One week ago, Alabama was set to be favored by 10 over Auburn. Now, the spread is down to three.
That came up during the College Football Playoffs rankings show Tuesday night.
While the Crimson Tide is No. 1 in the new rankings, the national perception seems to be that Alabama is vulnerable heading into next week's game at Auburn, which will eliminate the loser from contention for an SEC title and potentially a spot in the playoffs.
"I think they're very vulnerable right now," ESPN's Booger McFarland said of the Tide. "If you look at their hallmark, it's always been their defense, and their defense got pushed around like we've never seen (against Mississippi State). ... That defense is very vulnerable right now. And if Alabama and Auburn were playing this weekend, I'd pick Auburn because I think Auburn right now is playing better and they're healthier."
Auburn is up to No. 6 in the playoff rankings after its 40-17 win over then-No. 1 Georgia on Saturday. And, even with two losses, the Tigers are in a good position to make the playoffs if they can beat the Tide and then the Bulldogs again in the SEC title game.
There's a lot on the line for both Alabama and Auburn, though, as it seems highly possible that a loss next week could prevent the Tide from reaching from the College Football Playoff.
And, all of a sudden, there a lot more people like Booger McFarland in the media picking Auburn to win that game than there were a week ago.
"Right now, if Auburn's the team that we saw play Georgia, there's not a team in the country, not one team in the country that I would pick to beat the Auburn team that we just saw play," ESPN's Joey Galloway said. "They were that nasty up front. They were that nasty running the football. All they need then is (Jarrett) Stidham to hit a couple plays and they will be a very hard team to beat no matter where they play."
Matt Zenitz is an Alabama beat writer for the Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter @mzenitz....Read more