The 2004 college football national title will go down as one of the biggest controversies in the sport, at least if you hear from Auburn insiders and SEC apologists.
The USC Trojans won the title, the one they claimed by dismantling the Oklahoma Sooners by a score of 55-19. But, after the title was stripped in 2011 due to the messy elements of the Reggie Bush saga and the USC program’s NCAA witch hunt, Auburn aide Al Borges says the Tigers should be crowned champions of this season ( h/t Patrick Conn of Auburn Wire).
“Whether people want to admit it or not, last year’s game had a small effect. And we were a completely different team, that’s an unfair analogy, but I think maybe it has a bit to do with it. But SC sort of got rid of themselves with their issues, and it’s really the case that (Tommy Tuberville) makes is: SC isn’t even a factor because they supposedly got their hands on each other in the cookie jar.
USC got caught, sure, but would Auburn have beaten the Sooners? The Tigers won the Sugar Bowl against Virginia Tech, a team not as good as OU, let alone USC.
Also, don’t forget undefeated Utah, with Urban Meyer coaching the Utes and a quarterback named Alex Smith.
While it’s unclear what will happen with the title, it makes sense that Borges would insist that Auburn be awarded the crown – after all, he was part of this talented team.
Nonetheless, the Trojans were the best team in the country that year, plain and simple. Beating Oklahoma by 36 was the end of that particular debate.