Sunday, January 6, 2008

A look at the BCS Championship Game

LSU (11-2, 6-2)
Ohio State University (11-1)
New Orleans, LA
Today’s Line: LSU -4

LSU Tiger Rankings: (Conference, Nationally)
Total Offense: 448.2 (3rd, 21st)
Offensive PPG: 38.7 (3rd, 12th)
Total Defense: 283.8 (1st,3rd)
Defensive PPG: 19.6 (2nd, 20th)

Ohio State Buckeye Rankings: (Conference, Nationally)
Total Offense: 397.1 (8th, 59th)
Offensive PPG: 32.0 (3rd, 36th)
Total Defense: 225.3 (1st, 1st)
Defensive PPG: 10.7 (1st, 1st)

It’s finally time to put a nightcap on this crazy football season and send it to bed. One final bowl game remains and it’s for all the marbles. The winner will be the first team to win a 2nd BCS Championship.

LSU has a clear advantage in that the game is being played in its backyard, much like their 2004 victory over Oklahoma. They’ll have the overwhelming majority of the crowd there and that could prove to be the deciding factor. Well, that, and the fact that the perennially overrated Buckeyes are 0-8 all-time against the SEC in bowl games. And the fact that no one Ohio State has played this year is as big, strong, fast, and talented as the Tigers. Sure the coach is a little nutty and doesn’t always take the safe way out, but the Magic 8Ball has one more good game left in it… right?

The Buckeyes will tell you they went 4-0 against ranked teams during the season. When examined a little closer though, only 1 of those teams – Wisconsin – finished the season ranked. They also lost to Illinois, which was the only other Big 10+1 to finish the season ranked. LSU, meanwhile, played 4 teams that finished ranked in the Top 25, so they’re much more battle tested. There’s also rested and healed – including stars Glen Dorsey and Early Doucet – so the Tigers will be playing with a full deck for the first time since the early season.

Look for LSU to control the line on both sides of the ball with their speed and quickness. Give the Buckeyes credit for getting back to the title game after losing Heisman winner Troy Smith last year, but take it all back for losing yet another bowl to the SEC.

Dead Guy sees:
LSU 17
tOSU 10

As an aside, even though this is the BCS Championship game, and the winner takes home the shiny trophy and gets a year of bragging rights, you’ll never convince me that either of these teams is the best in the country. Congratulations to whoever wins, but count your blessings there’s no playoff.

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