Sunday, December 6, 2009

No, it's not perfect, but don't blame Texas

In a column on, Dennis Dodd is irked that Texas was invited to play Alabama for the National Title. Perhaps that's the safe pick -- not the "BCS chaos" as Brent Musberger so desired -- but hardly an outrage. Yet Dodd goes on to imply that somehow the outcome of the Big12 Championship wasn't on the up-and-up.

It just doesn't feel right, not when the two happiest men in college football Sunday were Dan Beebe and Walt Anderson.

It doesn't feel right because the Big 12 commissioner (Beebe) and his supervisor of officials (Anderson) were just as much a part of Saturday's furious finish to the season as was the football.

It doesn't feel right because half of the BCS title-game matchup was decided from the video replay booth. The commish and his supervisor had to put the final stamp of approval on Texas' 13-12 non-loss over Nebraska. Yeah, they got it right even after Texas almost got it unforgivably wrong.

Slow down, Dennis. The Big 12 commissioner did not decide that game. Nor did the officials.
Unless you want to say that the officials made the correct call and allowed the game to finish as it should have. No one outside of Lincoln, Boise, or Fort Worth wanted to see that game end on an incomplete pass that sailed out of bounds. (Okay, so maybe it would have been a little funny.) Either way, Texas had one second left, and a chance to win. If you want to point the finger, what about Nebraska? Thanks to two stupid plays at the end of the game -- kick out of bounds and horse-collar tackle -- the Longhorns ended up in field goal range without much trying. Welcome to the title game.

While I don't see Texas putting up much of a fight against Alabama, again I can't fault Texas. Dodd goes on to argue that the Longhorns' season was uninspired -- maybe -- and that they're only in the title game because Texas began the season with a higher ranking. Again, that's not entirely ridiculous, but does anyone really think that either TCU or Boise State is a better team than Texas? Or would put up a better fight against 'Bama?

If nothing else, this situation calls for -- no screams for -- a playoff. Imagine if Texas played TCU while Boise State faced off against Alabama? Four unbeatens! That next game could truly be called the National Championship. But as the next best option, an Alabama - Texas showdown in Pasadena will have to suffice.
(But that TCU - Boise State matchup might end up being the better game.)

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