Tuck: Alabama Win Historic, More Proof Playoff Needed

Alabama’s defense was great.  In fact, it’s one of the best ones I’ve seen.  Last night’s BCS Title Game shutout will go down in history.  People will look back years from now and be impressed with the numbers and the performance.  I would never try to take that away from the Tide.   I just struggle how to define it historically against other great defenses.

The conversation is somewhat irrelevant, but if we are to have it, then the following has to be brought up: Who they played.

Being the first team ranked in first in the top 4 defensive categories (yards, pass, rush, points against) is incredible.  But if you actually look at who they played, it becomes less impressive.  Look at their schedule (minus I-AA Georgia Southern, who actually was the only team to score two touchdowns against Alabama) and where the teams ranked in YPG (yards per game) and PPG (points per game).

Arkansas #28 ypg, #16 ppg

LSU #57 ypg, #12 ppg

Mississippi State #72 ypg, #73 ppg

Penn State #86 ypg, #110 ppg

Vanderbilt #88 ypg, #61 ppg

Auburn #91 ypg, #70 ppg

Florida #98, #71 ppg

North Texas #105 ypg, #76 ppg

Tennessee #107 ypg, #106 ppg

Ole Miss #114 ypg, #116 ppg

Kent State #119 ypg, #114 ppg

To say the Tide wasn’t tested might be an understatement.  Arkansas appears to be, by the numbers and by the eye test, the only real offensive team they played.  I would have loved to see the Alabama defense go against Oklahoma State, Stanford, Oregon, Baylor, Boise State, or Wisconsin.  That is just my wish.

I bring this up only to measure them historically, not to critique their accomplishment this season.  A season gives you what it gives you.  They can’t change their schedule.

Their schedule also is a reason that I didn’t think they should have been playing last night.  The weaker schedule is just one reason.  Having lost already to LSU, lost the division to the Tigers, and the conference would be the other.  I never said I didn’t think Alabama couldn’t beat LSU in a rematch, only that I didn’t think LSU should have to beat Alabama again.

Selecting Alabama for the game opened the game up to more questions than answers.  I wrote this after the final BCS rankings came out.  With an Alabama win, now LSU has their argument for a split.  So does Oklahoma State, who was ahead of the Tide in many polls, including mine.

The BCS is like Biggie’s song: Mo Money, Mo Problems.



1. Alabama (12-1)

1. LSU (13-1)

1. Oklahoma State (12-1)

Hey, I didn’t make the rules.  When you don’t have a clear cut title game, you don’t get clear cut final standings.  This vote matter much.  It’s the Crimson Tide’s title.  LSU did the most and split with the Tide.  The Cowboys never got their shot, which I thought they deserved.  So I split it.  Have a playoff and make this easier.  TCU, Boise State, Auburn, USC, and many others never got their shots either.  Clearly, there is something wrong here.

4. Oregon (12-2)

4. Stanford (11-2)

4. USC (10-2)

Ducks won the conference, but they went round robin with the Cardinal and the Trojans so I’ll split these three outstanding teams.

7. Arkansas (11-2)

8. TCU (11-2)

9. Boise State (12-1)

10. Wisconsin (11-3)

11. South Carolina (11-2)

12. Baylor (10-3)

12.Oklahoma (10-3)

12. Kansas State (10-3)

Another round-robin that I felt deserved a tie.

15. Michigan State (11-3)

16. Michigan (11-2)

17. West Virginia (10-3)

18. Clemson (10-4)

19. Virginia Tech (11-3)

20. Southern Miss (12-2)

21. Houston (13-1)

22. Northern Illinois (11-3)

23. Georgia (10-4)

24. Nebraska (9-4)

25. Missouri (8-5)