In the past two seasons, a team has come from outside the preseason polls to challenge for college football’s national championship in the BCS title game. Notre Dame was the out-of-nowhere darling in 2012, while Auburn’s miracle run through the back half of its schedule left it just a few plays shy of its second title in four years.
The BCS may be gone, but surprises aren’t going anywhere.
If anything, the four-team playoff only opens more doors.
Can another unforeseen SEC team run the gauntlet and emerge with a title-worthy resume? Could the same happen in the Pac-12, the Big 12 or elsewhere?
Our college football writers discuss (above) a few candidates, both inside and outside the Power 5, who could surprise during the 2014 season.