Alabama back in BCS title hunt
November, 18, 2012
By Alex Scarborough | ESPN.com
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- The unthinkable has happened, again. For the second consecutive season, the University of Alabama is benefiting from a late shakeup in the top three of the BCS Standings.
Only a week after losing a game and falling from No. 1 to No. 4 in the BCS, Alabama is back in the title hunt. Former No. 1 Kansas State and No. 2 Oregon dropped out of the top 5 with losses on Saturday night, opening the door for the Crimson Tide to move up to No. 2 in the newest BCS standings, just behind unbeaten Notre Dame.
If Alabama (10-1, 7-1) beats Auburn (3-8, 0-7) this weekend, a battle with No. 3 Georgia (10-1, 7-1) would be the only obstacle separating the Crimson Tide from a trip to Miami for the BCS National Championship Game.
No. 6 Kansas State's 28-point loss to Baylor on Saturday likely cost the Wildcats a shot at the title game. Bill Snyder's team still maintains wins over a pair of top-15 teams in Oklahoma and West Virginia, but the way it lost to unranked Baylor was a big blow to the team's reputation as a contender.
No. 5 Oregon's argument for a title shot hinges on its hope for a berth in the Pac 12 Championship Game where it could add another win over a ranked team to its resume. If No. 8 Stanford beats No. 17 UCLA, Oregon would be shut out of the conference title game.
No. 4 Florida seems an unlikely suitor to end the season in Miami as it cannot compete in the SEC championship game.
The only remaining one-loss teams are No. 10 Florida State, No. 11 Clemson, No. 18 Rutgers, No. 20 Louisville and No. 23 Kent State. The Seminoles have the strongest argument for a move up the ladder but are likely too far behind in the computer ratings to make a late push.
The Crimson Tide are No. 2 in the Harris Interactive College Football Poll and the USA Today coaches’ poll, which are the other two pieces of the BCS standings formula. Alabama is also ranked No. 2 in the Associated Press poll.
If everything holds and Alabama beats Georgia, it seems unlikely the Crimson Tide would be kept out of the national championship. Their only loss came at the hands of No. 9 Texas A&M and their resume includes four solid victories, three coming away from Bryant-Denny Stadium:
- a 41-14 win versus No. 19 Michigan
- a 44-13 win at Tennessee
- a 38-7 win over Mississippi State
- a 21-17 win at No. 7 LSU
Alabama has no remaining games against BCS ranked teams in the regular season. Georgia has only Georgia Tech remaining on its schedule.
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Final Washington State 45 Colorado State 48 Final 20 Fresno State 20 25 USC 45 Final Buffalo 24 San Diego State 49 Final Tulane 21 Louisiana-Lafayette 24
Final Pittsburgh 30 Bowling Green 27 Final Utah State 21 23 Northern Illinois 14
Final Marshall 31 Maryland 20 Final Syracuse 21 Minnesota 17 Final Brigham Young 16 Washington 31
Final Rutgers 16 Notre Dame 29 Final Cincinnati 17 North Carolina 39 Final Miami (FL) 9 18 Louisville 36 Final Michigan 14 Kansas State 31
Final Middle Tennessee 6 Navy 24 Final Ole Miss 25 Georgia Tech 17 Final 10 Oregon 30 Texas 7 Final 14 Arizona State 23 Texas Tech 37
Final Arizona 42 Boston College 19 Final Virginia Tech 12 17 UCLA 42 Final Rice 7 Mississippi State 44 Final 24 Duke 48 21 Texas A&M 52
Final Nebraska 24 22 Georgia 19 Final UNLV 14 North Texas 36 Final Iowa 14 16 LSU 21 Final 19 Wisconsin 24 9 South Carolina 34 Final 5 Stanford 20 4 Michigan State 24 Final 15 UCF 52 6 Baylor 42
Final 13 Oklahoma State 31 8 Missouri 41 Final 12 Clemson 40 7 Ohio State 35