The Norman Transcript

Sports

November 24, 2013

Where they stand

NORMAN — The Iron Bowl is always important. For this Iron Bowl, the stakes are higher than ever before, and so are the rankings of Alabama and Auburn.

Auburn moved up to No. 4 in The Associated Press college football poll Sunday, taking advantage of losses by Baylor and Oregon to set up the second top-five matchup in Iron Bowl history.

On Saturday at Auburn, it’ll be No. 1 Alabama against the Tigers. The winner takes the SEC West and gets a trip to the Southeastern Conference championship game.

The first and only time the Crimson Tide and Tigers played with both teams ranked in the top five was 1971. No. 3 Alabama and coach Bear Bryant beat No. 5 Auburn 31-7 and went on to play No. 1 Nebraska in the Orange Bowl. The Cornhuskers won that game 38-6.

In this case, Alabama has a straight shot to the BCS national championship game. Beat Auburn and win the SEC title game, and it’s on to the Rose Bowl to try to win an unprecedented third straight national title.

For Auburn (10-1), it’s a little more complicated. Even with an SEC title, the Tigers might not be able to pass No. 3 Ohio State or No. 2 Florida State. The latest BCS standings were set for release later Sunday.

There has already been speculation about the possibility of a one-loss SEC champion — either Auburn or No. 5 Missouri — getting into the BCS title game over an undefeated Ohio State.

That seems like a stretch — and the mere suggestion is enough to send Buckeyes fans into a rage — but first things first.

Alabama, which tuned up for Auburn with a 49-0 light workout against Chattanooga, has opened as a 10 1/2-point favorite against the Tigers, who took the week off.

“I really don’t care what their record is,” Tide quarterback AJ McCarron told reporters Saturday about Auburn. “They’re still the next team in our way.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • OU V UNT Sooners blank Mean Green thanks to one-hit shutout from Stevens

    Kelsey Stevens’ impact at Oklahoma continues to grow....

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sooners rolling in almost every program

    It doesn’t seem so long ago, yet it’s been almost a decade since I wrote a snarky, though not inaccurate column questioning the head-coach-hiring skills of Sooner athletics director Joe Castiglione....

    April 24, 2014

  • Tigers edge Timberwolves in opener

    Give round one to Norman High. The Tigers were the better team in the first Crosstown Clash of the season, holding on to defeat Norman North 3-2 behind a complete game from starter PJ Grunsted....

    April 25, 2014

  • Sooners are hoping road trip can give them a boost

    Ordinarily, the last thing a struggling team needs is a road trip. However, Oklahoma isn’t in an ordinary position....

    April 25, 2014

  • Pitchers deliver another classic Clash

    It was the top of the seventh inning and Norman North’s Austin Cranford, who came on in the top of the fifth, threw his second pitch to Sean Dixson. The Tiger center fielder simply let it go by like it was no different than any other ...

    April 25, 2014

  • Grizzlies take 2-1 series lead with OT win

    MEMPHIS — Oklahoma City prides itself on being a clutch team. The type of unit that knows how to come through in the most pressured of situations....

    April 25, 2014

  • NCAA board endorses more autonomy for big schools

    INDIANAPOLIS — The NCAA’s board of directors took the first step toward shifting power to the five largest football conferences on Thursday, endorsing a 57-page plan that calls for giving 65 of the nation’s biggest schools more autonomy in ...

    April 25, 2014

  • Dice-K 1st save since 2000 as Mets hold down Cards

    NEW YORK — Daisuke Matsuzaka pinched his eyelids, clenched his teeth and thought back. He couldn’t remember all the details of the first save of his professional career....

    April 25, 2014

  • Pineda banned 10 games

    BOSTON — Michael Pineda says he was just trying to get a better grip on the ball. Now, he won’t need one for a while....

    April 25, 2014

  • Royals pick up another crucial district victory

    EDMOND — The Community Christian boys kept their playoff hopes high Thursday night by taking down Oklahoma Christian School 1-0 on a goal from Chris Abernethy with 4:07 remaining.  An evenly played game, the Royals outshot the Saints 14 to ...

    April 25, 2014

Facebook