MotSaG TV Guide

Let me start by apologizing for accidentally listing this week’s UCLA/Oregon game in last week’s guide. I don’t know what happened. Probably interns.

We are down to 10 undefeated teams, and while all of them are in action this Saturday, none of them play each other. Still, it’s unlikely that all of them will survive. I’ll go on record saying 2 or 3 of them will fall.

Eight of those ten teams come from the Big 5 conferences (ACC, Big 10, Big 12, Pac-12, SEC) and this has caused many fans to fear that we could end the season with 3 or more unbeaten major conference teams, meaning someone (probably Ohio State if we’re one of them) will be left out of the national title game.

To ease those fears a bit, I looked into the progression of undefeated teams from this point in the season on over the last five years. The first thing to note is that none of those five seasons ended with more than two major unbeatens (including Notre Dame last year). Also important is that in 2011 and 2012, there have been eight undefeated teams from the Big 5 conferences, just like this year.

Based on the five-year average, we should be down to just three unbeatens in three weeks, but last year we still had five at that time. In other words, relax. These things have ways of working themselves out.

Since we’re on the topic of being undefeated, this week we’ll take a look at the last time each of our 8 remaining major unbeatens finished the regular season with no losses.



Wake Forest @ Miami. What a great place to start! The last time the Hurricanes went into bowl season unbeaten was 2002, when they met an underrated Ohio State team in the national championship game. We all know how that ended, and it still stands as one of the greatest games of the BCS era. (ESPNU)


N.C. State @ Florida State. In 1999, the Seminoles ran the table as the AP #1 team, defeating Virginia Tech for the national championship. Their offensive coordinator that season was current Georgia head coach Mark Richt. (ABC/ESPN2)

Tennessee @ Alabama. Despite winning three of the last four BCS titles, the Crimson Tide hasn’t gone unbeaten since 2009. Texas QB Colt McCoy was knocked out of the title game on the Longhorns’ fifth play that year, and it’s hard not to wonder what might have happened had he played the whole game. (CBS)

Texas Tech @ Oklahoma. This one was tricky, but I’m fairly confident that the last time the Red Raiders went undefeated in the regular season was the 10-win 1938 season, playing in the Border Conference, which featured teams from Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. (Fox)


Baylor @ Kansas. Less tricky was Tech’s Big 12 foe Baylor. The Bears have never gone undefeated in the regular season, coming closest in 1980, when a 30-22 loss to San Jose State sullied their perfect Southwestern Conference season. Baylor would also lose to Alabama in the Cotton Bowl that year, by the knife-twisting score of 30-2. (ESPNU)

South Carolina @ Missouri. Depending on who you ask, Missouri either did or did not go undefeated in 1960, the only time they have done so (if they did, which they didn’t but kind of they did). What happened? Kansas bested the Tigers in the 1960 Border War game by a score of 23-7. The Jayhawks’ Bert Coan scored two TDs in the game, but was ruled ineligible following the season due to recruiting violations committed by his former coach at TCU, Bud Adams. Kansas was forced to forfeit the game and Coan’s contribution can’t be ignored, but on the field, Missouri lost. (ESPN2)

UCLA @ Oregon. Let’s get back to modern times, shall we? The Ducks took an unbeaten record into the national championship game following the 2010 season, where a last second Auburn field goal kept the SEC streak alive. (ESPN)


Penn State @ Ohio State. As you know, the Buckeyes went undefeated last season. Under penalties from former coach Jim Tressel’s violations, Ohio State could not compete in the Big Ten or national championship games. Based on the performances of would-be opponents Nebraska and Notre Dame in those games, it’s very likely that OSU would have walked away with the crystal football. (ABC)


  1. Based on the performances of would-be opponents Nebraska and Notre Dame in those games, it’s very likely that OSU would have walked away with the crystal football. (ABC)

    Just twist that knife, Jason. Keep twisting.

    (also, I’d fire your editor if he let a factual error like that slip past his nose. He’s no good at his job)

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