Part 1: College football turned upside down
Well, here we are again. I’ve taken a two-week plus sabbatical from writing the sports column that will never be considered the best sports column in the nation and, in so doing, have reminded myself that I’m inconsistent at best, and some negative adjective at worst.
But this isn’t about me; it’s about sports. Besides, I mainly haven’t been heard from post-election because of that term: post-election. When outcomes don’t necessarily go the way which one prefers, one often isn’t in the mood to share his sports analysis. Instead, sitting on a couch and keeping it to myself seemed like a better idea.
Anyways, there’s much to recap and not enough space to do it all. Let’s operate in reverse order of the title here, so for starters, we’ll begin with college football.
Now, I haven’t reported much, if any, on the collegiate gridiron during my anonymous time writing here. That being said, Sports Guy can’t enough of the game on its Saturday or Sunday version, so maybe it’s time to incorporate more of that since we’re heading towards conference championships, bowl games and the like.
Saturday saw college football completely upended for the second weekend in a row. A week prior, the Texas A&M Aggies stunned the No. 1 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide by a count of 23-17. To that point, I myself had been speculating on whether or not ‘Bama could beat the lowliest of NFL teams; they’ve played that good all season. Of course, admitting that does nothing for my credibility, but I never presumed to have any in the first place.
Point being, the remainder of the season was supposed to be a coronation for the Tide’s second straight Bowl Championship Series (BCS) National Title, and now it’s not. So, that left us with Kansas State assuming the reigns of No. 1 (who would’ve thought?), Oregon at No. 2, Bama at 3 and the University of Georgia at 4.
Which brings the soap opera to last Saturday. Kansas State managed to do what many of us thought they would, and that’s choke. They got blown out by Baylor. Oregon managed to accomplish the same feat, though in nowhere near as pathetic a fashion, in their not-so-titanic clash with Stanford.
So, we’re left with Notre Dame in the top spot and that has to be a new feeling to this generation of Irish faithful. Alabama has returned to No. 2 while Coach Mark Richt’s Bulldogs sit at No. 3. Both Bama and Georgia face teams they should beat this weekend (Auburn and Georgia Tech), but falling asleep at the wheel in rivalry games has happened to both of these teams before so it bears mention. Either way, the two SEC titans will clash in their conference’s championship game a week from Saturday. Assuming all goes well this weekend, at stake will be a spot in the national title game against the Fighting Irish.
But Notre Dame also has to do its part to ensure a clash of perhaps the greatest tradition in college football history versus the greatest conference in college football history. (That said, both Georgia and Alabama have remarkable traditions.) They have to beat the team that commentators want to be a national player but just isn’t there yet, USC.
In other words, nothing is set in stone right now. Scenario time:
Should Notre Dame be upset by whoever Matt Barkley’s replacement is while both the Tide and the Dawgs “roll” (pun intended), then the most likely scenario is a national championship clash between the winner of Bama/UGA and…wait for it…the Florida Gators. The Gators were knocked from the conference title game by Georgia earlier in the season but, should things play out this way, they likely make a trip to Miami anyways.
That said, Florida has to beat arch-rival Florida State this weekend to seal their end of the deal on that one.
If USC topples Notre Dame and Florida State spoils Florida’s long-shot, then we’re looking at the winner of UGA-Bama versus a resurgent Oregon Ducks team.
If USC beats the Irish, Florida State beats Florida, Oregon somehow loses and Kansas State defeats the Texas Longhorns, then you’re looking at the winner of UGA and Bama versus Kansas State.
Lastly, if Alabama loses to Auburn and Georgia loses to Georgia Tech, there will be no national title game due to Mayans.
Realizing that you’ve topped 700 words before even getting to the NFL is either really good, or really bad. I’ll go with the latter because I’m a pessimist. So, with that I’m going to take-off for now. I’ll be back, hopefully later today, with an NFL recap and maybe more college football analysis.