The Norman Transcript

National Sports

December 1, 2013

National title hopefuls in SEC hoping for Ohio State collapse

NORMAN — Florida State is the new No. 1 in The Associated Press college football poll. It’s the first time since 2000 the Seminoles have held the top spot.

But that’s not what everybody is talking about Sunday.

Ohio State moved up to No. 2 and Auburn to No. 3 after the Tigers’ latest mind-boggling magic trick resulted in Alabama’s first loss of the season.

The Crimson Tide dropped from No. 1 to No. 4, and the Tigers advanced to the Southeastern Conference championship game to face No. 5 Missouri.

The SEC championship has been something of a de facto play-in game to the BCS championship game over the past two seasons. This season, there is no guarantee the SEC champion will play for the national title, not with Florida State and Ohio State both unbeaten.

The Seminoles play Duke in the ACC title game on Saturday. The Buckeyes get No. 10 Michigan State.

Win and they’re off to Pasadena, Calif., for the BCS championship game on Jan. 6. The SEC’s streak of seven straight titles broken. Right?

Well, the SEC will not go quietly.

Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs started lobbying for the SEC’s one-loss champion moments after the Tigers’ 34-28 Iron Bowl victory. He told reporters it would be “a disservice to college football” if a one-loss SEC champion did not play for the national title.

“That has to happen,” Jacobs was quoted as saying by Al.com.

This late in the season, no unbeaten team from a BCS automatic-qualifying conference has ever been ranked behind a one-loss team in the BCS standings, which were to be released later Sunday and do not include the AP poll.

The strange thing is this has become an SEC or Ohio State debate, based strictly on strength of schedule. If the argument is solely based on quality of opposition, then Florida State should not get a pass.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
National Sports
  • Drivers visit Indiana National Guard before race at Brickyard

    EDINBURGH, Ind. — Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Graham Rahal are used to occasional fireworks when drivers get upset at the track....

    July 25, 2014

  • Nibali wins Stage 18, builds overall lead

    ARGELES-GAZOST, France — As his team hoped, Vincenzo Nibali demonstrated he’s the “boss” of the Tour de France. Just don’t compare him to the last rider to regularly bear that sobriquet at cycling’s greatest race, Lance Armstrong....

    July 25, 2014

  • Sooners use momentum from Sugar Bowl in preparation for 2015 season

    The Associated Press NORMAN, Okla. — Oklahoma got a lot of attention with its upset victory over Alabama in the Sugar Bowl....

    July 25, 2014

  • Yankees edge Texas for sixth victory in seven games

    NEW YORK — Brandon McCarthy and Chase Headley are quickly putting their stamp on a playoff surge for the New York Yankees....

    July 25, 2014

  • Smoke turns corner at Indy

    INDIANAPOLIS — Drivers always say there’s something magical about Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and the opportunity for NASCAR to race there opened the door for one of Jeff Gordon’s most treasured victories. It was a race Tony Stewart ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Former great addressed during annual shareholders meeting in G.B.

    GREEN BAY, Wis. — Flush with cash, the Packers have a 112,000 name-long waiting list for season tickets filled with die-hards eager to see a team that figures to be an NFC contender for years to come....

    July 24, 2014

  • Roma tops Liverpool

    BOSTON — Marco Borriello scored in the 90th minute to give Roma a 1-0 victory over Liverpool in a preseason friendly Wednesday night at Fenway Park. There were limited chances until Borriello volleyed in a corner from in front of goal....

    July 24, 2014

  • Marcus Mariota helps Oregon’s PAC-12 title chance in preseason polls

    LOS ANGELES — Although Marcus Mariota knew he would be under a spotlight when he stepped onto the famed Paramount Studios lot Wednesday, the Oregon quarterback is getting quite comfortable in his starring role....

    July 24, 2014

  • Potential buyer group scouts Toronto area

    BUFFALO, N.Y. — A Buffalo Bills prospective ownership group that includes rocker Jon Bon Jovi has conducted a feasibility study into buying the NFL franchise and building a stadium in Toronto, a person close to the situation said....

    July 24, 2014

  • Majka wins 16th stage, Nibali leads

    PLA D’ADET, France — On the last of four Pyrenees ascents, Rafal Majka winked at a French TV camera and tugged playfully at a motorcycle’s antenna....

    July 24, 2014