For Alabama fans who have made their reservations to New Orleans, they had better break out their pompoms for this weekend. There are two possible scenarios that could dash the hopes of Tide fans hoping to make it to the national championship game.
Let me start by saying that anyone who says they know for sure that Alabama will be in the national championship is either foolish or misinformed.
The BCS and its voters are in uncharted waters. Yes, there have been instances of non-conference winners and rematches that were voted on. However, none have ever been from the same conference.
The first team Tide fans need to cheer for is the Oklahoma Sooners. If the Sooners defeat the Oklahoma State Cowboys, chances are Alabama is in regardless of what happens in the SEC Championship Game.
Neither Virginia Tech nor Stanford has the computer scores to leap the Tide. The only team with a legitimate shot is Oklahoma State.
The Alabama lovefest is dying down and now the media is beginning to plead the case for the Cowboys. One Harris Poll voter announced yesterday that he will be moving Oklahoma State to No. 2 if it beats Oklahoma and encouraged other voter to do the same.
The Cowboys have been defeated 11 straight games headed into the series. A win could go a long way with the voters. Would it be enough? Time will tell.
The second team that the Tide needs to cheer for is LSU. That is correct. The Crimson Tide need to cheer for the team that defeated them to defeat the Georgia Bulldogs in the SEC Championship Game this weekend.
If the Bulldogs were to upset the Tigers it could mean the Tide were left out. The voters would be left with a unique situation.
I think it is certain LSU will still be in the national championship regardless of the outcome this weekend. Its computer scores are too high and the voters are unlikely to vote Alabama above the Tigers since they defeated them head-to-head and were defeated in a game Alabama was able to dodge because of its loss at home to the Tigers.
If LSU is in, where does that leave Alabama? Would the voters be willing to put two non-conference champions in the BCS National Championship Game from the same conference?
It is possible, but it seems unlikely. There is a greater chance they move the Cowboys to No. 2 to dodge this PR nightmare.
What then happens to Alabama if it were left out of the championship game because the Bulldogs upset the Tigers?
With only LSU in the championship game, that would make two BCS bowls the maximum for the SEC. Georgia would have locked up the Sugar Bowl as the SEC champion.
As a result, that means the Crimson Tide would likely to drop down to the Capital One Bowl. Could you imagine the heartbreak? After defeating Auburn University, a rematch in the BCS National Championship Game seemed to be a lock.
Is this likely to happen? It would take a major Bulldog upset and the Cowboys breaking their losing streak to the Sooners, so it is not probable but it is clearly possible.
Bama fans, you might want to cheer for the Sooners and Tigers this weekend.