Upset Alert - Week 14
November 30, 2012
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Conference Championship week is here and that means three things: we have a smaller college football card to go through, teams will be crowned conference champions, and the BCS picture will be settled by the end of the weekend.
We already know that #1 Notre Dame will be in the BCS National Title game and they will play the winner of the SEC Championship this weekend between Alabama and Georgia. This will be the 7th straight season the SEC has had a representative in the title game and they have won the previous six. Alabama is favored to get there but nothing will come easy this weekend for the defending champs as they are one of the teams that should be greatly concerned about getting upset.
Pac-12 Championship - (Friday) UCLA (+8) vs. Stanford (-8)
The UCLA Bruins knew they were going to be in this game after they upset USC two weeks ago and could afford to take last week's regular season finale a little lightly because of it. Ironically, they played Stanford in that contest, a team that needed to win it in order to play for the Pac-12 title. The Cardinal got the job done on the road and set up this rematch a week later which will now have them at home.
But as good as Stanford looked in that game, there is no way they shouldn't be even more concerned about UCLA this week. The Bruins took away a lot of knowledge from last week's game and didn't exactly show their hand either. The Bruins were 4-1 SU away from home this season although they never really played any tough conference opponents away from home. Coach Jim Mora will have his guys ready for this one though and Stanford has to be concerned about falling into the "complacency trap" of thinking that they just dominated these guys last week and should easily do it again now that they are at home.
UCLA is a live dog here and getting the Bruins a Pac-12 title in his first year would be a phenomenal accomplishment for Mora.
SEC Championship - (Saturday) Alabama (-7) vs. Georgia (+7)
This will be the game the whole college football world will be focused on this Saturday and with good reason. The winner goes on to play for the National Title, while the loser is "relegated" to another BCS bowl game. It has been a great season for both of these teams and aside from one slip up each, they are both deserving of being here.
However, all the experts, media and prognosticators have already been talking about an Alabama/Notre Dame final all week, basically writing off the Georgia Bulldogs in this game. Sure, Alabama is coming off back-to-back 49-0 wins but neither of those teams was any good and the last two opponents they played that were ranked the Tide went 1-1 SU and 0-2 ATS.
On top of that, although this game is played on a neutral field, it takes place in the Atlanta Falcons home stadium; the Georgia Dome. Although Alabama travels well and have been in this building a few times in recent years, they have never played the Bulldogs over that span and this is essentially a home game for Georgia. When you combine that with Georgia knowing they have been nothing more than an afterthought all week about playing for a National Title and their players have got to be chomping at the bit to get a shot at upsetting Alabama. Their defense may not get the national exposure that Alabama's does, but Georgia shut out Auburn as well and held their opponents to 24 combined points over their last three games, including limiting a very talented and tricky Georgia Tech offense to 10.
Do not be surprised to see Georgia decide to throw a wrinkle in everyone's dream BCS Title game of Alabama/Notre Dame. The Bulldogs will come to play and are more than capable of coming out on top.