Don’t look now folks but we COULD have a rematch of the SEC championship game for the BCS national title.
I know I’ve said for weeks that this cannot happen, that the voters in the human polls would not allow a team that loses on championship Saturday to turn right around and play for the national title a month later. But now we are looking at the real numbers and the numbers do not lie.
Florida and Alabama are 1-2 in the latest BCS Standings. They are tied for the No. 1 spot in the computers. Look at the gap in the total rating between No. 2 Alabama (.9513) and No. 4 TCU (.8689) and No. 5 Cincinnati (.8547). Alabama has almost a full one-tenth of a point over TCU and Cincinnati. In this system that is huge! TCU (12-0) is done for the season and Cincinnati (11-0) plays a Pittsburgh team (9-2) that lost last week to West Virginia.
What does this mean? It means that if Texas loses to Nebraska in the Big 12 championship game, the SEC championship game loser, if it is a really tight game, has a real chance to finish No. 2 in the final BCS Standings. That’s because the computers will still love them because their only loss this season was to a team ranked in the top two.
It will all come down to the human voters and how far they drop the SEC championship game loser. If the loser of that game only drops to No. 3 or No. 4 in the human polls, then it can finish No. 2 in the BCS standings because of the computers. So it could be that a 12-0 TCU, a 12-0 Cincinnati and a 13-0 Boise State get squeezed out.
Remember this: The voters in the human polls realized in 2006 that their votes set up the BCS championship matchup. That’s why they moved No. 4 Florida ahead of No. 3 Michigan in their final polls. Michigan had had its shot and lost to No. 1 Ohio State and No. 2 USC had lost.
This also has a chance to be a repeat of 2003 when Southern California finished No. 1 in both human polls and did not get into the BCS championship game. If Texas loses on Saturday, then TCU or Cincinnati could finish No. 2 in the human polls but get left out of the big game in favor of a one-loss team from the SEC.
If Texas takes care of Nebraska on Saturday we will not have this argument. But if Texas loses, look out. If Florida and Alabama have a rematch for the national championship, those who want to blow up the BCS system will have a lot more ammunition that the system unfairly favors the elites of college football.
And boy, will that be a fun argument.
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