California Here They Come

Auburn appears to be headed for the BCS National Championship game following a win over Missouri and a loss by Ohio State in the Big 10 title game.

What started as a day of hope has turned into a day of opportunity for Gus Malzahn and the Auburn Tigers.

Following a 59-42 win over Missouri to win the SEC Championship and a loss by Ohio State in the Big 10 Championship Game, Auburn appears to be headed for a matchup against Florida State in the BCS National Championship Game in Pasadena, California.

Ranked No. 3 in last week's BCS Standings and defeating No. 5 Missouri, the Tigers are almost assuredly a lock to be playing for it all next month by virtue of what they have accomplished this season and particularly the last two weeks.

•Auburn has five wins versus ranked teams, the most of any team in the top six of the BCS standings.

•Auburn has won nine consecutive games with five of those wins coming against ranked opponents, including three against Top 10 opponents.

•Coach Gus Malzahn's team has consecutive victories against the No. 1 and No. 5 teams in the country.

•Auburn has the highest strength of schedule (Sagarin) of any of the teams in the top six of the BCS standings.

•No other team in college football this season has defeated two Top 5 teams.

•Ten of Auburn's 13 opponents are bowl eligible, the most of any team in the Top 10 of the BCS standings.

"What these guys have done is nothing short of phenomenal," Auburn Athletic Director Jay Jacobs says. "Here we are one year ago and a couple of days ago with a new football coach. We're standing on the stage now with the SEC Championship trophy in football.

"It takes everybody to get to this point," Jacobs said. "I couldn't be more happy for these seniors, for this coaching staff, but I'm really the happiest for Auburn.

"This is big for Auburn," the athletic director added. "All of Auburn had to get on board and get this done. It's a tough league and you can't have any chinks in your armor when you're playing in this league. All of the Auburn family is behind this group and we're going to keep pushing for excellence."

The BCS National Championship Game will take place in the Rose Bowl on Jan. 6.

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