News, thoughts and more from the world of college sports across the nation and Long Island.
Notre Dame, Stony Brook among big winners
Notre Dame (12-0): This is a no-brainer. The Fighting Irish will be playing for the National Championship in Miami on January 7. It’s a win for Brian Kelly, because he’s the coach. It’s a win for the program, because you can all but put to rest the talk of Notre Dame football joining a conference. Remember that? Is Notre Dame irrelevant, can they compete with the SEC, Big 12, Big Ten, etc… The answer to that is a resounding yes!!
Alabama (11-1, 7-1 SEC), Georgia (11-1, 7-1): Also a no-brainer because the winner of the SEC championship game will face Notre Dame for the National Championship. It also proves the SEC is still the king of the college football jungle.
Florida State (10-2, 7-1 ACC): It turns out Jimbo Fisher was worth the wait. The Seminoles will play Georgia Tech in the ACC Championship game on Saturday. The winner goes to the Orange Bowl. Ok, everything that glitters isn’t gold for the Seminoles, who lost to Florida, 37-26, on Saturday.
Kansas State (10-1, 7-1 Big 12): Wildacts coach Bill Snyder man of the year? You better believe it. Snyder took over a program that was dead in the water under Ron Prince in 2009. Four years later the Wildcats will be representing the Big 12 in a BCS bowl.
Stony Brook (10-2): Kudos to the Seawolves for their 20-10 win over Villanova in a FCS first-round playoff game. Stony Brook plays at Montana State in a second-round game on December 1.
Syracuse (7-5, 5-2 Big East): Kudos to the Orange for being bowl eligible for the second time in nine years. Doug Marrone has the program headed in the right direction.
Kent State (11-1, 8-0 MAC), Northern Illinois (11-1, 8-0 MAC): These two teams deserve mention for finishing up 11-1. Imagine if both could’ve went undefeated during the regular season.
Florida (11-1, 7-1 SEC): The Gators had a great regular season and topped it off with a 37-26 win at Florida State. Unfortunately, the Gators will have to settle for an at-large BCS bid and no shot at the national title. With no games left, there’s no way the Gators can jump either Alabama or Georgia.
Ohio State (12-0, 8-0 Big Ten): An undefeated season and nothing to show for it. The Buckeyes were punished by the sins of their forefathers.
Oregon (11-1, 8-1 PAC-12): The Ducks won at Oregon State, but like Florida, they’ll be shut out of the national title game. Oregon needed UCLA to beat Stanford to get to the PAC-12 championship game. No dice. Stanford crushed the Bruins, who they will meet in the PAC-12 title game.
Rutgers (9-2, 5-1 Big East): Rutgers had a golden opportunity to capture its first Big East championship and BCS bowl berth, but the Scarlet Knights laid an egg in a 27-6 loss to Pittsburgh. But they still have a shot at the Big East title. All they have to do is beat Louisville in Piscataway on Thursday night. If they can’t win that one, it will be another missed opportunity.
1. Notre Dame (12-0) .9979
2. Alabama (11-1) .9236
3. Georgia (11-1) .8911
4. Florida (11-1) .8882
5. Oregon (11-1) .8626
6. Kansas State (10-1) .7735
7. LSU (10-2) .7357
8. Stanford (10-2) .7299
9. Texas A&M (10-2) .6861
10. South Carolina (10-2) .6689
11. Oklahoma (9-2) .6129
12. Nebraska (10-2) .5393
13. Florida State (10-2) .4645
14. Clemson (10-2) .4570
15. Oregon State (8-3) .3790
16. UCLA (9-3) .3304
17. Kent State (11-1) .2512
18. Texas (8-3) .2492
19. Michigan (8-4) .2094
20. Boise State (9-2) .2030
21. Northern Illinois (11-1) .1936
22. Northwestern (9-3) .1865
23. Oklahoma State (7-4) .1646
24. Utah State (10-2) .1171
25. San Jose State (10-2) .0974