Voters might have two football champs

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Some voters might name Rueben Randle and LSU national champs if they lose a close game to Alabama. The No. 1 Tigers beat the No. 2 Tide during the season.  FILE/ASSOCIATED PRESS
FILE/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Some voters might name Rueben Randle and LSU national champs if they lose a close game to Alabama. The No. 1 Tigers beat the No. 2 Tide during the season.

There are many voters for the Associated Press Top 25 who say they are not absolutely committed to picking the winner of the BCS finale between No. 1 Louisiana State University and No. 2 Alabama as the national champion.

A big part of the reason is Monday’s game will be the first BCS championship featuring a rematch of a regular-season meeting. That Nov. 5 game ended with a 9-6 overtime victory for the Tigers on the Crimson Tide’s home field.

The winner in New Orleans gets the BCS’ crystal ball trophy and will be No. 1 in the final USA Today coaches’ poll, which is contractually bound to have the winner of the BCS in the top spot of its rankings.

But the media members who vote in The Associated Press’ college football rankings are under no such obligations.

Could there be two No. 1s at the end of the college football season? The last time it happened was 2003. That year LSU beat Oklahoma in the BCS title game, but Southern California, which was left out of the championship game, was voted No. 1 by the AP after it thumped Michigan in the Rose Bowl.

“Awarding a championship to a team that loses its final game is beyond counterintuitive and may be un-American,” said David Teel of the Daily Press in Hampton Roads, Va. “But if LSU loses narrowly, I will absolutely consider (voting the Tigers No. 1). That’s how good the Tigers’ regular season – five wins over the top 25, four away from Death Valley, including at Alabama – was.”

BOISE STATE: Chris Petersen has officially joined college football’s $2 million coaching club.

The Idaho State Board of Education voted unanimously Wednesday to give Petersen a $375,000 raise for 2012, the first step toward replacing his old contract with a new five-year deal designed to keep Petersen in Boise through January 2017.

NEW DATE: Washington State and Washington will meet in the Apple Cup on Nov. 23, in Pullman, the day after Thanksgiving, one of the revelations when the Pac-12 Conference announced its 2012 schedules. The schools have typically tried to avoid playing around the Thanksgiving holiday.

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