There’s a sense of flippancy in the chatter of an Alabama / LSU rematch.
Although it makes for interesting commentary, is it realistic to think that this SEC rematch might really occur with several weeks of football left to play? As we noted in Saturday's action, one play can change the outcome.
Let’s flip through the pages of college football history where rematch dreams, in this case, didn’t come true.
It was 2006, and Ohio State was 11-0 heading into a Nov. 18 matchup with Michigan. Billed as “The Game of the Century” (sound familiar?), the Buckeyes won 42-39 in front of nearly 106,000 fans. The game thrust Ohio State into the BCS Championship game in Phoenix against the University of Florida, ranked No. 2 at the time.
Although the Gators claimed the No. 2 rankings, they were a one-loss team, along with USC and Michigan. But a funny thing happened on the way to the BCS. The prospects for a rematch quickly changed the week after the Buckeyes regular season meeting with Michigan (Nov. 18, 2006).
USC suddenly jumped ahead of Michigan after they beat a highly ranked Notre Dame team. The following week, USC lost to rival UCLA, opening the can of doubt. Who truly deserved to be ranked No. 2, Florida or Michigan?
Many put Michigan ahead of the Gators, claiming they deserved a second chance against the Buckeyes. Florida had beaten Arkansas 38-28 in Atlanta, and their performance was not particularly impressive. But Florida won their conference, and that persuaded the human vote to give Florida the ticket to the 2007 BCS Championship. The coaches Poll and Harris Poll gave Florida the higher marks by an ever-so-slight edge.
This historic comparison about a Michigan and Ohio State rematch didn’t happen.
And more than likely, the showdown in Tuscaloosa between LSU and Alabama will be the only showdown this year between these two SEC opponents.