May God have mercy on the NCAA, as He (or She) surly sided with with Notre Dame Irish on Saturday, as after two massive an improbable upsets, the Irish are atop the BCS and are now the No. 1 team in the country. With just one game left to go against a hobbled and lowly USC Trojans team, the possibility of seeing the Irish in the National Championship game just got very real.
“Now we don’t have to answer questions about style points or politics,” Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said. “Now we have a chance to play for the national championship this week.”
Notre Dame jumped three spots in the BCS, but they weren’t the only team to have their prayers answered. After losing last week, the Alabama Crimson Ride have lucked their way back into having a shot at repeating as National Champions. The BCS shakeup also helped now No. 3 Georgia and No. 4 Florida move up in the standings as well.
As for the two teams that lost on Saturday, Oregon only fell back to No. 5 but Kansas State fell to No. 6 after getting embarrassed by an unranked Baylor team. The only beef someone with the BCS system may have is that Kansas State didn’t fall out of the Top 10 even after the whooping they took. Even with the loss, the Wildcats are set up nicely to make some sort of BCS Bowl appearance, as are the Oregon Ducks.
But the story is the luck of the Irish and the question is how long will it last. Notre Dame doesn’t have to play a conference championship game (unlike Alabama) so a win on Saturday against USC all but assures Manti Te’o and his Irish a shot at the title.
The real question is no longer will Notre Dame play in the National Championship, it’s who will they play. Alabama has a season finale against Auburn and then it’s off to the SEC title game against either Florida or Georgia. Logic would suggest that Georgia gets the trip to the SEC title game as Florida squares off against No. 10 Florida State on Saturday while No. 3 Georgia gets unranked Georgia Tech.
If all three SEC teams win on Saturday, the SEC championship game will decide who plays Notre Dame in the National Championship.
Of course, it Notre Dame loses, we will have another shake up atop the BCS, and this being the wild and always unpredictable game of college football we can never guarantee anyone’s safety in the BCS.