It's over! The vaunted Alabama Crimson Tide football team is out of the National Championship chase! Not so fast. The Fat Lady may be backstage clearing her throat, but until she walks on stage and does her best Beverly Sills impersonation, don't think for a minute that the Bama nation can't be celebrating a third BCS title in the last four years.
Haven't perused the schedules of the top three unbeatens? Let me save you the time to Google. Top-ranked Oregon has a tough road to haul before that final BCS poll emerges. The Ducks face two nationally-ranked teams in Stanford and Oregon State, then have to play in a conference championship game. 2nd-ranked Kansas State? The Wildcats have to play Baylor and then dangerous Texas. And Notre Dame? I think Bama would run this team out of the stadium but that aside, I will tell you the Irish has to go to Los Angeles to face Southern Cal.
When the dust settles, will there actually be two unbeatens out there? I'm here to tell you that the winner of the SEC Championship game has a very good chance to play for a national title as a strong one-loss team from the big bad SEC. The Georgia Bulldogs are playing inspired football, the Crimson Tide uninspired football. The Tide team is now ranked 70th in the nation in passing and 70th in sacks allowed. Nick Saban hinted Saturday after the loss to Texas A&M that he was concerned about the mental state of his players in the days prior to that game.
I noticed one other item that Saban mentioned. Did I notice a small bit of campaigning from the coach when he reminded the media that two of his three national championship teams had one loss? Saban's no doubt a smart guy and a master manipulator: Don't think for a minute that powerful people don't listen to what a powerful man has to say.
So then: IF the Crimson Tide wins the Iron Bowl, IF the Crimson Tide wins the SEC Championship game, and IF two of the nation's top three teams lose in the next few weeks, look for that team from Tuscaloosa to head south and play for a national championship... again!
A few random thoughts as I put the weekend to bed:
By the time Monday night rolls around, the chances are very high that another SEC football coach will officially be out of work. Just a hunch, but I believe in the next few days, the suits in Knoxville will officially announce that Derek Dooley is toast... My co-hort Paul Finebaum told me two days ago on "Tide and Tigers Today" that he thinks Auburn president Jay Gogue should get it over with. Paul recommends that Gogue issue a statement this week that has Gene Chizik being relieved of his duties. Finebaum thinks the more this is dragged out into Iron Bowl of SEC Championship weekend, the uglier it may get. While Chizik said Sunday that it is "very accurate" that he has a way to turn things around (firing assistants?), I agree with Paul on this front, and I believe we will hear something from Chizik's attorney over the next week or so... The latest NCAA football statistics are in, and the Auburn Tigers keep sinking lower (that's what a 38-0 drubbing by UGA will do to a team). Here's the latest Auburn rankings from about 120 FBS teams:
Total Offense: 113th... Scoring Offense: 116th... Passing Efficiency: 119th... Passing Offense: 111th.
Total Defense: 90th... Scoring Defense: 67th...Pass Defense: 57th... Sacks: 53rd.
So do you keep VanGorder and fire Loeffler? Just sayin... Be with Fox6 Thursday night at 10 pm as I bring you the emotional story of 5 year-old Mikey Crossley of Nashville. A huge Bama fan, Mikey died 9 months after being diagnosed with a brain tumor. Nick Saban along with players such as Carson Tinker, Barrett Jones and Vinnie Sunseri called to talk with Mikey just hours before he passed. I'll visit with Mikey's parents Creci and Terry, and talk with Coach Saban and his players... Maybe it's exactly what NASCAR needs to impove TV ratings and track attendance: A knock-down drag-out fight between Jeff Gordon and Clint Bowyer. Gordon ended Bowyer's slim Chase title hopes Sunday by paying back Bowyer for several past brush-ups. Sunday's drama gave fans some real entertainment as Gordon looked to take out Bowyer and many of his crew members.
Have a great week, and Happy Veterans Day. God Bless those who have served our country so admirably.