In Salt Lake, trailing 10-6, Utah scored with 48 seconds left in the game to win 13-10. In that same year, TCU trailed Boise all game, only to score late, winning by a single point. Sounds like all three teams were head and shoulders better than Alabama that year who got blown out of the stadium by the Utes. Utah dominated in every single facet of the game, and basically sat on the ball the entire fourth quarter. So, now that you mention it, Alabama was inferior to THREE nonAQ teams that year.
Oh, but you still think that they don't belong, don't you?