Friday, November 10, 2006

good news / bad news / picks

There’s bad news and good news this week for Auburn. Because I like happy endings, we’re going with bad news first.

Bad news: If you saw Arkansas’s win over South Carolina, and you’re aware that while the ‘Cocks gained more yards than both Auburn and Tennessee in those games but gave up 495 yards to the Hogs and fell 150 total yards short of them you know that just as much chance of Rutgers Wake Forest Duke playing for the national championship as Auburn has of playing for the SEC title. It’s conceivable that LSU or the Vols could rise up and steal one of the Hogs’ remaining games, but both? At home? There’s simply no chance whatsoever.

Good news: Auburn’s chances of landing in a different BCS bowl game are just as good not playing in the SEC championship game as they are playing in it. Beat Georgia, beat Bama, and that’s an 11-1 season. An SEC title sure would be sweet, but a megabucks Orange Bowl tilt with, say, Georgia Tech? I for one am not going to complain about that.

Bad news: Georgia’s and Bama’s losses last week to Kentucky and Miss. St. mean that if Auburn wins out, it won’t make much of an argument with pollsters or the computers.

Good news: Georgia and Bama lost last week to Kentucky and Miss. St.! Tee hee hee! I’m usually not that into the whole schadenfreude thing, but as long as Auburn comes through against them, it’s worth it for the laughs. Kentucky! Miss. St! They lost to Rich “I died six years ago and must coach my team to a bowl game to undo the Mumme’s Curse” Brooks and Sylvester “Yes, I have a playbook, I stick it under one my office desk legs to keep it even” Croom! Friggin’ unbelievable, man.

Bad news: Despite the Big East going down in scarlet flames, Auburn still has virtually no shot at the BCS title game. It’s not that tough to see Arkansas losing to LSU and then beating Florida, making Auburn the top SEC team. It would, at that point, probably come down to picking a one-loss team out of Texas, Auburn, and the Pac-10 champ, which looks very, very likely to be Cal. As Auburn would be the only one of the three without a conference championship, who outside of SEC diehards would make an argument for them?

Good news: Because, screw it, it’s fun to speculate, and if we lose to the teams that lost to Kentucky and Miss. St. I’ll be embarrassed enough already, we should point out that there is still a reasonable scenario that gets Auburn to Glendale without the SEC title. As mentioned before, Arkansas loses to LSU but beats Florida. Texas falls to either A&M or to Nebraska in the Big 12 title game—the second one seems much more likely, since the Big 12 title game’s only twin purposes since its inception have been to ruin a team’s national title hopes or embarrass Colorado. The Buffs won’t be there, so it could be a “national title hopes ruined” kind of year. Then, USC beats Cal but loses to either Oregon or Notre Dame. This strikes me as least likely—unless you’re the sort of person who has a peculiar and unyielding sexual fetish for the colors of garnet-and-gold, Cal is pretty clearly head and shoulders above the Trojans at this point. But if Oregon can knock off USC this week—and really, who would be surprised?—the Trojans might have just enough pride to turn it around against Cal the following week.

That’s a lot that has to fall into place, but none of those results, individually, are that much more unlikely than what happened last night, are they?

Bad news: God, I just wrote a “For Auburn to make the national title game…” scenario paragraph. As if the “home team in the Auburn-Georgia game” and “Cheerleader of the Week” jinxes weren’t enough already.

Good news: The “We’re quarterbacked by Matthew Stafford, our receivers can’t catch the ball, and our defense hasn’t stopped anyone” jinx should also be in full effect.

Bad news: The JCCW does not have GamePlan and will not be watching Auburn-Georgia at home, so no quarter-by-quarter recap until the ‘Bama game.

Good news: The JCCW will be in Chicago for the Decemberists concert this weekend and will be watching the game at Joe’s sports bar instead. On the tiny, miniscule, infinitesimal chance that you’re reading this Friday night/Saturday morning and will also be at Joe’s tomorrow, say hello. I’ll be the guy in the Auburn cap and Auburn shirt with the Auburn fans. Not that that helps you.


Quickly: Houston (-3) over SMU; South Carolina (+13) over Florida; Wake Forest (+8 1/2) over Florida St.; Oregon (+8 1/2) over USC; Arkansas (-6) over Tennessee; Michigan St. (+1 1/2) over Minnesota.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

37-15...that's a very painful pair of numbers. Looks like the CotW curse has claimed yet another victim. It's spooky.