Does the SEC need a BCS plus-one?
Maybe not, argues Tony Barnhart, in a column on the prospects for Auburn getting the 2004 trophy. The reason? 2006-2009.
This four-year streak has changed everything from the SEC perspective. The league office now feels that the SEC has proven its strength to the point where it is highly unlikely -- almost impossible -- that an undefeated SEC champion would be left out of the BCS title game.
In short, I’m not hearing anything these days about a "Plus-One" model from my friends at the SEC.
That could prove short-sighted. Think about it this way: What if the team were an undefeated Mississippi State or Kentucky that had a once-in-a-lifetime season, against an undefeated Texas and an undefeated Ohio State? (Let's assume that Kentucky doesn't schedule three JUCO schools and Louisville for its nonconference slate.) Don't undervalue name and starting position -- unless Mississippi State or Kentucky had a great season the year before, they won't be ranked preseason or will start in the 20s or so and would have a hard time being better than No. 3.
I'm as unsure about even a plus-one as anybody you'll meet, but self-interest isn't a reason for the SEC to ignore it.
CBS Sports ranks Hot Seats
Some of the results are -- um, what's the word I'm looking for here? -- interesting. We'll set aside for now the obvious problems with drawing up a list like this three and a half months before the season. SEC coaches and some other names you'll know on a scale of 0 (safe) to 5 ("It's Division I football, brother!")
Alabama's Nick Saban 0
Arkansas' Bobby Petrino 2.0
Auburn's Gene Chizik 1.5
Bowling Green's Dave Clawson 1.0
Duke's David Cutcliffe 1.0
Florida's Urban Meyer 0
Georgia's Mark Richt 3.0
Illinois' Ron Zook 4.5
Kentucky's Joker Phillips 1.0
LSU's Les Miles 3.0
Louisville's Charlie Strong 0.5
Mississippi's Houston Nutt 0
Mississippi's State Dan Mullen 0.5
Penn State's Joe Paterno 0.5
South Carolina's Steve Spurrier 3.0
Southern Cal's Lane Kiffin 3.0
Tennessee's Derek Dooley 3.0
Texas Tech's Tommy Tuberville 0
Vanderbilt's Bobby Johnson 2.5
I know it's Nick Saban, but is anybody ever really "safe" at Alabama? Georgia fans -- I'm just the messenger for now; I'll have some thoughts on Richt to share during Georgia week, which is a ways off for now. Why is Joker Phillips already at 1? Derek Dooley is already at 3? How is Joe Paterno at 0.5?!?
Those getting a 5 shouldn't surprise anyone: Dan Hawkins at Colorado, Rich Rodriguez at Michigan, Todd Dodge at North Texas and Paul Wulff at Washington State. (HT: Garnet And Black Attack)
James Williams no longer with Vanderbilt
Academic reasons. Offensive line is the kind of position at which you generally like to avoid attrition if you're a team like the Commodores.
Jarvis Williams, RIP
The former Florida player was 45.
He started 45 consecutive games and was an All-America in 1987 and a two-time first-time All-SEC selection. He is probably best known for the devastating hit he put on Miami running back Melvin Bratton in 1986 at Florida Field that left Bratton momentarily unconscious.
What hit, you might ask. This one:
No, your teeth aren't really rattling. That's psychosomatic.