Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Unthinkable is Now a Reality: Part 3 (of 9)

October 6
#9 Florida

This game could of easily been called the Game of the Century had Florida not lost to Auburn the previous week 20-17, nonetheless I still think the game lived up to the hype. Urban Meyer had never lost 2 consecutive games while at Florida. Could LSU beat an even more pumped up Florida team on what would become the biggest crowd in Tiger Stadium history? Gameday was present so the magnitude of this game was beyond comprehension. Florida jumped on LSU early. The Tigers did not have Early Doucet who was out with an injury. That was huge considering LSU missed some early first downs that lead to Tebow immediately getting the ball back. LSU was down 10-0 before fans could get into their seats. Late in the second quarter Tebow rushed into the end zone to put the score at 17-7 Florida. LSU would drive down the field and missed a crucial 43-yard field goal as time expired in the second quarter.

During that first half I can specifically remember talking to my friends how Tim Tebow just won the Heisman by the way he played in the first 30 minutes of the game. He was deadly in the pocket and even more dangerous when running. No one ever tackled #15 on their first try. He was picking LSU apart.

Tebow's "Call Me" Gesture Back Story: For those of you who watched the game I am sure you saw Tebow make the gesture of "call me" to the LSU Student Section. Allow me to give you some details on the whole story. Facebook is a social networking website many college students use. Tim Tebow used his username and wrote a comment on a Florida girl's Facebook page. After leaving his comment Tebow left his phone number as well.

And as you might guess someone found out about him putting his number on this girl's Facebook page and just like that LSU Faithful were calling up Tebow and leaving intense trash-talking messages. Tebow was simply playing along when he taunted the student section, which is perfectly fine.

But there was one problem.

Do not taunt an opposing team's student section then cry after the game. I am sorry, but you would not tease a person and then cry if they teased you back.

Best quote following the game against Florida: "Tim Tebow drinks milk on Fridays, I think drink his tears on Saturday."

In the second half LSU got the ball right off the bat to march down and cut the score to a margin of 17-14, but before the offense could rest Tebow found an absolutely wide-open Gator.

24-14. Gulp and the 4th quarter was upon us.

In the 4th quarter LSU cut the lead to 3 when Lesticles opted to go for it on 4th down inside the Florida 5. Perrilloux to the Byrdman.

24-21. Hope was still alive.

LSU would get the ball back with about 8:30 left in the game. LSU would end up scoring a TD on a drive that took over 8 minutes. Incredible. 2 for 2 on 4th down the Tigers were on that drive. The one at midfield and the one deep in Gator territory. Both were because of amazing second efforts by Jacob Hester. When Hester finally did get into the end zone on 3rd and Goal, I think my heart stopped.

I am sure I was not the only one who experienced that.

This was the single most nerve-racking game I have ever experienced in Tiger Stadium. When it was announced USC had lost to Stanford the place went nuts. So nuts the decibels in the student section reached 129.8, close to a jet engine (130). After the game, Lee Corso talked about how that game had everything you want in an epic college football showdown. The home team was trailing, field goals where missed, big turnovers happened, gutsy fourth downs were called, and a dramatic come from behind win was lead by the Tigers.

It seems like so long ago when that game happened but just to get that feeling back I had in that stadium after LSU pulled off the impossible, wow, it was just indescribable.

It is what Tiger Stadium is all about.

I still get goosebumps thinking how LSU was down by 10 with 10 minutes remaining and they hung together and pulled out the victory when all hope seemed lost.

Play of the Game: Again, many plays took place in that game for the Tigers that I could claim as the "Play of the Game." The one that sticks out the most was the final of the five fourth downs LSU converted. Tigers could of kicked a field goal to tie the game, but Les Miles wanted the win. On 4th and 1 deep in Gator territory LSU went for it. It looked like Hester got stopped in the backfield and in the student section I was sure he did, but in a last ditch effort #18 dove and just made the first down. Unbelievable.

As painful as it is to remember, the next game I will talk about will be the heartbreaking loss at Kentucky in triple overtime...

Thursday, January 24, 2008

The Unthinkable is Now a Reality: Part 2 (of 9)

September 22
#12 South Carolina

Through their first 3 games LSU had outscored its opponents 137-7. The South Carolina team coming into Baton Rouge resembled the biggest sleeper in the SEC. Spurrier was getting into his groove their; a coming out party was a possibly for the Gamecocks and all of Tiger Nation knew it. LSU's speed was hindered by the monsoon that took place throughout the game. Opening drive South Carolina went down the field to go up 7-0. Tiger Nation was watching for the first time all season LSU trailing in a game.

Trailing 7-0, Flynn and Co. did not hesitate to regain the lead. Behind a spectacular run by Trindon Holliday, LSU tied the score at 7 a piece. Holliday finished the night with a season high of 77 yards rushing. With the score 14-7 right before the half LSU brough out the field goal team, but as we all know the lovable fake field goal was pulled. Flawless it ran, and dazzling it was to watch. With a 21-7 lead at the half LSU was in control.

The second half remained no trouble for LSU who ran the score up 28-7 before sending Spurrier & Co. home with a 28-16 loss.

Play of the Game: Without a question Colt David's fake field goal touchdown run. I was disappointed when LSU failed on getting a first down on third down. LSU would get a field goal (I thought) and go up 17-7 at the half. Okay, but LSU needed to put this thing away. I have to give credit to my friend Marica. Prior to the amazing touchdown she told me, "They are going to fake it." I was in the state of shock when they a) actually faked it and b) ran it so smoothly.

The Tigers' win over South Carolina was a big victory, but it does not hold a candle to the magic LSU pulled off against the Florida Gators on October 6.

Up next, the game that ended with the most thrilling fourth quarter in LSU football history!....

Friday, January 18, 2008

The Unthinkable is Now a Reality: Part 1 (of 9)

I still time and time again find myself in disbelief and shock that LSU actually won the BCS National Championship. Don't get me wrong, I hoped for the Tigers to reach the Promised Land the entire season, but when they finally got their it literally left me speechless in the Superdome that evening on January 7. I mean when LSU had officially won that game I thought to myself, "Is this really going on?"

It was.

The Year of the Upset may be over in college football, but its memories do not have to die. There were 9 games LSU played in that where anything but sane. Each game I will relive on my blog and in doing so I will let you know exactly what was going on in my head on those days. Think of this as a 9-part television series.


September 8
#9 Virginia Tech

LSU had just shutout the Mississippi State Bulldogs 45-0 earlier the week before. That win was good, but nothing special. The VTech game would be a measuring stick on how good the Tigers would be this year. I remembered LSU getting humilated in Blacksburg in 2002 by the score of 26-8. I remember thinking an LSU win would not be easy because the Hokies carried an impressive 11 man defense. Another side note was that the nation would be rooting heavily for VTech as the university would be playing in its first football game since the tragic April school shootings.

LSU didn't play a better game than they did on this Saturday night. Alongside my younger brother and good friend, we watched LSU jump on VTech right from the get-go. Before the Beamer's Boys could catch their breath they trailed 24-0. The final was 48-7, a score that could of been much worse had LSU not put in their second team so early in the fourth quarter.

Following the game, talk about a National Title erupted in Baton Rouge, but for me that didn't catch my attention too much; it was only September.

Play of the Game: Keiland Williams embarrassed the entire Hokies' defense on a 67 yard touchdown run. The thrilling back finished the day with 127 yards on 7 carries with 2 touchdowns.

Up next remembering the September 22nd showdown on the Bayou between LSU and the 12th ranked South Carolina Gamecocks...

Monday, January 14, 2008

NFL Playoff Chaos

The games this weekend lived up to their billings. I have some thoughts on each outcome as well as the upcoming showdowns.

42 Packers 20 Seahawks

-Ryan Grant fumbled on his first 2 carries of the ball game that in turn gave Seattle a quick 14-0 lead. Suprisely, Coach McCarthy never stopped from putting Grant back into the game. Grant would set franchise records in the game with 201 yards rushing and 3 touchdowns. Now that shows a coach has confidence in his player.

-I am sorry but it seems no one told Brett Favre he is old and should be playing, well, old. Favre was 18 of 23, 173 yards and 3 touchdowns. He clearly displayed he still make the plays...even in the snow.

-Little disappointed how Seattle just fell apart. Yes, the snow start coming down, but you were up 14-0 and lost 42-20? You got outscored 42-6!

31 Patriots 20 Jaguars

-Jacksonville came to win, and had the NE defense not held David Garrad and Co. to 2 field goals they might have. Garrad proved he can be an elite QB as he kept his team in the game throughout the day with his 22 of 33, 278 yards, 2 TD day. Garrad impressed me.

-NE won this game because an individual may have played the greatest game by a QB we have ever seen. Tom Brady was 26 of 28, 262 yards, and 3 TDs. Reread that: HE THREW THE BALL 28 TIMES AND ONLY HAD 2 INCOMPLETIONS! How do you stop a guy like that? Kryponite? And lets not forget Jacksonville has one of the best defenses in the league! I am still in shock.

-Playing in Foxboro in January is an advantage for NE, but not as much as I would of thought. Again, Jax stayed with the Pats throughout the day. New England won because of a QB's exceptional play, not because of the bad play by the opposing team due to the weather.

28 Chargers 24 Colts

-Norv Turner was getting grilled earlier in the season when the Chargers started off 1-3 now he has the Bolts one game from the Super Bowl. Regardless of what happens in the game Sunday, expect A.J. Smith to bring Turner back next season with open arms.

-Phillip Rivers put up some impressive numbers by going 14 of 19, 264 yards, and 3 TDs with one interception. Only problem is the QB is making an absolute fool of himself by yelling at fans after games. What are you doing? He is a heckler, you are an NFL QB! Do not sink to his level and make yourself look like the idiot!

-During the last play of the game, Reggie Wayne and Marvin Harrison were both off the field with injuries. It gets to a certain point when you say to yourself, "Manning and his offense have had bad luck with injuries this year." Injuries definitely piled up in Indy, I mean their best defensive player Dwight Freeney has been on IR for a couple months now.

21 Giants 17 Cowboys

-Eli went 12 of 18, 163 yards, and 2 TDs Sunday in Dallas. For the second consecutive week Manning proved doubters wrong by putting up a moderately good performance. Eli did not need to win the game single-handily, but he did need to make the occasional big play. He certainly did that.

-Prior the game I was saying to my friends that for an NFL team to lose to the same team 3x would be quite an unusual thing to see. I figured New York would pull this one out. Well, I was right because for once the Jints prevailed over the Cowgirls. Sure Dallas won 2 out of 3 games this year against New York, but lets be honest, New York won the game that mattered the most.

-Coughlin has his team playing with a chip on their shoulder. That is the attitude that lead NY to giving Dallas it's 6th consecutive playoff loss. It is also this thinking by Coughlin and Co. that may ulitmately lead New York to the Super Bowl. The defense is clearly the team's best aspect as it shutdown Dallas (38 ppg) to a measley 17 points.

Conference Championship Predictions

Packers vs. Giants

This was supposed to be a game in Dallas between the Cowboys and Packers. Supposed. Green Bay is happy for New York's win because now they get to play at Lambeau Field where it is expected to be 11 degrees Sunday. Yes, Manning is use to cold weather games, but not like Favre. Brett thrives in cold, harsh conditions. I see a close came for 3 quarters that will be blown open in the fourth quarter.

Final: 33 Packers 20 Giants

Patriots vs. Chargers

This was supposed to be the rematch between the Colts and Patriots. I guess the Bolts forgot to lose. San Diego wants revenge on New England after last year's heartbreaking loss at home in the playoffs. The Bolts will be pumped, but so will the Pats. Tom Brady is on a mission meaning he will continue to put up outstanding numbers. More importantly, NE is use to playing in the cold weather. San Diego is not. That weather factor will not be the deciding point on who wins but it definitely plays a role. Let me put it this way, a team like NE likes playing in the cold. San Diego can deal with it. That is a big difference.

37 Patriots 22 Chargers

Super Bowl Prediction

Patriots vs. Packers

New England avenges it's 35-21 Super Bowl loss in 1996. Behind Tom Brady, NE jumps out to an early 14-0 lead. By halftime, Green Bay has cut into the lead, but still trailes 21-10. Favre makes some plays in the second half to cut the score to 21-17, but the Pats pull off a time-consuming drive that ends with a TD and Green Bay realizing a victory is out of question.

Final: 28 Patriots 17 Packers

MVP: Tom Brady (Duh!)

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Thoughts for the Minority

As the clock struck zero last night LSU was yet again claimed National Champs. But much like every other year doubt has to be present.

Let me say this, the BCS could use some minor tweeking, but my problem is I don't know if I'd necessarily like a playoff.

(Maybe a Plus-1 game?)

Why do I not like a playoff? The regular season would not be as important. Look at the NFL. If your team loses you are bummed, but you realize hope is still there because all your team has to do IS QUALIFY FOR THE POSTSEASON. That is easier than qualifying for the title game.

This was the Chaotic Year by all means. Upsets happened every week and there was no dominant team from start to finish. Yet, in all the chaos the BCS did MAKE the right choice choosing LSU and OSU for the Title game.

LSU was the most legit of 2 loss teams (Georgia: you didn't win your conference; USC: you lost to Stanford.)

Ohio State had a weak regular season schedule, but they are a big school team that had only 1 loss.

LSU won that game last night and rightfully can claim themyourselves No. 1 hands down. Yes, you can say, "Did UGA/USC deserve a shot?"

They got one, but they blew it. Case closed. Understand that. If not you're not stupid, just an idiot.

UGA fans understand they have no validity to complaining at all when you look at everything.

As for USC I have to think the media wouldn't be hyping about them as much if say we were talking about the University of Arizona and not USC.

My point? USC is in LA. Big school, big city, media bias. Don't bother giving me BS that "media bias" doesn't exist.

Again this whole rant of mine is focusing on a small, small group of people who don't think LSU rightfully earned the title. Most people know LSU is the No. 1 team period. From what I have come to see, most doubt comes from media personnel.

Meaning? Controversy is purposely being created to grab people's attention.

(I know you have seen Corso and Herb completely make contradicting arguments one day after saying so-and-so is No. 1.)

America knows the BCS has its flaws, BUT IT IS MUCH BETTER THAN THE OLD SYSTEM. (If you disagree with that your brain resembles the shape of a peanut.)

All in all, like I had said, most of America knows LSU is hands down No. 1...