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SI Presents: The Great Pigskin Debate
Don Yaeger
August 23, 2004
National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice and Democratic consultant James Carville rarely see eye-to-eye, especially on USC and the Fighting Irish Interviews by Don Yaeger
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August 23, 2004

Si Presents: The Great Pigskin Debate

National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice and Democratic consultant James Carville rarely see eye-to-eye, especially on USC and the Fighting Irish Interviews by Don Yaeger

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Who will play for the national championship?

RICE: Georgia and USC, but with a couple of caveats, one being that [Trojans receiver] Mike Williams's situation is resolved in USC's favor. He's a great player caught in a tough situation. I really think [Bulldogs quarterback] David Greene has a lot of talent, but Georgia seems to stumble late in the season. If they can avoid a late season fall, Georgia has the talent to be there.

Who wins?

RICE: I'd have to pick USC to win that game.

Who will win the major conference championships?

RICE: In the ACC, I'd pick Miami, though Florida State seems talented, and I like [quarterback] Chris Rix. I have a soft spot for guys with talent for whom it never seems to come together. The Big East is diminished, but you'd have to say West Virginia. In the SEC you'll probably see LSU versus Georgia in the championship game, and that's a toss-up, though I like Georgia. LSU is a school that lost so much talent they could go all the way or fall hard. The Big 12 is between Oklahoma and Texas, and I'll pick Texas. In the Big Ten, it's an Ohio State-- Michigan battle, and it will come down to their game. I don't see anyone else in their league.

How will your pal Ty Willingham and Notre Dame do this year?

RICE: Really well. I like [quarterback] Brady Quinn. Having one season under his belt, being thrown into the fire as he was, is going to be great for him. But I don't know if they've got enough speed for it all to come together.

Handicap the Heisman race.

RICE: It comes down to Jason White at Oklahoma and Matt Leinart at USC. I think White wins it because Oklahoma has a good season and Leinart is a junior.

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