College Football: What Happens in the BCS If Notre Dame Loses to USC?

Michael FelderNational CFB Lead WriterNovember 19, 2012

PASADENA, CA - NOVEMBER 17:  Marqise Lee #9 of the USC Trojans reacts to the crowd during a 38-28 loss to the UCLA Bruins at Rose Bowl on November 17, 2012 in Pasadena, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

The Fighting Irish are No. 1 in the nation and, as it stands now, are tracking to play the winner of Alabama-Georgia for the BCS Championship. That's a matchup that the BCS executives and the television viewers across the country are mighty keen on seeing.

However, what if the Irish go the way of the Oregon Ducks and Kansas State Wildcats before them? What if Brian Kelly's team, on the road against a backup quarterback, can't get the job done, and USC emerges triumphant?

Well, then all hell breaks loose, folks. If you breathed a sigh of relief after the final gun on the BCS Championship this past January, thinking an all-SEC title game would never happen again, you relaxed too soon. The all-SEC title game is on the table. A rematch is on the table.

Plus, Oregon and Kansas State could still be in play.

If the Irish go down, then so too do their dreams of showing up to play for the title in Miami. As the Irish cry it out, the SEC would hug it out as conference-mates get set to do battle for another BCS Championship. Alabama and Georgia, who would be sitting at No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, plus Florida beating a Top 10 Florida State team, would ensure that we get an SEC double-dip.

In Atlanta, if the Bulldogs pull off the upset, we'd have the all-SEC title game in addition to a rematch. That's something most folks do not want to see, and yet we sit here on the edge of that very scenario playing out.

There are more chaos scenarios, and if you're the Oregon Ducks, then you're hoping that Notre Dame goes down to USC, UCLA knocks off Stanford and Florida State beats the Gators. If we see that happen this Thanksgiving weekend, plus a Ducks win over Oregon State and a Pac-12 Championship beating of UCLA, and Oregon's back in the BCS Championship. The Alabama and Georgia game would knock the remaining team out of the way for the Ducks to head to Miami.

Kansas State? You're looking for the same things as Oregon, except without the Ducks winning. The quicker they lose, the better in your case. You'll get a little boost from beating Texas, but after getting mashed out by Baylor, the Wildcats will need a lot of losing to appear in the title game.

You pull the Notre Dame jenga block, and the entire BCS is going to be impacted in a huge way. If you don't want the SEC versus SEC rematch, root for the Fighting Irish and the Seminoles; they're your great hope.

If they both go down, then Alabama, Georgia and Florida will be sitting in the 1-2-3 spots, and America will have another SEC problem to deal with.