Monday, 1 January 2007

THIS is why we need a playoff

I was going to include my Oklahoma/Boise St. thoughts in the previous post, but the game was just too good. I still can barely believe what I saw. Last year's national championship game obviously had higher stakes, but this one was a more entertaining game, at least on my first reaction.

Not even just the ending either, because the whole game was good. Boise started off great as Paul Thompson made some key mistakes for the Sooners and the Broncos capitalized, but then Paul Thompson and Oklahoma settled down and started playing well on both sides of the ball. Which became evident as the Sooners climbed back from a 28-10 deficit to take a 35-28 lead.

I was all prepared to write about how heartbreaking of a loss it was for Boise St., going from being up 28-20 and a stop away from winning to being down 35-28 just like that. Especially when it got to 4th and 18 with about 20 seconds remaining.

Then things got funny. First a successful hook-and-ladder, which I'm not sure if I've ever actually seen before. It was just so perfectly designed and executed... it was just beautiful to watch. I just sorta stared at the TV in disbelief, thinking that this was one of the better games I had ever seen. And that was just the tip of the iceberg.

Adrian Peterson struck quickly in OT with a 25 yard run on the first play, giving Oklahoma the 42-35 lead. Then Boise St. REALLY opened the playbook. First play looked like it was going to the HB tossing back to Zabransky, who then probably would have thrown it again, but it never materialized. So then they get down to the 5 (that was not a fumble by the way, as the knee was clearly down), and it's 4th down again. Instead of doing something safe, they motion Zabransky out, snapping it to backup RB Vinny Perretta, who rolled out and threw a TD pass. Gutsiest call I have ever seen.

Of course, that was just a preview. Because they went for 2 obviously to try and win the game. When the play first started and Zabransky looked like he was throwing it, my thought was: "Huh? After all that trickery, a WR screen? This is their play on the 2-point conversion?" Of course, they fooled me, and apparently they also fooled the Oklahoma defense. The amazing thing is that that play must have been practiced a decent amount... I mean, it's not often that you go with the backwards handoff, but it was executed to perfection. The whole Boise gameplan was executed to perfection. What an absolute joy to watch that game.

Of course, now Boise St. should be preparing for another game, in the playoff quarterfinals or semifinals. But that's not going to happen. All Boise St. did was finish their season undefeated and beat the Big 12 Champion. They might get rewarded with a top 5 finish, and of course the victors of one of the most exciting game ever, but it's too bad they can't be in the running for something a little more tangible, like the National Championship.

Oh well, for one night, I won't complain too much, and just sit and be happy that I got to watch that game. Just incredible.