Friday, January 08, 2010

And That's A Wrap

It’s a shame that Colt McCoy got hurt so early in the game, not just because it denied him a chance at a championship, but because for all eternity we’ll now hear from Texas fans about how things might have gone differently had he played the entire game. They may be right; they may be wrong – but in the end, it doesn’t really matter one way or another. He did get hurt, he couldn’t play, and Alabama won the game.

But Texas sure made it interesting, essentially dominating the second half until the very end. Once Garrett Gilbert got his feet under him, he started to make some great plays. And although they’ll deny it, there seems little doubt that Alabama lost its edge at halftime, thinking that because Gilbert had played so poorly in the first half, the game was over. With a team like Texas, the game is never over. The only thing I can really criticize is the incredibly stupid decision to call a time out with 15 seconds left in the first half, and then run a play with absolutely no upside and lots of potential, as we learned, for disaster. I don't care what anyone says: there is no defending that call.

Based on their seasons and what we saw last night, I think that if Alabama and Texas played 10 games, Alabama would probably win 6 of them. But notwithstanding the final score, last night was not a dominant performance, certainly nothing like the demolition job that the Crimson Tide laid on Florida in the SEC Championship game - clearly, the best game played by any team all year. And with all due respect to Boise State, the Broncos just can’t make the claim that they beat two teams the caliber of Florida and Texas. Which isn’t to say that they couldn’t, if given the opportunity.

And that’s precisely what is wrong about the current system. A fair system, which I won’t attempt to define here, would give Boise State that chance. As it stands now, we’re left with one game for all the marbles, played by two teams that hadn't set foot on the field for 33 days. That hardly seems like a fair test.

If I had a final ballot, my Top 5 would look like this: 1. Alabama 2. Texas 3. Florida 4. Boise State 5. TCU.

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