Alabama Wins Title Game; LSU Wins the Season Championship
In a display of ugly, but down-home defense, the Alabama Crimson Tide smothered the LSU Tigers by a score of 21-0 to win the BCS Championship Game in New Orleans, Monday night, Jan. 9. The Tide's scores did not result from three touchdowns as the score might indicate, but from five field goals and a touchdown with a missed extra-point.
It was ugly in that LSU never did get it's offfense moving. The Tigers gained only 92 yards and went almost three and half quarters before crossing midfield. Alabama pretty much controlled the game from start to finish and capped off their scoring with 34-yard run by running back Trent Richardson late in the fourth quarter, the only touchdown scored by either team in eight quarters, plus a single overtime this season.
Though many argue that Alabama deserved this rematch with the LSU Tigers, the Houlgate Rankings formula could not make that calculation. The Houlgate Rankings, which places a team's strength of schedule at the forefront of its determinations, showed that Boise State and Oklahoma State had played tougher schedules than the Crimson Tide. Both teams won their bowl games, both against Pac-12 teams Arizona State and Stanford. In the final calculations, LSU ended up with 40 Houlgate ranking points to lead the field of 120 College Football teams in the NCAA's Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). Oklahoma State finished second with 31 points and Alabama finished third with 28. Boise State's win over 7-loss Arizona State was worth one ranking point as six of the Boise State's previous opponents lost their bowl games, netting the Broncos minus five points to drop them into fourth place.
One-loss Houston captured fifth place followed by Arkansas, Oregon, TCU, Stanford and Michigan to round out the top 10.
Final 2011 Houlgate Ranking results and game summaries have been posted. The bottom line: Alabama wins the championship game, but LSU won the season-long rankings war.