UNSUPPORTED BROWSER
College Football

BCS: Irish, Tide sit atop new poll

NEW YORK (AP) -- Notre Dame is a victory away from playing for the BCS title. Alabama and Georgia each need two, and could have to go through each other.

A day after Oregon and Kansas State lost to give up control of the BCS race, the Fighting Irish (.9973) moved into first place in the standings for the first time.

"Now we don't have to answer questions about style points or politics," Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said. "Now we have a chance to play for the national championship this week."

Notre Dame (11-0), ranked No. 1 in both polls and by the computer ratings, needs only to beat slumping rival Southern California on Saturday in Los Angeles to earn its first trip to the BCS title game.

Alabama (.9333) and Georgia (.8763) also have rivalry games Saturday. The Crimson Tide hosts Auburn and the Bulldogs play Georgia Tech at home.

If the favorites win, the Southeastern Conference championship game will be a national semifinal of sorts, with the winner advancing to the BCS title game.

If form does not hold, and there are more upsets such as the ones that took out Oregon and Kansas State on Saturday night, there are a handful of teams that could be in the mix.

Florida (10-1) is in fourth heading into a huge game at 10th-place Florida State. The Seminoles (10-1) also will have an ACC title game to play.

Oregon (10-1) dropped to fifth and Kansas State (10-1) was sixth.

Notre Dame, which last won a national championship in 1988, has lost nine of the last 10 against USC, the lone victory coming in 2010, Kelly's first season as coach.

But the Trojans have been a major disappointment this season, starting it No. 1 and dropping to 7-4 after losing Saturday to UCLA. They also will be without quarterback Matt Barkley for the matchup with the Fighting Irish. Max Wittek will make his first career start after Barkley was injured at the end of the UCLA game.

If Notre Dame loses, it could leave a muddle of one-loss teams vying for a spot in the BCS title game, even opening up the possibility of a second consecutive all-SEC national championship game.

More College Football

Close

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 4 easy steps:

  1. Click the Chrome menu on the browser toolbar.
  2. Select Bookmarks.
  3. Select Bookmark manager.
  4. Locate your current Sports Illustrated bookmark, click the Organize menu, then select Edit. You can now easily update the web address of your Sports Illustrated bookmark.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 2 easy steps:

  1. Click the Safari bookmark manager on the browser toolbar.
  2. This will open the Bookmarks Bar. In the Bookmarks Bar, select your Sports Illustrated bookmark and manually edit the Address field.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 3 easy steps:

  1. Click the Firefox bookmark manager on the browser toolbar.
  2. Select Show All Bookmarks.
  3. This will open the library window. In the Library window, select your Sports Illustrated bookmark and manually edit the Location field.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.
Don't Show This Again