CALGARY - After pouring over game film, we’re ready to make amends.
Upon further review — and following hours and hours of analysis, post-practice meetings and off-day discussions — we here at NCAA Football Frenzy have decided to give the LSU Tigers their true due.
No. 1 with a bullet? You bet.
We’re believers now.
‘Finally,’ many will say.
OK, so there wasn’t much arm-twisting or homework needed to encourage such an epiphany.
The Tigers are simply terrific and tenacious — all the proof was in last Friday’s effort over No. 3 Arkansas.
Down 14-0 to the visiting Razorbacks in the second quarter, it looked like LSU was in for a mighty fight to hold on to its top status in U.S. college football ranks. Then, the Tigers took over — first the defence, then special teams and, finally, the offence.
So LSU rebounds in short order to put up a 41-17 runaway victory and looks every bit a 12-0 team fit to be atop the BCS Standings.
And while there’s yet another hurdle in the Tigers’ way this Saturday facing the No. 14 Georgia Bulldogs — a 10-2 team and playing fabulous the last two months — in the SEC Championship, there’s nothing to suggest LSU won’t be in the BCS National Championship Game gunning for the coveted U.S. college title Jan. 9.
The Tigers will be there duking it out in a sequel to the Game of the Century against No. 2 Alabama — win or lose against the Bulldogs.
Unless Georgia somehow wallops LSU in the SEC summit Saturday, the Tigers are a shoo-in for the national title tilt.
Yes, a loss would drop them from the ranks of the undefeated (where only No. 6 Houston (12-0) would then sport such a remarkable record), and, yes, it would be brutal timing to become a one-loss team given all the other quality — and well-deserving — squads on the NCAA football landscape, including No. 3 Oklahoma State, No. 4 Stanford, No. 5 Virginia Tech and No. 7 Boise State, in contention for top bragging rights.
But the Tigers’ body of work during the season stands head and tails above all others.
Nobody else beat three top-ranked teams — at respective times, No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 Oregon and No. 3 Arkansas — plus four other teams then-ranked in the Top 25 this year. And they’ve dominated on most every occasion.
FIRST & 10
Once upon a time, Saturday’s Oklahoma-Oklahoma State tilt looked like a blockbuster for the BCS Standings. Not so much now after both teams took hits recently. Two weeks ago, the No. 2 Cowboys fell to No. 3 — quite fortunately — despite losing 37-31 to Iowa State in double OT, while the Sooners took it on the chin 45-38 from Baylor to tumble from No. 5 to No. 10 … The finalists for the Walter Camp Award for the nation’s best player (not to be confused with the coveted Heisman Trophy for nation’s most outstanding player?!?) are Stanford QB Andrew Luck, Baylor QB Robert Griffin III, Houston QB Case Keenum, Alabama RB Trent Richardson and LSU CB Tyrann Mathieu … Talk is the Heisman is still a wide-open race. How, though? Maybe it’s a two-horse race — Luck’s been nothing but stellar, with only Richardson sporting a snowball’s chance to take it away from him … Who’s got the best unis in college football? I’m lovin’ Stanford’s new duds they broke out Saturday night — sort of like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, with pewter helmets, deep red jerseys and pants and black trim and numbers. Sweet lookin’! Hit me with your fave and why on Twitter: @SUNToddSaelhof.
FOURTH & GOAL
Two Friday games kick off division championship weekend — No. 9 Oregon hosts UCLA at Eugene, Ore., in the Pac-12 finale, and Northern Illinois plays Ohio in the Mid-American Conference title tilt. The Ducks should destroy the Bruins based on USC’s 50-0 ransacking of UCLA last Saturday and the Quack Attack’s magical offence, while Northern Illinois has a penchant for winning big games … Four other title games go Saturday — LSU vs. Georgia, No. 6 Houston hosts No. 24 Southern Miss in the Conference USA final, No. 15 Wisconsin plays No. 13 Michigan State for Big 10 bragging rights in Indianapolis and No. 5 Virginia Tech battles No. 20 Clemson in the ACC championship in Charlotte, N.C. … How’s our championship hunt here at Football Frenzy after going 3-1 last week to sit at 30-21-1 overall? We think pretty darn good.
On Twitter: @SUNToddSaelhof