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To think, just last week we were caught up in the last gasp of BCS controversy. Debate raged. Hypotheticals proliferated. Questions swirled.
With a win over 'Bama, could Auburn leapfrog Ohio State for a berth in the national championship? (Florida State's bid was a foregone conclusion.) What if Missouri won the SEC championship over Auburn; would they deserve consideration?
How weak was Ohio State's schedule, anyway? Missouri, Auburn - same question.
Who plays for Northern Illinois other than Jordan Lynch?
Why isn't the Pac-12 nationally relevant?
Can we veto UCF's automatic bid to the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl?
How long do we have to wait for the Domino's Bread Bowl?
Why didn't we bet the house on Auburn at 1000-1 to win the national championship?
Where does the Heart of Dallas Bowl take place? Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl St. Petersburg Bowl, San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl, and R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl - same question.
Yet few asked the only important question: What if Alabama and Ohio State both lose?
Well. If that were to happen, the BCS HAL 9000 would have, inexplicably, and for the final time, done its job.
Sure enough, HAL came through for us. On January 6, we will be treated to a match-up between the top (maybe) two teams for the national title: Undefeated #1 Florida State and the one-loss #2 Auburn Tigers. Well done, HAL. Well done.
Bowl season doesn't begin until next weekend, so for this edition, we will round up some of our favorite recent news items.
Will He Or Won't He
Mack Brown, Texas, Nick Saban, and Alabama are keeping the headlines churning with fresh controversy. We imagine someone, somewhere, is live-blogging the drama as UT may force Brown to resign while Saban waits in the wings, sitting on a reportedly huge offer to stay in Tuscaloosa. That person has not slept since Sunday.
Brown, on his status: "My situation has not changed." (Read: That is to say, I am still out here twisting in the wind.)
Alabama senior quarterback AJ McCarron, just prior to being announced as the 2013 Maxwell (i.e. player of the year) Award winner, put the kibosh on the rumors of Saban's departure: "I think Coach is happy where he's at." (Read: Somebody needs to coach me up on interviews when I reach the NFL.)
Cyril Crutchfield of St. Augustine high school (in New Orleans), the head coach for top-ranked recruit RB Leonard Fournette, on Saban leaving Alabama: "I think he is committed to being the next Alabama football coach." (Read: I just caused a flurry of unnecessary confusion, as Saban is the current, not the next, Alabama football coach. Also: This check better not bounce.)
Alabama and LSU are pursuing Fournette, who will announce his decision at the Under Armour All-American Game on January 2, the same date as the (Alabama-Michigan St.) Sugar Bowl. Our prediction: Cyril will find a well-paid position at a Baton Rouge-area business, complete with relocation reimbursement, a company car, and temporary housing. Fournette will attend LSU.
Also: The best and worst thing to happen to sports reporting: Twitter.
And: If Texas offers the job to Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin, will he ask the Longhorns to foot (so to speak) the bill for his $100,000 fine from the NFL for interfering with a kick return?
Hall Of Fame Hatin'
The College Football Hall of Fame inducted the 2013 class on Tuesday night, including former Nebraska QB Tommie Frazier, who has distinguished himself recently by blasting Husker head coach Bo Pelini on Twitter.
Why is it everytime I ask a question or express what I see I'm doing the program wrong or asking (cont) http://t.co/c8Ud9SSlAX— Tommie Frazier (@TouchdownTommie) November 29, 2013
(Read: What does the "Backspace" button do? Help me out here, people.)
Also inducted: former Kentucky Wildcat Steve "Mr. Anywhere" Meilinger, who played under Bear Bryant at UK from 1951-53. Melinger "split time between end, halfback and quarterback on offense; on defense, he played end, linebacker and defensive back" and, to keep himself busy, he was a two-year starting punter and returned punts and kickoffs on special teams. The two-time first team All-American is still with us, so the University of Kentucky R&D department should go swab his cheek for DNA right now. The Wildcats need 22 copies of this guy.
Got A Clowney
The South Carolina Highway Patrol ticketed South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney doing 110 in a 70 mph zone last Saturday night.
The officer identified the driver while radioing in the call as "Clowney", confirming that Jadeveon has reached one-name-celebrity status.
While punching it to 110 mph sounds fun, the real adrenaline high goes to the SCHP officer who clocked 142 mph during the pursuit, according to his dash cam.
As an aside, Clowney was driving a Chrysler 300. The base model 300 (which he was assuredly not driving) starts at $30,000. By contrast, the College Football Report Contraption at Clowney's age was a 1986 Plymouth Reliant, which was assuredly not roadworthy.
Lord Of The Flies II: Escape From East Lansing
MSU students must keep a reserve of couches on hand for bonfire purposes. Following the Spartans upset win over Ohio State in the Big Ten Championship Game, delirious fans set all available upholstery ablaze. Good times were had by all, at least until the state police moved in.
The Finest Rivalry In The Game
The regular season concludes this weekend with one of the best traditions in sport: The Army-Navy game. The opening coin flip this season will use the silver dollar intended for the 1963 game. For that meeting, JFK was scheduled to meet the team captains at midfield for the coin flip. Several weeks following Kennedy's assassination, Midshipman captain John Lynch received the coin accompanying a letter from Secretary of the Army Cyrus Vance. Fifty years later, the coin will finally be used and then retired to the Navy Football Hall of Fame.
Every year, without fail, we make a point to catch the conclusion (at minimum) of the Army-Navy game for the post-game ceremony: The two teams first face the losing academy students, singing their school alma mater, followed by the teams linking arms and signing to the student section for the winning team. There is no better display of why we love this sport, and why we're willing to bear Clowneys, couch conflagrations and coaching controversies.
Mike Luce is our man on campus. He welcomes your comments.