Over 90,000 fans will pack Bryant-Denny Stadium this Friday in anticipation of the Crimson Tide knocking off undefeated Auburn.
Alabama will have more than those fans rooting for them.
Boise State and TCU will be looking on, hoping that Alabama defeats Auburn to leave just one undefeated team remaining from the BCS conference. But they won’t be alone.
It may be prominent members of the NCAA committee rooting for Alabama as well.
Innocent until proven guilty is the law of the land in the great United States. That courtesy must surely be extended to Auburn’s star quarterback Cameron Newton, who is at the center of an investigation involving improper recruiting conduct.
Statements have been made and accusations have been flying about whether Cameron and his father attempted to obtain money to secure Cameron‘s attendance at certain SEC schools.
A lawyer has already been hired on behalf of Cameron, and the lawyer has made statements on national TV. Auburn’s statement on the situation this week has been clear: No comment.
It’s important not to jump to conclusions about an ongoing investigation, as details and reports could potentially be wrong.
However, one must wonder how comfortable the NCAA must be with the possibility of Auburn playing for the National Title during an ongoing investigation that could rule their star player ineligible, and possibly, lead to a revocation of such an achievement.
Although the accusations of the case have yet to be officially proven, we do know one thing is for sure: The FBI is working on this case.
When the FBI gets involved in something, it usually means that somebody smells blood.
Even though Auburn is ranked No. 2 in the Associated Press poll, Alabama is favored to win the game by about four points.
If Alabama does win the game, Boise and TCU might not be the only teams taking a deep breath. The NCAA may be taking a deep breath as well.
The last thing the NCAA would want to happen is for Auburn to play in the title game and win the championship, only to have something detrimental come out later pertaining to the current investigation surrounding Cam Newton.
They already revoked Reggie Bush’s Heisman trophy. Certainly they would not want to revoke a National Title.
Nick Saban lives for these types of games, and this is a game Alabama should win. Actually, they might have to win.
If last season’s game against LSU is any indication, Saban may get some calls as well. Playing LSU at home and up 21-16 in the fourth quarter, LSU’s Pat Peterson seemingly intercepted a Greg McElroy pass and appeared to get both feet inbounds. The replay showed him with both feet inbounds.
However, after going to the replay for assistance, the referees awarded Alabama the ball, and the Crimson Tide extended the drive and got a field goal.
Auburn did get over 500 yards of offense at home against LSU, but don't expect that to happen with a Nick Saban-coached defense. Alabama hasn't given up 500 yards since Nick Saban arrived in 2007.
Since a shocking home loss to UL-Monroe in 2007, Nick Saban’s Alabama team is 20-0 at home.
Expect them to make it 21 in a row after this game.