No one seriously believes Notre Dame can get to the national title game with eek-out victories over Purdue and Brigham Young parlayed with replay-reviewed goal-line stands against Stanford.
Only the Southeastern Conference scores near-pointless points for hair-raising defense combined with offense that turns your eyelids to anvils.
Brian Kelly half-apologized after Saturday's 17-14 win over BYU. "Embrace who we are, I guess is what I'm saying."
Good luck shoveling that malarkey.
It's one thing for Louisiana State to stay in the title hunt with its quarterback throwing for 97 yards. Florida also doubled down on its No. 2 BCS position with quarterback Jeff Driskel averaging 5.8 yards per completion for a whopping 93 yards.
Divided by four, that's 23.25 passing yards per quarter.
But those were SEC wins, against other SEC teams.
Notre Dame will never, ever get away with this.
The team's importance to the title chase, however, should not be underestimated.
The Fighting Irish are still a critical bartering chip for one-loss Oklahoma and USC.
The Sooners and Trojans, with weekend leisure time on their hands, could openly cheer for Notre Dame.
Oklahoma was playing chess against Charlie and his checkers (Kansas), while USC hosted something called "Colorado" at the Coliseum.
A Notre Dame home defeat to BYU would have been devastating to the two schools that fully expect to pile-drive the Irish in coming weeks.
Oklahoma, already saddled with a home loss against Kansas State, was praying Notre Dame would be undefeated when the Irish visit Norman next week.
This week's BCS No. 9 Sooners, thankfully, got their granted wish as the Irish rallied back to defeat Provo's promise providers.
Don't get the wrong idea: Notre Dame has a solid team, with a stellar defense and a chance to someday again become a major player.
Yet, only a leprechaun would believe 7-0 Notre Dame can now go win at Norman on its way to a season-ending closeout victory at USC.
It is only muddling the message to mention Notre Dame has history on its side. The Irish are 8-1 all time against Oklahoma and have never lost in Norman (Oklahoma's lone series triumph was at Notre Dame in 1956).
You could also get nostalgic and remind the "post-Eisenhower" generation it was Notre Dame that snapped Oklahoma's 47-game winning streak and handed Oklahoma its last loss before the streak.
CHRIS DUFRESNE / ON COLLEGE FOOTBALL
USC needs to root for the enemy Notre Dame up until it plays them
No one thinks the unexciting Irish can get to the national title game this way, but its importance to the chase is evident as it goes to Norman to play Oklahoma next Saturday and Trojans on Nov. 24.
We've upgraded our reader commenting system. Learn more about the new features.
Los Angeles Times welcomes civil dialogue about our stories; you must register with the site to participate. We filter comments for language and adherence to our Terms of Service, but not for factual accuracy. By commenting, you agree to these legal terms. Please flag inappropriate comments.
Having technical problems? Check here for guidance.