Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Best 2 out of 3?

I know I'm in the minority, but I thought the Alabama-LSU game was incredible. I watch football games that end in the 40s all the time, but how often do I get to see two real defenses play? I loved the crazy interceptions, the hard hits in the backfield, Les Miles giving up on the pass completely by putting in Jordan Jefferson (because a 3 yard QB run is better than nothing), and the fact that one play, at any moment, could end the game.

But now let's get to the real question, will there be a rematch? I don't care if they should, I just want to predict the future, which of course means we should take a quick look at the only comparable situation: Ohio State vs. Michigan.

Here are the rankings BEFORE the Championship game.

Michigan's resume
Key Wins: #7 Wisconsin, @ #11 Notre Dame
Only Loss: @ #1 Ohio State

Florida's resume
Key Wins: #4 LSU, #12 Arkansas (SEC Championship), @ #17 Tennessee
Only Loss: @ #9 Auburn

Before, the SEC Championship and after Michigan's loss, Michigan was still ranked ahead of Florida, but Florida jumped Michigan with it's win over Arkansas. With that said, they have pretty much identical resumes and I don't think there is any difference. Notice how the computers also see them as dead even. I remember that the big argument at the time was "you have to win your conference championship" which isn't even a real rule, but with how close these two teams were, I can understand why that was used as a tiebreaker.

Ultimately, what this means for Alabama is that they not only need OSU and Stanford to lose, but they'll also need any team with a "similar resume" to get an extra loss. Alabama only has one for sure big win all year (Arkansas), and if Auburn and Penn State lose a few more games, they could be in a real trouble. The depth of the SEC is weak this year, and I see that as being the biggest hurdle from a rematch. At the end of the day, Alabama will need a significantly better resume than the other teams, but they don't have enough opportunities left to do that. The dreaded "tiebreaker" that doesn't actually exist will once again be the reason for preventing a rematch.

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