Karl Dorrell has been officially fired by UCLA. The Bruins schizophrenic season pretty much mirrored the chaos of the football season overall, but even his near miss at the Rose Bowl wasn’t enough to assuage the Bruin nation (think that loss to Notre Dame hurt a bit?). So who will be the next coach forced to face off against Pete Carroll and the Trojans?
Defensive Coordinator DeWayne Walker will serve as interim coach for the teams bowl game against BYU.
What with all the football madness on Saturday, extending into Sunday as the BCS rankings and pairings were announced, I totally forgot about the big USC-Kansas basketball game yesterday. Well, the Trojans lost, but it was a close game — a 59-55 thriller won by the #4-ranked Jayhawks thanks to Mario Chalmers’s late heroics.
Up next: a battle between my Trojans and Jay’s Tigers. That’s right, USC is at #2-ranked Memphis tomorrow night at 9:00 on ESPN. Fight on! Better yet, the game is preceded by Notre Dame-Kansas State at 7:00 PM, also on ESPN. It’s an Irish Trojan doubleheader!
As Brendan has posted repeatedly over the last 48 hours, the whole BCS process sucks the sweat off a dead man’s balls. (Kudos to you who get the reference…) But I thought I’d take my power as a guestblogger to make this a post. Not that I’m actually expecting the NCAA to take notice of this post, or actually care what college football fans want or anything, but I feel it needs to be said quite explicitly.
The BCS Bowl system for Division I-A football sucks.
a good guess as to why Americans are so fat… And now for one of the more conservative things I’m likely to say on this blog: Enough with the damn farm subsidies. They don’t work and it appears they are also going the wrong places. Brilliant! (Unless, of course, being for farm subsidies is a big conservative talking point? But it does at least seem to go against the general gist of conservatism.)
An odd analogy occurred to me yesterday, one that links two of my great passions: hurricanes and college football. The analogy is this: in a way, the 2007 college-football season reminds me of the 2005 hurricane season. Both featured a series of absolutely extraordinary events, one after another after another — each of which seemed so improbable as to be almost impossible, and yet no matter how unlikely, they just kept happening. Each event would have been incredible by itself; in combination with all the others, they got to the point of defying all adjectival description. All you could really do is sit back and say, "Wow." At some point, you just had to concede that this season simply didn’t follow the rules.
Seven named storms in June and July. A Category 4 and a Category 5 hurricane in July. Four Cat. 5s during the course of the season, including three of the six most intense Atlantic hurricanes ever recorded — all in the space of seven weeks. A monster hurricane threatening Houston three weeks after another monster hurricane destroyed New Orleans. A two-mile-wide pinhole eye rotating around the edge of a 40-mile-wide outer eye. A tropical storm making landfall in Spain. A cold-water hurricane that seemed to defy the laws of thermodynamics. A grand total of 28 storms, shattering the old record and pushing us into the Greek alphabet by mid-October. Two Greek-alphabet hurricanes, one of them a major hurricane. The season’s final storm forming on December 30 and lasting until January 6.
Appalachian State winning at Michigan. Syracuse, a 37-point underdog, winning at Louisville. Stanford, a 41-point underdog, winning at USC. Navy beating Notre Dame. Thirteen Top 5 teams losing to unranked teams. The #1 and #2 teams both losing in the same weekend three separate times — including both of the last two weekends of the regular season. Ohio State twice rising from #3 to #1 as a result of those double-upset weekends. LSU twice losing while ranked #1, yet still finishing the regular season ranked #2. West Virginia choking away a national-title shot at home, at night, against 4-7 Pitt, a 28-point underdog. UConn a co-champion in the Big East. Buffalo a co-champion in the MAC East. Kansas and Missouri, national-championship contenders. South Florida, briefly ranked #2 in the land. Notre Dame going 3-9. Illinois going to the Rose Bowl. Hawaii going to the BCS. Cal going from the nation’s unofficial #1 team for a few hours to 6-6 seven weeks later. Oregon, similarly, going from 8-1 and #2 in the nation to 8-4 and unranked. Nebraska giving up 76 points to Kansas one week, dropping 73 on Kansas State the following week, and losing 65-51 in its finale. North Texas 49, Navy 45… at halftime. The Play II. A hyperactive coaching carousel, complete with SEC coach-swapping (kinky!). Les Miles going, in the space of 12 hours, from allegedly leaving LSU for Michigan to unexpectedly leading LSU to the BCS title game. An Ohio State team that many suspected of being fraudulent even when it was undefeated, losing at home to an unranked team in Week 11, falling to #7, rebounding to #5 with a win in Week 12, then rising all the way back to #1 by the end of Week 14 without playing a game. LSU climbing from #7 in the second-to-last BCS standings to #2 in the final standings — and going to the championship game as a two-loss team. A sophomore, playing for a three-loss team, about to win the Heisman. And did I mention USC lost to Stanford? At the Coliseum? And that they’d be in the BCS title game if they’d won?
What a year. Truly unbelievable.
P.S. Also yesterday, I thought of an argument for why, even after USC-Stanford, Louisville-Syracuse, and WVU-Pitt, Appalachian State over Michigan is still the biggest upset of the year, and for that matter, of all time.
embattled controversial godawful head coach will reportedly be fired this week.
Trojan Nation will miss him dearly. We do appreciate the free touchdown he gave us as a parting gift on Saturday, though. Thanks for the memories, Coach Dorrell!
Also in New Orleans, it’ll be Georgia-Hawaii in the Sugar Bowl. If the undefeated Warriors beat the #5-ranked Bulldogs (which I seriously doubt they will, but if they do), they should win the AP championship. (”Should” as in “it would be just,” not as in “I predict it would happen.” No, definitely not the latter.)
Possibly holding a more realistic chance of capturing the AP championship is Oklahoma, which will face West Virginia in the Fiesta Bowl. SMQ writes that OU has “a distant chance to challenge LSU for a split title in the AP ballot if the respective margins of victory work in the Sooners’ favor.” But good lord, if LSU were forced to share another national championship, their fans would be insufferable. It’s the opposite scenario — LSU winning an AP title, but not a BCS title — that would have been delicious; a repeat of 2003-04 would just be annoying. I doubt it will happen, though, in any event. 96 points is a lot to make up.
In the Orange Bowl, Virginia Tech will play Kansas. Yes, Kansas got the last at-large bid (not counting the automatic at-large, Hawaii). Sorry, Arizona State. Whether or not it’s because the BCS hates the Pac-10, the fact is that the Sun Devils are going to the Holiday Bowl to play Texas. Also on the outside looking in: two-loss, #6-ranked Missouri, which came into the season’s final weekend ranked #1 in the land, then fell all the way to the Cotton Bowl (vs. Arkansas) with its loss in the Big 12 title game. Is it fair that #13-ranked Illinois and #8-ranked Kansas got into the BCS ahead of #6-ranked Missouri, which beat both of those teams? No, of course it’s not, but then, nobody ever promised “fairness” when it comes to the non-title-game BCS bowls. And hey, Chase Daniel vs. Darren McFadden? I’ll watch that game. Er, if I’m not in the hospital on New Year’s Day with a laboring wife or a crying newborn, that is.
But anyway, enough of all that, let’s talk about the Grandaddy of Them All.
The Rose Bowl, for the first time ever, will feature USC and Illinois. I know some Trojans are underwhelmed by this matchup, especially considering the more compelling possibilities we thought we might see, like USC-Ohio State or USC-Georgia. Personally, though, I’m excited. My mom went to Illinois, as did my friend Dmytro, so this will be a good opportunity for some friendly and familial trash-talking. Plus, the Illini and their fans will undoubtedly be very excited about their fifth-ever Rose Bowl (and first since 1984), so it’ll be especially fun to squash their dreams like a little bug. :) As for Ohio State: we’ll get ‘em next year.
Fight on, Trojans!! Beat the Illini!!