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Tide clinches SEC West, seals Chizik’s fate

Gene Chizik, Nick Saban AP

Georgia did its part on rivalry Saturday, easily taking care of business in dropping in-state rival Georgia Tech.  A few hours later, Alabama easily did the same.

And, in all likelihood, put the final nail in the coffin of their in-state rival for good measure.

Entering the game as anywhere between 31- and 35-point favorites, the Tide did the expected, rolling to a 42-0 halftime lead over the hapless and helpless Tigers en route to 49-0 woodshedding for the ages.  It was the worst margin of defeat for either side since Alabama dropped 55 on Auburn while shutting out the Tigers way back in 1948.

And it could’ve been an even more of an historical shellacking had the Tide kept its foot on the Tigers’ throat.  In jumping out to that 42-point lead after two quarters, Alabama had outgained Auburn 338-99 in total offense, with the dogs — or elephants as the case may be — being called off in the second half.

The Tide’s evisceration also officially sets up a winner-take-all SEC championship game next weekend in Atlanta.

Alabama, No. 2 in the latest set of BcS rankings, clinched the SEC West with the win and will face Georgia, BcS No. 3, in the Georgia Dome Saturday.  Barring the near-impossible transpiring next Sunday night when the final regular season rankings are released, the winner of the conference title game will fill one of the two spots in the BcS championship game Jan. 7 in Miami, giving the SEC the opportunity to extend its streak of BcS titles to seven.  If Notre Dame can handle USC later tonight, it would set up an Irish-Bulldogs/Tide matchup for all the crystal footballs.

Looking ahead to the upcoming conference title game, the Tide and Bulldogs did not face each other in 2012.  In fact, the two haven’t squared off since 2008, a 41-30 Alabama win over then-No. 3 UGA in Athens in Nick Saban‘s second season as UA’s head coach.

As for Chizik’s fate on The Plains?  The combination of yet another NCAA investigation (somewhat) and miserable on-field performances the past two years (mainly) has the fourth-year coach ticketed for the unemployment line in short order.

The Tigers have lost 10 straight SEC games, with their last win coming Oct. 29 of last year against Ole Miss.  Since winning the BcS championship last season, AU’s 11-14 overall and 4-12 in SEC play, hitting rock bottom in 2012 with a 3-9 record and its first winless conference slate since 1980.  Doug Barfield was fired as head coach following that season, replaced by Pat Dye.  Coincidentally enough, Dye has become one of Chizik’s staunchest supporters.

Whether that support can keep Chizik from being Barfield’d remains to be seen, although there’s even been erosion on the Dye front of late.

Regardless of whether an ex-coach does or doesn’t have the current coach’s back, it’s expected Chizik will be fired as early as Sunday.  The embarrassing loss to Alabama won’t be the determining in Chizik’s fate, though; it’ll merely serve as the icing on a cake that’s gone stale sans a dash of Cam and a pinch of eye of Newton.

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16 Responses to “Tide clinches SEC West, seals Chizik’s fate”
  1. charger383 says: Nov 24, 2012 6:54 PM

    Enjoyed every minute of the game. Roll Tide

  2. geraldthecat says: Nov 24, 2012 7:10 PM

    Also sets up the possibility of another all sec championship. USC needs to win and it is a play in game

  3. southernpatriots says: Nov 24, 2012 7:15 PM

    Congratulations to Alabama. It was quickly no contest.

    Chizik may not go anywhere, but there is such clamor amidst Auburn alums, fans, and boosters at this moment that is likely that a change will be made, and if that is the case, it will be very quickly even as JT stated.

  4. kozbee says: Nov 24, 2012 7:26 PM

    If Chizik is fired will be after Dec 2nd,Auburn will save 3 million from his contract.

  5. lucky5936 says: Nov 24, 2012 7:28 PM

    Another week, another comment about Auburn firing its head coach (Or being on the hot seat). Almost like death and taxes for JT. I hope he can find some new material for next season. Or at least the next lame duck head coach to write two to three dozen references or stories about.

    On a better note, the SEC championship game should be amazing. Both Alabama and Georgia looked impressive today!

  6. ajonesmc931 says: Nov 24, 2012 7:52 PM

    Sucks as an AU fan, but I will always be loyal. War eagle..

  7. pricecube says: Nov 24, 2012 8:08 PM

    Only way Chizik keeps his job is if he has evidence of boosters paying Cecil Newton to use as blackmail.

  8. 13datsyuk13 says: Nov 24, 2012 9:49 PM

    Dear Coach Chizik, please come back to Austin as the DC? Would you kindly find us an OC on your way?

  9. bills4 says: Nov 24, 2012 11:09 PM

    Alabama will destroy the Irish and I hope they do. All these pathetic dames fans are pissin me off.

  10. Brian Basher says: Nov 24, 2012 11:43 PM

    This guy doesn’t look so crazy now

  11. queenlivekillers says: Nov 25, 2012 12:11 AM

    If/when Chizik is fired, perhaps we will see the last of that ridiculous white short sleeve jacket/smock he wears on the sidelines.

  12. kappy32 says: Nov 25, 2012 12:20 AM

    It just goes to show you how great of a college football player Cam Newton was. I wasn’t a fan of him back when he was at Auburn & I’m still not a fan as he’s with the Panthers – his attitude sucks, especially the Superman TD pose while down 3 scores to the Giants – but it is hard to argue his greatness. People say Tim Tebow is the greatest college football player of all-time; well, I have to disagree & say Cam Newton is better than him (still not best ever; that goes to Bo Jackson, Barry Sanders, Archie Griffin, Herschel Walker & Ernie Davis before Cam & Tebow). Florida was good with Chris Leak before Tebow & they only struggled when Urban Meyer left. Auburn was bad before Cam & atrocious after Cam. Florida’s success was Urban Meyer more so than Tim Tebow; just look at the postseason ineligible Ohio State team at 12-0. Cam Newton was a better CFB player than Tim Tebow & is probably the 6th best CFB player of all-time behind the aforementioned 5 players.

  13. cubano76 says: Nov 25, 2012 12:21 AM

    Man, this has to be the record for things going down hill FAST! Feel bad for Coach Chizik, but you accept the HC jon at Auburn, you better win. And win a LOT!

  14. pedagoguish says: Nov 25, 2012 2:02 AM

    What is “Auburn” anyway? Are they accredited? Do they grant degrees? We have an Auburn in Washington State, but they mostly sell used cars there.

    Oh, and by the way, can any of you please tell me who Clem is? He has a son, and I think he plays football somewhere. Am I correct in this?

  15. 700levelvet says: Nov 25, 2012 8:13 AM

    Not a fan of either school or one of those conference morons, i like college football and the rivalaries, the tradition and the pagentry, and the intrastate bragging rights…It’s fun to watch and sometimes you see a great game…..But this game, was an absolute joke, Alabama could have scored a 100 easy, it’s like Auburn is a JUCO school,….Absolute embarrassment

  16. ukeone says: Nov 25, 2012 10:36 AM

    I’m not an Auburn fan; however, I do feel sad for the school, its student-athletes & fans. The outcome of the game with Alabama was a huge let-down, and I feel many believe they deserved better (at least from a more ‘competitive’ standpoint). I don’t care that much for Chizek himself (as well as for most of the coaches in the SEC). For the sake of the school (and just for sanity-sake), I just hope that Auburn U is a little more ‘patient and supportive’ with their next new coach. It just seems so much more difficult to keep a job in the SEC because of the “win at all cost’ attitude down there. Competition between schools is so fierce, that I’m surprised that there is any sort of cooperation and support between any of them. It almost seems like each one prays for the others’ demise altogether. No school seems to have any breathing room at all these days. I’m glad we are in the B1G…as the schools seem to have a healthier competitiveness and great work ethic with one another (‘maybe’ sans the Michigan/Ohio State rivalry). The climate is definitely better for everyone here. as are the huge traditions and colorful pageantry of college football in general. Apologies for the comparisons, but this is only my own observation . Good luck, Auburn, in your search for a new leader.

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