Sunday, October 30, 2011

10/30 (Luck!) Quickie

Remember a few weeks ago when so many "experts" were worried about 4 or 5 or even 6 unbeaten teams this season? Ha: Quaint times.

We're down to just a handful now, after Clemson pulled a Clemson and K-State felt Oklahoma's wrath (let's not even speak of poor Wisconsin).

Stanford barely survived its trip to USC -- Andrew Luck looked brilliant (well, except for the pick-6 that could have cost the Cardinal its dream season). Stanford will lose to Oregon.

Oklahoma State throttled Baylor -- a very good Baylor team, I thought. The Cowboys have some swagger... just enough to peek past rival Oklahoma to the BCS title game. OKS will lose, too.

There is the winner of LSU-Alabama next week -- as it should be, at least one half of the national championship picture settled on the field, head-to-head -- and then... who?

I'd like to see Boise, even though I think Boise's schedule is a sham and a scam. As usual, there are probably a dozen teams in the country that could go unbeaten with Boise's schedule. I try not to let that obscure that they are, in fact, a terrific team in the absolute sense. (Frankly, I'm unclear that Boise could hold off Houston, another prolific unbeaten with even less of a chance of playing for the national title than Boise.)

But what we have -- and this is mostly perennially -- is the excitement that a single loss ruins aspirations for more (as if an ACC title and BCS bowl game is a terrible outcome for Clemson) and the clarity that comes with sports' most exciting and most(ly) meaningful regular season.

Clemson didn't make it. Stanford is still going. Oklahoma State looks strong. And the rest of us are captivated along the way.

-- D.S.

(Oh, NFL Week 8 today, so it's Red Zone Channel all day. Pats-Steelers might be the Game of the Week, but you should expect plenty of coverage of Tebow vs. the Lions.)

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