OU vs.Florida will settle several arguments raging this season.
FOXSports' Pete Flutak breaks down the game.
All right, fine. If you're going to go on resumes and what actually happened on the field this season, bowl games included, this game should probably be Utah vs. Texas. Utah is the nation's lone unbeaten team, beat the team that beat USC, and throttled the Alabama team Florida struggled to get by. Texas, of course, beat Oklahoma.
However, in lieu of a playoff, if you're going to go by the two most impressive teams this college football season, and if you're going to go with the two teams you think are the two best in America, with all due respect to USC, it's almost impossible to argue against Florida vs. Oklahoma. When all is said and done, the winner of this game will be the national champion.
The Fiesta Bowl was a huge win for Texas seniors.
It was the way Texas' season should have ended, and this doesn't necessarily refer to its 24-21 comeback victory over Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl on Monday night.No, it was the players who made the last-minute, season-saving plays who allowed the moment to be poignant and poetic at the same time.
There was senior Quan Cosby diving into the end zone for the game-winning touchdown to complete a career night in which he caught 14 passes for 171 yards and two TDs. And then classmate Brian Orakpo opened the final series by sacking the Buckeyes' Todd Boeckman for a 10-yard loss.
And not to be forgotten is senior defensive tackle Roy Miller. It was only appropriate that he picked up the Fiesta Bowl defensive MVP honors after recording three tackles and a sack.
The Horns chemistry on and off the field helped cement a win against Ohio State. Just ask Blake Gideon.
As a coach and father, Steve Gideon understood what it meant, the way the Longhorns veterans rallied around the freshman. That same chemistry was on the field Monday night. "It'll be up to Blake in the future to do that for someone else when it happens to them," Steve said.
So much of the college football discussion is about ratings, numbers, the demands of adults. But the game is played by kids, who feel the human highs and the lows.
SI's Stewart Mandel believes Ohio State's waste of talented players cost Jim Tressel and the Buckeyes not only the Fiesta Bowl but several seasons.
I'm not a football coach, so I generally avoid trying to dissect play-calls and defensive schemes. (I'd be the first one to tell you I don't know what I'm talking about.) I will say, however, that while Ohio State obviously made the game much more competitive than many of us were anticipating, watching it only reinforced to me just how badly Jim Tressel and Co. wasted their talent over the past three years.
Florida's Urban Meyer supports Mack Brown's decision to vote Texas No. 1 and fight for his team.
Meyer said at a news conference Wednesday that Utah's Kyle Whittingham, Texas' Mack Brown and USC's Pete Carroll would be bad coaches if they didn't lobby to be ranked No. 1.
"That's absolutely what they should do," Meyer said. "I've got news: I'm representing University of Florida, and I'm an employee of the University of Florida and I represent my players, most of all I'm going to fight like a dog to take care of them."
Just in case you are not in Austin for this Saturday's Big 12 conference opener against Iowa State, TexasSports has the affiliate stations carrying the game.
An Iowa State preview. CrossCyed, Clone Chronicles editor, stopped by BON to give a preview of the ISU basketball team.
CBSSports' Gary Parrish updates his list of top four teams by region. Of course, Texas is there.
The San Antonio Express News' Brent Zwerneman has the Best of 2008 Quotes Part One: Texas A&M.
"There's an awesome responsibility to restore the pride of the unit. Because of the great Wrecking Crew defenses of the past."
— Reggie Herring after becoming A&M's defensive coordinator. Less than a month later he had split College Station to become the Dallas Cowboys' linebackers coach
So maybe now Oklahoma will stop recruiing in Texas? There is banter in the OU locker room about Texas vs. Oklahoma high school football. The Sooners are winning with home-state players.
For decades, the Texans have held the majority and do so now, on the eve of the national title game against Florida.
But the Okies have more quality to their argument than in a long time.
The headline reads, "Oklahoma's O-line is made up of five fast, immovable men." The writer obviously missed the Texas-OU game last October.
FOXSports' Mark Kriegel asked Bob Stoops the wrong question. Oklahoma's coach gets a little testy about the age-old season question concerning Big 12 defenses.
The Big 12 schools, I began, aren't scoring nearly as much in these bowl games as they did during the regular season. Why do you think that is?
Stoops paused — a disdainful pause, I might add — before issuing a deadpan answer. "They haven't scored as many points," he said. "That's up to you guys to decide why."
Stoops advice to Sam Bradford?
Thursday's meeting between Florida QB Tim Tebow, the 2007 Heisman winner, and OU QB Sam Bradford, the 2008 Heisman winner, is just the second title game to feature a Heisman faceoff.
OU coach Bob Stoops said he will remind Bradford "don't try and be Superman."
Dr. Saturday has the whole keeping Bradford clean conversation.
It's no coincidence that Sam Bradford has only been sacked three times since that loss to the Longhorns, and not at in all in five of the subsequent seven games, in which OU has averaged an eyelash shy of 60 points. Bradford is the best-protected man in America this side of Barack Obama, and he responded during the winning streak by throwing 25 touchdowns to one interception, posting an astronomical pass efficiency rating and winning one of those trophies you hear so much about. It sounds trite, but it's true: If Florida's going to slow Oklahoma down (this is different from stopping them, for which there is no precedent) they have to hit Bradford.
OU vs. Florida. Two top programs battle it out for the national championship, but Florida is already monetarily way ahead.
At $66 million, UF's football budget runs 63 percent bigger than Oklahoma's, according to U.S. Department of Education figures. OU's no pauper, but the Gators make twice the football profit, by Forbes magazine's count. Florida raised double the money for athletics OU did in a survey published last year by the Chronicle of Higher Education.
There are no extra-curricular activities at this year's Orange Bowl. The Sooners are just in Miami for one purpose and one purpose only: Win the crystal trophy.
"Nobody has even mentioned partying," defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said. "Everybody talks about having fun after the game. It’s all business."
No trips to the Burlington Coat Store?
ESPN's Pat Forde looks at the BCS way: Greed, bad sportsmanship and style points.
The same mentality also should percolate from now through signing day in February. Nowadays coaches are far less likely to stop recruiting a player who gives a verbal commitment to another school -- another disregard of the gentleman's agreements that once governed the sport.
You go for the jugular, on the field and on the recruiting trail, and worry about it later. That's how the game is played today.
This is another manifestation of a BCS system that is awash in money and finds frustrating ways to crown a champion. The system rewards blowouts -- not in the computer rankings, which collapse margin of victory, but with voters who use scores to help split hairs between powerhouse teams.
The Sports Economist insists that schools are just doing what the BCS requires.
I certainly can admire coaches that don't run up the score on purpose, but it's hard to damn them when they do. They're just responding to the incentives that they face.
The SEC grouses about their superiority... again.
The last conference to take three consecutive AP titles? That would be the SEC, which did it some three decades ago with Alabama (1978-79) and Georgia (1980).
In this updated version of the Civil War, the Big 12 is just an annoyance (granted, they did have four pretty good teams this year), the Big Ten is a bunch of slow-footed, three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dusters, the Pac-10 is nothing more than USC and the Nine Dwarfs. What about the ACC? C’mon, that’s a basketball league. The Big East? Puh-lease.
"When you do it three years in a row," said Florida tight end Tate Casey, "some people are going to start resenting you. I think that’s what we’re seeing."
And now the SEC comes to the big screen... I'll wait for the DVD. Birmingham native Warren St. John's 2004 book "Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer," will be made into a movie. The book follows Alabama football fans as they travel from game to game during the 1999 season.