Thursday, November 3, 2011

Predictably Irrational

When do the dominoes start to fall for undefeated teams in college football? Just check around when the initial BCS rankings are released.

Those pesky rankings, all they ever do is confuse everything and everyone. Yet, ratings show we don’t mind it a bit. We enjoy talking heads giving their take and stirring the pot to promote viewership for a system that has not existed one year without some sort of controversy. It’s opinion and chaos that sells, remember. But before we open that can of worms, lets not wax poetic on why we need a playoff system, but profile the teams that have had their bubbles busted—and one that came mighty close-- since the BCS rankings came out.

Stanford- Almost blew their chance at the big one with a three overtime thriller against USC on Saturday. I personally was all-in for this one once I saw that Georgia Tech was doomed against Clemson. The Cardinals still have a long road ahead as they still play Oregon before finishing the regular season with Notre Dame.

Clemson- Look, it was unfortunate running back Andre Ellington could not play against Tech and then have the bye week to regain his health back. Clemson was reduced to a pass-only offense when they could not establish any type of run game. And four turnovers have never helped a team win a big game on the road. Or so I’ve been told.

Wisconsin- You could say the hailmary pass that connected in the Michigan State game was a fluke. A fluke that cost the Badgers a shot at the BCS title game. But the same thing against Ohio State? For a team that looked to be the most complete in the nation, its funny that the same gimmicky type play would cost them two weeks in a row. No matter how small, a chink in the armor is still a chink in the armor.

Oklahoma- The injury-riddled Sooners were the shoe in for the title game against the LSU-Alabama winner, so all they had to do was win out the rest of their games. Not even convincingly, just win, baby. How horrifying that the dream came to a crashing halt against an also injury-plagued 4-2 Red Raider bunch who on their best day, sadly, were enough to beat my pick of this years BCS champion. Crap.

“A Dream Come True”

That’s exactly how Scott Elledge, Executive Producer of Chevy Game Night Live on WJBF’s digital channel 6.2, explains the thrill of bringing live football on Thursday nights into the homes of everyone in the CSRA.

“As an ex jock myself (Elledge played football at Middle Tennessee State University) I know how big a deal it is to have the local outlets covering your game, much less a full production with six cameras, incredible graphics, sideline reporters, etc.”

For the eleven game schedule that concluded last Thursday, it has been an exciting first year not only for football fans but for the administration of those schools as well.

“Outside of the usual player spotlight segments we have each week, we were also able to donate $500 back to each home team with the help of our sponsor, the CSRA Chevy dealers.”

And it’s that exclusive time slot on Thursday that seems to be the key for all those involved.

“You are able to watch a bunch of local teams that otherwise you might not have the opportunity to see,” said Grovetown’s Rodney Holder. “We have to coach every Friday night, so it’s nice to be able to sit back and watch a live game each week of the season.”

And the games have been great theatre for those able to watch them live or replayed Sunday on WJBF Channel 6. Holder can attest to the excitement around the games as his Warriors defeated the Greenbrier Wolfpack in the first game of the season 28-24 in a thrilling finish. And for his post game report on how the entire production played out?

“If you can’t get behind this you’re just crazy. The excitement and exposure for the kids playing on Thursday night is incredible.”

Games to Watch

Burke County @ Thomson-Friday 7:30pm

The CSRA’s version of LSU-Alabama. Seriously. No hyperbole here.

South Carolina @ Arkansas- Saturday 7:15- ESPN

Must win for the Gamecocks in order to stay atop the SEC East division.

LSU @ Alabama- Saturday 8:00pm-CBS

Even causal fans are talking about this game and how important it is.

Baltimore Ravens @ Pittsburg Steelers-Sunday 8:20- NBC

Don’t miss this one. Always one of the best played games of the year in the NFL.

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