Sport The First All-SEC National Title Game Was Bad, but the Second Doesn't Have to Be

20:43  08 january  2018
20:43  08 january  2018 Source:   si.com

With six national title game appearances in nine years, Alabama’s run surpasses all other recent dynasties

  With six national title game appearances in nine years, Alabama’s run surpasses all other recent dynasties Saying that the Alabama Crimson Tide football program under Nick Saban is one of the most dominating dynasties in college football history isn’t a very bold statement. College football has seen a lot of good programs rise and fall over the years. A few lucky ones find themselves atop the heap for two or three years in a row. The rarest of them all, however, create a dynastic era where their program is the one that defines the entire sport for a decade.

That national championship game wasn’ t the first time those two teams had faced each other that season. Like this season, a regular-season loss kept them out of the SEC title game , so all that stood between them and a likely national championship game bid was unranked Mississippi State

That national championship game wasn’ t the first time those two teams had faced each other that season. Like this season, a regular-season loss kept them out of the SEC title game , so all that stood between them and a likely national championship game bid was unranked Mississippi State

Nick Saban holding a microphone© Provided by TIME Inc.

When the College Football Playoff Selection Committee gave the fourth and final playoff spot to Alabama instead of Ohio State, it set the stage for what many fan bases thought of as a doomsday scenario: two SEC teams playing for the national championship. Standing in the way of that all-SEC matchup was a Heisman Trophy winner leading the nation’s most explosive offense, not to mention the defending national champions peaking at the right time. But Georgia got the last punch in an exhilarating blow-for-blow bout with Baker Mayfield and Oklahoma, and Alabama stifled Clemson in dominating fashion. So here we are, with a Southeastern-flavored national championship game on our hands.

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A championship game matchup between Alabama and Georgia promises to be more engaging than the Crimson Tide’s 21-0 win over LSU in the last all - SEC title game . Latest News.

by Patrick Schmidt. The First All - SEC National Title Game Was Bad , but the Second Doesn ' t Have to Be . by Daniel Rapaport. Georgia vs. Alabama: 3 key position battles in the National Championship Game .

Both teams’ semifinal wins were impressive for different reasons. Georgia beat the Big 12 champs at their own game—a defense-optional shootout, the type of contest SEC teams want to avoid, as the conventional wisdom goes—while Alabama at times made Clemson look like the junior varsity a week after the Tigers won the ACC title game by 35. It’s one thing to be upset with the committee’s choice to go with ‘Bama over a conference champion, but it’s difficult to dispute that Monday’s matchup is anything but a game between the two best teams in the country. Both teams validated their status by scoring big-time victories over conference champions on the biggest of stages, and these wins make the all-SEC matchup a bit more palatable.

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Share National Title Game Preview: It’s Master vs. Apprentice on College Football’s Biggest Stage. But Georgia, the prototypical SEC program with a dominant rushing game and lockdown defense, roared back after the break, using a In what should be a close game , I ’m going to trust my first rule.

Some college football fans are fuming over an All - SEC title game . The UCF Knights, meanwhile, just completed a perfect season by knocking off Auburn, a team that ranked second prior to the SEC title game , in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.

Whether you’re still bitter that Ohio State or USC or even UCF didn’t get a chance, we can all come together in hoping that this year’s national championship game will be a more entertaining contest than the last time two SEC teams fought for it all.

Following the 2011 season, Alabama beat LSU 21–0 in an absolute snooze-fest that nobody really wanted to see. That national championship game wasn’t the first time those two teams had faced each other that season. The two SEC West programs faced off roughly two months earlier in that season’s “Game of the Century”, with the Tigers and Tide undefeated and ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the country.

That first meeting itself was polarizing. Depending on whom you ask, LSU’s 9–6 overtime win was either a gloriously anachronistic defensive standoff or a borderline unwatchable field goal bonanza.

Because the game was so close, Alabama only dropped to No. 4 in the AP Poll and, more importantly, No. 3 in the BCS rankings. That meant that if the Tide could win their final three games, they would need only a little help from the field to get into the title game. Like this season, a regular-season loss kept them out of the SEC title game, so all that stood between them and a likely national championship game bid was unranked Mississippi State, FBS Georgia State and an always-tricky Iron Bowl matchup at Auburn. Alabama took care of business the rest of the way, as did LSU, which entered the title game unbeaten after smashing Georgia 42–10 in the SEC championship game.

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The all - SEC national title game between Bama and Georgia was supposed to be a clash of defensive-minded teams led by a pair of dynamic rushing attacks. It was for most of the first half, but it quickly turned into something else altogether.

First , you are asking your unpaid student athlete to put more stress on their body for your entertainment. I hate the idea of an all - SEC title game . Will an all - SEC title game change anything? Doubtful.

LSU was a no-brainer for one national championship spot, but there were three teams that had legitimate cases for the second spot. Oklahoma State was 11-1 and had just beaten No. 10 Oklahoma by 34, but a bad loss at unranked Iowa in Week 13 loomed large. Stanford was also 11-1, with the lone loss coming to No. 6 Oregon, but didn’t win the Pac-12 North and thus didn’t make the Pac-12 title game. Then there was Alabama, an 11-1 team whose only loss came by three to the top team in the country. The decisive BCS standings (remember those?) went with the Crimson Tide, and the rematch was on.

That year’s SEC-on-SEC final was certainly less justifiable than this year’s. It’s hard to get past the fact that the teams had already played each other, especially with two other extremely worthy teams waiting in the wings. Plus, the first game between LSU and Alabama was so boring, so why not give Oklahoma State, a team that averaged 48.7 points per game that year, a shot at LSU’s vaunted defense? The problem was that no human or committee had the power to step in as the voice of reason to stop it from happening—what the BCS rankings spit out was the final decision.

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Urban Meyer won national titles in year two at Florida and year three at Ohio State and has come in first or tied for first all five years at Ohio State. If Georgia finished 12- 1 with a single loss to Alabama in the SEC title game , I don’ t know how you leave them out over a two loss title team from another

Skip all. Welcome home! This timeline is where you’ll spend most of your time, getting instant national title game is guaranteed to be better than the first one because nothing could possibly be worse . www.sportsonearth.com/article/244896850/college-football- worst -ugly- games -in-history

To make matters worse, while defense once again ruled the day, the rematch itself did not replicate the intrigue of the regular season meeting. Alabama took a 9–0 lead into halftime on three field goals, no touchdowns were scored until there were less than five minutes remaining and, famously, LSU didn’t cross midfield until the fourth quarter. The Tigers’ offense, despite having Odell Beckham Jr. and Spencer Ware and Alfred Blue and Jarvis Landry at its disposal, managed just 92 total yards and picked up five first downs the entire game. It was truly a Les Miles special.

The entire contest was a regrettably unentertaining and uninspiring way to end a season, and Oklahoma State’s 41–38 overtime victory over Stanford in the Fiesta Bowl left fans wondering what a final with the high-octane Cowboys might have looked like.

There’s reason to be more optimistic about the 2018 edition of SEC vs. SEC. First and foremost, the teams haven’t played each other and don’t have the familiarity of division rivals, even though Georgia coach Kirby Smart worked under Nick Saban for years before moving to Athens. We have no idea how Alabama’s terrific run defense will fare against the Nick Chubb-Sony Michel duo, nor do we know how Georgia plans to contain top Tide wideout Calvin Ridley.

There’s something special about those first few minutes of a championship game, when both teams are feeling each other out and seeing what will and won’t work. That electric beginning wasn’t there six years ago. And unlike their 2011 counterparts, this Crimson Tide squad did handle the No. 1 team in the country, a win that validated their controversial admission to the playoff party.

There is also a real chance we’re in for another slog: Alabama is the nation’s top scoring defense, giving up just 11.5 points per game, while Georgia’s is fourth-best in that category (13.2). But at least if this national championship turns out to be a dud, it will be the first terrible game we watched between these two SEC foes. One awful game can be stomached. Two leaves a lingering bad taste.

ESPN bowl audience up 12% versus last year heading into championship game .
With the Georgia-Oklahoma All-SEC matchup coming up in the national championship game tonight, there’s a lot of focus on how low the ratings might go.&nbsp;While the matchup tonight, the playoff selection process, and UCF claiming a national championship for their own has brought a lot of scrutiny to the current four team structure, what about the rest of bowl season?

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