Green Room

College Football Extra: Who Should Play Against LSU in the National Championship Game—Alabama or Oklahoma State? UPDATE: It’s Official-All SEC Championship

posted at 10:12 am on December 4, 2011 by


After a dismal first half in the SEC Championship game, (12 total yards and zero first downs), the LSU Tigers were more like a heard of elephants in full stampede mode, as they dismantled the Georgia Bulldogs 42-10.  Tyrann (Honey Badger) Mathieu was a one-man wrecking crew for LSU along with an overwhelming defense that held the Bulldogs scoreless in the second half, leaving 12-0 LSU the only undefeated FBS team in the nation, and an undisputed No. 1 ranking in the BCS.

The not so surprising outcome leaves college football fans, (and more importantly, the voting Coaches, Pollsters, and BCS computers), with one final dilemma—who’s # 2???

If you listened to Kirk Herbstreit and Brent Musburger, (ABC/ESPN announcers/broadcasters), on who should play in the BCS title game, it’s already decided—Alabama.  The all too cozy relationship with ESPN, (a multi-million dollar contract with the BCS and the SEC), might as well be a Chris Matthews/Keith Olbermann debate over who should be the next President.

The current #2 Alabama Crimson Tide, (11-1) sat out the weekend, not qualifying in the SEC Championship game, finishing second in the SEC-West.  And, for the record, LSU defeated Alabama 9-6 on November 5th in what the sportscasters billed as “the game of the century”, (where neither team scored at touchdown), yet the Tide loss moved them “suspiciously” by the BCS down only one spot to #3*.

But the 11-1 Oklahoma State Cowboys have a legitimate argument for that #2 spot by winning the Big 12 Conference defeating #10 Oklahoma soundly 44-10.  Both teams have high national offensive rankings, (Oklahoma, #10 and O-State, #2), but last night the Cowboys defense, (ranked 29th), stifled the Sooners offense forcing five turnovers, (three fumbles and two INTs) keeping Oklahoma out of the end zone until 2:25 in the fourth quarter.

Now, it’s all up to the polling and those pesky BCS computers to decide who should show up in New Orleans on January 9th to face LSU,  Alabama or Oklahoma State?  Neither choice will be popular in certain regions of the country, and you can bet those who’ve been calling for a play-off system will be roaring again with a fever pitch.

(Now if I can just figure out how to insert a poll into the thread ~ check back later)


* After the Alabama loss to LSU, the Harris Poll and the USA Today Coaches Poll (that is part of the formula for the BCS “system”) actually ranked Alabama #4 placing them behind still unbeaten Oklahoma State and Stanford, but those pesky “human computer” folks voted/inputted their own formula:

3 Alabama .8836 previous #2, current Harris #4 2505 .8713 current USA Today #4 1286 .8719  Average computer ranking #3   4+6 +4+ 3+ 3+ 3 = 23 ¸6 = 3.83 = 3 ????

(I guess computers aren’t allowed to round up—but the difference between placing the Tide at #3 or #4 at the time would have placed Bama in the predicament of having to move up two spots instead of one to reach the coveted Big Game)

Update: BCS picks Alabama for an all SEC Championship Game:

NEW YORK (AP) — Play it again, LSU and Alabama.

The Crimson Tide edged out Oklahoma State in the final round of voting Sunday  and will play the top-ranked Tigers in the BCS national championship game on  Jan. 9 in New Orleans.

Undefeated LSU is the only team to beat Alabama this season, and the head BCS  official sees a do-over as a perfectly good title game.

“Absolutely, if they’re 1 and 2, and they are in all the polls released  today,” executive director Bill Hancock said.

Why do I feel like the health care bill just got passed again… one vote?


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You know who Alabama has beaten this year? Nobody. Absolutely nobody.

If they do get in, then it proves that SEC sports media bias could actually be worse than the Democrat-MFM alliance.

uknowmorethanme on December 4, 2011 at 11:17 AM

If you didn’t even play in your conference championship game (never mind winning it), how can you play for the national title?

rbj on December 4, 2011 at 11:51 AM

Pretty good analysis. Thanks for doing all the work for these threads. I didn’t know they were here, so I missed most of them.


Now, it’s all up to the polling and those pesky BCS computers to decide who should show up in New Orleans on January 9th to face LSU, Alabama or Oklahoma State? Neither choice will be popular in certain regions of the country, and you can bet those who’ve been calling for a play-off system will be roaring again with a fever pitch.

OSU is already viewed favorably by the computer polls. .950 for Alabama vs. .930 for OSU. OSU’s computer number should improve after last night’s definitive victory over OU, but not by much. I don’t really understand why the Harris Poll and the USA Poll arrive at their ranking. I blame all the leftie sports writers.

I’ve seen the stats you posted last night, or similar ones, this morning and they are compelling for OSU jumping Alabama. As you say, a lot of people will be unhappy with whatever happens at No. 2. There are many arguments to be made for OSU and Alabama. Unfortunately, the human polls are composed of too many people who have vested interests or who haven’t even watched all the games. And OSU has large human poll point deficit to overcome.

I’m an SEC fan, but after watching OSU smush OU last night, I’d have to give a slight edge to OSU over Alabama. Nick Saban get’s no sympathy from me. (Bob Stoops says he’s voting for OSU, too.) Besides, OSU should get extra points for fan support. Did you see the celebration on the field after the game?

We’ll know who gets to be unhappy tonight.

And a playoff system? Never happen.


SlaveDog on December 4, 2011 at 12:37 PM

You know who Alabama has beaten this year? Nobody. Absolutely nobody.
uknowmorethanme on December 4, 2011 at 11:17 AM

I don’t believe Penn State was a “nobody”, especially at home where the “twelveth man” on defense REALLY comes into the equation.
I’m not against OK St playing LSU in the Championship game, but I wouldn’t be against Alabama playing in it, either.
If the Championship Game had a finish like the regular season game did between LSU and ‘Bama, THAT would be a pretty darn good game. It may well be that OK St can give LSU that kind of competition, too. We’ll see.

listens2glenn on December 4, 2011 at 3:44 PM

Alabama would likely trounce Ok State, but they already had their crack. A rematch cheats LSU.

truth2power on December 4, 2011 at 5:29 PM

I’m a Pac12 guy, and even I think OSU deserves the title shot. Alabama’s schedule was, what, 42nd hardest? OSU’s was 7th. PERSPECTIVE PLEASE.

John the Libertarian on December 5, 2011 at 2:15 AM

The championship of college football is no longer a sport. it has become a rougher version of ice dancing, and the rest of the country just got jobbed by the East German judge.

MunDane68 on December 5, 2011 at 9:24 AM