Wednesday, January 03, 2007
Lets begin with Boise:
I will start by stating I totally respect the Broncos each season, but as a Bulldog fan I really cant stand them. My reason for the prior statement is probably coming from the fact that they have won 6 of the last 7 versus FSU, broke the Dogs hearts back in 01', win the WAC every year, and did exactly what coach Pat Hill told Bulldog fans he set out to do only 7 years removed from Division 1-AA. They are the Bulldogs most staunch conference rival but Boise State has owned Fresno since they became WAC members. I know, I know, but the Dogs will beat the Broncos in the 07' home date.
The Broncos were able to run the table in the regular season, blowing out Oregon State in an early season home contest, and was able to hold off gunslinger Colt Brennan and Hawaii. Their biggest test was in San Jose where they have always had problems for some reason, but they were able to get the job done. Thanks to the added fifth BCS game, the Broncos were able to get the bid and were matched up against an Oklahoma team that was getting their featured runner back from injury in Adrian Peterson. Many claimed that because of the shenanigans that took place in Eugene Oregon earlier this season, that the Sooners were among the top 5 in the nation and were as good as anyone. My perspective was that because of the running prowess of the Sooners that it was going to be a tough task for the team from Idaho.
The game was special as everyone has stated and weighed in with. It provided everything that College Football fans wish for. There was storied program in Oklahoma, an upstart non BCS conference school in Boise State, and a great stage for a masterpiece to play out on in the Fiesta Bowl on New Years Day. There was the early lead by the Broncos that shocked many, then the subsequent comeback led by Paul Thompson who was able to shake off the early game woes.
The game is tied when the Sooners have to attempt three 2 point conversions just to even up the score at 28-28. You then have a much maligned QB in Jared Zabransky throwing a deflating an epically egregious pick-six. Follow that up with that very player in Zabransky able to construct a TD scoring drive in 1 minute to redeem himself, highlighted by the gutsy hook and ladder (lateral) play that you could not draw up any better. Adrian Peterson opens overtime waltzing into the endzone from 25 yards leaving the viewer to wonder how come the Sooners didnt run outside of the tackles like that the entire game? Boise then has a 4th and 2 and chooses to put their Senior QB in motion and let the backup RB Vinny Peretta throw the TD pass to TE Derek Schoumann. He has to make the throw on the run to a moving target in Schoumann that has a defender covering him and Peretta just got it done. Then Boise State coach Chris Peterson just decides what the heck lets run the statue of liberty play for the 2 pointer and the win.
One could seemingly write a novel on the occurances of this game, I watched it as many Bulldog fans did with bittersweet thoughts on the outcome, thinking like Coach Pat Hill has told the fan base often "Why not us?". Well the us was a State, just Boise rather than Fresno. It was a great thing for the WAC and the exposure was welcomed, followed by obvious bragging rights over the MWC. It was great to see a team able to execute so well when the stakes were at their highest, coupled with the kind of playcalling and guts people love to see. You leave a game like that and wonder why dont coaches throw it all on the line, make tough calls and run more trickery? Fact is most coaches at all levels play it too close to the vest.
-YouTube game highlights-
-A nice read on the games potential impact-
Notre Dame exposed yet again:
Once again the Fighting Irish find themselves in a better Bowl game than they deserve to be in and once again it showed. All week the Notre Dame players said they were tired of being disrepected and just couldnt seem to figure out why nobody likes them. There was even an ESPN article about it. Well LSU showed the College Football landscape yet again that Charlie Weiss and Brady Quinn's hype train can only go so far. Embarrased yet again on a big stage by a Bayou Bengal team that just imposed its will upon the Golden Domers from the first quarter and the duration of the game. One of my favorite moments was at halftime when Notre Dame alum Tim Brown said that although LSU was leading 21-14 at the half it felt like Notre Dame was up and was dominating the game. This is exactly why former players should stay away from the Booth or halftime sets when their school is involved.
Brady Quinns career ends without him truly winning or playing exceptional in a big game. The BCS games have got progressively worse with each game, which means that by Monday the BCS titlt game may not even be worth watching, yet I will tune in. Hopefully this loss can get people to see through the Fighting Irish and their smoke and mirrors, beat no one, lose the big games, get invited to a BCS game, and proceed to stink it up mode of operation. They have lost their last 9 Bowl games by an average of 18 points. Im sick of it and so is everyone else.
Marshawn Lynch declares for the Draft:
Cal Junior RB and PAC-10 Offensive player of the year Marshawn Lynch has decided to forego his Senior season and head to the NFL. I must say I have enjoyed watching him play and not only marveled at his athleticism but also his toughness and his LT-esque abilities. He dealt with injuries over this season and overcame them to put together a superb season. Not to worry Bear fan, RB Justin Forsett is a capable guy to take the reins and take over where Lynch left off. Also, one of Lynch's favorite players is Forsett(Click on the below link and read for proof) and hopefully coach Tedford can get an early jump on Marshawns 13 year old brother who is a Pop Warner standout in Oakland.
-Meet Marshawn Lynch-
Idaho Thursday, then USU Saturday:
Fresno State hosts the University of Idaho on Thursday to open WAC play, followed by a big home date with the Utah State Aggies on Saturday. Idaho comes in with a dismal 2-10 record. The Bulldogs should have no problem taking care of the Vandals, especially in the friendly confines of the Save Mart Center. Saturday marks the first key WAC game, not that they are all key, but the Bulldogs have little room for error and need to defend the homecourt above all. They were able to go 9-0 at home last year in WAC play, and need to be no worse than 8-1 this year. The Nevada home game will be tough but if they shoot well, then the game is winnable. The Aggies come in with an 11-4 record and dont have any truly impressive wins, but they will be a tough foe and will be led by sharpshooting Junior guard Jaycee Carroll. Lets hope that Guard Javance Coleman's slump ended with his solid outing vs. USD and Dominic McGuire and Quinton Hosley continue their dominance on the boards. Also, kudos to Forward Dominic McGuire who was named WAC player of the week for the second time this season and has been great thus far. Do you think him winning the award had anything to do with his 14 pt-14 reb-10 blk-4 asst-and 2 stl effort against the University of San Diego? Naw, I didnt think so either.
-McGuire named WAC player of the week-