LSU, Alabama meant to meet in championship game

TODD SAELHOF, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:28 PM ET

It says here the right two teams will play off for U.S. college football’s ultimate honour.

When the BCS National Championship Game opens for business Jan. 9 in New Orleans, it’ll be No. 1 LSU against No. 2 Alabama.

Perfect.

All the talk since Sunday’s final rankings were released about how the BCS doesn’t work is pure nonsense.

Bull, if you will.

Since Oklahoma lost to Texas Tech Oct. 22, it’s been all about LSU and Alabama at the top of the BCS Standings — and rightfully so.

Yes, there have been surges from a few contenders — specifically Oklahoma State, which climbed all the way to No. 2 before falling to a mediocre Iowa State squad 37-31 in double overtime. That hurt the Cowboys bigtime, enough even to downplay their stunning 44-10 domination of rival Oklahoma the following week.

For that — and for a superb season laying waste to others in the Big 12 — we’ll definitely give the Pokes their due. It’s just not a credit worthy of No. 2 ahead of ‘Bama.

Why, you may ask?

Because LSU and ‘Bama are one and the same.

Some fan tried to tell us last week Alabama wasn’t properly punished for its 9-6 overtime loss to LSU in early November. He said the Crimson Tide should’ve fallen further from its No. 2 perch than to No. 3, where they washed up.

That’s a lousy argument.

ESPN’s Jesse Palmer compared a list of the two team’s results during the season, and it smacked of amazing similarity.

Just check it and see.

Even if Alabama had tumbled all the way down to … say … 10th in the BCS Standings after losing that OT dogfight with LSU, the Tide would have climbed right back up to No. 2 anyways given the timely losses since that game by other programs that would have then been ranked ahead of the team from Tuscaloosa.

Oklahoma State, Stanford, Boise State, Oklahoma, Oregon, Arkansas and Clemson suffered pivotal losses in subsequent weeks — none of them to teams considered better than them except for the Razorbacks (who got thumped 41-17 by LSU).

So ‘Bama would have climbed right back up the standings anyway to where they sit — legitimately — today.

Besides, how can you sorely punish a club for losing by a mere field-goal in OT in a 9-6 war while outplaying the top team in the nation? For all intents and purposes, the Tide and the Tigers batted to a tie. So if you punish one, you punish the other.

Really, you can say LSU and ‘Bama are Nos. 1 and 1A.

At the very least, they are second to none.

FIRST & 10

They say it’ll be a tight vote when ballots for the Heisman Trophy are counted. But it says here it’ll be Andrew Luck’s name called Saturday to claim the coveted best college football player award in New York City. Yes, others have gained ground on the year-long frontrunner — especially Alabama RB Trent Richardson — but Luck has maintained an excellent standard in the face of constant (and undeserved) scrutiny all season. The Stanford QB passed for 3,170 yards, 35 TDs and nine interceptions for the fifth-best passing efficiency in the country. Meanwhile, Richardson, who many pundits are picking to pilfer the Heisman from Luck’s hands, ran up an outstanding resumé with 1,583 yards and 20 TDS (plus three more receiving). Certainly, the other three finalists — Baylor QB Robert Griffin III, Wisconsin RB Montee Ball and LSU DB/KR Tyrann Mathieu — can hold their head high if not the Heisman. RG3 QB’d Baylor with the top passing efficiency in college ball, throwing for 3,998 yards, 36 TDs and six picks. Aptly-named Ball ran the ball for a nation-high 1,759 yards and scored 38 TDs, one shy of Barry Sanders’ NCAA single-season record. And Mathieu ‘The Honey Badger’ had 70 tackles, two interceptions, six forced fumbles, five fumble recoveries and four TDS, including two on punt returns. My only question is: Where the heck is Houston QB Case Keenum, who set NCAA career passing records (for TDs, yards and total offence) after chucking for 5,099 yards and 45 TDs this season?

FOURTH & BOWL, ER, GOAL

Stay tuned next Friday for our bowl predictions. If our regular-season record of 33-22-1, after going 3-1 last week, means anything, perhaps it’ll be a profitable new year.


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