- Al Sharpton, Trayvon Martin’s parents rally against Fla. ‘stand your ground’ law
- Hillary Clinton campaign got illicit funds from D.C. scandal figure
- Obama administration backs off plan to cut prescription-drug program
- Tickets linked to stolen passports purchased by Iranian middleman
- More than 3,500 police planned for Boston Marathon
- Ottawa day care suspends 2-year-old for ‘outside’ cheese sandwich
- Liam Neeson tells NYC mayor to ‘man up’ in horse carriage fight
- Real-life Dr. Doolittle to reveal how to talk to animals
- Climate change could bring back smallpox, researchers say
- Shoe-bomb witness to speak from London at N.Y. trial
Column: Best ever? Alabama closing in on title
The top-ranked Crimson Tide still has a lot of work to do, beginning with Saturday’s Iron Bowl showdown _ the biggest game of the year _ against No. 4 Auburn. If Alabama gets past the Tigers, they’ll meet either No. 5 Missouri or No. 10 South Carolina in the Southeastern Conference championship game. Should the Tide clear that hurdle, No. 2 Florida State would likely be waiting in the BCS title game in Pasadena.
Alabama could steal away Oklahoma’s title as the best ever by getting through this season-ending gauntlet.
“I’m subject to my own history, my own age,” said LSU coach Les Miles, whose team lost to the Tide 38-17 in early November. “But I would have to say that in my time, it would certainly be defendable as maybe the most productive time in football history that there is.”
Along with Oklahoma, here are some others to consider:
_ Nebraska (1993-97). Tom Osborne closed his coaching career in style, going 60-3 over his last five years, taking two national titles outright and sharing another. If the Cornhuskers had made a 45-yard field goal on the final play of the 1994 Orange Bowl, they would’ve taken four titles in five years, beating Alabama to the punch.
_ Florida State (1987-2000). Along with Oklahoma, the most long-standing run of sustained excellence. Bobby Bowden’s Seminoles went 152-19-1 over 14 seasons, won two national titles and never finished lower than fifth in the final AP poll. If only they had made a few more clutch field goals.
_ Miami (1983-92). The Hurricanes might’ve been renegades, but there was no denying their success on the field. They went 107-14 and took four national titles in a decade under three different head coaches.
_ Southern Cal (2002-08). The Trojans went 82-9 and were less than a minute from winning their third straight national title before Vince Young led Texas to a 41-38 victory in the 2006 Rose Bowl, one of college football’s greatest games. Of course, USC’s accomplishments were tarnished by NCAA violations.
_ Notre Dame (1943-49). The Fighting Irish posted a 60-5-3 record and won four national championships in seven years, all while dueling with the team we’ll mention next.
_ Army (1944-1950). Red Blaik’s Cadets captured a pair of national titles and finished second in the AP poll two other times while going 57-3-4.
_ Michigan (1901-05). It was a totally different game at the turn of the last century, but college football’s first dynasty is worth noting. The Wolverines went 55-1-1 and outscored opponents 2,821-42.
South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier sees no end in sight to Alabama’s dominance.
“When you have the No. 1 recruiting class almost every year, there’s no letup,” Spurrier said. “As long as Nick Saban is there and they keep recruiting like they’re doing, they’ll keep on keeping on.”
And maybe go down as the best ever.
By David Keene
Conference showed that the values Reagan cherished still endure
- Hillary Clinton campaign received funds from Jeffrey Thompson
- Kim Jong-un calls for execution of 33 Christians
- Unanimous Senate passes bill on military sex assault to give victims more say in prosecution
- Senate Democrats, Republicans spar over restoring unemployment benefits
- Bill Clinton poses for photo with Bunny Ranch prostitutes
- Atheists sue to remove 'Ground Zero Cross' from 9/11 museum
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Sharyl Attkisson resigns from CBS after months of talks
- Mitch McConnell on beating tea party: 'We are going to crush them'
- DHS accused of holding U.S. citizen at airport, using emails to pry into her sex life
Pope Francis meets his 'mini-me'
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Winter storm hits states — again