I think this is the post I’ve dreaded for a while. I’m so sad that the college football season is over and we will not have nearly as much to talk about. That said, here are my final thoughts on the BCS title game:
—It’s pretty clear now that the Gators are in the middle of the same kind of run that we saw USC and Miami make earlier in the decade. Winning two titles in three years is no easy feat. Urban Meyer has done that and, when you take into account his undefeated season at Utah in 2004, you have to consider him to be the unquestioned top coach in college football. It seems almost quaint now what people were saying in 2005 when he was hired. Stuff about the spread not working in the SEC and so on. Of course, here at HP, we predicted that Meyer would not only dominate the league, but that his presence would cause the rest of the conference to change for the better. And so, here the SEC sits, with much improved coaching to go along with the best talent in the country. I see no reason why Meyer can’t keep it up, although we have seen in the past that such dynasties are not taken down from without, but from within, and usually due to things like ego and hubris.
—I thought it was a very entertaining game. Obviously, we did not have the scoring fest that everyone predicted. I thought the two teams were fairly equal in terms of talent. Florida just has a couple more playmakers and that was the difference.
—Curses to Fox for yet again putting on a horrible telecast. The first Florida touchdown did not feature a proper camera angle, but that did not stop the color commentator from declaring that is was ‘clearly’ a touchdown. Uh, no, it was NOT clear. We also learned that the Fox guys were newly exposed to Tim Tebow, as we were subjected to phrases like “Spending 20 minutes with Tebow will make you a better human being.” And did we really need to see that shot of New England Patriots owner Bob Kraft? Who gives a flip? Certainly not the millions of college football fans viewing the game.
—The best player on the field was Oklahoma defensive tackle Gerald McCoy. I don’t know if he is going pro or not, but that guy has to be the first pick in the draft when he does come out. The second-best player on the field might’ve been Florida defensive end Carlos Dunlap. Oh, Percy Harvin, Tebow and Jermaine Gresham were pretty good, too…
—Sam Bradford played a solid game for the most part, but his flaw is that he doesn’t always find ways to make things happen when the play breaks down. The Sooners missed two huge opportunities inside the 10-yard line and if those go differently, OU probably wins.
—Watching the two teams made me think about future offensive trends. We are seeing the rise of the Spread Defense now in college football, as coaches retool their rosters to deal with the tough-to-stop Spread. As a result, we are seeing an emphasis on smaller linebackers who can run and safeties who can cover. For much of the season, Oklahoma exploited that size issue by retaining a powerful downhill running game. And its no-huddle, fast-break tempo meant that defenses had trouble substituting. Meanwhile, you have Florida, which often utilizes smaller smurf-types to press its offensive attack. I think the next trend to counter the defensive moves is to utilize a no-huddle, fast break spread that uses smurf running backs and receivers and still maintains an element of downhill I-formation running behind a massive offensive front. Basically, put Jeff Demps, Jacquizz Rodgers, Trindon Holiday and Derrick Williams on Oklahoma and you’d have the ideal offense for 2009. I predict that the next few seasons will see tons more college football stars who are 5-9 and below.
—The next deadline we are waiting for is January 15. That’s when the NFL declaration deadline hits and that’s when we can unveil our first real Heisman list for 2009. I am surprised that Tebow is returning, though with his recent surgery, it makes sense. The people who think he should be an H-back in the NFL are nuts and are typical of the arrogant mentality that surrounds that league.