Silver Bullet Points Salutes You

Written April 16th, 2014 by MaliBuckeye

Those of you who play along with us during Fall liveblogs know my propensity for helping make stadium sound effects on third down as a way to manage my ADD help the team. As such, today’s news hit me with a bit of both nostalgia and sadness… The band that gave us the bell may be no more. We’ve only got one choice for today’s soundtrack, then… Happy Wednesday!

For Those About To Rock…. Fire!

Buckeye 411

The Week That Were: 2013 Championship Weekend

Written December 9th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

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.

ku-xlarge

We Know The Feeling

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.

Nice Aim

Nice Aim

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.

WEIRD-BAYLOR-FAN

Filled With The Spirit?

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?).

Best Tackle All Day. Seriously.

Best Tackle All Game. Seriously.

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.

No Roses For You

Roses? Not so fast…

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:

  • Hats off to Michigan State, whose defense played the way that Ohio State defenses used to play. Wonder why that is… What I wouldn’t give to have one of their DBs in the scarlet and gray.
  • Hats off to Sparty, too, for offensively game planning a perfect scheme to attack Ohio State’s weaknesses in the secondary, and to Connor Cook for the poise that he showed in the passing game. Enjoy California, Dino and folks… remember, it’s not too far of a drive for your offensive line coach to visit some family.
  • I’m as confused as the rest of you are about the Ohio State gameplan, particularly when it looked like our bread and butter were working. I understand the idea of getting Carlos into space against MSU’s secondary, but when every empty set led to a QB draw/counter, then it takes away the mystery. And mid-range passing? Does everything have to be a bomb?
  • “Frustrated” only partially covers my thoughts on the secondary’s play this past year… I’m not smart enough to figure out if it’s a scheme thing or a personnel issue or coaching, and I’ve read all three from the “experts” that make up Ohio State bulletin boards. I know that linebacker is something that Urban has identified as a “need”, so I’m just going to trust that this will improve overall in the coming season.

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.

RICE1

The “Bowl-Bloat” Culprit

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:

  • Rose Bowl, Jan. 1 (Big Ten vs. BCS/Pac-12): Michigan State vs. Stanford
  • Orange Bowl, Jan. 3: (ACC vs. BCS): Ohio State vs. Clemson
  • Capital One Bowl, Jan. 1 (Big Ten vs. SEC): Wisconsin vs. South Carolina
  • Outback Bowl, Jan. 1 (Big Ten vs. SEC): Iowa vs. LSU
  • Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl, Dec. 28 (Big Ten vs. Big 12): Michigan vs. Kansas State
  • Gator Bowl, Jan. 1 (Big Ten vs. SEC): Nebraska vs. Georgia
  • Texas Bowl, Dec. 27 (Big Ten vs. Big 12): Minnesota vs. Syracuse

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:

Poll Position: Championship Week

Written December 3rd, 2013 by Patrick

Alabama’s run at the top of tBBC’s top ten was short lived. A missed field goal that was promptly returned 100 (officially) yards basically ended Bama’s hopes of a 3rd straight national title.

We’re Number Two!!

Ohio State survived a failed 2 point conversion attempt by TTUN to win their regular season finale and FSU beat and battered a Florida team who lost to Georgia Southern the week before.

Pos. Team (1st Votes) LW
1 Florida State (7) 2
2 Ohio State (3) 3
3 Auburn 4
4 Alabama 1
5 Missouri 5
6 Oklahoma State 7
7 Michigan State 8
8 Clemson 6
9 Baylor NR
10 South Carolina 10

Dropped Out – Wisconsin

That brings us to championship week. Three games will essentially decide who will play for the crystal ball.

The biggest one of all will be the 3rd annual B1G championship game in Indianapolis. For the first time in its short history, the game is a sell out and will match the 2nd ranked Buckeyes vs the 10th ranked Spartans of Michigan State. If the Buckeyes win, they should be playing for all the marbles. That game is at 8pm eastern time.

At 4pm, the SEC championship will be decided in Atlanta between Auburn and Missouri. If Auburn can win, they will no doubt sit back and watch the B1G champ game with baited breath.

Down in Charlotte, NC, the Duke Blue Devils will attempt to finish their Cinderella season with a monumental upset of the number 1 ranked Seminoles of Florida State.

Other games of interest: Oklahoma travels to Oklahoma State for Bedlam, Texas travels to Baylor and Stanford will travel to Arizona State to battle for the PAC 12 championship and a trip to the Rose Bowl.

Stop back next week and see who’ll be playing for the crystal ball in January.

Poll Position: Bama Back On Top

Written November 26th, 2013 by Patrick

Another week, another change at the top. Whether it’s legal troubles or the fact people realize FSU’s schedule isn’t all that great, Alabama has regained it’s spot atop tBBC top ten.

Pos. Team (1st Votes) LW
1 Alabama (5) 2
2 Florida State (4) 1
3 Ohio State (1) 3
4 Auburn 6
5 Missouri NR
6 Clemson 9
7 Oklahoma State 8
8 Michigan State 7
9 Wisconsin 10
10 South Carolina NR

Dropped out – Stanford, Baylor, Oregon

Huge games on the docket this week with major BCS national championship implications. On top of that “game” up there in TSUN, Alabama will travel to Auburn, FSU travels to the swamp to take on Florida, Clemson travels to South Carolina, and Johnny Football travels to the Zoo to take on Missouri.

Stop back after The Game and see all the movers and shakers in tBBC top ten.

The Week That Were: 10.26.13

Written October 28th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

It’s a week of ghastly costumes and other ghoulish accoutrements… so of course, we’ve got a great soundtrack for all of our friends.

Well, the powers that be didn’t decide to market this weekend’s games as a “Separation Saturday”, but it ended up looking that way at the end of the day. Two more undefeateds fell, two others were challenged, while the top four continued to extend their apparition of domination.

mizzzzzeryLet’s start with the “Columbia Cup” between the Ol’ Ball Coach and this year’s “SEC Surprise”, the Missouri Tigers. I’ve been pulling for the Tigers all season for several reasons: It has been rumored to be a landing spot for Coach Herman if Pinkel was dismissed, and I love the fact that two “middle of the pack” B12 teams join the mighty SEC and play at the top almost immediately.

The Tigers didn’t disappoint early on, jumping out to a huge lead in their spiffy “blackout” gear. However, once Gamecock QB Connor Shaw came off the bench (recovering from a knee issue from last week) the tide turned and the game ended up heading to overtime.

And there, well… let’s just say that Pinkle is Einhorn. The doink heard ’round the conference. 

While there’s still a huge chance that the Tigers can play a role in the BCS, it may only be limited to being a spoiler at this point… but they’ve got some games to play yet, including mathups with Old Miss and aTm before they might face Alabama in the conference championship game.

The second “thanks for playing” award this week goes to a young Texas Tech team, which lost their first contest of the season at Oklahoma. After a lengthy weather delay that resulted in the game being shifted over to Fox News in lieu of World Series coverage, the Fighting Stoops figured out how to get out of their own way and managed to corral the Raiders’ high flying offense… although, it should be noted that Cliff Kingsbury’s team is very young, and will be a contender at the conference level sooner than some would like to admit. Read More

Poll Position: Huge Shift In tBBC Top Ten

Written October 22nd, 2013 by Patrick

What a week it was in college football. Many Buckeyes fans have wondered aloud what would need to happen for the Bucks to be playing in the “2nd game” in Pasadena in January and some of those wishes came true on Saturday.

Passing His Way Up The Polls

Teams like Louisville, Georgia, Texas A&M, LSU and South Carolina all but eliminated themselves from the national championship picture with losses this past Saturday.

What did that mean for our voters?

Pos. Team (1st Votes) LW
1 Oregon (4) 1
2 Alabama (4) 2
3 Florida State (2) 5
4 Ohio State 4
5 Missouri NR
6 Baylor 7
7 Stanford NR
8 Miami NR
9 Clemson 3
10 Texas Tech NR

Dropping Out – Louisville, UCLA, LSU, Texas A&M

Others receiving votes – UCLA, Oklahoma, Central Florida,

The Bucks win again and again stay at 4.

The Noles were the big mover of the week jumping the Bucks to 3 and gaining 2 1st place votes.

Four new additions to the top ten and with a number of top 25 match ups this week, including Texas Tech/Oklahoma, UCLA/Oregon, South Carolina/Missouri, and Stanford/Oregon State.

Interestingly enough, these are close to the recent BCS data as well… but there’s a lot of football to be played. Stop back next week to see all how the Chase for the final BCS title plays out.

The Week That Were: 9.8.12

Written September 10th, 2012 by MaliBuckeye

This week’s soundtrack is colorful, but has a bit of a different taste to it: trust me, it makes total sense in the grand scheme of things.  Enjoy… language warning.

There’s no denying it… one group of conference-mates had an incredibly difficult Saturday.

Positioned for excellence, and featured in a number of nationally significant matchups, the on the field results just did not help dissuade the critics who argue that they have lost their prestige, and are rightfully scorned by college fans across the country. Once seen as powerful contenders for titles, it seems as if the results on Saturday have shown that the game may have passed them by.

Yup, it was a terrible day for the Big 12 expats.  Who did you think I was talking about?

Texas A&M, Missouri, Colorado, Nebraska all dropped matches on Saturday, with two of these being significant “upsets” in terms of rankings and so forth.  The Aggies, after a week full of bravado regarding their new allegiance to the “we can spell three letter words” conference, saw the early lead against Florida disappear in the waning moments of the game, and couldn’t count on Kyle Field to help carry the day. You’ve got to wonder if the different understanding of the word “cheerleader” might have had something to do with it. Ah well, you know they’ll just say that they won later… it’s the SEC way.

Mustard? Really?

Missouri also opened SEC play by welcoming Georgia to play between the… uh… rocks in Columbia. The Bulldawgs emerged victorious, but you’re right in realizing that Mizzou is excited to be in a new home. There were too many Longhorns in the last one, and the B1G never returned their phone calls, so you can’t blame them for being OK with a loss in their prestigious opener.  So excited about the new opportunities were they, that they broke out their new school clothes… or someone else’s old school clothes from when they were in the Arena League. As goofy as they looked, though, they didn’t win our “awkward haberdashery of the week award”… more later.

Ah, CoLOLorado… See, here’s how it works.  You schedule a FCS opponent in the pre-season, you get them at home, you beat them and build up your alumni/student confidence in your program = profit.  But, the Buffs are constricted by no man’s social norms, and instead chose to allow the mighty Hornets of Sacramento State to kick a field goal with time expiring and upset the Buffs in Boulder.  I’m sure the fans will have to find some way to console their grief.

Which brings us to Nebraska. Read More

March Madness 2012: West Region

Written March 12th, 2012 by Joe Dexter

March Madness is here! Coming up over the next two days, the staff here at tBBC will get you ready to fill out your brackets by evaluating each region in the field of 68.  Coming up later today, Eric will take a look at the East bracket that features Ohio State as a #2 seed. WVaBuckeye will follow tomorrow with the South bracket with Kentucky and MaliBuckeye will wrap things up with a review of the Midwest bracket. Today, we take a look at what I believe is the most interesting region of the 2012 tournament.  The West features 5 of the top 20 top scoring offenses, including three teams that average over 80 points per game. From top seeds, to cinderellas, to teams that could get upset in the first round — We have it all as we get ready for the best two weeks in sports all year long.  Here’s a look at this year’s West Region.

Favorites:Unlike other regions this season, what makes this bracket so tough is the talent in the middle and lower seeds. Of course, this might have the best one-two punch in the tournament with Missouri and Michigan State, but all-around — the West could be won by a whole bunch of different Cowboys. Two teams to watch in the middle of the bracket are Florida and Memphis. The transition game of the Tigers has carried this team to an insane 20-3 record to end the season. The trio of Will Barton, Joe Jackson and Adonis Thomas could be dangerous against any team in the bracket. If they can get past St. Louis, they really have a chance against some of the top seeds in the West. The one thing that separates the Tigers from any team in this region is their ability to run until their opponent’s legs fall off. Jackson is a solid facilitator, and Barton is arguably one of the best scorers in college basketball. Everyone on the floor can and isn’t afraid to score.

Read More

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