There will be no Alabama-LSU II: The Sequel.
LSU has no shot at playing for the national title -- no embarrassments like last year's title-game rerun that made the regular-season "Game of the Year" a farce.
But Alabama -- hoo boy, Alabama -- affirms its place at the top of the polls. That was grown-up football last night in the 4th quarter, something the rest of the contenders around the country could barely (if at all) comprehend, except in circumstances like Oregon has had over the past two seasons in which they have experienced first-hand what elite SEC defenses look like.
The Oregon fireworks display in out-scoring USC was fun -- it felt as good as eating fistfuls of Halloween candy. There is no question: Oregon's offense is a thing to behold.
Then again, it was empty calories -- Chip Kelly has brought his high-octane offense to games with the best of the SEC, with time to prepare, and walked away solved and beaten.
I still want to see Alabama vs. Oregon for the national title -- this is Oregon's best offense, by far. And if they can scoot past Bama's defense of future pros, more power to them.
But it might just be the third straight season -- the sixth straight season, if you count BCS title-game wins by the rest of the SEC -- where the grown-ups show up to the kids' game, playing to win.
*Yup, Matt Barkley should have left school for the NFL a year ago. What you wonder is if the Redskins would have drafted Barkley or stuck with RGIII. Let's hope it is the latter.
*Still not convinced Kansas State couldn't neutralize Oregon -- but only if Collin Klein is entirely healthy. If he's not, K-State's unbeaten run could end next week.
*Congrats to Notre Dame fans on eking out a win that should have been a loss. Every title contender deserves one or two of those per season. That doesn't mean ND would survive vs. Oregon or Bama.
*Next week's biggest games: K-State at TCU -- Upset Special. A&M at Alabama -- no upset, but fun to watch Johnny Football against Alabama's D. (ND at BC? Meh. Only if ND loses.)
*BlogPoll Top 25 Preview: (1) Alabama, (2) Oregon, (3) Kansas State, (4) Notre Dame, (5) Georgia, with Texas A&M leap-frogging into my Top 10.