Sunday, November 20, 2011

11/20 (Very) Quickie

Let's reiterate yesterday's point: Gosh, isn't college football awesome?

USC's win at Oregon would have been big enough -- it knocked Oregon out of the national-championship debate just 12 hours after the meme was "Alabama or Oregon?"

(I hate USC and loathe Lane Kiffin, but it's hard not to credit them for a season-making win.)

But Baylor's win over Oklahoma was the sweetest. OU fans have been sitting there since their season-killing loss to Texas Tech talking about how they would ride the BCS madness all the way to the BCS title game, as if it was a foregone conclusion they would beat everyone along the way.

Baylor vivisected the Sooners. Robert Griffin III re-established himself as one of the best (and certainly the most exciting) player in the country, and if I had a Heisman vote, I would give it to Griffin ahead of Luck. Griffin's performance last night was an instant classic.

And so here's where we stand w/r/t the BCS: LSU is in if they win out. Alabama will probably be in if they beat Auburn next week, even without playing in the SEC title game. Arkansas will likely make it if they beat LSU, but there are some funky SEC tie-breaker issues that would actually put Alabama into the SEC title game ahead of Arkansas or LSU if the former beats the latter.

The rest of the country is largely out of the equation. If I had to hazard a guess, I'd say LSU throttles Arkansas next week -- this week's upsets are the best bulletin-board material -- and Alabama takes care of business.

In the end, I hate the idea of an LSU-Alabama rematch in the title game. However: Every other big contender had their shot to keep winning and play their way over Alabama. Every one. And even knowing all that, they couldn't get it done, largely against inferior competition.

That is arguably the most compelling thing about college football -- not championship contenders rising to the occasion, but championship contenders stumbling unexpectedly.

If the challenge to voters and fans and the system is to find the best two teams to pit in the national title game, the match-up is LSU vs. Alabama. Yes, even if they played before.

It's not ideal and it speaks to a broken system, but it's certainly less cynical and less flawed than artificially vaulting an inferior team ahead of Alabama, just for the sake of variety or out of pique at the system.

After last week's situation of missing Red Zone Channel, we're back in front of Scott Hanson all day. Should be a typically fun Sunday. Enjoy it, folks.

-- D.S.

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