Monday, January 28, 2008

Gators maul the Commodores

I must confess, I had serious doubts about Florida's basketball team's ability to beat a good team. They certainly proved me wrong, and that in spades.

Florida obliterated Vanderbilt in a game that demonstrated how a good offensive team doesn't have to play defense at all to win. Florida took a page from Vanderbilt's book and ran the Commodores off the basketball court early in the first half. Vanderbilt missed at least ten layups in the game, and even though a couple of them were tough, there is just no excuse. Not only that, the Commodores played lousy defense that wouldn't have stopped a high school team.

But the Gators deserve credit for taking advantage of Vandy's early struggles and just completely burying them in a barrage of hot shooting. Florida cooled off considerably in the second half, but were still much the best team yesterday. Here's a look a the box:

Now, let's go to the blogs. Let's let Orange and Blue Hue start on the the Gator side:

It’s time to remove the qualifiers. This is a VERY good team which has the firepower to beat any team in the conference. Nick Calathes is the leading contender for SEC freshman of the year honors and should be first-team All-SEC. Marreese Speights has arrived. Three games in a row he’s shown us an aggressive, powerful presence in the low post. The switch has been flipped. Big Mo is now arguably the best big man in the SEC.
I think he is correct. The Gators are capable of beating anyone in the conference, and even though this wasn't Vandy's best, you have to admire the maturity and execution of their young basketball team. Their defense is highly suspect, in my opinion, but they run the offense beautifully, and many times wound up with layups by running the Commodores off screen after screen. Combine that with the savvy and outstanding court awareness of Nick Calathes, and you get a beat down of the 14th-ranked 'Dores.

Mlmintampa at Alligator Army doesn't seem to recognize his own team:
Who were those guys out there? I saw players wearing white jerseys, then I saw the team make a 23-0 run and I seriously doubted that Speights, Werner, Calathes, Lucas, and Hodge were on the floor. It was a run reminiscent of older teams who knew how to destroy people.
Heh. I was wondering the same thing. Very impressive.

For the Commodore side, we have Save the Shield first. Philipvu94 says that he didn't see the game, but now he sees the 'Dores and the SEC in a bit of a different light:

But man, it’s clear that our OOC record that made us look like the best team in the SEC, right up there with Tennessee, was really flattering us. In reality, here’s how I see the SEC:

Serious Final Four contender: Tennessee

Mediocre-to-good; might land a 5-to-8 seed with a strong February: Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, State, Vanderbilt*

Low-mediocre: Arkansas, Georgia

Flat-out terrible: Alabama, Auburn, Carolina, LSU

I'm reluctant to agree with the idea that the Gamecocks are terrible -- they certainly are more capable than I previously thought, but their record is poor. Then again, so is Kentucky's.

Bobby O'Shea at Vanderbilt Sports Line says it's not time to panic ... yet:
As Aaron wrote in the comments section for the Florida Preview, no one who watched today's game can be happy with the Commodores performance. It's not just that we lost the game, it's that we were never really in it. Let's give credit where credit is due: Florida is a very talented team that played one of, if not their best game of the season. The fact that Vanderbilt opened up the game 2-16 from the field and allowed Florida to go on a 23-0 run didn't help matters either. During the first 12 minutes, it honestly appeared as if there was a lid over the basket. We must have missed 6 or 7 shots around the basket early, and of AJ's 6 missed from the floor (he was 2-8), all of them were within 3 feet of the basket.
He's right. Vanderbilt played very badly, and did a lot of self-inflicted damage. I don't mean to belittle the Gators effort, though. I'm not at all convinced anything but the final score would have been different if this was the Vanderbilt of late December. With all that said, the Commodores definitely do need a win now. They have been hit hard lately, losing 3 out of the last 4 games, and things don't get any easier when they travel to Ole Miss on Wednesday.

For the Gates, they have almost a week off before they take on the Razorbacks in Fayetteville. Both those games are highly interesting to SEC basketball fans.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Around the SEC bloggers

We are in that time of year where the remnants of the college football season is, in the words of Montgomery Gentry:

Gone like a freight-train, gone like yesterday
Gone like a soldier in the civil war, bang bang
That's right. Gone. We are in that long, 7-month period where recruiting and the NFL draft will be the only things to talk about, and glory on the field is over half a year away.

Ethanator1088, The SEC Football Blogger, thinks that this is a good time to reminisce a little, like back to Auburn's 2004 undefeated season in which it was denied the Hajj to the BCS championship:
Let me get right to the point. Auburn was gypped. They were cheated. They were “ done wrong”. They should have won the national championship. This is the best reason for a college playoff. I do not care if you are an Auburn fan. If a team goes undefeated through the SEC, they deserve a shot at the National Championship. It is idiotic to think otherwise.
After castigating Booty and Cotu below for whining, I'll bet you think I am going to do the same thing here. But you would be wrong. I think Ethanator1088 is right. Auburn wasn't necessarily robbed because they were a better team than either of the eventual contestants, although I think I could make a sound argument they were. Rather, they were robbed by the system which forces a choice between two of three virtually equal teams in every respect without giving them a chance to settle the matter on the field.

Of course, I have agitated over this all year long, and since we are entering the interregnum between this season and next, I expect to agitate some more. But not today.

Moving to the sport that tends to occupy our attention during said interregnum, it seems that Ole Miss easily dispatched a tough Mississippi State [UPDATE: OOOps. Got that one backward. Thanks to Marcus for pointing out my egregious error, and apologies to MSU for my faux pas. Too much blogging lately.] Mississippi State dispatched an Ole Miss team that has been on a roll yesterday at the Hump. Strands of Crepe Paper has the word:
The score on this one says it all. State beat us tonight like a drum at a sold out Humphrey Coliseum. Charles Rhodes completely had his way inside, scoring 26 points on 12 of 14 shooting. Curtis, Kenny Williams and Malcolm White were continuously schooled inside and stayed in foul trouble.
Ole Miss has announced its arrival as an SEC force, for this year at least. I really expected MSU to do better, and as a Kentucky Wildcat fan, this isn't encouraging after MSU beat Kentucky in a tough game at the Hump. As a Kentucky fan, the MSU loss now doesn't seem so bad. Kudos to Ole Miss MSU, and Parrish Alford tells the tale from the Rebel side of things:
What’s next? State wasn’t a must-win game. The biggest loss in the last two games was at Auburn, because that’s a place the Rebels were favored and a road game they could have won. It was going to be far more difficult to win at State.
To my mind, the ultimate act of disrespect to a rival is to say something like the above. Just another game. Meant nothing. Ouch.

Turning back to football, Third Saturday in Blogtober has an update on Alabama's search for a new Offensive Coordinator, and the name ... Jim McElwain. Your reaction is probably the same as mine, and his: Jim Mc-who? The Tide Druid is also reporting on this.

Joel at Rocky Top Talk is reporting that Eric Ainge was named the offensive MVP for the South in the Senior Bowl. Kudos to Ainge and the Vols. In more Volunteer news, Georgia went up to Tennessee to challenge the knot-headed Volunteers in hoops, and got sent home bloodied and humbled. Lawvol at Gate 21 has the call:
In the process of laying it to the Dawgs, Tennessee secured its 27th consecutive victory in the Tommy Bowl. and improved to 17-2 on the season. Chris Lofton — apparently feeling the juice once more — scored 27 points, including 6 three-pointers. Lofton has been steadily improving over the last few games, which is good considering now is when the Vols will need his shooting ability most — in the heart of the SEC schedule.
Paul Westerdawg at The Georgia Sports Blog has the view from the other side:
Here's my issue with the the program as a whole. My source of frustration if you will. I'm no hoops guru, but I know three things to pretty much be unshakable, unwavering hoops truths:
    1. If you don't hustle defensively on the road, you don't win.

    2. If you don't pass well or move without the ball effectively, you're easy to defend. I think it was Bobby Knight who said, "The easiest man to defend is the man standing still."

    3. Moving and passing intelligently do NOT depend on talent.
Speaking as a person who is a hoops guru (well, I like to think so, anyway), I think he is dead right in all three areas.

Finally, the Bleacher Report gores one of my all-time favorite oxen -- Bobby Petrino. Seems the game of musical defensive coordinators has left Petrino the odd man out, and not Spurrier after all:
[Ellis] Johnson left his position at Mississippi State around a month ago to be the new defensive coordinator at Arkansas.

Then he moved on to join sleazeball extraordinaire, Bobby Petrino, to rebuild the Razorbacks. Well, that marriage also lasted just a month.

Now Arkansas is the odd man out: The only party without a defensive coordinator. I think it is great. Petrino deserves it.
See, it seems that Spurrier stole Johnson away from Petrino. Ah, [dis]loyalty -- it's not just for head coaches anymore.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Booty still arguing that USC should have been in BCS Champoinship

You know, hearing the USC players and some fans continually argue that "they wuz robbed" is getting old. Not that it will stop anyone, but at least I have a blog to vent about it on. Got some cheese? Ready for some whine? Take it away, John David Booty:

“After the Rose Bowl we knew, and I think a lot of people around the country knew, that we should have been in that game,” said Booty, the Trojans’ quarterback. “And we would have been if we hadn’t hit a little rough patch there during the middle of the season.”
So let me get this straight. It says here that you lost to Stanford at home. Standford was a team that won 4 whole games all year, and lost to *ahem* Notre Dame! The loss to Oregon was on the road and definitely against a worthy opponent, but losing at home to Stanford is as unforgivable, in the BCS championship game sense, as losing to Appalachian State (arguably a much better team). LSU, on the other hand, lost multiple overtime games to two teams that went to mid-level bowls.

So I really wish you would do us all a favor, JD, and be a man and a leader. Own up to the fact that your team's big bowl blowout was against a team that half the SEC could have beaten, and accept it. We are all very sorry you were hurt for the Stanford game, but if you were so important to the team that it can't even defeat an overwhelmingly inferior opponent at home without you, what chance had you against LSU -- or Ohio State, for that matter?

Not to be outdone, Georgia's kicker, Brandon Cotu, aught to close his pie hole as well. Cotu brings us a Southern vintage of Booty's whine:
“We definitely had an argument for being the two-loss team that should have had the opportunity to move forward and play for the national championship,” Coutu said. “If we had played any of the other teams, I think we definitely would have given them a game, if not won.”
WAAAAHHH. Good grief. You couldn't even hold serve at home against South Carolina, a team that also failed to make a bowl appearance, and Tennessee drubbed you in Knoxville. They didn't just beat you -- they beat the living daylights out of you, and LSU beat Tennessee. So by what twisted logic do you consider yourselves justified in making such a claim? Spare me, and yourself further embarrassment and just stuff a sock in it.

22 players from the SEC in the Senior Bowl

As an SEC blogger, I try not to trumpet the accomplishments of my home team, UK, very often. I promised when I started this blog that it would not be UK-centric, and I think I have lived up to that commitment.

However, Kentucky is well known not to have near the football tradition of most other SEC schools, and LSU is no exception. But this year, thanks to one of Kentucky's most outstanding senior classes in many decades, they turn out to have as many players in the Senior Bowl as the national champs, four for each.

On the South squad, the SEC dominates, having no less than 22 out of 52 players from SEC schools on its roster. The breakdown looks like this:

School Players
Kentucky 4
Alabama 3
Auburn 2
South Carolina
Arkansas 3
Vanderbilt 1
Ole Miss
Georgia 1
Florida 1
Tennessee 2
Total 22

According to this article, the SEC is not only leading in number of players, but in smack talk. Well, I think they may have earned the right to talk a little smack, anyway.

Congratulations to all the SEC schools for their outstanding participation in the Senior Bowl this year, and good luck to all involved.

Sad news for the SEC

Sad news today for all SEC fans. Steve Spurrier's mother has apparently passed away. Marjorie Spurrier was 86 years young. Sometimes, tough years just get tougher.

I lost my mother only last year, and I know how it feels. Whether we are close to our mother or not, there is an emotion that is ... deep in the race, and hits very hard when we lose the face we first saw from our cradle. My sincerest sympathy and best wishes go out to Coach Spurrier and his family. There are no words that will soothe such a loss. The impact of losing a mother cannot be mitigated or softened by the fact of its inevitability.

God bless you and yours, Coach, and may He comfort you with His presence in this difficult time, and ease the burden of your sadness.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Friday is for fun

OK, it's Friday. Time to find the fun stuff to get us ready for the weekend.

Says here were gonna start with Ryan Ferguson of Fanhouse, who blogs about a little Hawai'i dissin' coming from the Aloha state:

Here's one for the "Oh no he DIH-UNT" file. Former Hawai'i Warrior Lene Amosa says Hawai'i just didn't bring it in their game against Georgia.
As a former player, I'm tired of hearing fans and the media say that we were overmatched by bigger, faster, stronger players.

Georgia players are no different than us; the problem was they came to play and we didn't.
Oh, I get it -- the game's over, so now you talk smack. I hate to beat on the Rainbows, but please, God, don't let them play in a BCS bowl ever again. I'm with Ryan on this one. Somebody could get hurt, and unless Hawai'i starts feeding their boys an awful lot of poi, it won't be the Georgia boys.

Jai Eugene at Loser with Socks hasn't held back ... well, ever, and today is no exception. Florida fans will want to check out the Herbanator:
Hell, if Herban Meyer was a tool, he would be a toilet brush. All good Gators know that he will clean up these recruiting violations and make them go away like a large shit that leaves a skidmark in a newer low eco-friendy toilets. He is like the best tool ever!
Heh. Toilet brush. Don't you know that those plastic handles with the disinfectant-impregnated single-use sponges has replaced those? And man, they are cool, and they make a really good plunger substitute when ... Ah, never mind, TMFI.

Moving right along, we find that The Bulldawg Blawg is having more fun with Brian VanGorder. And I'll bet he got a raise, too. Finally, Third Saturday in Blogtober brings us this gem. Here's a taste:
The SLA (Sign Language Associates), along with other sign language groups, have filed suit against the NCAA,,, ESPN, and other companies dealing with college football recruiting for trademark infringement. It appears that National Signing Day is already a holiday that is observed by many deaf people and their families on September 29th. And they don’t want to share it.
I love it when a blogger throws political correctness to the winds and just says "Damn the torpedoes! Let's mock the hearing impaired!" No doubt, more suits will be forthcoming.

Happy Friday!

Say what?

Wow. Imagine that. I've been nominated for a College Football Blog award.

I don't know what to say about that. So I'll say, "Thanks, guys" to Alligator Army for the kindness. This whole blog-award thing is new to me. Now I really feel guilty for not being able to post much for the last month.

[UPDATE1]: I'm told Rocky Top Talk has also suggested our name. Thanks to them as well.

[UPDATE 2]: Just noticed that had nominated this blog also. SECFootballBlogger is one I didn't know about for some reason, but that's changed now. Thanks.

[UPDATE 3]: Now, I find that we have been nominated also by one of my favorite SEC blogs, Get The Picture. Thanks to the good Senator.

Have you missed me?

Have you missed me? Yes, I have been absent from the blogging world for a while now. That's life, and I'm living it.

But I'm back, and its time for more trips around the world of SEC blogs. So here we go:

Phillip Fulmer's recent crack-down on murder, mayhem, rape, pillage and general lawlessness by Tennessee football players in and around the Knoxville area is getting lots of attention. He's decided to take the Coach Herman Boone approach:

"We will be perfect in every aspect of the game. You drop a pass, you run a mile. You miss a blocking assignment, you run a mile. You fumble the football, and i will break my foot off in your John Brown hind parts and then you will run a mile. Perfection. Let's go to work."
Get arrested? Run a mile -- at 6:00 am. Nice work, coach. Fanhouse says that Fulmer has vowed to lose the Fulmer Cup at long last. This has to be good news for Vol fans, especially the victims of the rampage in Knoxville. I hear property values in the Knoxville area are already moving up.

But lest you think we're done with Fulmer and Tennessee, I would be remiss if I failed to point you to this humorous little romp by Lawvol at Gate 21, who says that Tennessee has added a new "Techniques Coordinator" to motivate the soon-to-be law-abiding volunteers:
My job here at Tennessee will be to turn the Vols into some cold-blooded, hard-hittin’, bad asses. My mantra is simple: Mess with me, and I’ll kill your ass.” said Winnfield while brandishing a 9mm pistol.
Heh. Maybe the Vols should just "lawyer up" now.

The Ol' Ball Coach is having lots of fun and games over at South Carolina. He hires a defensive coordinator, who then leaves to go back to the Falcons from whence he came. Garnet and Black Attack has makes fun of the details:
Falcons owner Arthur Blank said he had no hesitancy about taking two DCs from Spurrier on the same day after his experiences with Michael Vick, Petrino and Bill Parcells.

"If you can't beat the back-stabbing slimeballs, join them," said Blank, shrugging.


In basketball news, the unranked (I'm getting really tired of typing that) Kentucky Wildcats sent the newly #3 ranked Tennessee Volunteers home with a knot on their collective heads Tuesday, and Vol fans are handling the loss with remarkable aplomb. Lawvol at Gate 21 has thoughts:

It sucks to lose to Kentucky, especially when you had the ability to beat them, but sometimes the game just doesn’t go the way you want it to. That’s what playing in the SEC — whether it be in basketball, football, or any other sport — is all about … Every game matters, and every team can beat you.
Very true. Tennessee played hard, Kentucky just played harder and the home crowd helped a lot. Third Saturday in Blogtober says that Rupp Arena is still Rupp Arena, no matter how bad the Cats are:
The Vols got handed their second loss of the season last night at Rupp Arena. Kentucky played a good hard fought game, and capitalized on an off night for the Vols to pull the upset. That may be the one thing that amazes me the most about this loss, we didn’t have one player have a good game, and we still nearly pulled it out at the end. Its kind of hard for me to get mad at a loss like this, because at least now we have improved to the point that it is possible to be upset by Kentucky at their place.


Sunday, January 13, 2008

A basketball post!

Yes, I know I should blog more. So sue me. It has been a tough couple of months. I promise to try to do better.

So, here we are in SEC basketball season. Time for SEC teams to start doing the work, because they certainly didn't do much work in the non-conference season (I'm looking at you, Kentucky, LSU, and South Carolina).

From, here are the current SEC standings as of today:

Loading data...

East-5South Carolina020880.5
West-1Mississippi State2011150.688

The SEC clearly needs to do some work in it's non-conference schedule, as having the tenth toughest is not at all what I would like to see. When the MAC, the MVC and the WCC all have stronger out of conference schedules than the SEC, I can't blame a soul for claiming that the SEC is scheduling cupcakes. Yeah, we do have a pretty good record against them, but we surely could do better, collectively.

This year, Tennessee looks like the class of the conference, although Vanderbilt has been making a lot of noise with a 16-0 run. The 'Dores did trip up yesterday against my Wildcats, and that was a game I am proud to win. Take nothing away from Vandy, though -- Rupp Arena is a tough place to win, and Kentucky badly needed a victory, whereas the Commodores may be getting a little overconfident. While it is easy to take UK for granted this year, Vandy just showed why you don't want to do that.

At this particular moment, Alabama is really struggling. They are 11-5 overall, but a young Florida team came into Coleman Coliseum Tuesday and spanked them. Even thought the final margin was only seven, the game wasn't that close. The Alabama Basketball Blog wonders what happened to Richard Hendrix's free-throw shooting. My response to him is that Hendrix's best season has been a whopping 62%. He shot 59% Tuesday. That's close enough for me.

What are we to make of Ole Miss this year? Andy Kennedy has just done a bang-up job in his second season getting these guys to play ball, and they nearly came into Thompson-Boling Arena on Wednesday and handed the mighty Vols their hind parts. World Class Glass says, "Don't blame the refs:"
Some will blame the referees on this game, however that is not why
we lost. The referees let alot of calls go both ways. Yeah they missed
a call at the end, but that was not the reason. As Kennedy said in post
game, "We aren't going to get any calls"
Officiating is something we all gripe about, but it is part of the game. When you are the visiting team, you have to expect to overcome officiating in order to win. What hurt Ole Miss was their relatively poor field goal percentage, fully 5% down from their season average. But you have to give the Rebs credit -- only ten turnovers against the UT pressure is exactly the kind of ballhandling presence you need to have any chance at all to beat the Vols at home.

Ghostofneyland at Third Saturday in Blogtober found some high comedy in one of Tom Hammond's comments about Bruce Pearl:

“Bruce Pearl already over there jacket off. He usually doesn’t do that until the second half.”

I nearly spit out my Diet Dr. Pepper. I looked at my dad, whose eyes
widened and jaw slacked open. “What did he just say??” my dad asked,
bumfuzzled. Surely Bruce wasn’t over on the sideline in front of 21,000
people doing what my dad and I (and we’re not dirty-minded people)
thought Hammond said he was doing.

Heh. That's funny right there, I don't care who you are. I think the pics of Bruce with young blonde hotties over the summer must have had more of a ... ahem ... subliminal impact than many might think.

Well, that's all for now.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

LSU Vindicates the SEC and Les Miles Mouth

I have taken a long two weeks off from blogging, but it is time for me to salute the LSU Tigers, champions of the BCS.

In many ways, the outcome of this game was predetermined by Ohio State's fast start. It was a moderate improvement by Ohio State, but except for the first quarter, there was never really any doubt who the best team was. Despite this, LSU made a few poor decisions and mental errors that could have cost them dearly. But alas for Ohio State, LSU was able not only to recover from their mistakes, but to play very clean football while the famously poised Buckeyes took no less than five major penalties, every one of them personal fouls and every one of them costly.

Nobody can argue with Les Miles now. I think we can all safely say that when he said of the Pac-10, "They're going to play real knockdown, drag-outs with UCLA and Washington, Cal-Berkeley, Stanford - some real juggernauts," he nailed it. How is a comment about the Pac-10 relevant to this game? If you think it was only intended for the Pac-10, I think you are mistaken. That was meant for the ears of every non-SEC FBS team.

And the SEC? All the SEC has done is delivered two BCS championships in a row, both over Ohio State in convincing fashion, and the BCS championship 4 out of the 10 years of its existence, two more than any other conference. The SEC also went an astonishing 7/9 in all its bowl games, dropping only 1 BCS bowl out of 3, including the BCS championship. SEC fans have been utterly vindicated in every meaningful way when they asserted their superiority over the rest of the nation's football conferences. For at least the last 2 years, and arguably for the last 5 or 6, the SEC can lay claim to being the best college football conference in all the land.

Congratulations to the LSU Tigers for bringing the crystal back to the conference where it may well stay for most of the next decade, and where it truly belongs -- with the best football conference in the land. Looking forward, the SEC is likely to have 2 and possibly 3 teams ranked in the top five pre-season next year, and as many as 8 in the pre-season top 25. Pretty sweet.

So now, it's time for some comments from the LSU bloggers, who are probably much hung-over this morning from celebration last night.

And The Valley Shook says this wasn't all about SEC speed:

Clearly, the SEC Speed thing was overblown. Best I can tell, no one saw it coming (with the exception of SMQ and possibly Pete Fiutak at CFN): the SEC isn't a bunch of Nancy Boys who can only outrun other teams to victory; LSU, at least, can win - and has won - by simply being more physical.
That is simply indisputable. Clearly, Ohio State had speed. LSU won this game with speed in the defensive secondary and power in both lines, as well as overall athleticism. This game was as much about LSU power as it was anything else.

Louisiana Love notes Harry Coleman's nearly flawless performance all over the field:
What didn't reserve safety Harry Coleman do for LSU's defense? In the first quarter, the sophomore from Baldwin, La., recovered a muffed punt return by LSU's Chad Jones at the Tigers' 16. In the second quarter, Coleman blitzed and hit Boeckman, forcing him to underthrow a pass down the left sideline. Cornerback Chevis Jackson intercepted the pass and returned it 34 yards to the Ohio State 24, setting up the touchdown that put LSU ahead 24-10 at the half. Coleman added another fumble recovery early in the fourth quarter, after linebacker Ali Highsmith drilled Boeckman on a fourth-down play.
The kid was simply everywhere, all the time. It was a game-long highlight reel. Richard Pittman at Geaux Tuscaloosa calls the game "fairly boring."

How did the rest of the SEC bloggers see the game? Predictably, as a win for the SEC, which it was. Cocknfire at Garnet and Black Attack could speak for many:
There is a sense of pride in this conference. One Wisconsin fan I know was astonished that I root for every SEC team -- except, of course, Georgia -- when it comes to bowl games. He could never see himself rooting for Michigan or Ohio State. He seemed to see this as a uniquely Southern phenomenon.
It does seem passing strange to me that conference affiliation seems to be much weaker in other conferences. I would have assumed that all conference's fans were similar in the respect that they pulled for their conference first, except for rivalries. This is anecdotal evidence to the contrary.

Ryan Ferguson, writing for Fanhouse, says that even though preparation is usually the difference, it wasn't so in this game:
How did LSU win this game? First, from top to bottom, they simply fielded better players. QB Matt Flynn easily outplayed and outmanaged Todd Boeckman. LSU's offensive and defensive lines controlled the line of scrimmage for most of the game. LSU's receivers were faster and more physical, and made big plays when it really mattered.
Indeed. At then end of the day, it was all about who brought the talent, and LSU had more, especially in the trenches where championships are won and lost. LSU's lines simply pushed the much-vaunted OSU "big uglies" around all night. And if that wasn't enough, OSU's receivers were simply out-athleted by LSU's secondary in one of the biggest athletic mismatches, offense to defense, I can remember. It is truly a wonderful thing when you don't have to play zone in the secondary, and you can send extra people flying into the backfield at the quarterback. The game just becomes so much easier.

Henry Gomez at Saurian Sagacity wonders what could be more embarrassing than losing two consecutive BCS championships by lopsided margins:
What could be more humiliating than losing two consecutive BCS SHAM-pionships to SEC teams by a combined score of 79-31?


PS, LSU has scored 265% more than OSU allowed per game this year. LSU has scored 10 more points than Illinois which had the previous high-water mark against OSU this season with 28.
Ouch, indeed.

Kyle King of Dawg Sports, in a post before the game, goes all Rodney King on us:
On this, the night of the B.C.S. national championship game, I interrupt my review of the Mark Richt record to offer a few words in defense of interconference unity. I have tried and tried to promote good relations between the Big Ten and the Southeastern Conference, which is an objective in which some Big Ten fans are interested but others evidently are not.
I think interconference love is fine, as long as every other conference in America acknowledges the obvious fact of SEC football superiority. I'm certainly willing to acknowledge the accomplishments of other conferences -- as soon as they actually have any.

King notes for the record that Ohio State was anointed into this game last year and, for all intents and purposes, this year as well, while the Tigers had to fight, claw and scratch their way through superior competition just to have the right to prove the obvious fact that at least two and arguably three SEC team could have won this game.

Finally, we go for the record to the camps of non-SEC bloggers, and breathe deep of schadenfreude as they tread the sour grapes of defeat into the wine of misery. Mike at Card Chronicle will lead the way:
One of the most memorable college football seasons of all-time will come to a close tonight with a game that will undoubtedly be overwhelmingly forgettable. If LSU wins, then a two-loss team that fell to 6-7 Arkansas and 8-5 Kentucky will be deemed more deserving a national champion than two one-loss teams (one of which won a BCS game), and five other two-loss teams. If Ohio State wins, then it will be a team that defeated a grand total of one ranked opponent (Outback Bowl loser Wisconsin) in the regular season that will be crowned as the nation's best.
I can scarcely recall a post anywhere so disrespectful of a team's on-the-field accomplishments. I think Mike is trying to somehow escape the fact that bitter rival Kentucky defeated the football Cardinals who provided new meaning to the term "overmarket and underperform" coined by UK president Lee Todd of a couple years back. Rather than acknowledge that LSU's victory here validates not only Kentucky's victory over Louisville, but the entire SEC, he would rather just say "feh."

The Buckeye Blog wrote a redemption post before the game, proved pretty prescient, at least in part:
This game will come down to defense. The Buckeyes have one of the best in the land and I believe they will shock the LSU offense coming out of the gate. If LSU can adjust, we have a game on our hands. Likewise, a healthy Glenn Dorsey will give the Buckeye offense a run for their money. The offensive line needs to get on him early to give Wells the running room he needs.
The game did come down to defense -- LSU's. The Buckeyes did shock the Tigers early. The O-line did get Wells off early. Almost all that he hoped for came to pass -- in the first half of the first quarter. The rest went, well, less according to his script.

Some Buckeye fans have so far decided to take the high road. Men of the Scarlet and Gray writes:
As for LSU, I hope the media gives them the props they deserve. None of this “yeah-but-USC” argument. Any team that puts up 31 unanswered points against the best defense in college football is, without question, the best in the country.
Indeed. This is a classy post by a classy blog. The "USC is better" meme will no doubt be repeated endlessly, and not without at least the thinnest connection to reality. Unfortunately, because we still have no form of playoff as we have lamented many, many times, and since the Pac-10 as well as the Big Ten are adamantly opposed to a playoff or "plus one" game, I'd say it's fitting they are hoist on their own petard. Still, lemming-like, we will see many in the media dutifully vote USC as the number one team, regardless of tonight's result. They may even be voted #1 by the AP. It wouldn't surprise me in the least, especially after their "traditional" bowl format provided them with an overmatched opponent for them to crush.

And lest you not take my word for it, perhaps you'll accept that of the Southern Cal blog Conquest Chronicles, who writes:

Today there are some who seem to think that SC would actually have a claim to a split title depending on the outcome of tonight's BCS title game against Ohio State and LSU.

For those who would actually pine for a split title I would say...STOP IT!

We don't deserve it and it shouldn't happen. From the Baton Rouge Advocate via Wolf's blog:

J. Barker Davis of the Washington Times isn't buying it.

"Georgia -- just beat the lamest BCS team in history," Davis said. As for USC, whose 24-23 home loss to 4-8 Stanford was one of the season's biggest stunners, "The Trojans did less with more than any team in the nation this season and should be ashamed for having the audacity to do any stumping after the Stanford debacle."

What can I say? The guy is right on the dot, and it is very forthright of him to say so.

I expect to have more later today, but I make no promises. Blogging for me is a "when I have time for it" activity these days.