Saturday, September 19, 2009

CFB Quickie: A Win is a Win. Just Ask USC

A couple of thoughts from the afternoon:

*Monte Kiffin is a very very very good football coach. I would actually argue that he is the best coach -- head or assistant -- in college football, at least as it relates to scheming.

*Florida did not look like the No. 1 team in the country, and I predict they will be penalized for that in the polls on Monday. Still: No one but Lane Kiffin will remember how close it was, as long as Florida keeps winning.

*Lane Kiffin came as close as possible to a moral victory, and UT's final drive (including that FU time-out near the end) felt like running out the clock to "hold on" for a 10-point...loss, which is really a win, if you factor in the insane build-up of expectations.

*USC losing: Another year, another game that USC loses to knock them from the national-title picture that they have no business losing. And they lost looking meager; it's not like it was a shoot out.

*It is worth asking, for all the crap Jim Tressel took last week: What's worse -- losing the biggest games or losing the smallest ones? I would argue that Pete Carroll is a bigger dud than Jim Tressel, because at least Tressel always beats the teams he is supposed to beat.

*What a win for Washington: I would say that is the biggest win for the Dawgs program since they won a half-share of the national title in 1991. Big-time football is back at U-Dub.

*I owe a big apology to Ohio State fans for picking Toledo to upset OSU today. While I think it was a fair stretch -- and not (entirely) fueled by my disdain for tOSU -- I couldn't have been more wrong, and I accept your jeering and mockery. I really will now stop doing things like that. (Did you see me defend Jim Tressel above?)

*Notre Dame, on the other hand...

*Although I think everyone needs to recognize just how insanely brilliant Monte Kiffin was in game-planning for the Gators, I think that Tim Tebow played himself out of the Heisman front-running position today. In fact, if I was picking a front-runner, I personally would take Jahvid Best.

*That was a much-needed win for Oregon. Same for Iowa (enough to make folks forget about the Northern Iowa escape). Same for VA Tech (enough to make folks take the loss to Bama in context -- and, guess what: The Big 12 is down this year).

*That was a bad -- if predictable -- loss for Virginia. (And Maryland: Oof. Yeah, sure, Miami might be really good this year... but what does that mean if the ACC is atrocious? BC? Awful. That league needs Florida State to beat BYU tonight, badly.)

*I'm wiped out by that Florida game. I was at the Swamp, and I've never experienced or exited a game where a win -- a win that never felt in doubt, by the way -- felt so muted. I blame the expectations. Still: A win is a win.

Just ask USC.

-- D.S.


Art Vandelay said...

I would probably concede that the Big 12 is down (if 2nd or 3rd best conference is down) but not sure how Nebraska losing on the road against a favored opponent on the final drive tells you anything

Andy Hutchins said...

As a fellow UF-UT attendee: Oh, my, was there palpable relief at that last Black interception. I've also seen the word "escaped" on a UF student's Facebook.

This was a bizarre game.