By Coach Hayes
Mark this date: January 6th, 2014.
Why you ask?
Well here’s why. On that day the last BCS championship game will be played in Pasadena, CA. That’s right all those critics who were against the BCS finally got their wish. All the talk about a playoff system has finally made its way through the red tape and will start in Jan. 2015. The BCS has been around for a long time( started in 1998), and has made many colleges and universities lots of money. For some reason that just wasn't good enough. The details are still being worked out with the playoff setup. Either way it could be great for college football or be even worse than the BCS all together.
At the start of the every College Football season, there are a few schools who start out with the potential to win that crystal football and become the best college football team in the land. Yes the SEC has won the last seven BCS championships. All the talk is how great that conference is. Let’s pump the brakes and not forget that conference is only made up of four or five great teams. The rest just show up so the big boys can whip them stupid. Hey thanks for showing up, heres your meal money. Please don't buy drugs with it or get caught drinking and driving.
Ok so Alabama has a great program with an excellent coach. Nick Saban has won three BCS national championships (the most as a head coach since the BCS started 15 years ago). I’m sure he wants to make this last BCS national championship game number four on his resume. It’s easy to see why. Even though Alabama consistently puts out NFL caliber players on offense and defense, they also reload every year at those positions. They are always up there in the top ten of the recruiting classes. So with that its almost expected that Alabama be in the SEC championship game, which in recent years means the winner of that game is usually in the BCS national championship game. The SEC could be wide up open and who knows one of the whipping children may make a run and get into SEC championship game. It’s a stretch but stranger things have happened in college football in the past. The tide may not roll this year.
The PAC 12 may have some good teams competing for their conference crown. There are always some good matchups with quality teams. USC was picked to be #1 in the preseason polls last year and just couldn't handle the hype, especially since they just came off a three year bowl ban. The Trojans just couldn't pull it together and win the big games. Plus there was a melt down in the locker room of their bowl game this past January. Lane Keffin needs to pull it together and get all of his players on the same page if he expects to have success starting in the fall. It doesn't help that the Trojans just lost their four year starting QB. Oregon is always a decent pick in the last five to six years. The fast paced offense can really slow down opposing defenses which gives them more opportunities to score points. Oh wait Oregon just lost its head coach (Chip Kelley) to the NFL. The Eagles swooped down and snagged him from the Ducks' nest. Once a bird always a bird I guess. It’s tough getting a new coach to motivate teen aged athletes to buy into a new style of coaching. If the Ducks want to make a splash then being a surprise team is the way to do it. It’s all about quieting the critics with the performance on the field.
The last part of this is the Big TEN. The conference has shown tremendous strides in the last few years. Even though the bowl record doesn't reflect it. The top of the Big TEN is Ohio State, coming off their sixth undefeated season in 120 years of playing football. They would have made a bid for their tenth national championship but had to sit out a year because of NCAA sanctions. Thank you Terrell Pryor and all those who got free tats by giving away Ohio St. swag that the university gave those players. Well the bowl ban is over and with Urban Meyer( 2 BCS national championships to his record with Florida) is in his second year with the Buckeyes and looking to repeat what he did with last year’s team. That’s go undefeated and win Ohio State its first National Championship since the days of Marice Clarett and Craig Krensell in 2002. The Buckeyes have a great chance to make it to Pasadena. The last time the Buckeyes were in Pasadena, they won the 2010 Rose Bowl. So they know how to win in Cali. Ohio St. has a great starting QB who can take over games and a defense to match. Strong spots for the Buckeyes are QB, RB/TB, O line, LB's, and the secondary (which returned 3 starters). The only concerns will be with the wide outs and defensive line. Other than that it looks like Urban Meyer could have back to back undefeated seasons. Oh yeah Ohio St. was the only undefeated team in college football last year! A team that could give Ohio St. a run to get to Pasadena would be the hated Wolverines of Michigan. With coach Brady Hoke (a former player at Michigan) has his boys working hard. They just lost their starting QB for the last three to four years. Other big names are on their way to the NFL. Michigan has the chance to run the table and clash with the Buckeyes in the last game of the season. The last time both these teams met when being undefeated and ranked 1 and 2 in the polls was in 2006( Ohio St. 1 Michigan 2). The Buckeyes came out on top and went on to the National Championship game only to lose to Urban Meyers Florida Gators. In 2006 there was no Big TEN championship game. So they two heavy weights of the conference have the potential to play each other twice in two weeks. Talk about a clash of the titans. That would be the most anticipated Big TEN championship game ever. To note there only been two conference championship games so far. So the Big TEN has high potential to send a representative to Pasadena for the final BCS national championship game. Only time will tell.
Overall it’s going to be a great season. Dreams will come true and others will be left by the way side. It’s a mad dash to get to the city of roses and claim the ultimate prize in College Football. Who knew a small crystal football could be so sought after. In the end the SEC's reign on that trophy ends with the last BCS championship game before the playoff system starts. College Football, there's nothing better!
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