| | USC Trying to Make History
USC has 34 straight victories and consecutive national championships, although technically one of them was split with LSU, while Texas has the highest scoring offense in the country. USC has Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart, while Texas has Vince Young. Sure sounds good doesn’t it?
Pete Carroll and the Trojans have played down the historical significance of the Bowl Championship Series title game, insisting they haven't given it much thought. "If I did that, then I wouldn't stay with the discipline of how we do stuff," Carroll said. "It has never been a focus of our program to look at the end of the rainbow."
The Associated Press poll began crowning champions in 1936 and five years later Minnesota became the first school to win consecutive titles. USC became the ninth team to repeat with an emphatic 55-19 victory over Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl last January.
In between, Oklahoma did it for Wilkinson (1955-56) and for Barry Switzer (1974-75). Nebraska also did it with two coaches — Bob Devaney (1970-71) and Tom Osborne (1994-95).
Bear Bryant won two in a row twice at Alabama — 1964-65 and again in 1978-79. The Sooners won 47 straight games under Wilkinson from 1953-57, an NCAA record and eight games more than the next closest streak.
In the last 25 years, Miami, Nebraska and Florida State have put together long strings of dominance. The Hurricanes from 1983-91 won four championship under three coaches — Howard Schnellenberger (1983), Jimmy Johnson (1987) and Dennis Erickson (1989, '91).
Tom Osborne's best teams came toward the end of his career. In 1995 he put together his best squad. Tommie Frazier, Lawrence Phillips and the Blackshirt defense became the first repeat champions in 16 seasons by throttling Florida 62-24 in the Fiesta Bowl.
"I always felt the '72 USC team was the best team I ever saw," college football announcer Keith Jackson said. "Then along came '95 Nebraska. Whoa! My word. But if these guys, if USC wins, they've got to be right there, too. You can't deny them that."
"Rarely do you have everything come together, a good supporting class and that key quarterback there for three years," Osborne said. "Anytime you break in a quarterback, no matter, how talented it's hard to go out and win every game."
"I think that would set (the Trojans) apart, when you start talking about how great are they," Bobby Bowden said. "Do they belong to be named among one the best ever? Yeah, if they win three in a row."
"We know what we have in hand and it's hard to not think about it," USC defensive end Frostee Rucker said. "Very hard.