you asked.

Rose Bowl -- Wisconsin 49, Oregon 46 OT

Fiesta Bowl -- Texas A&M 38, Ohio State 17

Orange Bowl -- North Carolina 28, Alabama 20

Sugar Bowl -- Houston 48, South Florida 13

BCS National Championship -- South Carolina 24, Boise State 22

Yes, that's right, the Ol' Ball Coach has added another national title to his resume. Boise State did have a chance to topple the BCS machine, but couldn't pull through. Trailing 24-16, Kellen Moore hit Kyle Efaw on a 16-yard touchdown with 3 minutes left, but the Broncos couldn't convert the two-point conversion. The Gamecocks ran out the clock and celebrated a national title. Oh, and Stephen Garcia was the game's MVP. Let that marinate in your brain for a minute or two.

As for awards, I hope Houston quarterback Case Keenum used all that time off last season to build himself a trophy case because it looks as if he's going to need one. Keenum not only won the Heisman Trophy, but the Maxwell, Walter Camp and Davey O'Brien trophies to boot. That's what happens when you lead Houston to a 14-0 record yet still finish second in both polls.

Now, if that's not enough info for you, let's take a look at some of the season storylines by conference.


-- Jimbo Fisher hits the sophomore slump. Florida State doesn't even qualify for a bowl berth after finishing the year 5-7 with a 3-5 mark within the ACC. FSU loses to Oklahoma, Wake Forest, Maryland, NC State, Boston College, Miami and Florida. And of those losses, only the loss to Florida was by less than 10 points.

-- Al Golden has Miami on the right track. Sure, the Canes only went 8-5 during the season, but they did finish 6-2 in ACC play, just missing the ACC title game thanks to a 27-17 loss to North Carolina

-- Duke goes bowling! That's right, Duke finishes the year 7-6 with a 4-4 mark in the ACC, including a two-point win over UNC. Though the Dukies do lose to Florida in the Music City Bowl. I have no idea who Steve Spurrier was rooting for while watching.

-- Boston College is the "best" team in the Atlantic Division. The Eagles finish the year 8-6 with a 5-3 mark in the conference. They even nearly beat UNC in the title game, losing 29-27.

Big 12

-- Oklahoma can't handle the pressure. The Sooners started out the year 7-0 before getting shocked by Kansas State on the road -- where else? -- 24-21. They also lost at Oklahoma State 38-24 to end the regular season and kill their hopes of a BCS berth.

-- Texas won't be terrible two years in a row. The Longhorns finish the season 11-2 with a 7-2 mark in the Big 12. Though they do lose to Oklahoma and Texas A&M, which stings a bit.

-- Where have you gone, Blaine Gabbert? Missouri needs you. The Tigers finished the season 4-8 with a 2-7 mark in the conference. Seems they're going to miss Colorado, Nebraska and the North Division.

Big East

-- The Big East is respectable. While no team in the conference finished the season with less than three losses (Pitt being the only with three), seven of the eight Big East schools won at least seven games, with Rutgers holding the only losing record.

-- Louisville can't finish. The Cardinals led the Big East most of the season before losing four of their last five games to finish 3-4 in the conference.

-- Casino or football field, Dana Holgorsen has a tough time winning anywhere this year. The Mountaineers went 2-5 in the Big East during his inaugural campaign.

Big Ten

-- Who needs Jim Tressel and Terrelle Pryor? Ohio State went 4-1 in its first five games of the season while so many of its playmakers sat out, and though the Buckeyes struggled in Big Ten play, they still finished the year 9-4 and got an at-large berth to the Fiesta Bowl. Oh, and they still beat Michigan.

-- Not that Michigan minded all that much, because Brady Hoke made believers out of the faithful in his first year. That Michigan loss to Ohio State? That was the Wolverines only Big Ten loss of the regular season, as they went 7-1 to win the Legends Division.

-- Wisconsin loves Russell Wilson. Wilson and the Badgers tore up the Big Ten all year long until the final week of the regular season. Then, after being 11-0 and ranked #1 for the majority of the regular season, the Badgers fell at home to Penn State 42-28. Though I guess beating Michigan 34-13 in the first Big Ten Championship Game and then Oregon in the Rose Bowl took some of the sting out of it.

-- New kid Nebraska gets picked on. The Huskers went 3-5 in Big Ten play, even losing to Minnesota. Though that wasn't as embarrassing as the 13-7 loss to Ohio -- University, not State -- in the Texas Bowl.


-- USC isn't on probation in virtual reality. So the Trojans were able to win the Pac-12 South division, even if they did lose to Oregon 35-14 in the inaugural Pac-12 Championship.

-- Utah enjoyed their move more than Colorado. The Utes finished the season 5-4 in conference play while Colorado went 3-6.

-- Andrew Luck should have gone pro. Stanford and Luck were off to a very nice start to the season, opening 7-0. Then Luck broke his arm, missed the rest of the year and Stanford finished 10-3.


-- The East still stinks. Sure, South Carolina wins the national title, but no other SEC East team managed to win more than four games in the conference. Meanwhile, in the West, LSU had the worst season of anyone, going 7-6 with a 3-5 mark in the SEC. Les Miles needs to eat more grass.

-- Will Muschamp did OK. Florida finished the season 9-4 with a 4-4 mark in the SEC, though Charlie Weis' offense needs some work. The Gators never scored more than 21 points against a SEC opponent not named Vanderbilt.

-- Alabama needs to fire Nick Saban, PAAAAWWWWWWWL. Oh the indignity of Alabama's 2012 season. Not only did the Tide lose the SEC title game to South Carolina, but then they went and lost to North Carolina in the Orange Bowl. Since when does Alabama play in the Orange Bowl, PAAWWWWL? NICK SABAN HAS GOT TO GO.

-- Auburn doesn't miss Cam Newton as much as you'd think. Even without their Heisman winning quarterback, the Tigers still manage to go 8-5 with a 4-4 mark in the conference. Not great, but not terrible either.


-- TCU would like to get to the Big East ASAP. The Horned Frogs lose twice in 2012, and not just to Boise State. Unlike 2011, TCU wasn't able to escape San Diego State, losing 33-30 at Qualcomm Stadium.

-- Notre Dame is back! The Irish finish the year 10-3, and feature one of the most potent offenses in college football. Why they're painting Brian Kelly over Touchdown Jesus as you read this.

-- BYU finds independence to be constricting. The Cougars first season free of the shackles of conferencedom does not work out very well, as BYU finishes the year 4-8 and even loses to Utah State along the way.

-- While I already went over the disrespect Houston received, what about conference mate Southern Miss? The Golden Eagles finished the regular season 11-1 before losing to Houston in the C-USA title game, and they couldn't even sniff the Top 25.

And that's it. There's the entire 2011 season right there according to a video game. I suppose at this point there's no point in even watching any of the games. Now, if you don't mind me, I'm going to go try and wrap my head around Stephen Garcia leading South Carolina to a national championship.

Can you imagine that party?

Since: Aug 10, 2011
Posted on: August 10, 2011 12:11 am

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

That will be the day when Houston gives up 13 points in a BCS bowl game. Apparently the creators of this game haven't watched the UH defense play the last, oh, 20 years.

Since: Sep 14, 2010
Posted on: July 18, 2011 5:53 am

Like Garcia Can Stay Sober For A Whole Year

South Carolina has a good team with a top notch RB & WR. But how long can the " Ole Ball Coach " keep his Jekyll & Hyde qb sober. How many times has this kid been in trouble? Most school would have already put him in the road. But the Ole Ball Coach knows he has no chance of winning the SEC east without Drunk Boy. I never thought he would sell his soul for win but i guess the SEC east needs one coach that will sell his soul and mervin meyer is gone so now steve is the cover up boy. Time will tell if the sell out works.

Since: Aug 28, 2006
Posted on: July 17, 2011 7:54 pm

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

-- Where have you gone, Blaine Gabbert? Missouri needs you. The Tigers finished the season 4-8 with a 2-7 mark in the conference. Seems they're going to miss Colorado, Nebraska and the North Division.



Not worth the electrons it took to run the program.  Somebody forgot to program in Mizzou's D.

Since: Aug 8, 2008
Posted on: July 17, 2011 10:27 am

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

EA Sports hasn't yet made such an obvious mistake as breaking the Sugar Bowl - SEC tie-in.
I am fairly certain that due to a SEC team being in the NC, the Sugar Bowl does not have to choose an SEC team. The automatic tie in is lost when S. Carolina makes the title game. Again, this is a simulation, not a prediction. Who hasn't simmed a season and seen some jacked up results. It's really not worth getting your undies in a bunch.

Since: Sep 15, 2007
Posted on: July 16, 2011 10:27 pm

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

Our aggrevation isn't so much over the results, but the claim that he "tweaked" the game; albeit only to align recent transfers to their correct teams. 

EA Sports hasn't yet made such an obvious mistake as breaking the Sugar Bowl - SEC tie-in.  This simulation did, so we're questioning how far the tweaking actually went.  Some of us are quite surprised at how our teams were 'simulated' to perform and are simply wondering what amount of tweaking was done to them in order to get the results that were posted. 

Otherwise, you are quite right.  It's just another opinion about the upcoming season.

Since: Aug 8, 2008
Posted on: July 16, 2011 8:00 pm

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

It is clear that reading comprehension is not a strength for some people. If you are seriously getting this worked up over a video game simulation, you really need to readjust your priorities.

Since: Mar 26, 2010
Posted on: July 16, 2011 1:32 pm

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

You guys should seriously lighten up, as some have stated.  Its a fun article, I enjoyed it.

Since: Dec 1, 2010
Posted on: July 16, 2011 10:07 am

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

Houston and So Fl in a BCS game.  Man you must have HUGE THUMBS,  Harry Potter couldn't get Houston to a BCS game

Since: Oct 24, 2010
Posted on: July 16, 2011 9:50 am

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

Cannot give much credibility to a guy who does not even know which conferences play in which bowl.  SEC champion plays in Sugar.  IF SEC champion plays in National Championship game ( as Auburn did last year and as SEC has done for last 5 years) then SEC still plays in Sugar.  In that case, Sugar chooses who it wants from SEC.  Last year when Auburn played in championship game, Sugar chose Arkansas over S Carolina which was SEC East Champ. But author of this article does not even put SEC team in Sugar.

Since: Jul 15, 2011
Posted on: July 15, 2011 6:44 pm

The entire 2011 season simulated on NCAA 12

How is he an idiot?? You're an idiot for taking it so seriously. Obviously this is not his prediction for what he actually thinks is going to happen. He simulated a freaking video game.... It was fun, entertaining... Get over yourself.

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