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USC-SEC title game seems likely

Mon., Sept. 15, 2008

USC is on its way.

No need to go over the gory details of the Trojans’ 35-3 pounding of Ohio State, but suffice to say it will take an immense upset to keep USC out of the national title game.

Sure, USC lost two conferences games each of the past two seasons, including that perplexing one to Stanford. And, yes, 2007 showed the college football world there are no sure things.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever. Three weeks into the season, the race for the national championship already has a clear favorite, and only a handful of other contenders need to be taken seriously.

Mark it down: USC will be in Miami for the BCS national title game.

This USC team might be the best of coach Pete Carroll’s amazing run. Mark Sanchez is the Trojans’ most talented quarterback since Carson Palmer. They’re about five deep at running back and wide receiver. The defense might have the two best linebackers in the country in Rey Maualuga and Brian Cushing.

And who’s going to beat USC? Check out the Pac-10 results from Saturday. Seven Pac-10 teams lost.

So the rest of the season comes down to determining an opponent for USC in the national title game. Forget any Big East or Atlantic Coast Conference teams. The Big Ten? Sorry, Wisconsin.

Either the Big 12 champion or SEC champion will play USC for the national championship on Jan. 8 – and here’s hoping it’s an SEC team.

No offense to the Big 12 folks, but this USC-SEC thing has been simmering for a while. In 2003, USC and LSU never got a crack at each other. In 2004, Auburn got passed over and USC was left to pummel Oklahoma. There was talk of a USC-Georgia Rose Bowl last season, but it didn’t happen.

Despite all USC has done during its six-plus seasons as college football’s 1,000-pound gorilla, SEC fans still look with skepticism at the Trojans because they’ve never played the SEC champions.

It’s time to get this settled.


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