FanDuel - WFBC

January 08, 2010

Alabama Rolls to BCS Title Over Texas: After a shoulder injury sidelined Texas Longhorns quarterback Colt McCoy early in the first quarter, the Alabama Crimson Tide took a 24-6 halftime lead en route to a 37-21 victory in the BCS National Championship game at the Rose Bowl. Alabama won its first championship in 17 years and eighth overall. Coach Nick Saban won his second, the first with LSU.

posted by rcade to football at 12:35 AM - 32 comments

So, Nick Saban joins the field of coaches trying trick plays. Had the ball not been underthrown, that would've been quite nice.

posted by boredom_08 at 08:56 PM on January 07

Coming home to find out McCoy is hurt is a major disappointment. Hopefully he comes back for the second half, otherwise I can't see Texas having a chance.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 09:59 PM on January 07

Ying Yang Mafia. Texas doesn't stand a chance even with McCoy. Alabama is over its jitters and are steam rolling over texas.

posted by twgibsr at 10:12 PM on January 07

I was totally Roll SEC Tide, but now it's halftime, and I want nothing more than McCoy to come back in and lead an epic comeback for the ages. One of those comebacks that nastololgic anouncers 50 years from now, "and then there's that McCoy guy who came back to win the final non-playoff BCS game, forcing Nick Saban to high school coaching football, never to be heard from again." Don't see it happening, but being able to cheer for any team when my only allegiance is towards a conference is relaxing. I get so stressed out cheering for my Alma Mater during the season that it's almost not worth it sometimes!

posted by jmd82 at 10:21 PM on January 07

I was also pulling for the Tide, but I would love to see Gilbert lead Texas to victory here.

How about that onside kick? That was ballsy.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 11:10 PM on January 07

I was pulling for Texas, but that was sure not meant to be. Couple of questionable non-calls after that onside kick, but 'Bama was going to win this all the way. Gilbert looked like he's got potential to be quite good the next three years, if he can come out and perform the way he did in the second half (and realize when a blitz is coming on his back).

posted by boredom_08 at 01:41 AM on January 08

That was a game! I was also impressed with Gilbert. The more he plays, hopefully he will get better at not sending telegraphs letting the defense know where he's about to throw the ball. My mother and I got in to a spirited discussion about this; Any one have any opinions on Alabama's quarterback's performance? That being said, I am deliriously happy that Alabama won.

posted by yzelda4045 at 07:31 AM on January 08

SEC had an off year in terms of top-to-bottom strength, but man was the top good. SEC is now 6-0 in BCS Championship Games (counting both the formal game and back when one of the four main bowls was designated as the "championship"), having won the last 4 in a row, and accounting for half of all BCS Championships. Other conferences are a combined 6-12.

posted by holden at 08:40 AM on January 08

That was a wild game. Texas loses McCoy, Alabama loses Ingram for most of the second half, and the game is decided by a fluke interception on a shovel pass with 15 seconds left in the first half.

I was rooting for Gilbert to make a good showing, given the unbelievable task he was asked to achieve. The Horns showed a lot by not giving up -- particularly on defense when the offense was hopeless for the second and third quarters.

Boo Saban for scoring that final touchdown. The Tide was up by 10 with 1:41 left and had a first down on the Texas 5. If they take a knee and Texas doesn't use one of its two timeouts, they could take a knee twice more and run out the clock. The points were unnecessary and risked a turnover.

posted by rcade at 09:13 AM on January 08

That one was painful exit interview with McCoy at the end of the game. "So, McCoy, you got injured on the 2nd drive of the final game ever as a college player in the national championship. How does it feel?"

I mean really, how the how hell do you think he felt? Awesome?!? That question seemed cruel to me, and I felt sorry for McCoy having to answer it, especially right after the game had ended.

Any one have any opinions on Alabama's quarterback's performance?

Considering Bama's offense went comatose for a while there, not that great. He didn't do jack, really, though that wasn't necessarily a bad thing. Granted the Texas pass D showed up, but Saban did not want him loosing the game by throwing the ball.

posted by jmd82 at 09:14 AM on January 08

If it's OK to ask a player how he feels when he's exultant in victory, it's OK to ask when he's despondent in defeat. I thought it spoke well of McCoy that he composed himself and answered the question.

posted by rcade at 09:22 AM on January 08

I agree. I thought McCoy handled himself well and came off very classy in the interview.

I feel bad for Colt. First he lost the Heisman he should have won last year, then he lost it again this year (although Ingram was the deserving winner), and now he finally makes it back to the championship game and doesn't gets hurt in the first quarter. Brutal. And he seems like a very pleasant kid. Good luck to him in the NFL.

posted by bender at 09:39 AM on January 08

I would contend there's a difference between being injured the way McCoy was and not even having a chance to really play versus playing the whole game, but point taken. And I agree about him coming off classy.

posted by jmd82 at 10:33 AM on January 08

I agree, rcade. I thought that Saban did not need to go for that last touchdown. And I also did not think that Bama's quarterback didn't do jack, either. I acknowledge that Texas D is awesome, but did it seem like Bama's quarterback was holding the ball for a long time, or is this just me?

posted by yzelda4045 at 10:48 AM on January 08

If it's OK to ask a player how he feels when he's exultant in victory, it's OK to ask when he's despondent in defeat.

It's ok to ask but I just don't want to see it. Maybe it's enjoyable for some people to see someone having the worst possible day but I just hate it.

posted by tron7 at 11:18 AM on January 08

I enjoyed the McCoy interview for the same reason I used to watch Wide World of Sports. The thrill of victory would mean less without the agony of defeat. I didn't become a true Jaguars fan until they were crushed beyond recognition in the 1999 AFC Championship game.

posted by rcade at 11:44 AM on January 08

Boo Saban for scoring that final touchdown

My feelings exactly. I don't begrudge his players their championship, but I can't say I'm happy for this guy. Totally in character to twist the knife.

One of my favorite sports moments of all time was watching my Hawkeyes beat LSU on that last second TD in the Capitol One. His comments afterward were all about how LSU beat themselves--blaming his players with little acknowledgement of the opponent, in other words.

Regarding this game: my favorite games are unpredictable and sort of chaotic. The Texas win over USC was like that, and so was this one.

posted by Uncle Toby at 11:48 AM on January 08

The thrill of victory would mean less without the agony of defeat.

I get that but post game interviews with the losing side are just too much for me. They make me squirmy.

I didn't become a true Jaguars fan until they were crushed beyond recognition in the 1999 AFC Championship game.

That's what they get for the '96 divisional playoff game against the Broncos. The Super Bowl losses were bad but that one was somehow far worse.

posted by tron7 at 12:13 PM on January 08

If Saban wants to be regarded as a total coach, his trick plays have to look at least half as sharp as Chris Petersen's.

The early fake punt was dumb and ugly. If Bama had lost the game, he'd be hearing about that for the rest of his life.

Wonder what the incentive clause is in Saban's contract for winning a title. He had a whoppa title clause in his LSU deal.

With 80 plus scholarship players plus walk-ons, hard to imagine that the Texas depth chart at QB went right from McCoy to a tenderfoot true freshman, without a semi-experienced upperclassman Krenzel-type game manager QB in there between them as a solid #2.

But the kid learned fast under fire, and is going to be a player for sure.

Mal Moore's stature remains unchanged: a bumbler who is now far more fortunate than he has a right to be.

posted by beaverboard at 12:19 PM on January 08

Saban got $400,000 for winning a BCS title game and $200,000 for losing.

That fake punt was a terrible call. Why give Texas a short field when you're the heavy favorite going in?

posted by rcade at 12:24 PM on January 08

Wonder what the incentive clause is in Saban's contract for winning a title. He had a whoppa title clause in his LSU deal.

According to a graphic during the game last night, Saban gets $400,000 for winning the game. Apparently would have received $200,000 (or $250,000, I don't recall exactly -- on edit, $200,000) just for making it there.

posted by holden at 12:24 PM on January 08

What blows my mind is that the 'Bama QB never lost a game he started in high school or college! He may not play on Sundays and if he does that record will fall, but that is some record.

posted by billsaysthis at 01:05 PM on January 08

With 80 plus scholarship players plus walk-ons, hard to imagine that the Texas depth chart at QB went right from McCoy to a tenderfoot true freshman, without a semi-experienced upperclassman Krenzel-type game manager QB in there between them as a solid #2.

Colt McCoy started all four years of his career so the probability of a semi-experienced QB seems very unlikely.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 01:05 PM on January 08

hat fake punt was a terrible call. Why give Texas a short field when you're the heavy favorite going in?

Not sure why the guy intercepted it. If he just bats it down, they gain 20 yards of field position (the fact that he intercepted it made the whole fake punt nothing worse than a bad punt or a punt with a good return since they took over somewhere around the 40 as opposed to inside the 20.)

Who knows, maybe if they start that initial drive inside the 20, Colt doesn't get hurt as they would have scored by then. So maybe the whole loss is on that guy for intercepting the fake punt! :-)

posted by bdaddy at 02:10 PM on January 08

Not sure why the guy intercepted it. If he just bats it down, they gain 20 yards of field position ...

I was thinking the same thing. He went for the glory over the smart play. Did anyone hear the announcers make an issue of that?

What blows my mind is that the 'Bama QB never lost a game he started in high school or college!

McElroy was the quarterback for Southlake, a Dallas/Fort Worth high school football machine that has won several state championships while almost never losing. The continuation of his winning streak last night had nothing to do with the way he was playing.

posted by rcade at 02:55 PM on January 08

I was thinking the same thing. He went for the glory over the smart play. Did anyone hear the announcers make an issue of that?

Not that it excuses lack of preparedness/right-thinking, but I wonder how much of that is simply instinct taking over. It seems to me that if you are a defender and a thrown ball is coming your way, the instinct is to try to catch it, as opposed to making a conscious decision of "I'm going for personal stats, here!" But I've never played organized football, so who knows.

posted by holden at 02:59 PM on January 08

After reading the posts to this point, I'm bit surprised that the biggest issue -- the major key of all -- hasn't been expanded upon.

If there was ever a clearer example of Leadership (or leadership lost), and its effect upon an outcome of a game, I don't recall seeing one in recent history so extreme like what I saw last night in the BCS Championship game.

I have no ties to either the Tide or Texas just a fan of football that desired to see a competitive football contest. However, when, on the fifth play of the game, Texas' leader, their heart and soul commander went down -- it demonstrated perhaps the clearest example of how important leadership is to a team (or an army, a corporation, etc.).

Texas just didn't lose just any player, they lost "Colt McCoy" -- the winningest quarterback in the entire history of college football. Yes, other people need to "step up" and be leaders in the moment (and the true freshman quarterback finally somewhat composed himself), but how could anyone even ever come close to replacing such a supreme leader.

I'll say this; if Alabama had lost any one of their key players -- even their fine and intelligent quarterback or even their Heisman Trophy winning running back Mark Ingram, or their defensive leader Rolando McClain -- they wouldn't have skipped too many beats. Their second quarterback is seasoned and their second (and third) running backs are outstanding. Rolando McClain is for sure a force, but the Tide defense would by no means have lost their compass, lost their direction and fallen apart. The extreme degree to which Colt McCoy was counted upon to lead his team renders his presence irreplaceable. The entire balance of the team, offensively AND even defensively was shaken at its core.

To their credit, they pulled together as best they could and mounted a comeback against mighty odds (and a heckuva lot of crazy bad breaks and unfortunate calls, which we say is "just a part of football") -- and almost pulled off a comeback for the ages, but they fell short. Yes, it would have been better if Garrett Gilbert had been afforded more snaps during the season, but most any team seems to go with their starting quarterback till very late in games. (And it didn't help Texas' cause that that big receiver Malcolm Williams dropped a for sure touchdown pass just as he entered the end zone).

Certainly, Bama fought hard the whole way through, too, so they deserve a lot of credit as well. But it seems that a hard fought victory should be won against the best your opponent can bring against you.

When that Texas team lost Colt McCoy, we saw not only a game changer, we also most probably saw a shift in history being written as well as what true leadership means to becoming a champion or not one.

posted by naturalpro at 03:14 PM on January 08

it demonstrated perhaps the clearest example of how important leadership is to a team (or an army, a corporation, etc.).

Eclipsing Patton in '45? I didn't watch much of Texas this year-- what position did McCoy play on defense?

posted by yerfatma at 03:35 PM on January 08

"So, McCoy, you got injured on the 2nd drive of the final game ever as a college player in the national championship. How does it feel?"

That question alone is justification for guns in the locker room. Too bad an armed Colt McCoy couldn't just drop the interviewer with one well-placed round.

posted by Howard_T at 05:11 PM on January 08

I think Herbie had it right when he said that McCoy's injury shook the UT D, not just the O.

I think this game looked easy for Bama b/c Mcelroy (sp?) never had to do anything, which was a direct result of McCoy's injury. If McCoy is in, at some point Mcelroy is going to have to make a play against a top defense; i am unconvinced he could've, based on the 80 sacks (exaggeration, i know) he took in the 1st quarter; he had the deer in the headlights look nearly as bad as Gilbert did. I think most bama fans, if they were honest, would admit having the same fear of having to trust Mcelroy. Instead, all he had to do was give it to his backs and throw an incomplete pass on 3rd down. The guy only threw 11 passes all game. No way he only throws 11 if McCoy is healthy all night, no way. It just can't be overestimated how that injury changed the game.

I wouldn't go so far as to say Bama's win is tarnished, but they should count their blessings, so to speak.

posted by brainofdtrain at 05:22 PM on January 08

Congrats to 'Bama and her faithful, y'all done good.

Thanks too, Colt, for 4 classy years.

posted by mjkredliner at 06:03 PM on January 08

brainofdtrain: You are aware that McElroy was playing with broken ribs, right?

posted by raysmj at 06:18 PM on January 08

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