The Week That Were: “Championship” Week

Written December 5th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

For the last TWTW of the season, I was digging deep for musical inspiration. While I’ve been playing the new Black Keys album non-stop, I wanted to find something that encapsulated the anticipation and pleading that so many are involved in these day- all looking toward a special event at the first of the year.  So, here you go.

For what was supposed to be the pinnacle of the college football regular season, this week’s games were incredibly disappointing.  Not for the action on the field- there were a lot of spectacular plays and performances, but the behind the controversies that impacted the games overshadowed  the work of coaches and players.

Let’s start with Friday Night’s clash in Eugene. While the Fighting Neuheisels went out guns blazing (or pop guns popping) and managed to keep the game under the 30 point spread, the subtext for the entire matchup was that this game was not the “legitimate” Pac-12 title game: The Southern Cal Trojans, who had beaten both of these teams, sat idle due to the Reggie Bush situation and the NCAA’s response. So, after all of the realignment and festivities, even Oregon’s big win has a dented trophy as for the case in Phil Knight’s house.

That’s not to say that there weren’t fireworks in the game- check out Friday’s “Catch Of The Day” from UCLA’s Nelson Rosario:

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One Fan’s Opinion: Oklahoma State Deserves Title Shot

Written December 4th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

With all the BS surrounding today’s BCS decision, we thought it would be a good idea to get a different perspective from someone who’s case is not being shoved down our throats clearly articulated from Bristol. For that, we turn to our Big Integer correspondent…

All For Naught?

I’m a man and not quite 40, and last night was a first in my lifetime…Oklahoma State University won a conference championship, outright for the first time since before MY parents were born and I was there to witness it.

Not only was it against our in-state rival and traditional power OU, it was an arse cripplin’!  In all phases the Cowboys dominated.  But because of our great college football playoff system, I’m not here, nor are most of the other writers, to talk about the win, rather discuss who plays in the MNCG, as Mali calls it.

Today it all comes down to a vote. Unfortunately, as the four letter network would have it, there will not be equal time given to “all sides” up for election.  First, they didn’t bring GameDay to Stillwater even though it was the only top 10 match up.  Next, they didn’t send their ‘A’ team to broadcast, because we all know that the VTech/Clemson match up definitely had more to play for and would be better.  As if Kirk and Brent stumping for Alabama/LSU LAST WEEK at the Stanford/ND game wasn’t enough, they put on one of the ‘leading candidates’ head coaches to give his ‘unbiased’ opinion for 2 hours on said GameDay.  They didn’t even TRY to include an outside voice.

What gets me most is everyone wants to talk about the one loss.  How about a paradigm shift and talk about the 11 wins.  Alabama didn’t play the top two teams in the east and had their shot AT HOME and lost.  As of this writing, they defeated 2 top 25 teams.  The Cowboys beat 5 top 25 teams and won every game at home and their conference championship who even the four letter network said was 1 and 2 at the top of conferences with the SEC.

Do I have Pickens colored glasses?  YES.  Do I think its ridiculous that the four letter network isn’t even trying to hide their bias?  YES. I still do have hope in the nation-wide voters at large and that they will vote (against the wishes of one network) to have a conference champion play a conference champion in the final game of the season.  And for those of you saying my OSU doesn’t have a chance against LSU, remember back to 2006 when the final BCS ranking was released and NOBODY outside of Gator Nation said they had a chance…but it ended differently than most thought it would (ed.- we have not idea what you’re talking about… there was no 2006 bowl season).

As Gundy said, after last nights thumping, these Cowboys deserve a chance and it definitely will not be a 9-6 game on the road against the Tigers.

The Week That Were: 11.26.11

Written November 27th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Lots of holiday options for this week’s soundtrack, but I’m that guy that thinks Christmas music should be banned until at least December. So, given all of the rumors of this past week and the results from yesterday’s Ohio State game, the R&B genius of Sam And Dave make a return as we give thanks and look to the future.

Ah, Thanksgiving weekend. When thoughts turn to leftover turkey and pie and… football. While the NFL takes front stage on Thursday, and even with the “exciting news” that the NBA is “back, baby!!!”, this weekend was all about the college game. It’s the weekend that puts the best of both worlds together- family and friends gathering together to break bread and then scream at each other because someone had to go to that school just to be different.

And we got three days of amazing games, starting with the end of an era. Because of future schedule issues between the SEC bound aTm and the Big Integer anchor Texas Longhorns, the Turkey Day Tradition saw its last episode end in a classic fashion. This was supposed to be THE year for the Aggies, but failure after failure on their farewell tour led to a mentality where the UT game was a must win to maintain dignity before heading to the 4-8 seasons that SEC play was sure to bring.

Texas’ struggles are also well known (and well documented), and there was a contingent of Longhorn faithful who were as tired of their staff’s decisions regarding offensive and defensive play as some Ohio State faithful have been as of late.  For this to end the way that it did highlights the beauty of the rivalry and the reason that college football is the heart of the lives of so many:

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The Week That Were: 11.19.11

Written November 21st, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

After yesterday’s slate of games, the soundtrack for this episode should be pretty obvious.  Onward!

Ain’t chaos beautiful?  While the end result may be less than desirable, you’ve got to be amazed at the ways that each week is different, each week has the possibility for the unexpected and amazing.  And this week was proof positive that the football gods have both a sense of humor AND a mischievous side.

Wait... what?

We start on Friday, with a shout out and hat tip to our BFF’s from Ames who saw their mighty Cyclones upset the #2 ranked Cowboys of T. Boone Pickens U. It was a perfect “storm” of sorts- ISU’s freshman quarterback played the game of his life, while Gundy’s squad seemed incapable of being able to hang onto the ball and put points on the board.  Somehow, a team that managed to shut out Texas Tech at home couldn’t cover a basic wheel route; a Cyclone TD and a senior citizen moment from Weeden ended any hopes that Oklahoma State had at playing for the national championship… at least, so it would seem (more later).

Congrats to Coach Paul Rhodes and his staff for getting his team prepared to square off against the ‘Pokes, and for having Iowa State bowl eligible once again.

So- we had early warnings that something was astir in this week’s slate of games, but “The Oracle” was able to solidify our beliefs that it was going to be an unforgettable experience. I’ll just link to Lee Corso’s commentary, since it’s not all that family friendly; let’s remember a) he had a stroke a while back and b) he spoke the truest college preview that’s ever been spoken. Read More

LSU/Alabama- The Forgotten

Written November 2nd, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

This week, the hyperbole has kicked into full gear as the top two teams in the nation play each other in what must certainly be the “Game Of The Millennium!!1!11!!”.

There's A Shirt... It Must Be Serious

Granted, both LSU and Alabama are amazing teams, and deserve their top rankings. Each program is led by a coach that has won a national championship; with Coach Saban doing it at both schools. Both come from the tradition and experience laden SEC, winners of the last five national titles. Heck, there’s even speculation that this may only be a precursor to the National Title game; that the tubes and wheels inside of computers might match them again in the Sugar Bowl for another go at it.

So, in many ways the extreme coverage is warranted. Given that both teams have had a week off to prepare, and that their conference has exclusive coverage from the network that creates news stories, I’m actually surprised at how understated the buildup to this game has been. And yes, I will be watching.

That being said, though, there’s one set of stories that won’t be covered in all of the leadup to this spectacular matchup. I’m on record as being very “anti-human interest angle” pre Super Bowl, and my perspective here is why I refuse to watch the Olympics. However, there are student athletes who have been forgotten and cast aside here, not just by the media coverage, but by the programs themselves.

I’m referring, of course, to those players who have ‘left’ the active rosters of each team for what might be considered questionable reasons.

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The Week That Were: 10.15.11

Written October 16th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Today, we join with racing fans in mourning the loss of Indianapolis 500 champion Dan Wheldon. As such, this week’s soundtrack has a bit of a somber tone. We give ESPN/ABC a lot of criticism, but they got this one right- Thoughts and prayers with his family and friends.

When will it stop?

This week was very very special across the college sports landscape, as special teams highlights and gaffes were the order of the day across the nation. First, the “Woah! Did that just happen?” moments…

When Clemson and Maryland met, the undefeated Tigers should have known that something was swirling that could have put a blemish on their dream season.  For starters, the Terrapins chose a uniform that didn’t look like a condiment tray this week, choosing instead the “Fancy Hot Sauce” look. Maryland opened up an eighteen point lead in the second quarter on the Tigers, and nothing in the Michelle Obama playbook was working at all.  Then, Sammy Watkins happened, all 345 total yards of his offense, including a special teams play that turned the tide for good.

However amazing his individual performance was for the night, the special teams highlights for the day happened in the “Battle Of The Oil Money”, where T. Boone Pickens University traveled to Austin and found themselves in a shootout with the Longhorns.  It was one of those games where you were certain that the last team with a series of possession would win… unless there was time for a kickoff or two: Read More

Silver Bullet Points Gets B1G

Written September 28th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Weekly update from Coach Fickell’s press conference as well as notes from around the world of college football.

B1G Game, Big Ammo

Buckeye 411

  • Injury Update: No news today on Philly Brown or Nathan Williams; it’s speculated that Brown may be back sooner of the two. Coach made no comments on some of the other guys dinged up- (Melvin Fellows, etc.)
  • Fickell Speaks: In preparing for Michigan State, coach Fickell will be facing one of his mentors in former colleague and current Spartan Mark Dantonio.  When asked about this, he said-

Just the three years Coach Dantonio was here with him, probably the one guy that I stay most in contact with since he’s been gone. Just probably because we’re more similar people in general, family oriented guys, a lot of those kind of things. That’s very important for him, how you handle these situations, what’s really important, don’t forget about those kinds of things. We have a good relationship. If there’s one person I’ve talked to as much as anybody, it would be him.

I’ve said before, if I was playing my brother, I’d want to beat him as bad as I want to beat anybody. I don’t think that changes or factors into it.

  • Captain, My Captain: This weeks’ “Leader-go-round” lands on Nate Ebner (his second tour of duty), Nate Oliver, and Jordan Hall.  First time in Buckeye History that there’ve been two “Nates” as captains. Read More

Picks for the Weak: Week Four

Written September 22nd, 2011 by Joe Dexter

Dabo and his Tigers are HUNGRY....

It’s week four of the college football season, and you weaklings are gaining strength. No, it’s not from our expert prespective… Yeah, no. This week, us college football fans get our inspiration for top notch picks by pumping ice water in our veins!

We might be in Death Valley, but it’s our time to choose greatness! Are you going to be the next greatest tBBC College Challenge Champion? Are you going to put the ! in Yahoo!??? Week three is in the books, and another slate of games is in front of us. Are you going to eat rock like Dabo?? Or are you going to eat crow like Brady Hoke?

It’s time to step up your game like OSU Silver Bullet, Buffalobuckeye, The Silver Bullets, BWCGF3, and Culp’s Freaking Hill. tBBC is here to help you with your picks. We’re just not sure if we’re helping you jump up the standings or jump off the face of the earth.

Week 3 Review:

Everyone but yours truly finished .500 or better in week three, with the experts receiving a week off.  The staff swept the board with Southern Idaho State, Nebraska and LSU.  Only Joe L  had the cajones to pick Notre Dame  against Michigan State.  He  and Jime were also smart enough not to dip their picks into the Miami (OH) Butter.  Here’s a look at last week’s standings.

Mali 6-4 – Eric 6-4 -Jim 8-2 – Experts **BYE – Joe L – 7-3  Joe D 4-6 – Computer – 5-5

Oh Boy. As you can see, the picks get harder as we get closer to conference play…. Or maybe I’m just destined to finish worse than a machine. Here is a look at the current standings heading into week 4.

Mali 20-9 – Eric 21-8 -Jim 20-9 – Experts – 14-5* – Joe L – 17-12 Joe D 14-15 – Computer – 13-16

Week Four Analysis:

There are some big games this week, but there are also some ugly ones. Helping us break down some of the better ones is Kyle Kensing of Saturday Blitz. We talk expansion, Alabama/Arkansas, Oklahoma State/Texas A&M, Florida State/Clemson as well as scUM vs. SDSU.  Kyle also breaks down our Week 4 games in writing this week.

Picks For The Weak: Week 4 by The Buckeye Battle Cry

Now to the games!

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