What’s That Smell? …2004?
Let’s Celebrate! The biggest Iron Bowl win we’ve all been gloating over the past couple days. With wide smiles, wearing as much Auburn gear as you can just to check the mail (and the mailbox is 10 feet in front of your house). It was a Miracle vs. Georgia and now it’s a Shocker vs. Bama. What’s next!? Well that’s what I’d like to look at because I’m a tad worried.
Let’s face it, we know we can win (words we would probably not have muttered with such resilience pre-season) but that’s where we are at.
We are also haunted by that 2004 season.
The one where we went undefeated, proclaimed we could take anyone down (cough, cough USC) and then got shut out of the National Championship just to see USC steam roll Oklahoma 55-19. I believe that was where ‘it’ all started. The landslide of SEC dominance winning the National Championship yearly, minus the very next year when Texas and USC played for it all. Even with that the Nation came to their senses and decided that the SEC Champion should be awarded a slot in the big game… which has paid off every since.
Here we are on the verge of the SEC Championship where a one loss SEC team will sit and wait to see whether Michigan St. can topple Ohio State or whether the nation holds to historical significance and allows a one loss SEC team to leapfrog Ohio St. in the final standings. I’ll just assume the Florida State – Duke game is already settle in favor of Florida State.
If Auburn wins and so do Ohio State and Florida State, then where do we hang our hat?
It’s surely strength of schedule. Auburn will have played 6 ranked opponents through the SEC title game. Ohio St. will have played 3 ranked opponents through the Big Ten title game. If that’s not enough, Auburn will have beaten 5 of those ranked opponents (with one being our only loss) when 4 of the 6 were top 10 teams. Ohio St. will have played 1 top 10 team when they meet Michigan St. this Saturday. Let’s also keep in mind that Auburn’s lone loss was to a #6 LSU team, on the road in Baton Rouge at night, in the rain during a time when LSU was being touted as likely the best ‘team’ in the SEC.
We hope to beat Mizzou and then fill one of the two slots for the National Championship no matter the outcome of any other game next Saturday. We hear it all the time, just win and things will play out well. Even IF we lose to Mizzou we had a Terrific season with one loss, Beat Bama, and will likely go to the Sugar Bowl. Those were outlandish thoughts heading into this season.
I will leave you with one last nugget of thought:
Urban Meyer sure does a lot of whining for an ex-SEC coach. Urban knew of Ohio St.’s weaker scheduling / opponents well before he took that job along with the SEC’s strangle hold on top 25 dominance and National Championship record … Just sayin’.