Quick update on tBBC’s Championship Chase, our yearly contest for all of our Buckeye Yahoo!s…
Of the over 50 folks who signed up to play, Toasted Bucknut ended the season on top with 252 points! Drop us a note here at the mothership, and we’ll get you hooked up for your prize package and so forth.
Your humble correspondent ended up atop the Staff challenge, and found myself in the huge logjam that was the second place shootout. You know what they say, though- “Second place is still not where Michigan finished this year.”
And now that the Bowl Movement has been completed, we can also announce the next contest for all of the armchair defensive coordinators in Buckeye Nation. If you’re looking to have yet another reason to watch all 35 of the bowl games this holiday season, you can tell your family that you’ve got something important riding on it since you’ve entered tBBC Bowl Challenge.
In order to join the group, just go to College Football Pick’em, and click the “Join Group” button. From there, enter the following information…
Group ID#: 6433
As a reminder, since we switched our contests over from ESPN to Yahoo!, the BCS has died. Success! Read More
Look, I know it’s the holiday season and all that, but I’m not feeling it just yet. Here’s some Ella if you’re in a similar mood this Monday.
And so it ends… not with a bang, but a whimper. Not for everyone, but for fanbases who entered Saturday with significant postseason aspirations, the doors gently shut on both those dreams and on their season.
While TWTW is usually reserved for Saturday’s festivities, we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out that Northern Illinois started the slide on Friday; poised for a shot at another possible BCS bid, the Huskies fell for the first time all season in the MAC championship. And not just “fell”, but were beaten by 2o points by Bowling Green in a game that cost the Falcons (and the other non-qualifying schools) some pretty major cash.
Saturday’s early slate started with some Bedlam, a game where anything can happen and often does- this year in the form of an earthquake during a field goal attempt.
As a rivalry game, you throw the records and season results out the window, as any Ohio State or Michigan fan can tell you. And while TBPU looked to be the easy favorite, icy conditions and the passion of their cross state rivals kept this from being an easy match.
While both teams struggled to score early on, Oklahoma tied things up in the third following a fake field goal that may or may not have happened before the play clock expired. No call, though, so on we went.
Much like last week’s game in Ann Arbor, OkSU drove down the field with relative ease at the end of the game, and scored with time left on the clock in spite of our warnings. And, you can guess what happened- Oklahoma managed a length of the field drive to score which left only enough time for the Northwestern-esque “throw the ball around and hope for the best” play, and like NU, Oklahoma State’s efforts were interrupted and scored upon.
Check out the gif on the left there; this is after the spread-covering score, and you can see both a Cowboy cheerleader attempt to trip a jubilant Sooner and also notice that some happy fan has decided to huck a snowball at the field toward the end of the clip.
That’s what it means to be in a rivalry game… it’s bigger than just a regular loss, particularly when you fall at home and fall out of the BCS. I’m sure that excitement and emotion were behind the Sooner player’s decision to go full Marcus Hall on the Cowboy fan, and am certainly looking forward to them being benched for the entirety of their next game, the way that Hall was. And, media folks, feel free to spend hours discussing how classless this play was and what Stoops should do. You’ve obviously got nothing else to talk about.
With the Cowboys’ falling in Stillwater, the late afternoon game between Texas and Baylor became the defacto Big12-2 Championship matchup. Let that roll around in your head for a minute- Mack Brown, who may be on his way out after yet another disappointing season, was one game away from a Conference Title and a BCS bid.
And yet, it was not to be… after a close first half, Baylor made the plays that it’s executed so well all season and pulled away from Texas to win their first conference title in forever. Given that they’re opening a new stadium next year and just signed their coach to a sizable extension, it’s quite possible that we haven’t heard the end of celebrations in Waco.
And their reward? A trip to Phoenix to face the University of Central Florida in the Fiesta Bowl… the same UCF that held off SMU to win on Saturday. That game ain’t going to be pretty, folks.
By now, Buckeye fans know all to well that Auburn will be playing in the National Title game against Florida State. Poised in the computers to leap Ohio State with a blowout win against Missouri, the resurgent Tigers (no, the other ones) handled the
B12-2′s SEC East’s finest handily in Atlanta on Saturday, in a game that seemed to be played with an understanding that each team was required to ration their tackles (perhaps the same memo OSU got?).
That’s not to say that there wasn’t any controversy on the way to the SEC crown. One of Missouri’s early scores was on a long pass that clearly was not fully possessed by the receiver- I have no idea how that wasn’t overturned. Later, an Auburn player pushed Missouri’s Josey out of bounds after the running back had another long scamper, and the shove caused Josey to hit a nearby cart and miss the remainder of the game.
Auburn’s win meant that, should one of the top two teams fall, they would be in. Florida State started first in their epic clash against the Duke Blue Devils, and managed to go the entire first quarter without a score.
That was about it, though- the Seminoles managed to roll up a 45-7 win and punch their tickets to Pasadena, while Winston possibly scheduled a trip to New York to pick up some hardware. It’ll be interesting to see if we get a 2006 repeat- an undefeated team with a Heisman Trophy QB against a one-loss SEC program who “backed in” to the title game. That’s all I remember about the 2006 game… and I’m not listening if you try to give me any further facts.
Which brings us to Indianapolis. As if Ohio State fans didn’t have enough reasons to hate Sports Illustrated, this week’s decision to put Braxton on a regional cover added the Buckeyes to the list of Oregon, Alabama, and Baylor as teams who lost the week following their cover appearance. Splendid.
Look, my thoughts on the game are probably the same as the rest of Buckeye Nation:
Again, no disrespect to Ben Affleck or to Michigan State, but it feels more like Ohio State let this one get away from them than the Spartans “took” it. While I’d prefer that it was the Buckeyes in Pasadena, I’m still excited to see Michigan State play Stanford in the 100th edition of the Rose Bowl.
Stanford won their rematch with Arizona State in a walk in front of less than stellar crowds. While some blame the “rematch” factor for poor attendance, I believe that it’s due to these being hosted on campus… as nice as that is for the home team, this time of year the trend is to allow fans the chance to travel to somewhere new. I’m conflicted on this, since I believe that any future Championship Expansion should consider home stadiums, but I also understand that there’s a huge money factor involved from tourism and so forth.
And that’s the heart of the silly season that we’re getting ready to enter- schools will pay lots of money for the “privileged” of making cash for television networks and tax exempt “bowl committees”; and only one game will “matter”, other than the contrived “Bowl Challenge” that the four letter network has created without consideration of even-matchups. When there are so many bowls that more than 50% of FBS teams get to go, is it really an honor?
That being said, this year should be a pretty good one for the B1G- in looking across the Bowl Landscape, there are only a few games that don’t feel like solid contests. See what you think:
The BCS games, then, would be Florida State/Auburn, Michigan State/Stanford, Ohio State/Clemson, Oklahoma/Alabama, and (bleh) Central Florida/Baylor.
All in all, a great set of excuses to gather friends and family for the holidays and then ignore them to watch TV. We’ll have breakdowns of each of these matchups in the coming days, as well as full coverage of Ohio State’s trip to Miami in an attempt to exorcise Charlie Bauman’s specter.
But with that… The Week That Were draws to a close for yet another season. Thanks for playing along with us all fall, and for being a part of tBBC Family. We’ll close with a bit of nostalgia to get you ready for Miami:
We’re in uncharted waters here… it’s really an odd feeling to have a game after THE GAME. If you’re heading to the game, be sure to check out a great blues bar downtown… these guys are playing this weekend!
If the pounds of fried turkey and sweet potato pie that you ate on Thursday didn’t give you a heart attack, this week’s college football games certainly were going to do their damnedest to finish the job.
Rivalries, by nature, raise the blood pressure of those involved… if they didn’t it would be called a “friendly tiff” or an “untimely spat”. Add the magnitude of what was on the line for some teams, and you’ve surely got the makings for one of the most memorable weekends of the year, if not all times.
We’ve already discussed the awesomeness that was the victory in The Game, and join the rest of Buckeye Nation in sending Tyvis Powell the kinds of “thank you” that would be approved by the NCAA. TWTW doesn’t often spend time rehashing Buckeye wins, but man… that’s one to savor. Right, Eddie?
Kudos to Coach Hoke and his team in their preparation and gameplan, and for the decision to go for it all at the end. It didn’t work out, but it was a great call. Kudos to Devin Gardner as well- after a rough year, and on a bad wheel, he really put it all on the line for his team. I’m not gloating, but that’s how the game is meant to be played… win or lose, you leave everything on the field.
While I’m here, I can’t figure out how only one of these guys was ejected from the game, and that it wasn’t the first one to throw a punch (#34). The Buckeye reaction was understandable, but inappropriate given the program and the magnitude of the game. That being said, if you’re looking for Christmas gifts for me…
But this amazing weekend started well before kickoff in Ann Arbor. Thursday’s rivalry action in the Egg Bowl saw an injured quarterback enter into Mississippi State legend status, leading his team to an overtime win with a touchdown run on fourth and 1 from near the goal-line. Sometimes, gutsy calls work out for the home team. Also on Thursday, Texas fans saw another big win… one big enough to celebrate with a shirt and a Mack Brown contract extension? Yeah, probably not.
Friday’s game that should be called “Farmageddon” but isn’t saw the start of the Christmas season in Lincoln Nebraska. At least that had to be what the Huskers thought, since One Weisman was enough to do a ton of damage to the Blackshirt defense. That Nebraska lost was surprising enough, but for me the really interesting part of the game was the media response during and after. Coach Pelini has been on a hot seat, and you could sense his frustration even during the typical halftime “let’s chat on your way to the locker room” interview.
Postgame, someone asked him about his job status and… well, listen to his response here.
Essentially, he says “look, you’re making a story out of something that I have no control over, and your decision to do so is hurting our players and our team. If the people in charge want to fire me, they can.”
The storyline from the game? “If they want to fire me, go ahead“, as if he was calling his AD and the University leadership out. Of course they didn’t talk about his comments ripping the media for impacting the program… it’s like they say. Read More
Great news after a great weekend for Ohio State, the 2015 Recruiting Class has just added its second verbal commitment.
Jamel Dean from Cocoa High School in Florida announced this evening that he had verballed to the Scarlet and Gray, joining Eric Glover-Williams in next year’s class.
A defensive back, Dean is rated as a four star recruit by most services. He currently is 6′ 1″ and 180 pounds, and held offers from Miami, Florida, Mississippi State, and Temple.
He camped at Ohio State over the summer, and visited the campus unofficially in October. Interestingly enough, quotes to Eleven Warriors’ Jeremy Birmingham addressed an issue close to many B1G programs’ hearts:
“I’m most likely leaving Florida. They play NFL football in Ohio, New England and Wisconsin. I know most people want to stay in Florida because of the weather, but I like doing new things so I don’t mind leaving Florida.”
You can check out his highlights on Hudl.com at this link… pretty exciting opportunity for the young man and the Buckeyes.
Welcome to the Buckeye Family, Mr. Dean!
Finally, it’s time for The Game.
Ohio State versus “that school up North.”
In this exclusive from the team at Campus Insiders, Urban Meyer discusses his strategy to beat the Wolverines, go 12-0, and put the Buckeyes in position to secure a spot in the BCS Championship.
And if you’re not sufficiently excited for The Game yet, check out this amazing video from the Ohio State Athletic Department: Read More
If it’s Thanksgiving week, it’s time for our yearly check in with That Blogger Up North, Yost from the often hilarious and occasionally comprehensible MZone. Before I got started writing, Yost’s was the only “enemy” site that I visited regularly; my “career” is mostly “Hell, if he can do it, anyone can…”. We were able to pull him out from under his barstool for this year’s visit, and made sure to use small words in our questions.
In spite of his obvious deficiency, he’s a great guy who’s mostly on the twitter these days, and worth a follow.
Lots of speculation that Devin Gardner has a significant injury. Do you believe that he’ll be able to play, or will Shane Morris get his first taste of The Game? If it’s Morris, what does he bring to the table that’s different than Gardner?
I think rather than a singular injury, Devin is suffering from the effects of 11 games of playing behind an O-line providing him with all the protection of jello pudding. Couple that with a schizophrenic offensive strategy at the coaching level and it’s hard to tell where player injuries merge with play calling incoherence.
There’s no question Devin will play and I’ll think he’ll play the entire game barring any new injuries in the OSU game. Good, bad or otherwise, I think we’re long past the point of Morris coming into the game and expecting any significant improvement. He hasn’t had any real meaningful game experience all season.
Unfortunately, all the “easy” games he was supposed to get experience in (Akron, UConn, etc.), Michigan ended up in dogfights so he sat on the bench. To put him in Saturday unless it’s an emergency would just be pointless.
Long term, I think U-M is going to be fine, although I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed at the regression this season compared to Hoke’s initial campaign. I thought – and still think – Hoke can lead Michigan to great things. However, I’d be surprised if the head-scratchingly bad 2013 season hasn’t instilled a wisp of doubt in even the most ardent Brady Hoke supporters.
After the way this fall’s campaign has disintegrated before my maize and blue eyes, next year is crucial for Hoke. Because if 2014 is another substandard year like 2013, I think you’ll see the bottom drop out of Hoke’s support. And if he doesn’t make needed changes to his staff (yeah, you know who), then he’s turning the heat up another 20 degrees before next September even rolls around. Because if Hoke doesn’t realize something isn’t working on his staff at a coaching level, then much more of the blame will shift to him and not just on coordinators or position coaches.
Word Association- Al Borges. Read More
We’re blessed here at tBBC.
Not just in being fans of the greatest program in the country, but also in having the opportunity to come across your intertrons and onto your computer/tablet/mobile device. To have the chance to interact daily with the best fans in the land, and to possibly impact your Ohio State experience in ways that are positive is something that we cherish deeply- thank you for making us a part of your daily lives.
Here’s a bit more of our team’s moments of gratitude and what we’re thankful for today as we argue over the other drumstick on Dexter’s rotisserie turkey: