by WCT, The Ship of Fools
45, 58, 62, 66, 65, 61. Those are the scores the Oklahoma Sooners have put up in the 6 games since their loss in the Red River Shootout. Three of those explosions were against teams ranked in the top 25 at gametime, and one was of course against the then-#2-ranked Texas Tech Red Raiders. Nobody, not even Florida, has been more impressive over the last month and a half than the Sooners, who have humiliated everyone they have shared the field with over the course of the second half of their schedule. All that said, I still don't think they deserve to be in the Big 12 Championship game. How the BCS formula, or computer, or whatever it is that spits out the rankings, can take two teams with nearly identical resumes, and rank the team that lost when they met head-to-head above the team that won is mind-boggling. Nevermind the fact that the BCS ranks USC ahead of Texas Tech, which is ridiculous, but that is a whole other issue. It has almost gotten to the point that highlighting the flaws in the system and calling for a playoff has become tiresome. The system sucks, but there is nothing we can do about it.
Also, keep in mind when you see ESPN talking heads complaining about the system and and calling for a playoff, it was their very own network that ensured that we would have the system as we know it now in place until at least 2014. When the BCS was peddling this garbage to TV networks, ESPN did not use its negotiating leverage to push for a change in the system.
- I don't know about you, but I am completely sick of the "Charlie Weis will-he-or-won't-he-get-fired" story. I'm tired of hearing about the buyout (which in the last week has been described as so big its "stupefying," and so small its tantamount to "pocket change."), I'm tired of hearing his record compared to Willingham and Daive, I'm tired of the nonsensical votes of confidence from the Athletic Department, and I'm tired of the sabre-rattling from the alumni and boosters. Either fire him, or let the man be. Until something definitive happens, it isn't a story.
- I hate to always focus on the negative, but then again, I'm a blogger, so F it. That being said, LSU: wowzers. That game on Friday afternoon was ugly. Its not so much the fact that the defending national champions lost to the last-place, and previously 1-6 in-conference, and downright hapless Arkansas Razorbacks, its more the way in which the defending national champions lost to the last-place, and previously 1-6 in-conference, and downright hapless Arkansas Razorbacks. The Tigers not only blew a 30-14 2nd half lead, but they aided the 90 yard drive on which the Hogs scored the decisive FG with 42 yards of penalties. There was pass interference, unsportsmanlike conducts, and of course a personal foul after a successful stop on a 3rd and long. It was the classic meltdown you would expect from a bottom-feeder from the MAC, not a perennial BCS participant from the SEC.
- More on LSU: You really have to wonder how it came to this, because with Friday's loss, the Tigers finished the year with four consecutive conference losses, sandwiched around a blowout out win over Tulane, and narrowly-avoided humiliation at home against Troy. LSU's last SEC victory was a 7-point squeaker over South Carolina more than a month ago.
- It was not a good weekend for the SEC in general. Yes, Florida rolled. We know they are good. But Clemson (and their interim coach) beat up South Carolina (and their iconic, future-hall-of-fame coach), and Georgia (who continues to disappoint) couldn't handle the option of Georgia Tech. Throw in early-season-darling Vandy losing to Wake Forest, and that's 1-3 on the day against mediocre ACC teams.
- For at least one night in Corvallis, the old Pac-10 we knew and loved was back in full force. In the "Civil War" game between Oregon and Oregon State, there was absolutely no defense played whatsoever. The Ducks and Beavers went up and down the field on each other with ease, with Oregon outlasting O-State 65-38, knocking the Beavs out of 1st place in the Pac-10 and killing my dream of Oregon State in the Rose Bowl.
- Speaking of the Pac-10, do not be swayed by all of the pundits falling all over themselves to anoint USC's defense as the greatest they have ever seen. The Trojans have benefited from playing the 114th (UVA), 117th (Washington), and 118th (Washington State) ranked scoring offenses in America. Throw in an Ohio State team without its best player (Wells) and with a mistake-prone, later-benched QB (Boeckman), and mix in a struggling Notre Dame team, and that is nearly half their schedule. My guess is the 107th ranked offense (UCLA) won't do too much damage against them next week either, and we'll have to hear about it all game long.
- Staying with USC, every bowl projection under the sun has them going to the Rose Bowl. Again. Am I the only one sick of seeing them in this game? They win the pathetic Pac-10 every year, and the dinosaurs that run the Rose Bowl refuse to give up their now-meaningless tradition of putting the Pac-10 and Big 10 champions against each other. So the Trojans will destroy Penn State on January 1, 2009 in Pasadena. Fantastic. Would it kill the Bowl CEOs to give us an interesting matchup for once? How about USC vs. Texas? How about USC vs. the Alabama-Florida loser?
- You probably missed it, but there was a huge turnaround at NC State this season. After starting the year 2-6 and looking like garbabe, the Wolfpack beat Miami on Saturday to get to 6-6 and end up bowl eligible. Very impressive.
- Who else is psyched for this weekend's big BC-Virginia Tech rematch in the ACC championship game?! Uh, hello? Anyone? I would imagine there are plenty of good seats still available.
- Weird, weird scene in Knoxville on "Phil Fullmer day." How often do you see a coach go 100 games over .500, then get killed by his fans, then get fired, then get honored with his own day, then get carried off the field with the fans all chanting his name. The same fans that were calling for his head a month ago!
by WCT, The Ship of Fools