Half of this college football regular season (7 of 14 weeks) is now in the books, and neither of the two standout teams to date has won a conference championship, let alone a national championship, in the past half-century. Each played in a bowl game in Tennessee last year (the Music City Bowl and Liberty Bowl, respectively), far away from the bright lights of Pasadena, New Orleans, or Dallas. What’s more, the two are separated from each other by only 100 miles geographically and by only .001 in this week’s Anderson & Hester Rankings. Despite their modest pedigrees and expectations, however, few college football fans would deny that #1 Mississippi (6-0, with wins over #7 Alabama and #17 Texas A&M) and #2 Mississippi State (6-0, with wins over #6 Auburn and #17 Texas A&M) have accomplished more so far this season than any other teams in the country.
Holding down the next two spots in the Anderson & Hester Rankings — and separated by even less (.00004) — are #3 Florida State and #4 Notre Dame, who happen to be squaring off this coming Saturday in Tallahassee. The last time both teams were undefeated when they played each other was 21 years ago. In two of the most memorable back-to-back games for one team in college football history, the Irish handed the favored Seminoles and Charlie Ward (that year’s Heisman Trophy winner) their only loss of the 1993-94 season, 31-24, in South Bend, only to be handed their sole loss of the season the following weekend, 41-39 in dramatic fashion, by Boston College on that same field.
Rounding out the top-5 this week is undefeated Baylor, which came from 21 points behind in the fourth quarter on Saturday to beat now-#14 TCU. The Bears are followed by two other teams that share a little bit of history together, #6 Auburn and #7 Alabama. The rest of the top-10 consists of #8 Oregon (which beat now-#15 UCLA in the Rose Bowl on Saturday), #9 Arizona (which lost to now-#13 USC late Saturday night when the Wildcats’ potential game-winning field goal went wide-right), and #10 Oklahoma (which beat struggling Texas in the Red River Shootout).
Ole Miss hosts #49 Tennessee this Saturday, while Mississippi State has the week off.
After finishing the season ranked #29 last year, the Arizona Wildcats — hot off their upset win at Oregon — have claimed the top spot in the inaugural 2014 Anderson & Hester Rankings. The second and fourth spots are held by two schools from Mississippi — #2 Mississippi and #4 Mississippi State — that went a combined 15-11 last year. Sandwiched in between are the Auburn Tigers, who came within 14 seconds of winning last season’s national championship. TCU, which went 4-8 last year, rounds out the top-5.
Senator Jeff Sessions says Americans should be asking where their elected representatives in Washington stand on "executive amnesty," which the Alabama Republican says "could be increasingly imminent and broad in scope." Here's an excerpt from his statement:
Gary Palmer, the founder of the conservative Alabama Policy Institute and a candidate for the House of Representatives, won his Republican primary runoff Tuesday against Paul DeMarco. Palmer is running to succeed retiring Republican Spencer Bachus for the GOP-friendly, Birmingham-area district. At National Review Online, Alabama resident Quin Hillyer has more:
Gary Palmer, who is seeking a House seat in Alabama, is a unique candidate. Until this year, he’d never run for political office. Yet he has a long and impressive record in politics. He was a walk-on for Bear Bryant’s University of Alabama football team – whoops, that’s not politics.
Birmingham, Ala. No House district in the country is more Republican than Alabama’s 6th, where the retirement of Spencer Bachus opens the seat for the first time in 22 years. The district voted 74 percent for Mitt Romney, so whoever captures a majority in the seven-way Republican primary in June—or, in the likely event no one does, whoever wins the runoff in July—can expect to be moving to Washington.
Admiral Jeremiah Denton is dead at 89. Americans of a certain age will remember him, if not by name, then as the returning Vietnam POW who stepped off the plane at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines and concluded some remarks with the words, “God bless America.”
The state of Alabama received bonus payments from Medicaid for 2009 and 2010 that were a stunning 13 times higher than the state was eligible for. So says the inspector general (IG) for Health and Human Services in a report released on Wednesday.