Irish don't stand a fighting chance

Monday, November 19, 2012

So, Alabama wasn't unbeatable this year.

Texas A&M surprised everyone but themselves by upsetting the Tide to throw a wrench in the BCS standings for a week. But all is returned to normal after Sunday's BCS standings were released and Alabama was perched in second place behind Notre Dame.

That reinstates the Tide as the favorite to win the BCS title. Notre Dame won't last through the remainder of the season unbeaten and Alabama will likely end up playing Florida in the championship game.

The Southeastern Conference prevails once again as the rest of the nation suffers from conference envy.

Speaking of conference envy, there are some critical games this week in the SEC, namely Missouri and TAMU and Vanderbilt at Tennessee. If Vandy and Missouri both record victories on Saturday it would make bowl eligible 10 teams from the SEC. I really want to see how the bowl committees are going to juggle that many teams.

I do think Vandy can topple the Vols and Missouri has an outside chance of beating the Aggies. Very outside.

Once again, the Southeastern Conference dominates the college football landscape, creating haters along the way as every other conference complains. And I understand it. I do the same when Notre Dame is ranked in the Top 10 with four losses. That's not to say the Irish don't deserve to ranked No. 1 in the nation this week. But they are far from the best team in the country and I would pick any of the top seven teams in the SEC in a head-to-head meeting. Yes, I said, Notre Dame is not as good right now as seven SEC teams. The Irish is ranked No. 1 by default.

Looking down their schedule leaves a lot to be desired. Navy, Purdue, Michigan State, Michigan, Miami (Fl.), Stanford, BYU, Oklahoma, Pittsburgh, Boston College and Wake Forest. It took three overtimes to beat Pitt. They slipped by Purdue early in the season by three, barely beat BYU and will probably get hammered by USC on Saturday.

Early predictions have either Alabama or Georgia playing Notre Dame in the BCS Championship game. That will all change again once the Irish falls from voting grace and the football world gets turned right side up again.

Here's my suggestion to Notre Dame. Join a conference. Play some quality non-conference games. But until you join a conference and play tougher competition week in and week out, save your national television audience the misery of being force fed your games, your pitifully boring games.

Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, LSU, Texas A&M and Mississippi State would all take you to the woodshed this year, and not so sure that Vanderbilt wouldn't do the same. How embarrassing would that be for Notre Dame to be contemplating a national title then get beat by Vandy. We will never know. But it's fun to ponder.

There is very little more to say until Alabama routs Auburn and the SEC title game is played in a few weeks. The road to the college championship is more interesting now that the Tide fell from graces a little. Just don't expect that to stop them the rest of the way.

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Chan Davis is the sports editor for the Carroll County News. Contact him at or 870-654-2742.

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