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Report: USC could be stripped of '04 title

Forget Reggie Bush losing his Heisman trophy; USC could be facing a much greater loss — their 2004 BcS crystal football.

That’s according to Steve Wieberg of USA Today, who reports that the Trojans could be stripped of their 2004 national title if the NCAA finds the football program committed major violations.

The NCAA’s report on its investigation into both the football and basketball programs could come down any day now — any day now…  any day now… — and sanctions, if there are any, would be handed down at that time.  If it’s found that Bush received illegal benefits starting in 2004, and the football program was found to be culpable, the former Trojan great would be ruled retroactively ineligible and the Trojans could be forced to vacate wins from 2004 and 2005.

If that’s the case, a previously unknown BcS stipulation, enacted after the probe into the Bush allegations began, would kick in.

Quietly in early 2007, as the investigation into USC and alleged improprieties involving Bush and his family was unfolding, college football’s Bowl Championship Series drew up a policy calling for teams’ BCS appearances and BCS titles to be vacated when major rules violations subsequently are discovered and the institutions are sanctioned by the NCAA. Current BCS executive director Bill Hancock confirmed the provision Wednesday. …

“[Vacated wins] would be the BCS’ cue. Its policy stipulates: “When the NCAA or a conference makes a finding of violations … and imposes a sanction of forfeiture or vacation of contests in which an ineligible student-athlete participated, we will presume that vacation of participation in a BCS bowl game is warranted.” That’s if the player in question participated in that BCS game or in victories that led to the bowl berth.

Uh.

Oh.

BcS director Bill Hancock confirmed the provision to USA Today Wednesday, but also added it would not kick in “until the very end of the NCAA process, including all appeals.”

Obviously, we’re still a long way from knowing how this will all play out, and would only begin to play out if the triggering sanctions were slapped on USC by the NCAA, but it does beg the question: what would happen to the 2004 title if it is indeed ripped from USC?

Would it go to Oklahoma, who got their asses handed to them in the title game by the score of 55-19?  Would it go to Auburn, who finished the season unblemished at 13-0?  Or would there simply be no “official” national champion for that season?

Your mileage may vary but, from what I remember of that season, USC was hands down the best football team in the country.  And it wasn’t really close.

Whether or not they used a retroactively ineligible player would not change that.

(Tip O’ the Hat: Dr. Saturday)

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Respond to “Report: USC could be stripped of '04 title”
  1. jj jones says: May 20, 2010 11:34 AM

    Will the AP have a re-vote?

  2. rolltide says: May 20, 2010 11:44 AM

    They should give it to Oklahoma, since Auburn already claims that championship, complete with rings saying “2004 National Champions” given to all the players.

  3. Hail2ThaRedskins says: May 20, 2010 12:17 PM

    I doubt a rule enacted in 2007 would be applied to a situation in 2004, especially if said rule was created as a result of an investigation into the 2004 situation. Someone might want to confirm whether or not the rule was enacted retroactively. When people write stories and apply short quotes, I look for what isn’t there as much or more than what is there. There is no reference of USC or a mention of the fact that rule was indeed retroactively enacted. Seems more likely that the author of the story is using convenient quotes out of context to imply something that isn’t 100% accurate.
    I will admit I don’t know and could be wrong, but I bet if you did some journalistic research on your own you will find that the rule does not apply to any situation prior to its enactment in 2007.

  4. jwsteph says: May 20, 2010 12:47 PM

    Check your history book. USC was not hands down the best team. Look at strength of schedule and margin of victory, then try again.

  5. fumanchu2 says: May 20, 2010 1:01 PM

    In 2004 Auburn played FIVE Top 20 teams.
    USC played 2
    Oklahoma 1
    FWIW, Auburn also set the NFL Draft record that year, for most players to go in the 1st round.

  6. BrownsTown says: May 20, 2010 1:14 PM

    Auburn’s 2004 OOC schedule was their downfall, as it should be. Oklahoma is more deserving of a gift title and USC was better than Auburn.
    Auburn’s OOC:
    Louisiana-Monroe
    The Citadel
    Louisiana Tech
    Bowl: Virginia Tech (same team played by USC in SCHEDULED their season opener)
    USC’s OOC:
    @ Virginia Tech
    Colorado State
    @ BYU
    Notre Dame
    Bowl: Oklahoma
    Oklahoma’s OOC:
    BOWLING GREEN
    HOUSTON
    OREGON (ask Boozie how good they were)

  7. BrownsTown says: May 20, 2010 1:19 PM

    And the SEC was 3-3 in bowl games that year, so it’s not like those five games within the SEC were against premier teams.
    L:
    Minnesota 20
    Bama 16
    Miami 27
    Florida 10
    Iowa 30
    LSU 25
    W:
    Georgia 24
    Wisconsin 21
    Tenn 38
    Texas A&M 7
    Auburn 16
    VT 13

  8. fumanchu2 says: May 20, 2010 1:34 PM

    Auburn had Bowling Green scheduled but they backed out. Had to go with Citadel unfortunately. I still say give it to AU…. they would have put up a MUCH better fight than the Sooners.

  9. plfalzar says: May 20, 2010 1:58 PM

    Cheat On, U$C, Cheat On!
    I love it! I’m really pleased I started this rivalry, as watching you suffer and embarrass yourselves on and off the field for over 80 years has been so much fun.
    Sincerely,
    Knute Rockne
    PS Auburn would be my champs. Undefeated is undefeated. I would know.

  10. SoFlaTrojan says: May 20, 2010 2:05 PM

    My personal opinion is until there is a playoff and the championship is won on the field these National Championships are all BS anyway.

  11. Bigrat says: May 20, 2010 3:13 PM

    USC should give up every win for 2-3 years that Bush played.
    AUBURN was the REAL nat. champ that year anyway…

  12. Voice of Football says: May 20, 2010 3:29 PM

    You can bet your ass that 0u will claim it. Like Alabama, they have a long history of claiming titles that aren’t really theirs.

  13. gator_prof says: May 20, 2010 3:37 PM

    OK shouldn’t have been in the title game, Auburn should have. They played a tougher schedule all season, in a tougher conference.
    USC may have won, but they were not “hands down” the best. OK was an incredibly over-rated team…has been for a while. Both USC and OK play in cupcake soft conferences compared to the SEC.

  14. SoFlaTrojan says: May 20, 2010 3:38 PM

    SC would have rolled Auburn no problem.

  15. TexasTime says: May 20, 2010 3:39 PM

    Probably won’t go to anyone if it is vacated. Saw another article that went into a little bit more detail and the BCS is basically following the same rules of vacated wins as the NCAA. When the NCAA vacates a win that does not add a win into the opponents column in the record books. The losing team still holds onto the loss but the winning team does not get credit for a win.
    As far as the BCS championship, specifically, there are too many elements that go into the decision between the human and computer polls. Would be a major headache to have to reassemble all these things to determine who might go. Taking out all of USC’s wins would change strength of schedules and on and on and on. As for the human elements, they would have to go back to the original voters. The voters in the Harris and the Coaches poll have changed since then.
    Also, you would have the University of Utah screaming that it should be them and not Auburn no matter what the polls said.
    The AP would be unlikely to go back and re-vote. One, because the too have people that currently vote that were not voters back them. Two, this particular year is a real sore spot with them in that this was the year that finally severed the relationship between the AP and the BCS. It was pretty ugly.
    Needless to say, there will be fans at Auburn and those at Utah that feel that they are justified in claiming the championship. But it will only be in their minds and not in reality.

  16. SoFlaTrojan says: May 20, 2010 3:48 PM

    2002 USC 24 vs AU 17
    2003 # 8 USC 23 at #6 AU 0
    I think when you get shutout in 2003 in your own building you cant claim you were the better team in 2004.

  17. fumanchu2 says: May 20, 2010 3:53 PM

    great logic SoFlaTrojan

  18. savannahgator5220 says: May 20, 2010 4:48 PM

    Nothing to see here.USC will get a wrist slap like FSU did.
    No way the NCAA goes after one of it’s sacred cows.

  19. Bious says: May 20, 2010 4:55 PM

    Means nothing as people will still give them the NC

  20. plfalzar says: May 20, 2010 5:08 PM

    @SoFlaTrojan
    Brilliant logic. You must have a degree from Southern Cal.
    It always makes sense to compare college football teams with rolling rosters from one year to the next.

  21. CanesNYC05 says: May 20, 2010 5:21 PM

    Fumanchu – Second time I’ve seen pointing to Auburn having the record for first-rounders on this board. That’s flat out wrong. Miami set the record in 2002 with 5, then broke their own record in 2004 with 6. Auburn did not have a player in the first round in 2004. Their first selection was Dansby at #1 in the second round.
    FWIW – I definitely agree Auburn would have beat USC.

  22. RJDunkman says: May 20, 2010 5:27 PM

    Looking at a comparison of the two teams, they aren’t really that different. Auburn finished 13-0 and #2 in the final AP poll, while OU was 12-1 and #3 in the AP. Auburn’s opponents had a combined record of 80-62 (not counting Citadel since they are 1-AA), and played four teams that ended up ranked in the final AP poll (#7 Georgia, #10 Virginia Tech, #13 Tennessee, and #16 LSU). OU’s opponents had a combine 87-65 record, and they played three teams that finished ranked in the final AP poll (#1 USC, #5 Texas, and #18 Texas Tech).
    As for a statistical comparison, Auburn surely had the better defense, although OU was no slouch there. On offense, Jason Campbell threw for 2700 yards, 20 TD, and 7 INTs to Jason White’s 3205 yards, 35 TD, and 9 INTs. Cadillac Williams and Ronnie Brown combined for 2078 rushing yards and 20 TDs, while Adrian Peterson accounted for 1925 yards and 15 TDs on his own. Both teams had a solid but unspectacular receiving core with 4 WRs drafted each.
    In terms of future NFL draftees, Auburn did have four chosen in the 1st round that year (Brown at #2, Williams at #5, Carlos Rogers at #9, and Jason Campbell at #25 – impressive but not the record as previously claimed. Miami had 6 first round picks in 2004 in Sean Taylor, Kellen Winslow, Jonathan Vilma, DJ Williams, Vernon Carey, and Vince Willfork, who also had four 1st rounders in 2003 and five 1st rounders in 2002). Auburn also had Marcus McNeill who was drafted in the 2nd round the following year, and Ben Grubbs who was draftes in the 1st round in 2007. On the other side, OU had two 1st round picks, three 2nd round picks, a 4th, and three 5ths in 2005, plus a 1st, 2nd, three 3rds in 2006, and Adrian Peterson in 2007.
    I don’t think you can claim a clear-cut replacement to USC as the champion. I have doubts that the BCS would name a replacement champion if USC was to vacate their wins. I think if they did name a replacement, it would have to be OU since their system considered them the 2nd best team in the country and put them into the championship game ahead of Auburn. I think if the AP re-voted on their poll, they would probably name Auburn the new champ over OU, but the AP championship poll doesn’t count for much.

  23. SoFlaTrojan says: May 20, 2010 5:36 PM

    Plfalzar,
    So your telling me the freshman who came in were better than the seniors who went out? Come on they played the 2 previous years and SC won.

  24. DCroz says: May 20, 2010 5:37 PM

    I think this will wind up seeing the title vacated with no new champion named. We see this happen all the time in sports where the title is not awarded to whomever came in second. When Florida was forced to vacate the 1984 SEC title, for example, the league did not name the second-place team as champions; instead, the record book shows as “1984: Florida (vacated)” or just “vacated”.
    And really, do you think the BCS wants to invite more controversy by awarding the title to someone else? OU would still show as the loser of the Orange Bowl since the game would be vacated and not forfeited by Southern Cal (presumably), but Sooner fans would argue that there is no way to know what would have happened if Bush had not played. Auburn would say they were 13-0 and finished second, so they should automatically move up to the championship. And Utah would point out that it, too, was undefeated and crushed Pitt 35-7 in the Fiesta Bowl while AU barely skated by an unimpressive Virginia Tech in the Sugar Bowl.
    But who knows? Maybe the NCAA does not force vacating the wins on USC, and they will still be the champions…not that it would stop the argument, of course.

  25. Deb says: May 20, 2010 5:50 PM

    I’ll believe BCS will strip the title when I see it.
    @SoFlaTrojan …
    Yes, we need an NFL-style playoff system. But that is the saddest comment I’ve ever seen on the subject. You sound like a kindergartner pouting in the corner because someone took his toy away.
    @Voice of Football …
    You should join SoFlaTrojan in the corner because apparently the voice of football is a grating whine. So Bama claims titles they haven’t earned? Sorry, but history does not support your sour-grapes assertions. A little thumb-sucking might alleviate that bitter taste in your mouth.

  26. louisianaguy says: May 20, 2010 7:17 PM

    John Taylor opines: “USC was hands down the best football team in the country. And it wasn’t really close. Whether or not they used a retroactively ineligible player would not change that.”
    Really? You think that Reggie Bush was an isolated incident of a player being paid? Read the Yahoo report. The abuse was egregious, rampant, widespread, and systemic. USC was a pro team, not a college team. AND–as we are seeing,–abuse wasn’t limited to the football program.
    If justice wasn’t influenced by money and prestige, USC would deservedly be given the death penalty.

  27. SoFlaTrojan says: May 20, 2010 8:23 PM

    Deb,
    How can I be pouting if nothing has been taken away? You need some reading comprehension skills. The article says “They could be stripped.” Bama fans are the worst when it comes to talking about MNC’s.

  28. Bigbuckeye says: May 20, 2010 11:00 PM

    I still have my doubts that the NCAA has the intestinal fortitude to smack USC.
    However, IF it happens, the NC should be vacated for the year..

  29. Deb says: May 21, 2010 12:16 AM

    SoFlaTrojan says:
    My personal opinion is until there is a playoff and the championship is won on the field these National Championships are all BS anyway.
    ————————————————
    “So what if they take our championship away, gosh darn it! All those ol’ championships are BS anyway!! So you can just take ours and see if I care!!”
    Darlin’, I did not say you were pouting, nor did I say anything had been taken away. Read it again, Einstein. My comment was that you “SOUND LIKE a kindergartner pouting because his toy was taken away.” And, baby, you do.
    Apparently YOU are the one with inadequate reading-comprehension skills. I’m a real Floridian and lifelong Bama fan, but picked up my degree in the Big 12. How about you, Transplanted Trojan? Did you buy your diploma the way your team is accused of buying its talent? Because, frankly, I’d expect better reading-comprehension skills from an SC alum than those you’ve just demonstrated.
    BTW … I advocate playoffs but since college football conferences lack the parity of the NFL divisions, it’s a little more complicated to achieve than just wishing it so. However, the absence of a playoff series does not negate every championship in college history. All previous championships–yours and ours–were earned on the field. And like it or not, Alabama has earned more of them than anyone else. Part of demonstrating your adulthood is learning to accept reality, even when it’s unpleasant.
    Roll Tide!

  30. WingT says: May 21, 2010 12:39 AM

    Doesn’t matter. The title is in the past. What matters is what how they penalize USC going forward.

  31. Richard S says: May 21, 2010 1:45 AM

    It is amazing how Auburn fans forget that just months earlier in 2003 that USC SHUTOUT Auburn on their home field. USC was ranked 8th at the time and Auburn ranked 6th. Go figure how stupid the tigers (or should I say tiggers) can be for printing up rings and prouncing around like school girls. Fight On!
    As for Alabama fans, remember that you just won a national title while on probation for “major” violations. Go figure. BTW, best game I ever saw was at the Coloseum in 1978 with USC playing Alabama and went for the two point conversion to win but Paul McDonald threw a wounded duck pass and the game was over. I have never heard the Coliseum louder in my life. Roll Tide! Beat the arrogant Tigers. Who got their butts beat but want to claim they were national champs over a team that in fact kicked their butts. How embarrassssssing would it be to give the title to the lowly tiggers. FIGHT ON!!
    USC Class of 79

  32. Richard S says: May 21, 2010 2:02 AM

    To Gator_Prof,
    If Florida played in the Pac 10 year in and year out, you would be at best an 8-4 team. Why? Because you would be subjected to 7 different defenses and 8 different offenses week in and week out. You would run up against an Oregon State or Oregon team that practiced all season just to whomp on your butts and that knows all your tricks.
    The SEC is all hype. The reason why USC never gets to play you in the title game is because some how your officials figured out a way to avoid us. We were ready in 2004 and would have wiped you out. Did you see how really great that 2003 and 2004 USC teams were. They played at a different level that the rest from the Washington State game in 2003 all the way to the championship in 2004. Another level and if you were honest you would recognize that fact. We welcome the day the playoff system starts and your conference is shown to be soft in the head. Have Florida scheduled USC tomorrow. I am sure that Garrett would sign up for it in seconds. USC has consistently kicked your SEC butts since 2001. Before that, we were mediocre for 20 years. But in 2003, the year we lost two games we played unbelievable football and no one wanted to play us at the end of the season. Cowards!

  33. Richard S says: May 21, 2010 2:02 AM

    To Gator_Prof,
    If Florida played in the Pac 10 year in and year out, you would be at best an 8-4 team. Why? Because you would be subjected to 7 different defenses and 8 different offenses week in and week out. You would run up against an Oregon State or Oregon team that practiced all season just to whomp on your butts and that knows all your tricks.
    The SEC is all hype. The reason why USC never gets to play you in the title game is because some how your officials figured out a way to avoid us. We were ready in 2004 and would have wiped you out. Did you see how really great that 2003 and 2004 USC teams were. They played at a different level that the rest from the Washington State game in 2003 all the way to the championship in 2004. Another level and if you were honest you would recognize that fact. We welcome the day the playoff system starts and your conference is shown to be soft in the head. Have Florida scheduled USC tomorrow. I am sure that Garrett would sign up for it in seconds. USC has consistently kicked your SEC butts since 2001. Before that, we were mediocre for 20 years. But in 2003, the year we lost two games we played unbelievable football and no one wanted to play us at the end of the season. Cowards!

  34. jamesrewtin says: May 21, 2010 3:08 AM

    Deb,
    If you look at the list of national championships from the beginning of college football, bama has 10 national championships, generously including various tied and shared nat. championships. That is incredible and very impressive, it’s just not 13 like most bama fans proclaim. Something being printed on the back of one of those clever crimson-colored t-shirts does not make it history, e.g. 13 national championships.
    Also- saying that someone sounds like they are pouting, but they are not pouting is a ridiculous statement. That is the kind of logic a child would use. He is or he isn’t.
    And please, stop typing out “Darlin’.” We are all really impressed that you are from the South, but keep the drawl in your voice and off the keyboard. I’m Southern, born and raised, but that is a little much.

  35. SoFlaTrojan says: May 21, 2010 7:39 AM

    Deb,
    Sorry I didn’t realize you were a real Floridian and lifelong Bama fan. It all makes sense now, so how is your Bruncle Bubba doing?
    Auburn did get screwed in 2004. Although it is funny that if the would have scheduled a d1 school instead of the Citadel they would have played SC in the NC game. Last year if Texas doesn’t get lucky against Nebraska we have Bama vs Cincinnati and everybody knows Cincinnati was nowhere near being a top team in the country.
    In 2006 people were calling for Michigan and tOSU to play a second time in the NC game. It didn’t happen and both teams got rolled in their bowl games. My personal opinion is the by not having a playoff in college we are deprived of seeing some very good matchups. I would have loved to see the 2008 Trojans play the 2008 Gators in a playoff game.
    As far as national championships go like Bama, USC has quite a few as well. I still don’t think they mean shit until there is a playoff.
    For what it’s worth I have a lot of respect for Alabama and think Saban is the top coach in CFB. They do deserve to catch a little shit for scheduling Georgia State.

  36. BrownsTown says: May 21, 2010 11:59 AM

    Once again, hillbilly nation disregards that 3-3 bowl record in the ’04 season while crowing that they were the best conference. Facts… use ‘em.
    And worst Jedi Mind Trick Attempt of 2010 goes to Deb (who may or may not have been pouring lemonade at the time) with this gem:
    “Darlin’, I did not say you were pouting, nor did I say anything had been taken away. Read it again, Einstein. My comment was that you “SOUND LIKE a kindergartner pouting because his toy was taken away.” And, baby, you do.”
    Darlin’, talk about parsing.

  37. ScottyD says: May 21, 2010 12:15 PM

    I don’t know if Auburn would have beaten USC in 2004, but I don’t think you can use the 2002 and 2003 games as an argument that they wouldn’t have. In 2002, I think Auburn would have beaten USC if Cadillac Williams hadn’t cramped up in the 2nd half. He was having a lot of success running against them. Auburn’s offensive coordinator that year was Bobby Petrino. No doubt USC stomped Auburn in 2003, but that year was a disaster for Auburn from the get-go. Petrino had left for Louisville, but Auburn tried to keep most of his offense, but have it run by the offensive line coach and the QB coach. That didn’t even come close to working. In 2004, Auburn brought in Al Borges as OC and got everyone on the same page.

  38. Deb says: May 21, 2010 2:30 PM

    @jamesrewtin, SoFlaTrojan, and BrownsTown …
    Down, boys. Being Central Florida born and bred, I don’t have a strong Southern accent–unless my dander is up. But I do occasionally sprinkle my conversation with darlin’, etc. … which is how those endearments wind up in my posts. They’re not affectations, jamesrewtin. Just part of the personality. An ex-boyfriend’s opening line to me at a party was “You’re from the South, aren’t you?” I hadn’t said a word. But it was a college party and the women were all wearing jeans and tees. I was wearing a nice skirt, three-inch heels, and a manicure. (But no, BrownsTown, I wasn’t pouring lemonade.)
    Head’s up: If I’m calling you “Honey,” I’m probably pissed.
    “Sounds like” … why do you guys have such trouble understanding that? He “sounded” pouty. Maybe he wasn’t pouting. But he sounded pouty. No parsing involved. Obviously I know his toy hasn’t been taken away. Have already said I’ll believe that will happen when I see it.
    Okay, SoFlaTrojan, there are stereotypes–and there are stereotypes. Daddy’s from Bama, Mama’s from Florida. I’m an evangelical Sunday school teacher and enjoy being a girl. I’m also a staunch liberal (amazing they’ll let me teach the kids ;) who got my journalism degree and immediately went to live in the projects in an overseas war zone for nearly four years. And I’ll match my NFL knowledge against any man, except my brother … who’s a criminal defense attorney, like his wife, the Bama grad. We’re all civil rights advocates, and none of us is named Bubba (although we do have some interesting names among the elderly relations :)
    For what it’s worth, I’ve always had a lot of respect for USC. During my teenage rebellion, I cheered for the Trojans. Though Bama’s in the blood, my first love is the NFL. I watch all Bama’s games and some SEC games, but that’s about it for college ball. I seriously asked yesterday on a Vikes thread what is a Gopher and why did it rank a new stadium over the Vikes LOL But if I can help it, I never miss an NFL game. So if it were workable, I’d like to see a playoff system, too. And I concur about Saban.
    jamesrewtin … some of them are ancient, preceding the modern champ-picking procedures, and omitted by the braintrusts of college football … but it is 13 ;)

  39. SoFlaTrojan says: May 21, 2010 2:39 PM

    Classic post Brownstown!
    You know some SEC fans dont want to let the facts get in the way. I am friends with several UF alum and they always bag on the Big 10 even though they lost to Michigan. Its like it never happened and they can only remember beating tOSU.
    ScottyD.
    Good points all the more reason for a playoff.

  40. louisianaguy says: May 21, 2010 7:28 PM

    Richard S said… “Did you see how really great that 2003 and 2004 USC teams were. They played at a different level that the rest from the Washington State game in 2003 all the way to the championship in 2004. Another level and if you were honest you would recognize that fact.”
    Richard S, don’t you get it? Southern Cal CHEATED. They created great teams by CHEATING and PAYING their players (and not just Reggie Bush!), thus making them a PRO team, not a true amateur collegiate team.
    I admit those were some great teams… but they were illegitimate teams. Shame on Southern Cal and shame on all of you who either defend the school, or are too blind to recognize the phoniness of the Trojan “accomplishments.”

  41. Gatorfan1 says: May 21, 2010 9:08 PM

    SoFlaTrojan:
    We remember that Michigan beat us, big deal. It is people like you who can’t stand or do not want to remember how Florida destroyed the team that beat Michigan. Are you implying that Michigan would have beaten Florida for the NC. Yeah, I didn’t think so.
    Wow, one year later a Michigan team that returned almost their whole defense from the year before beat a Florida team that replaced 9 starters on defense, HOORAY!!
    Sorry, I’ll take talking about a NC game over a Capital One Bowl victory everytime. But you go ahead and thump your chest on that victory. Tell me though, with all that experience back, Henne, Hart, Jake Long, the whole defense; just how did Michigan end up in the Capital One Bowl and just barely beating Florida? Oh yeah that’s right, Appalachian State, oops. The only time a ranked team in the AP poll was beaten by a 1-AA team
    FWIW, I find your argument about the SEC dominance amusing. Your argument is with all the experts who clearly rank the SEC conference the best in college football, not SEC fans. It’s not as if this is subjective whereby a lot of experts pick different conferences. I would argue that 99% of writers, prognosticators, NFL talent scouts and anyone else who follows the college game all agree that the SEC is king in college football. Go argue with them.
    In the meantime, SEC fans will be waiting for the conferences 5th straight NC in football next year.
    Curious, has there ever been two more overhyped & overpaid football players coming out of a supposed powerhouse than Bush & Leinart??

  42. jamesrewtin says: May 22, 2010 2:41 AM

    As far as the SEC bowl record is concerned, if the Pac-10 and the Big-10 are just as good as the SEC, then why do the bowls always have an SEC #4 play a Big-10 #3, or an SEC #5 play a Pac-10 #4. Bowls always make SEC teams play teams from other conferences that are in higher standing in their conference than the SEC team in the SEC. They do this because they also think the SEC is the best and they want the best match-ups for the best games for the highest ratings possible. This is done for the same reason that there are no playoffs in cfb-money. It’s not about fairness, or else the SEC #3’s would play the Big-10 #3’s, etc. Evidence of this is for the past four years when the SEC #1 has gotten out of the SEC and into the championship game, they have beaten the “whoever” #1. –also, the Pac-10 plays a team from the WAC and a team from the MWC every year in the bowls, but when those conferences have a really good team like TCU or Boise, they get to go to a higher echelon bowl game. The SEC isn’t guaranteed that break.
    On a more congenial note, the Pac-10 did pretty well last year from what I saw.
    And the fact that Auburn got whipped by USC in 2003 has nothing to do with Auburn’s legitimacy in 2004. Auburn was 8-5 in 2003, and they were not a championship-caliber team, or even a great team, but in 2004, the year in question, Auburn was 13-0 and WAS a championship-caliber team. Plus, the only reason we are talking about this is because of allegations of USC cheating, so if this is true, who cares how good USC was.
    and Deb,
    “preceding the modern champ-picking procedures” is another way of saying that there was no championship game at all and Bama simply claimed them. I wonder how many other teams also “won” the national championships in the same years Bama claimed them.

  43. Donf says: May 22, 2010 7:43 AM

    Interesting comments here – to say the least. Lots of “smack” and lots – shall we say – rowdy talk.
    Now to set the record straight with no trash talk or waste of time foolish bravado – 1st I’m one of those Sooner fans who was in the stadium when SC handed us our head. They won the NC because the rating system, flawed I admit, put them in the game that they handily won by smacking my team hard.
    2nd – Auburn if you’re claiming that NC and wearing rings for a game you didn’t play in – shame on you. Again, flawed as the system is, it IS the system whether we like it or not and you have no right to claim a championship that year. SC won it.
    3rd – As distasteful as it is for me to admit – Notre Dame has the most championships. Not Bama. No disrespect Bama or Bama fans – I actually would prefer Bama to own that title if my Sooners can’t. But adding various end of year secondary poll ratings will never count to the national football community as a whole. I like the Bama team and you have wonderful fans but please – count your championships by the excepted rules. That puts Notre Dame 1st.
    4th – Auburn you would NOT have beaten SC that year. Now before you go ballistic or start with the trash talk let me say – I would rather have had you win the championship then SC. But my wishing you to have the ring instead of SC does not make it so. You had a great team that year but I do not think you would have beaten SC – sorry.
    5th – we all have our loyalties and we all can say a team got screwed out of playing in the NC but the system is the system. Change the system – I don’t have a problem with that. Actually, I think the system needs to be changed but until then – live with the system and quit complaining.
    6th – I see posts here that the Big 12 is a weak conference. BULL. I think the SEC is a fine conference with some fine teams. There are other fine conferences that have some fine teams as well and the Big 12 is one of them. Lets play football, root for our prospective teams, agree that the system is flawed, work to fix it and above all quit complaining and bashing each other.

  44. SoFlaTrojan says: May 22, 2010 9:31 AM

    Gatorfan,
    So you’re saying that UF lost to a team the was beaten by Appalachian State?
    By the way I dont disagree with UF winning the BCS Championship in 2008 they had a good team. The jury is out on the 2006 team. I just wish there would have been a playoff to get to the game instead of the SEC getting the automatic.
    I also dont disagree that the SEC is a good conference maybe the toughest. I just dont think it is far superior to the other conferences. Right now the conference has 2 teams.
    Oh and I know Tebow was more overhyped than Bush or Leinart.

  45. louisianaguy says: May 22, 2010 10:20 AM

    Y’all put WAY too much emphasis on bowl records.
    For a great team that doesn’t make it to the BCS championship game, any other bowl they go to–including BCS non-championship bowl games–is a major letdown… and the players just don’t give a sh*t. Their dream is over. The game is meaningless to them and they go through the motions and try to enjoy the social aspects of bowl week.
    For the lesser team, playing against the big boy is their chance at redemption, and thus the game is VERY meaningful to them. They are “up” and totally concentrating on winning. It is their ultimate goal, their only goal.
    Meanwhile, fans and analysts treat it the way you guys treat it here: as a real, meaningful, do-or-die contest between inspired, dedicated players to determine which team is better, which conference is better.
    Get real. For you it might be a HUGE deal to take on and beat an SEC team in a bowl game… but to the SEC team, playing you is pretty meaningless at this point, especially a month after the season ended with your championship hopes dashed. After all, in the SEC if you can’t play for all the marbles… why play at all?
    If you don’t understand that, it means you haven’t been a college football player lately.
    Anyway, just remember this: over-hyped fans and media think rah-rah differently from actual athletes.

  46. Gatorfan1 says: May 22, 2010 10:51 AM

    SoFlaTrojan:
    Sorry it doesn’t work that way. Michigan lost to Appalachian State. I have no idea whether Florida would have lost to them and I don’t care, Michigan did!
    Concerning the 2006 team, it is because we played a bunch of close games against the other teams in the “best” conference that we were prepared for OSU. And listen, when you hold a team, one that was being talked about as possibly one of the greatest, to less yards of offense for a whole game than their opening kickoff, there is little doubt about whether they deserve the NC.
    And you may be right about Tebow, we will have to wait and see. But since Bush & Leinart have set the bar so low as pro’s, it won’t take much for Tebow to surpass them.

  47. DCroz says: May 22, 2010 11:53 AM

    Donf:
    On the national championships, there is all kinds of debate over who has the most, and it’s always dependent on which championships one considers to be legitimate. There’s a really good summary of the issue on Wikipedia:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NCAA_Division_I_FBS_national_football_championship
    As it shows, Princeton claims 28 national titles and Yale 26, far more than anyone else, though those titles were all in the 19th and early-20th centuries. Alabama as a school claims more national titles than Notre Dame does (13 to 11) though many lists credit the Irish with more (as many as 21 to the Tide’s 17; incidentally, Michigan has as many as Notre Dame in those lists, if not more).
    Personally, I think the closest one can come to an “accurate” count of national championships is to go by the two that everyone acknowledges as legitimate: the AP (started in 1936) and Coaches (started in 1950 and been known as the UPI, CNN/USA Today, ESPN/USA Today, up to its current connection with the BCS poll). In that listing, Alabama and Notre Dame are tied for the most with eight each (including a title they shared in 1973). Interestingly, Oklahoma and USC are tied for third with seven; getting back to the main topic, the Trojans getting stripped of the 2004 title would leave the Sooners alone in third, and if either the BCS or AP decides to recognize them as the “new” champs of their respective polls for that year, then they would be in a three-way tie with the Tide and Irish for the top.
    Stay tuned….

  48. Gatorfan1 says: May 22, 2010 12:23 PM

    louisianaguy:
    Exactly! Good post.

  49. Deb says: May 22, 2010 1:48 PM

    @Donf …
    Oh my. A man among boys. I feel like Annie Savoy after Crash Davis finished his speech in “Bull Durham.”
    My general knowledge of pro football history is much stronger than my knowledge of the college game. But I have read a lot of Bama history, so I know about Wallace Wade and Frank Thomas as well as the Bear and we do have 13 championships. However, I’ve never bothered to count anyone else’s. It’s rare for me to take anything at face value, but I’ve just accepted the lore that Bama topped the heap. Obviously, I need to do more research :)
    But much as it would cut me to crown ND champ of champs, at least they have a proud tradition as the little school that could, the place where Knute popularized the pass, the team that won for the Gipper. The school’s entire legacy isn’t tarnished by Parseghian’s smarmy cowardice against Michigan State in ’66 anymore than USC’s full legacy is tarnished by this pay-for-play scandal.
    (BTW, yes, it’s childish and whiny for people to say championships don’t count if they’re earned without a playoff system. But a little congenial smack talk is part of the fun ;)
    @louisianaguy …
    Never been a college player, but I’m with you on those bowl games.
    This is why I prefer pro ball. In college, once you’re out of contention, then what? You go on vacation and play a meaningless bowl game. It’s like watching an NFL preseason matchup preceded by a parade. But preseason games have a purpose: evaluating talent for the upcoming season. I still haven’t figured out the purpose of the bowl games … other than $$$, of course.
    And now back to boys among boys …
    Hello, jamesrewtin …
    Bitter much? Let me guess … Auburn?
    If, as you contend, Alabama just jumped up and crooned, “We are the champions, my friends,” why didn’t Auburn simply do the same? Then you, too, could have some of those old-time championships. And somehow I doubt you’d find them irrelevant. Prior to the AP, Coaches Polls, and BCS computer models of recent years was a vast series of polls and complex mathematical formulas. It was all even more convoluted than today’s system, but just as legitimate. If anything, it would have been more difficult to earn a championship with so many different organizations determining the winner. Yes, sometimes championships were split when two major polls declared different winners. In those cases, the records show BOTH teams earned championships. No team finished a season and just declared itself the national champ. You are being silly.

  50. jamesrewtin says: May 22, 2010 3:43 PM

    Deb,
    Well, I was looking at one record of championships and it said that Auburn has won four… does that mean that I go around telling everybody that? no, Auburn has one legitimate championship and Alabama less than the 10 I previously stated. Although, the only reason I talk about this at all is because Alabama fans talk about the “13” all the time, and no one these “ancient” ones. If multiple teams are crowned national champions by different polls in a single year, it is silly for us to say in 2010 that any one of those teams were the “best” or the national champions in that year. You can look back and say that those teams were the cream of the crop in that year. If it were up to me, I would only talk about what i’ve seen. Alabama has great tradition, don’t get me wrong, and they were the best team in 2009, admittedly. Congrats.

    and Michigan beat Florida in that game. They were the better team that day. Is that proof that the Big-10 was better than the SEC? In 2006, Auburn beat Florida who went on to win the national championship. Was Auburn the better team that year? No way! On that day they were, but one loss does not condemn a whole season, and louisianaguy has a good point in reference to the bowls.

  51. Deb says: May 22, 2010 9:28 PM

    @jamesrewtin …
    Why hello … Auburn ;) You may tell people what you wish about the Tigers, jamesrewtin. The Tide will still have 13 National Championships :)
    But, agreed: All those polls, computer models, mathematical formulas, and split decisions are a bizarre way to select a champion.
    The real reason I prefer pro ball is because it’s a faster, more complex game–especially on defense–played by superior athletes. But I’m also put off by the dizzying number of college divisions, conferences, and teams … the pomposity of the NCAA and corruption of college boosters … the variation of rules in different conferences … and the obvious conflict of using conference-paid officials who may (emphasis on “may”) have conference-based agendas. Plus, the season is essentially over if your team loses one game.
    The pro season has three meaningful stages:
    Preseason games let us see how vets are performing, how well players have recovered from injuries, if talent gaps have been filled, whether new acquisitions are good fits, and how the competition stacks up.
    Since NFL teams can conceivably lose half their games and still make the playoffs, most clubs remain mathematically viable into December. (Condolences to John Taylor and BrownsTown–but even if they’re finished before Halloween, they can still love to hate on my team ;)
    The post-season tournament gives increasing weight to every game, reaching a crescendo with the Super Bowl. The only meaningless game is the Pro Bowl–and at least they don’t hype it by crowning a queen and throwing a parade.

  52. John Taylor says: May 22, 2010 9:52 PM

    Uncalled for, Deb. Completely and totally uncalled for.
    Correct? Yeah. Uncalled for? Absolutely.

  53. Deb says: May 22, 2010 10:38 PM

    Just an innocent jab to see if you were paying attention, John ;)

  54. BrownsTown says: May 23, 2010 12:56 PM

    Wow, so not only do SEC teams typically not schedule tough teams for OOC play, but now we can simply dismiss the bowl records for lack on inspiration. Wow. Simply, wow!
    The spin never stops.

  55. Deb says: May 23, 2010 3:23 PM

    @BrownsTown …
    Others have compared the win/loss records of teams played by National Champs from the SEC with those played by National Champs from other conferences. The SEC’s schedules were just as difficult as anyone else’s. You’re just taking a position because it suits you, not because it has merit. As for Bama … after a post-Stallings series of bumblers who probably couldn’t name a non-SEC conference, we have a coach who’s going out of his way to schedule tough OOC games.
    As for bowl records, my opinions don’t reflect the entire SEC fanbase. My sister-in-law is a rabid college fan who watches every bowl game. She thinks they matter. I just don’t understand why.
    In the pros, your goal is to win the division, or failing that, to be a wildcard. Then you want to win the wildcard round, the division round, the conference championship, and ultimately, the Super Bowl.
    In college ball, you want to win your conference championship, IF you have one. Once the conference championships are over, the ONLY remaining goal is to be one of two teams squaring off for the national title. If you’re not one of the lead dogs, season over. Sudden death. You’ve lost.
    Going to a bowl game when you have NO HOPE of competing for a title that takes you to the next level is like driving down a road to a dead end. What possible purpose does it serve? Please explain.

  56. Gatorfan1 says: May 23, 2010 3:31 PM

    BrownsTown:
    Umm…you do know how ridiculous you look saying something about a conference that has won 4 NC in a row and probably a 5th next year…right?
    The conference that has been universally excepted as the best for years….
    Your certainly are right about one thing….the spin never stops…especially from people like you (Big10) trying to convince people that the SEC is not the best…
    Like I posted before…your argument is not with SEC fans…it’s with all the national media, NFL Scouts, front offices, magazines and every other media outlet who continually put us on top…go figure…by a wide margin..lol…

  57. DCroz says: May 23, 2010 5:23 PM

    You’ve just got to love these people who keep screeching about how SEC teams allegedly do not schedule tough OOC teams. The only thing that would make them “happy” in that regard is if ‘Bama, for example, scheduled USC, Ohio State, Texas, and Oklahoma for its four non-con games (though they’d then likely bitch because we were “too scared” to schedule Boise State or Utah–or the Dallas Cowboys, for that matter). They like to ignore inconvenient little things such as ‘Bama having had 2nd-toughest schedule in the nation last year according to Sagarin–and the only one tougher was Mississippi State’s another SEC team.
    I also got a huge kick last year out of hearing people grab the Kleenex because we had Chattanooga on the schedule late in the year and holding it up as proof of our “cupcake” schedule…conveniently ignoring our neutral-site opener with a Virginia Tech team that was ranked 7th at the time and finished the year ranked number 10. The same is already happening this year with people boo-hooing about Georgia State while ignoring our date with Penn State.
    But it’s this simple: if you think the SEC is such a fraudulent conference, then prove it. Stop the streak of four-straight victories in the BCS National Championship game and six of twelve overall. Otherwise, we may change the name to the “SEC Invitational.”

  58. BrownsTown says: May 24, 2010 5:23 PM

    Gatorfan1/Dcroz, et al.,
    In the understatement of the decade, half of the battle is just getting there. The SEC has seemingly acquired a de facto automatic bid to the big game so congrats on winning four 50/50 propositions. A playoff would be the worst thing to happen to the SEC since the “hunker down, live off the conference rep and win one game” strategy would go poof overnight.
    But at least Alabama has been scheduling some challenging OOC games against quality BCS opponents. Florida will continue to crow over their big game against the Notre Dame of the South (FSU). I’m sure someone traveling in a time machine from 1996 thinks that matchup is impressive.
    Also, I wasn’t aware that it was “universal” that the SEC was the best from all perspectives. I’m still waiting for someone to tell me how a conference can prove that they’re the best if they don’t prove it in OOC play or in bowl games. Yeah, yeah, yeah, the NC game. If you believe that pits the two best teams, then you’re in the minority or you’re a conference commissioner.
    Don’t play tough OOC games to prover superiority and then split bowl games (because they’re not motivated). Yep, that’s domination.

  59. Gatorfan1 says: May 24, 2010 6:12 PM

    BrownsTown:
    If you DON’T know it’s universally excepted in the national sports media that the SEC is rated the top conference, than you don’t read much….which of course would explain the ignorance!!!
    Gee genius, if it wasn’t generally excepted, than why does the SEC make the NC game every year….oops logic….I know your veering off now…
    Curious….just who’s opinions and rankings do you think comprise all these polls that make up the BCS….Big10 Education not what it used to be I see.

  60. Deb says: May 24, 2010 11:33 PM

    @BrownsTown …
    Apologies. Suddenly woke up, reread the last few posts, and realized you’re right about the spin on bowl games. I was focused on how pointless the bowls are TO ME rather than paying attention to the point being debated.
    Noooo, fellas … you can’t say SEC teams are so above it all that they’re less motivated to win bowls than opponents from other conferences. That’s ridiculous. Most SEC teams know they have no shot at the conference championship and are playing their whole season hoping to make a bowl game. That’s their big reward. Their families are there. It’s on national TV. Who-hoo!
    The SEC is ALL about being better than everyone else. It’s a matter of pride for SEC teams to beat all comers even if nothing else is on the line–and you don’t have to be a football player to know that. If an SEC team loses to an OOC opponent–and that includes Bama’s 08 season loss to Utah–it’s because the players were flat out beaten, not because they didn’t care to win. Come on … that’s a sore loser’s excuse.

  61. boosie says: May 27, 2010 1:59 PM

    big 10 is garbage, get over it brownsclown.

  62. Pier588 says: May 27, 2010 3:06 PM

    BOOZER the LOOZER and “OAR-I_GONE are garbage”.
    I hope the Oar-i-gone women can bring home another track title for your lame school – the football team has, never will.

  63. DCroz says: May 27, 2010 4:48 PM

    Oh, my God, here we go again….
    Boosie and Pier588: When are you two going to go to Massachusetts and make it official? And can we expect to get invitations?

  64. Pier588 says: May 27, 2010 11:36 PM

    DicROZ – here’s an invitation for you – start rotating on your head that you always have stuck up your arrogant 4th point of contact.
    That’s one for you to really spin on while writing your next book-like opinion – Mr Know-It-All.

  65. DCroz says: May 28, 2010 1:54 PM

    Pier588:
    Awwwww…did I hurt your widdle feewings? Want a tissue?
    And thanks for the compliment. I’m sure I come across as an arrogant Mr. Know-It-All to a Know-Nothing such as yourself. Better to be a smartass than a dumbass.
    And I didn’t realize three moderate-length paragraphs constituted being “book-like.” Just because it takes you 15 minutes to phonetically sound out the words to read them does not mean that they are considered to be overly-lengthy to everyone else above a 3rd-grade reading level.
    Now you can get back to your insults towards Boosie and the “Oar-i-gone” program (as you love to call it). It is, after all, the subject of 90% of your posts. Or should I call them “love notes?”
    Have fun.

  66. Pier588 says: May 29, 2010 12:00 AM

    DicROZ – “Awwwww…did I strike a nerve. What was it – did I step on your arrogance AND insult your boy friend Boozer in the same post? Want a tissue to wipe your eyes, sonny?”
    “Feel free to get back to your “love notes” defending Boozer your boy friend (as you love to call him). Who could have known my post would bring all strong feelings for him out in the open?”
    Keep on spinning around your head while “taking 15 minutes to describe your true feelings for Boozer, considering your 2d-grade crush on him as well as your overly-lengthy posts and low end reading level.”

  67. boosie says: Jun 2, 2010 4:52 PM

    man i know you 2 are gay, but keep that shit on the east coast.. we all know how you OHIGHoins do family members and same sex, but us on the best coast, i mean west coast keepz it triiillllllll. so now now gay boys, stick to your family members, and corn fields, and stay away from my ace!

  68. BrownsTown says: Jun 7, 2010 1:28 PM

    Just think….someone raised boozie. Someone made him like this.
    Yikes!

  69. jibfest says: Jun 9, 2010 7:30 PM

    They should be stripped and scholarships should be lost. It is obvious why Pete Carroll took off. They don’t do things the RIGHT way at USC, we all know that.

  70. jibfest says: Jun 9, 2010 7:31 PM

    Boozie, the east coast is the only coast that matters. CA in particular is a format for how to NOT run a state. CA is flat broke and where morals go to die.

  71. Big Al says: Jun 10, 2010 10:50 AM

    It is possible that Pete Carroll didn’t know anything about the paying of players until after the fact. It is possible that USC would have beaten Auburn in the NC game. It is possible that the basketball players were not paid at all. It is fact that there have been 12 BCS NC games. There have only been 12 Schools represented in those 12 games. It is fact that in 6 of those 12 NC games one of the teams was from the SEC. It is fact that the SEC Team won all 6 of those games. Right now, it is the SEC against everyone else. Get used to it…

  72. CJ says: Jun 11, 2010 11:07 AM

    What’s all the fuss about?
    > Everone knows the SEC is the top conference, which is partially why everyone else is trying to rearrange things, to gain an advantage.
    > No one should be comparing the merits of USC and Auburn/Oklahoma’s ’04 season. That’s not the point. The point is, IF USC does lose that title, who should get it, if anyone?
    IOW, if USC loses the title, they’re not in the conversation. If USC gets to keep the title, there is no conversation to be had. What exactly makes that so hard for USC fans to understand?

  73. boosie says: Jun 14, 2010 1:41 PM

    umm pac 10 has won the most championships out of any conference in the nation…. how is the sec the best? they cheat, they play nobody, and they dont go travel and pay on the road. sec blows

  74. boosie says: Jun 14, 2010 1:41 PM

    east coast is terrible! we pitty you foo’

  75. Arizona Buckeye says: Jun 16, 2010 6:32 PM

    boosie – like usual, not even remotely accurate statement. I suggest you bury your face in these statistics once you sober up and get the duck dick out of your mouth: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NCAA_Division_I_FBS_national_football_championship

  76. The Warren Sapp Diet says: Jun 18, 2010 10:49 PM

    I hope this retro stripping of awards doesnt become a trend.
    If my HS baseball coach found out that I was drinking beer, toking herb, and plowing strange during the season I may just be stripped of 1991 Honorable Mention 3rd baseman in Section 5.
    Oooh snap Coach – please dont turn me in.

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