The betting line on the BCS National Championship hasn’t budged one bit, so if the oddsmakers are due to make a proper BCS National Championship prediction then Florida State should be in line to win their second title since the computer overlords took over the process. The Seminoles were the country’s only undefeated team in the rankings and obliterated everyone who stood in their path. But it’s almost impossible to bet against the SEC Champion in the big game considering how well the conference has done historically.
The SEC has won the last seven national championships in a row, and the ACC hasn’t won a national title since FSU bested Michael Vick’s Virginia Tech Hokies in 1999. There’s a reason for that – the conferences are night and day in terms of overall strengths.
The Seminoles not only went undefeated, they were a profit churning monster at 11-2 ATS. Heisman winner Jameis Winston was a force of nature throwing for 3,820 yards and 38 touchdowns and is clearly one of the best athletes we’ve seen in college football in a long time. But you can’t make a BCS National Championship prediction based on his athletic gifts alone.
It’s worth noting that FSU didn’t play a single noteworthy team all year. Sure, they beat Clemson and Miami handedly but neither of those teams really made a dent in the big picture. The defense ranked first in terms of passing yards (152.0 per game) and points allowed (10.7) but also didn’t play very stiff competition, and they certainly didn’t play anyone like Auburn.
And they’re running in to a ballistic freight train in the form of Auburn. Making a BCS National Championship prediction based on numbers ignores the simple fact that these Tigers have played like a prodigal team of destiny throughout the season. I’ve never really loved betting on teams that seem lucky, but I can’t deny that Auburn always caught miracles when they needed to. An unreal catch at the end of the Georgia game maintained their momentum heading in to the Iron Bowl, where they won on a missed field goal that was returned for a touchdown.
But luck is only part of the magic at Auburn. They have the nation’s best rushing attack, averaging 335.7 yards per game and if there’s any weakness in FSU it’s their ability to stop the run. Auburn’s Nick Marshall and Tre Mason combined for 33 touchdowns on the ground, while Marshall also threw 12 more through the air. This is a very creative team led by a genius of a coach in Gus Malzahn who has had over a month to prepare his offence to face the fast and ferocious FSU front seven. The better rushing team in the BCS National Championship game almost always wins if you look at the history of the matchups. It’s just one of those stone cold facts.
There’s a good chance that FSU is as good as their record indicates, but I simply can’t bring myself to betting against Auburn and the SEC. The oddsmakers are right to favor FSU because they’ve been so dominant throughout the year, but Auburn is a nasty defensive team that can get stops at critical moments and their coach will have them better prepared for the big game.
So my BCS National Championship game prediction is fairly simple; Auburn runs away with this game both literally and figuratively.
War Eagle, baby.