We all know Georgia will represent the SEC-East on Dec. 3 in Atlanta. But who will the Bulldogs play?
There are a few possibilities of outcomes for this next weekend's games.
First, LSU and Alabama win.
Second, Arkansas and Alabama win.
Third, LSU wins and Alabama loses.
Fourth, Arkansas wins and Alabama loses.
Let's take a look at the first option. This is perhaps the easiest to understand, since if No. 1 and No. 2 take care of business, we expect to see a rematch no one outside of Alabama is excited to see. Even Crimson Tide fans have to admit that Alabama's loss to LSU was not only ugly, it was painful and mind-numbing to watch.
Arkansas would obviously drop a position or two with this loss, but there's not nearly enough mathematical room for No. 4 Oklahoma State (.8408) to leapfrog No. 2 Alabama (.9491) given the fact that OSU is now playing a two-loss Oklahoma team on December 3.
So if both the Tigers and Tide win, the nation will be treated to what will be the BCS title game with perhaps the lowest television rating since the inception of the current system.
But what if Arkansas and Alabama win?
That all depends on how far LSU falls in the BCS rankings. According to the SEC, the tie-breaking procedure for selection a divisional participant for the SEC Championship Game is to look at BCS rankings. The SEC eliminated the lowest of the three teams in the BCS rankings as long as the top two teams are within five ranking positions of one another (which will be the case).
So, Arkansas could win and will likely leapfrog Alabama into the No. 1 spot (as Arkansas has a slightly higher SOS rating in the computers than Alabama). Since Alabama will be the No. 2 team (withing five positions), Alabama wins the SEC-West tie-breaker and plays in the SEC title game against Georgia.
If, however, Arkansas wins, LSU drops to No. 2, and Alabama falls to No. 3, then Arkansas would win the tie-breaker, earning a trip to Atlanta.
Confused yet? Just wait. It gets better.
If Arkansas is the No. 1 team but Alabama plays in the SEC title game, you can bet that an Alabama win over Georgia would supplant Arkansas as the No. 1 team in the nation, and Arkansas would likely fall to No. 2 or even No. 3.
If both Arkansas and Alabama lose, it's possible that Arkansas will still leapfrog Alabama (since Alabama will lose to a much lower ranked team), or it's conceivable—however unlikely—that Oklahoma State could make up enough ground with some human intervention.
If LSU and Alabama both lose, you'll likely see LSU fall to No. 2 in the rankings, while Arkansas goes on to play in the SEC title game. In that situation, an Arkansas win in the SEC title game would likely give us an LSU-Arkansas rematch in the BCS title game.
So what's the bottom line?
It's highly likely we're headed for what no one really wants to see: an all-SEC BCS Championship Game.
While SEC fans might like this on the surface, let's say LSU and Alabama face off on January 9 in New Orleans. What if Alabama wins? LSU fans would have a legitimate beef win another national championship claim by 'Bama.