All the talk prior to Thursday night’s Auburn-South Carolina game centered on whether the Tigers could earn “style points” in its contest with the Gamecocks. In other words, would Auburn beat South Carolina bad enough to impress the pollsters? This is what college football has come to now.
Say what you want to about the NFL, but at least there, a win is a win. Is Auburn the second best team in the country? Right now, I honestly don’t know. Then again, I’m not convinced Ohio State is the best team in the country. Did Auburn play with its A-Game Thursday? Not even close. But they still won.
With that said, we should taking nothing away from Auburn’s 24-17 win in Columbia. This team went on the road against a 3-1 Steve Spurrier team at night. Any kind of win is impressive in that environment. Still, by Friday morning, all the talking heads on the radio and television were speculating over whether the Tigers seven point win was enough to stay ranked second in the country.
Please. You must be kidding me. A road win at night in the SEC should never drop a team in the polls. Say what you want to about ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit, but he echoed that point prior to the start of Thursday game. Talking to the Auburn Radio Network, Herbstreit said that most people around the country don’t realize the difficulty of playing on the road in the SEC. He went on to say that playing even what is considered a middle-tier team like South Carolina is difficult. Herbstreit said that’s what separates the SEC from other conferences. I couldn’t agree more.
And neither can Tommy Tuberville. ”If they think that wasn’t a tough ball game to play, they need to come watch an SEC game,” he said. “I saw the two teams in front of us (in the Harris Interactive poll) play close games last week, too.
How can you possibly drop Auburn in the polls and not drop Southern Cal after last week’s game?They managed to beat an Arizona team that was pounded by LSU a few weeks earlier, 20-3 in Tucson. What’s more impressive: A seven point Auburn win over South Carolina or a 17 point USC win over Arizona? That’s a pretty easy answer. I’ll take Steve Spurrier over Mike Stoops any time.