After week 11, only three teams are left undefeated in College Football, and none of them are from the SEC. Oregon continued to put on huge offensive numbers with a win over California; Notre Dame put in another defensive clinic against lowly Boston College while Kansas State kept rolling with a 23-10 win in TCU. Alabama and Louisville lost for the first time this season.
Alabama were playing at home against the toughest opponent in comparison with their rivals for the 1-2 finish in the BCS, but no one expected the Aggies to be this good. Johnny Manziel was every bit as good as they hype surrounding him, as A&M rolled to a 20-0 lead in the first quarter, holding on to a 29-24 lead, stopping the Tide on their final drive.
This isn’t just a possible end to the the Tide’s title hopes, unless one of the other three teams loses, but this might mean the end to a six-year SEC streak with national titles. And it was all possible thanks to a team that is into its first season in the new conference.
Oregon, who are probably the favorites to take the number one spot among the voters, had no problem in their win over California with another huge day from Marcus Mariota, who threw for 377 yards and six touchdowns as the Ducks won 59-17. This leads them to their toughest three-week stretch of the season, the big finish: Hosting Stanford, who might be a top 10 team after beating Oregon State and the Civil war against the Beavers before the Pac-12 Championship game. Favorites to win all three, there’s no chance the Ducks aren’t in the national title game if they keep the zero in the losses column.
The really happy teams about Alabama losing are Kansas State and Notre Dame. The Wildcats had a few doubts in their mind before arriving at Fort Worth to play TCU after Collin Klein wasn’t 100% for the game, but he ran for two scores and threw for 145 yards in a 23-10 win over the Horned Frogs. The last two games are more than winnable – At Baylor and against Texas who are far from the toughest team Kansas State had to handle this season. Problem is having no conference championship game and what the computers will think about their last two opponents.
Notre Dame? Nothing is easy for them. They did beat the Eagles from Boston College 21-6, but with an offense that struggles so to put up impressive wins puts them at risk in every single game. They have Wake Forest next week, which is considered a rather easy game, but the big finish is USC in Los Angeles, and a test against a great offense but a vulnerable defense. No conference championship game means they’ll need some favors from the computers, even if they go undefeated.