The Sunday Blog is a little late today because someone stayed up way too late watching football on Saturday night.
Sorry, but it was glorious.
My faith in the game was restored by the great finishes in the late-night games.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL TOP 25
1. LSU (11-0): They were asking for the Mercy Rule in Oxford.
2. Alabama (10-1): Only Auburn stands in the way of, well, we’re not sure. See below.
3. Arkansas (10-1): It’s an SEC world and everyone else is just living in it.
4. Virginia Tech (10-1): Hokies quietly have moved way up the rankings.
5. Stanford (10-1): Barely escaped in The Game against Cal.
6. Houston (11-0): Nobody is sure how good this team is because of competition.
7. Oklahoma State (10-1): They had a chance to play for it all but missed field goals haunt a lot of coaches.
8. South Carolina (9-2): Say this about Steve Spurrier — it took him awhile but he made the Gamecocks a winner.
9. Boise State (9-1): Broncos close with Wyoming and New Mexico. Thanks, again, TCU.
10. Kansas State (9-2): Wildcats gained 121 yards and won. Who do they think they are — Denver?
11. Oregon (9-2): Such a great comeback wasted by a kicker.
12. Oklahoma (8-2): Hard to understand the defensive collapse in two losses.
13. Clemson (9-2): The N.C. State game meant nothing and Clemson played like it.
14. Georgia (9-2): Winning nine in a row deserves something.
15. Michigan State (9-2): They won one of those silly Big 10 divisions.
16. Wisconsin (9-2): Big game against Penn State this week.
17. Michigan (9-2): Brady Hoke has done a really good job there.
18. TCU (9-2): Horned Frogs started slow but will have a nice season.
19. Penn State (9-2): That’s one tough bunch of players.
20. Southern Cal (9-2): Like him or not, Lane Kiffin can coach some offense.
21. Virginia (8-3): Cavs found a way against Semis.
22. Baylor (7-3): Did Robert Griffin get back into Heisman race?
23. Nebraska (8-3): This team has baffled me all season.
24. Notre Dame (8-3): Surprised they barely hung on against Boston College.
25. Georgia Tech (8-3): Techies have the Doggies this week.
THE SEC FOUR-PACK
1. With one week to go in the regular season, it is very possible the SEC could end up with 10 bowl teams. Seven are already bowl eligible and because two will make it to BCS games the other eight tie-ins could be filled. Vanderbilt, Tennessee and Mississippi State need one more win. Vandy has the toughest task with a game against Wake Forest. Tennessee has Kentucky and MSU has Ole Miss. All three could lose, which would leave the Liberty, Music City and Compass scrambling to find teams from other conferences. And while Florida seems destined for the Gator Bowl, if Tennessee wins and Florida gets smoked by Florida State there’s a chance the Gator could take the Vols because they will fill hotel rooms.
2. I heard an announcer say Saturday that “nobody thought Georgia could be in Atlanta after they lost their first two games.” Well, anybody who looked at the Georgia schedule thought so. I’m not taking away from Georgia winning nine games, but when they face Georgia Tech it will be the first top 50 offense they will have faced during this winning streak. The seven SEC teams they beat went a combined 12-39 in conference play. Still, as Mark Richt said, it’s hard to win nine straight against anybody.
3. If Arkansas beats LSU and Alabama beats Auburn, who goes to Atlanta? It goes to BCS standings. And that’s where it gets interesting. Per SEC rules, “The tied team with the highest ranking in the BCS standings following the last weekend of regular-season games shall be the divisional representative in the SEC Championship Game, unless the second of the tied teams is ranked within five-or-fewer places of that highest ranked team. In this case, the head-to-head results of the top two ranked tied teams shall determine the representative.” If Arky wins a close game, could it jump to the top of the BCS? Probably not because Alabama hammered the Razorbacks earlier this year. Even if Arkansas did and Alabama was second, Alabama would go because of the SEC rule. And if the final BCS standings has Alabama No. 1 and LSU second, LSU would go. Crazy.
4. Steve Shaw, the head of SEC officials, released a statement Sundsay that said his officials blew the last play of the Vandy-Tennessee game twice. The end result was correct because the defender’s knee didn’t touch the ground, but the whistle blew the play dead and when that whistle blows, the play is not reviewable. I heard a whistle. It was almost a case of two wrongs making a right.