College Football Semi-Final…
We are at the end of the college football regular season and heading straight into the bowls. I know for many of you this event ranks just below a baseball bat to the face. I know this has been a painful run of boring posts about a topic that only knuckle dragging, booger eaters named Bubba care about. You will be glad to know that this will be the last post and starting next week, we will return to regularly scheduled programing of war stories, veteran interviews, writing updates, and other less low brow topics. Hey Josh over at the McGill Review, I am planning on getting back to cranking out some new material for you as well. So for all my leaf eating friends, hang on and breathe easy, a new season is approaching.
To all of my college football fanatics, I think that we all can agree that life is good. I hope your team found its way into the college playoff because mine did not. But did anyone besides me think that the Arkansas State Red Wolves really had a chance? Looking back at my picks I would like to take a moment to publically flog myself for being a dummy. I believed the hype machine of ESPN when they touted Oklahoma and UCLA as championship material. Yes, I had both of them going to the playoff and they are both lucky to be going to a bowl. That is what I get for listening to people who are slightly more informed than I am.
I picked Ole Miss to make the playoff and if not for a single disastrous play where their best player was illegally tackled and held up so that he could receive a flagrant helmet to helmet hit causing him to break his leg and drop the football at the one foot line. I really think that if Ole Miss had beaten Auburn, they would have found a way to beat LSU. The Arkansas game was a result of the hangover from the previous two weeks and we saw what they did to Mississippi State when they were motivated. So I will not back pedal on that pick.
I did pick Oregon and they held up their end of the bargain. I know that Alabama was the pick that everyone had to begin the season and I didn’t want to be a bandwagon fan. They should have lost to Arkansas and LSU. But they ran the table the final three weeks and they deserve to be in the playoff. Florida State kept us all tuned into the game as they made three or four plays more than every other opponent. They can thank the referee for helping them win against Notre Dame but they did what they had to do. They swept the table clean with no blemishes and they deserve to be in the playoff.
That brings us to Ohio State. Before I go there, I should mention the WWE. That’s right, the wrestler network. When the good guy gets a bad deal from “The Authority”, the catch phrase used to justify the travesty is to simply say that it is “good for business.” The college football selection committee is allegedly comprised of non-partisan members who in theory intend to represent the highest ideals and ensure the true best four teams make the playoff. Like a newborn baby, I bought into that theory hook, line and sinker. I actually believed that they would do the right thing and pick the four best teams. To me, they followed that theory until the only poll that mattered and that is the last one. The system is rigged, there I said it. It will only be four teams from the power conferences and they followed through with the mandate. Every year moving forward, look for the playoff to have the conference champion from the SEC, Big 10 and the Pac 10. The forth team will be from the ACC or the Big 12. Never will there be a team from a non-power conference. And never will there be two teams from the ACC or Big 12 conference. Those two conferences, including Notre Dame, Texas, Oklahoma and Florida State are all playing for one spot.
The committee admitted as much when they vaulted Ohio State into the playoff because of one victory in the Big 10 championship game. TCU and Baylor are better teams and both teams were ranked in the top four for most of the season, but magically they dropped because Ohio State won a game with a 3rd string quarterback. The Big 12 didn’t help itself when they refused to crown a conference champion. I know that publically, the conference is bickering but I think they didn’t choose a champion to force the hand of the committee and make them to pick one or both between TCU and Baylor. But when Ohio State won and won big, the committee had a reason to justify taking a Big 10 team and leaving the Big 12 shut out. I think there will be some major re-alignment over this. I expect that Florida State, Notre Dame, Texas and Oklahoma will all be moving to a new conference. They are the only major schools not in a major conference and I think that they can read the writing on the wall. Move or risk being shut out from the big boy party. The bidding starts at 100 million dollars, so much for the idea that amateur athletics are for amateurs because it is “what’s good for business!”
I’m going long here so I will make some picks and let you tell me how wrong I am.
Alabama vs Ohio State. On paper, Alabama has every edge and yes they should rout Ohio State. The Buckeyes are a year or two ahead of schedule and shouldn’t even be in the playoff this year. But I really have a feeling that Coach Urban Meyer is one of the few coaches that can match schemes with Coach Saban. This game will be much closer than you expect. Alabama 31 Ohio State 34.
Oregon vs Florida State. The two best quarterbacks in the country will square off and this will be a track meet. FSU has the better defense, the better running game and the proven coach. Oregon has the better person who plays quarterback and the better booster. The Nike guy verses Bert Reynolds. I think that this will be as fun of a football game as anyone has ever seen. Oregon 58 FSU 61.
Until next time, keep on rockin.