National title hopes can rarely absorb a loss in college football

Unless you're in the Southeastern Conference, the chances of reaching the championship game with a loss are next to none.

  • Pin It
Quincy Mauger

Georgia defensive end Quincy Mauger gets an earful from defensive coordinator Todd Grantham during the Bulldogs' 41-26 loss to Missouri on Saturday. The loss shattered Georgia's national title hopes. (Jason Getz / Associated Press / October 12, 2013)

Seven ranked teams discovered this weekend that defeat in college football is very expensive.

As it relates to national titles it can bankrupt you.

Consider the seven losses suffered by the Super Bowl champion New York Giants in 2011 equal the combined total losses for 15 Bowl Championship Series champions.

No school outside the Southeastern Conference has been able to absorb a wound and come back to win the title. The SEC owns nine rings and all seven losses.

It took six seasons before the BCS even had a one-loss champion — Louisiana State in 2003.

So it really does matter, one week before the first BCS standings will be released, if you won or lost.

Losing is hard to shake when one play call can cost you everything, right Stanford?

Let's review this weekend's Seven Deadly Defeat Sins.

--Former No. 5 Stanford (5-1).

The defeat: 27-21 at Utah.

The repercussions: Stanford's inability to score inside the 10-yard line near the end probably ended the Cardinal's national title hopes. Stanford's 40-6 record since 2009 is almost identical to Alabama's 41-5, yet the Crimson Tide has won two national titles in that span.

The difference is Alabama doesn't lose to unranked opponents. Stanford lost last year to unranked Washington.

Stanford fell eight spots to No. 13. The pollsters did not recognize Utah as a quality opponent that suffered close losses to Oregon State in overtime and to No. 9 UCLA.

Utah, incredibly, garnered only 18 points in Sunday's USA Today coaches' poll.

The reaction: "We knew we were coming into a hornets' nest," Stanford Coach David Shaw said after the Utah loss.

The prospects: History has proved only SEC teams can rebound from regular-season defeats. The good news is Stanford has remaining games against UCLA and No. 2 Oregon.

--Former No. 7 Georgia (4-2).

The defeat: 41-26 at home to Missouri.

The repercussions: Georgia's second loss almost officially kills its BCS title hopes. And wasn't that the reason Aaron Murray came back for his senior year?

LSU in 2007 is the only school to win a title with two defeats, but that took a bizarre set of circumstances.

  • Pin It

Local & National Video