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CHRIS DUFRESNE / ON COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Some get a potential shot at BCS title game after a crazy day

No. 1 Alabama's loss to No. 4 Auburn and No. 3 Ohio State's victory over Michigan throws a wrench into things.

November 30, 2013|Chris Dufresne
  • When Coach Nick Saban and Alabama lost to Auburn on the game's final play, the day's biggest winner was Coach Urban Meyer and his Buckeyes.
When Coach Nick Saban and Alabama lost to Auburn on the game's final… (Associated Press and McClatchy-Tribune )

Now that your heart rates have retreated to somewhere near normal, didn’t we tell you the Bowl Championship Series (almost) always works out?

Shoot, after days like Saturday, why are they even scrapping it for next season’s playoffs?

(We’re kidding).

And what if we told you biggest loser Alabama might still be coming to the Rose Bowl thisseason, just not for the title game Jan. 6?

College football simply can’t get crazier, or better.

It started in the morning when No. 3 Ohio State held off Michigan’s two-point conversion to win, 42-41, in Ann Arbor, Mich.

That kept Ohio State’s national title hopes afloat as Buckeyes everywhere gathered to root for No. 4 Auburn to upset No. 1 Alabama.

By day’s end, fans in Columbus, Ohio, were dancing circles around Coach Urban Meyer’s house.

Two weeks after Auburn defeated Georgia on a Hail Mary tipped pass, the Tigers did it again, this time with a miraculous kick (return) to the gut.

Auburn beat Alabama, 34-28, and clinched the Southeastern Conference West Division when Chris Davis returned for a touchdown a missed Alabama field-goal try on the last play.

Instead of playing for overtime, Coach Nick Saban allowed Adam Griffith to try a 57-yard field goal with one second remaining.

The decision was made possible after Alabama was awarded one second on the clock after a replay review.

Cade Foster, Alabama’s short-yardage kicker, had missed field-goal tries of 44, 33 and 44 yards.

Griffith’s kick came up short and Davis grabbed it nine yards deep in the end zone and raced down the left sideline for the game winner.

The shocking result probably derailed (for now) Alabama’s chance to win a third consecutive national title.

Auburn’s second miracle in two weeks left two unbeaten contenders, Florida State and Ohio State, in the race for this season’s BCS title game at the Rose Bowl.

Florida State and Ohio State should be 1-2 in this week’s BCS standings with one week left, with Auburn moving to third.

Ohio State, which won its 24th game in a row under Meyer, spent the last few weeks thinking it might get shut out of the title game lining up for Alabama and Florida State.

Auburn (11-1) can reach the BCS championship game if it wins next week’s SEC title game and either Florida State or Ohio State loses.

Or the BCS computers do something, well, weird.

Florida State plays Duke in the Atlantic Coast Conference title game in Charlotte, N.C., and Ohio State plays Michigan State for the Big Ten Conference title in Indianapolis.

You can’t count Alabama out either. Remember, in 2011 the Crimson Tide won the national championship after losing the SEC West title to Louisiana State.

Alabama edged Oklahoma State out for the second BCS spot and won the Louisiana State rematch in New Orleans.

Alabama might get a second chance if Florida State and Ohio State lose next week, or one of those teams loses and Auburn loses the SEC title game.

Alabama could also end up in the Jan. 1 Rose Bowl to play Arizona State or Stanford.

That’s possible if there is no second top-14 ranked Big Ten team eligible to replace Ohio State if the Buckeyes are lost to the BCS title game.

Michigan State (11-1) is No. 11 in the BCS but could fall out of the top 14 with a loss to Ohio State.

Wisconsin isn’t even an option after suffering its third loss Saturday.

As of now, the SEC’s reign of seven consecutive BCS championships is in jeopardy. The schools controlling their fates are from the ACC and Big Ten.

If we’ve learned anything in the BCS era, though, it’s that the season isn’t usually over until the SEC says it’s over.

chris.dufresne@latimes.com

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