Wednesday, December 01, 2010

College football miscellany

College football's 2010 regular season comes to a close this Saturday; after this weekend's games, the postseason, featuring a record 35 bowl games, begins. One team that will not be making a postseason appearance is the University of Houston Cougars, who lost to Texas Tech at Lubbock last Saturday, 20-35, and cemented a losing record. The Coogs' 2010 campaign will probably go down as the most disappointing season in University of Houston football history since the Great Run-and-Shoot Trainwreck of 1991. I'll provide a thorough postseason postmortem later on, when I feel up to the task (and right now I don't).

North Texas has a new football coach. Dan McCarney, formerly the head coach at Iowa State, will take over at the helm of the Mean Green. Given the program's abysmal 8-40 record over the past four seasons, McCarney has a lot of work ahead of him if he is to return UNT football to something resembling respectability. He does have the advantage of a new stadium coming online, which might aid him in recruiting. Early word is that the University of Houston will be the Mean Green's first opponent in their new stadium next September. I plan to be there if this is so.

In other Metroplex college football news, TCU has made it official: they will be joining the Big East for all sports in 2012. This announcement came as no surprise, given recent rumors. While the move might not make geographic sense - Fort Worth is "where the west begins," after all - from a football standpoint it makes sense for both parties: the Big East is clearly the weakest of the BCS automatically-qualifying conferences and needs the strength of the Horned Frog program to bolster its status, while by virtue of joining an automatically-qualifying conference TCU elevates itself into the world of the college football "haves." This will probably not be the end of the Big East's football expansion process, either, and Houston is still being mentioned as a possible target. Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, Boise State's BCS aspirations came to an end last Friday in Reno, as they were upset by the Nevada Wolfpack, 34-31. It was a thrilling game: Nevada trailed 7-24 at one point but rallied to win the game in overtime. They were unintentionally aided by Boise State kicker Kyle Brotzman, who missed a 26-yard attempt that would have won the game in regulation as well as a field goal in the first overtime. Nevada kicker Anthony Gonzalez would make his overtime field goal, ending Boise's BCS aspirations and leading to a celebration on the field:
Meanwhile, with Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" playing on the PA, thousands of Wolf Pack fans poured on to the field of 30,000-seat Mackay Stadium to celebrate what coach Chris Ault called "the greatest win this university has ever had." The Hall of Fame inductee, who came out of retirement in 2004 in part because he'd tired of seeing his team get crushed annually by Boise State, took umbrage with the notion his team was one of the so-called "Little Sisters of the Poor" on the Broncos' schedule.
And who was it that called teams like Nevada the "Little Sisters of the Poor?" Oh, that's right, Ohio State University President E. Gordon Gee, whose elitist and uniformed comments about college football keep looking stupider all the time.

College football. Gotta love it!

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