SEC: Miami Hurricanes
The AP No. 1 team has faced a Top-20 opponent on the road the week after a home win against another Top-20 opponent nine previous times. The AP No. 1 team is just 2-7 in those games, including the Crimson Tide, who lost in that situation at South Carolina two years ago.
Some of these games are defining moments in the history of at least one of the schools involved.
Here’s a summary of each game since 2000 that fits the same description as Alabama’s game at LSU this Saturday.
2010: 19 South Carolina def. 1 Alabama, 35-21
The Gamecocks came out firing, opening up a 21-3 lead that couldn’t be overcome en route to a 35-21 victory behind three touchdown passes from Stephen Garcia and three scores from freshman running back Marcus Lattimore.
The defense limited future NFL first-rounders Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson to just 64 yards on the ground, allowing South Carolina to earn the school’s first victory vs a No. 1-ranked opponent.
2008: 6 Texas Tech def. 1 Texas, 39-33
Texas was a play away from winning before Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell found Michael Crabtree on the sideline for the dramatic game-winning touchdown with one second left.
That loss would be the Longhorns’ only defeat of the season, but was enough to leave them (controversially) out of the BCS national title game that season.
2007: 17 Kentucky def. 1 LSU, 43-37 (3 OT)
The Wildcats, who hadn’t beaten a top-ranked opponent since taking down Ole Miss in 1964, rallied from a 13-point third-quarter deficit to force overtime.
In the third extra period, Kentucky quarterback Andre Woodson found Steve Johnson for a 7-yard touchdown pass, and LSU was unable to pick up a first down on its possession, setting off a wild celebration at Commonwealth Stadium.
Though it seemed like the loss dashed the Tigers’ national title hopes, they actually went on to lose another triple-overtime game later that season (50-48 to Arkansas), but still would end up playing for and winning the national title that season.
2001: 1 Miami (FL) def. 14 Virginia Tech, 26-24
The Hurricanes appeared to have the game under control after taking a 16-point lead in the fourth quarter, but Virginia Tech rallied for two touchdowns, including one off a blocked punt.
A failed two-point conversion by the Hokies and a late interception by Ed Reed (his second of the day) helped the Hurricanes ward off the comeback, giving them a two-point win that was their only single-digit margin of the season. Miami went on to crush Nebraska in the Rose Bowl and win the national title.
Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low
It's no secret that Tennessee's biggest need right now is at quarterback.
The Vols would like to sign two in the 2010 class and have immediate playing time to offer.
It makes sense that they would be interested in former Miami quarterback Robert Marve, who's narrowed his choices to Purdue and Tennessee. Marve already has college experience, having played last season as a redshirt freshman. A big-time recruit, he also wouldn't come in as wide-eyed as a freshman.
Here's the other thing: If Marve winds up at Tennessee, you know he genuinely believes he could come in and be the starter right away in 2010. Miami has refused to release Marve to Tennessee, which means he would have to pay his own way through school his first year in Knoxville.
Nick Stephens would be a senior in 2010, and the Vols are currently scouring the country for high school quarterbacks.
It's never ideal to be starting a true freshman at quarterback in the SEC, but that's certainly a possibility for the Vols in 2010. They have their sights set on several highly rated quarterbacks in this upcoming class, namely Jake Heaps of Sammamish, Wash., Andrew Hendrix of Cincinnati, Ohio, Jesse Scroggins of Lakewood, Calif., and Jonny Miller of Denver, Colo. All four are on the ESPNU 150 Watch List.
If the Vols do get Marve, it will be interesting to see how that affects their recruitment of high school quarterbacks.
Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low
We now know where the final remaining member of the SEC fell in ESPN's Prestige Rankings, and I was wrong.
Alabama didn't crack the top 5.
The Crimson Tide came in at No. 6, which tells you how lean the last 10-15 years have been in Tuscaloosa. Alabama has suffered through three losing seasons during the BCS era, hasn't won a major bowl game since its 1992 national championship season and hasn't produced a first-round NFL draft selection since 2000.
I still believe most hardcore college football fans view Alabama as one of the top 5 programs of all time. A few more seasons like 2008, and the Tide will easily move back into that elite group.
We know that the top 5, in no particular order, will be comprised of Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Southern California. While realizing these rankings were based on statistical data, it's hard for me to believe that neither Alabama nor Michigan didn't warrant a spot in the top 5. The Wolverines were No. 8.
I also question Miami being in the top 10 when you consider that we're talking about a program's full body of work since 1936. The 1980s were as good as it gets for the 'U,' but that's only one decade.