Monday, November 17, 2008

Weekend Carnage Report

This was one of the more ho-hum weekends in college football, as evidenced by the lack of change in the Top 15 of the BCS. The season is winding down, and some teams are beginning to believe again while others are realizing that their season or in some cases, their career, might be over. Some good finishes were there for the finding for the truly dedicated, but this may have been a nice weekend to step outside, get some fresh air, and remind your loved ones that you do indeed care about more than an oblong ball and a set of uprights. (Of course, this isn't true, but loved ones are usually foolish, blinded by their feelings and emotions. This goodwill should last you at least through the conference championships, then you can buy enough Christmas gifts to allow you uninterrupted Bowl watching. Thank me later.) On to the weekend...

The Good
  • Florida. As in really really good. I think most thought the South Carolina-Florida game would at least be fun to watch. Not so much. Florida jumped on the Gamecocks early, often, and impressively in route to a 56-6 shellacking. I said it in June, and I'll say it again here... this Florida team is the best in the country. And the National Championship is their's to lose.
  • Utah. The Utes had to be hearing the whispers after an ugly win over TCU that they were a tad bit overrated. Coupled with the other non-BCS undefeateds and the Utes needed a statement win. They got it in the form of a 63-14 pounding of hapless San Diego State. Granted, SDSU is 1-10, but good teams blow bad teams out. A lesson some of the big boys and a few of the mid-majors would do well to remember.
  • Maryland. In defeating 16th ranked North Carolina on Saturday, the Terps not only made their claim for the ACC Championship, but also defeated their 6th straight ranked opponent. If Ralph Friedgen could ever figure out how to beat the Middle Tennessee's of the world, the Terps would be amazing.
  • Ball State. The Cards defeated Miami on Tuesday last for their first 10-0 start in school history. They drop three spots in the BCS, leapfrogged by TCU and BYU in the process as their reward. Up next for the Cardinals will be Central Michigan on Wednesday, a game that should they win, will get the Cardinals some respect in the minds of the computers and the pollsters.
The Bad
  • Syracuse/Greg Robinson. Alas, the love affair between Greg Robinson and Syracuse has come to a bitter bloody end after a 39-14 beating by UConn in the final home game of the 08 season. Robinson was 9-36 in his career and 3-25 in the Big East. In trying to find at least a little humor in this otherwise awful situation for Syracuse fans, Robinson won 2 of his 3 games against Louisville. Proving yet again that Louisville sucks.
  • Washington. Remaining the only winless team in FBS, the Huskies now close the season against 1-10 Washington State and 6-4 Cal. If Ty is going to go out with a win, he would do well to beat Wazzu. At least they kept it semi-close against UCLA.
  • Tulsa. Just a few short weeks ago, Tulsa was everyone's darling with thier glitzy high powered offense and head coach Todd Graham appearing on many short lists for vacancies. Looks like the Golden Hurricanes are petering out to be a minor rain storm as they get violated by Houston 70-30.
  • Michigan. One of the most storied programs in history has its first 8-loss season after the 21-14 loss to Northwestern. Deep breaths, M fans... with Coach Rod it only gets better after the first season.
The Ugly
  • LSU. The Tigers needed a 30-point fourth quarter to defeat the Troy Trojans 40-31. If you're good at math, that means they were trailing 31-10 when the 4th quarter began. That's simply inexcusable. It was a night game in Tiger Stadium for Christ's sake. A lot of folks are talking about how overrated the SEC is, and LSU is one of the many reasons why.
  • Wake Forest/Florida State/North Carolina. Apparently, no one wants to win the ACC as all of the ranked teams in the conference got beat this weekend. At least Wake and UNC were on the road. The ACC Title and the accompanying BCS Bowl and $17 million payday is like a bad penny that no one wants. Do everyone a favor and just forfeit your auto-bid.
  • The BCS. I know I'm biased. But Ball State wins their game, they are undefeated, and ahead of them in the BCS standings are a bunch of two-loss teams and right behind them is LSU. They were jumped by TCU and BYU, effectively ending their hopes of a BCS game. It's complete and utter bullshit, and I for one, am pissed. The major conferences created a shitty little sandbox and refuse to let anyone else in. There will be a post forthcoming about this, but I'm not happy right now.

OTP Helmet Stickers
From Alan:
  • Shonn Greene, RB, Iowa: Greene gashed Purdue for 211 yards and 2 scores in the Hawkeyes victory over the Boilers. Javon Ringer gets a ton of press, but Greene is just as good if not better.
  • Percy Harvin, WR, Florida: In a game ripe for stat building, Harvin took advantage of the South Carolina defense for 167 rushing yards and 2 TDs.
  • MiQuale Lewis, RB, Ball State: In the win over Miami, Lewis hung 165 yards and 2 TDs on the Red Hawks while helping BSU to its firsts 10-0 start in school history. Lewis has quietly amassed some impressive stats this season, moving to 7th in the nation in yards per game.

2 comments:

J said...

I really don't like the BCS system, and the rankings are usually infuriating, but... BCS bowl for Ball State? Really? The hardest team Ball State's played so far has been Navy--Navy who in turn just crept by a lousy Rutgers team, had to go into OT to beat Temple, and lost to Duke.... Who would you have Ball State go up against? Florida? Texas Tech? USC?

TCU, BYU, Utah, and Boise State all deserve a BCS bowl more than Ball State simply based on strength of schedule and scheduling some non-conference games which at least on paper before the season (i.e. Michigan) looked respectable. And I still don't think any of those except Utah and maybe BSU would really have much of a chance in a BCS game. This whole thing reminds me of all the Hawaii fans yelling that they deserved to be in the national title game... Then they went and got smacked in the mouth by Georgia.

Give Ball State one of the higher non-BCS bowls, they've earned that much. Beating Kent States and Western Kentuckys and Toledos fairly convincingly every week though isn't enough. If they consistently win over a little time, and schedule more difficult non-con games, then in the near future, certainly, but this season? Sorry, but I don't agree...

Papa lou bsu said...

BSU (or any other non-BCS team) is likely to play the ACC champion in the Orange Bowl should they make the BCS... are you really making the argument that BSU doesn't deserve to play a 3- or 4-loss North Carolina or Florida State squad? Really?

No one's arguing they should be in the title game.

And I love how everyone trots out the Hawaii argument, quickly forgetting that exact same argument was used against Boise a year earlier, and Boise only *beat Okla-freakin'-homa in one of the most exciting, dramatic bowl games in college football history.* (If you'll recall, plenty of folks thought OU deserved to be in the title game ahead of Florida that year... they were a Top 5 team and the "other" BSU just couldn't compete with them because of their weak schedule -- which was only marginally better than Ball State's this year).

Look, we're in line behind Utah and Boise, and I think everyone can live with that. Both are undefeated, and both have better "signature" wins than the Cards. (Utah over the current PAC-10 co-leader and Boise over a 7-3 Oregon team). But there's absolutely no way in hell a BYU team that got trounced by 25 points in their loss, nor a two-loss TCU team should be currently ranked ahead of Ball State, not now and certainly not if the Cards finish 13-0.