For those of you who don't know, Brad Edwards is a columnist for ESPN.com. He recently wrote an article on ESPN.com trying to justify allowing a team that did not win their conference to compete for the BCS title. He's essentially apologizing in advance for what would happen if Missouri wins the Big XII championship game. He claims that the third ranked team in the conference would be the best team in the nation. He attempts to back up his claim by painting a doomsday scenario where the top ranked teams lose out, and don't win their conferences.
Here's my stance on this. If the best teams lose out, then clearly, they weren't the best teams. This is a problem that will have been manufactured by the money grab known as the conference championship games. I am deeply opposed to conference championship games. They undermine the importance of conference play, and they screw up the national title picture. However, it is the bed the Big XII has made, and now they must lie in it.
The fact that he's arguing for the Big XII makes his case even shakier. The Big XII has already screwed up the BCS picture in this exact same manner twice. In 2001, the Big XII champion was Colorado, however, the Big XII sent Nebraska to the national title game. The result? 37-14 Miami. They didn't learn their lesson. In 2003, Kansas State was the Big XII champion, but the Big XII sent Oklahoma to the National Title Game. This time it was 21-14 LSU.
I believe the voters might have learned their lesson. Last season, Georgia was ranked second with only the conference championship games to go. Georgia was not playing, so they figured that their spot in the title game against Ohio State was assured. Far from it. Eventual SEC Champion LSU jumped from 7th to 2nd, and locked the #3 team in the SEC from attempting to play in the title game. The results were quite pleasing to the SEC. 38-24 LSU.
So to answer your question Brad, in case your doomsday scenario does play out, yes, Penn State-Florida would be just fine.