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Boise left out of BCS picture

Broncos victim to politics; and what is Notre Dame thinking?

December 8, 2008
By B.J. LISKO

(Commentary)

Boise State got screwed.

Thanks to bowl politics, the Broncos won't head to a BCS bowl, as the Fiesta Bowl instead opted to take Ohio State and its legion of fans to take on Colt McCoy and Texas.

I know every Buckeye fan will call BS on me for even bringing it up, but Boise went 12-0 in the regular season to Ohio State's 10-2.

The Big Ten has been down for quite some time, and this year was no different. What quality win did the Buckeyes have? Certainly not a conference opponent Michigan, Wisconsin, Michigan State, Minnesota, Purdue, Illinois or Northwestern. Certainly not Ohio, Youngstown State or the mighty Troy. The only two formidable opponents the Buckeyes played they lost to. Southern Cal waxed the Buckeyes, and Penn State held them to just six points.

Boise didn't exactly play the cream of the crop either. But they rolled every opponent, including the now No. 15 ranked Oregon Ducks in Oregon as well as Hawaii who nearly beat the Orange Bowl bound Cincinnati Bearcats late Saturday. USC has Oregon to thank for its Rose Bowl berth as the Ducks prevented Oregon State from making a trip to Pasadena by beating the Beavers in its regular season finale. If you recall, Oregon State is USC's lone loss.

Ohio State's best win? Michigan State finished at No. 19. Northwestern finished at No. 22. But how can you justify the strength of the Big Ten when all they do is play one another?

I understand the Western Athletic Conference is another tough one to gauge. Boise is 60-4 overall in the WAC and really was never tested by an opponent within the conference.

But almost the same could be said for the Broncos two years ago when they broke the BCS and shocked the world in arguably the greatest college football game of all time beating the Oklahoma Sooners in overtime.

Ohio State got the nod because they are Ohio State. The Buckeyes are a big name, and they draw a huge crowd wherever they go.

The up-and-coming Terrelle Pryor vs. Heisman candidate Colt McCoy is a massive ticket, even though McCoy and his Longhorns will stomp Ohio State.

But Boise is no pushover. The Broncos could give Texas the same problems they gave Oklahoma two seasons ago. They're not a Big Ten offense. They spread it out. They take massive chances playing with nothing to lose. They're not predictable, and they would provide a much more entertaining and close game than Ohio State will.

Boise didn't do itself any favors with its schedule. They set it up again with the hopes that they would be the automatic qualifier from a non-BCS conference and went unbeaten. Problem is that Utah did the same thing, and the Mountain West had a couple more decent squads in it this year to give them the edge in the rankings.

I know it's a moot point, and I'm not even going to bring up a playoff argument, because it's not going to happen anytime in the foreseeable future.

The Buckeyes are in for another bowl hurting. That offense is not ready for Texas. It just isn't.

Ohio State's inclusion in the Fiesta Bowl was all about dollars. In a BCS series that includes some pretty paltry squads Cincinnati, Utah and Virginia Tech namely it needed all the firepower it could get to juice up the other contests.

Boise got left out. True, it could've done more for its own cause. But watching Ohio State get blown out in the postseason is getting really, really old.

Unfortunately for Broncos' fans, that terrible game is going to come at Boise's expense.

Notre Dame in Hawaii?

If Irish fans thought Notre Dame was crazy for keeping Charlie Weis as head coach, imagine what they must think now.

All indications were that the Irish were going to the Motor City Bowl to take a Mid-American Conference opponent which turned out to be Central Michigan.

Instead they opted to take a vacation to Hawaii to play the Warriors on their own field, a team they don't match up with in any way whatsoever.

Toe-to-toe, Notre Dame is the bigger, stronger team.

But tell that to Cincinnati, the Big East champion who were lucky the Warriors collapsed in the final quarter to pull out a win on Saturday night.

Hawaii is a squad that has improved week to week all season long. Even in its recent losses, the Warriors have been in contests thanks to their run and shoot offense and extremely athletic wide receivers. Notre Dame better find a way to score, because Hawaii will. And even though the school said it was keeping Weis, he might want to wait on unpacking his bags just yet. A loss to the Warriors, especially a lopsided one may just be the final straw.

E-mail B.J. Lisko at bjlisko@salemnews.net

 
 
 

 

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