HAHAHAHAHAHA! AHHHH-HAHAHAHAHA! Northern Illinois? Hee-hee hee-hee heeeee…Northern Illinois vs. Florida State in the Orange Bowl? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!Understand Huskies, I’m not laughing at you. I’m laughing at the pouting, grumbling, hand-wringing, pooh-poohing caused by your Mid-American Conference champions sneaking into the BCS bowl party. Let them wail. Welcome to South Florida and your spot opposite Florida State in the preliminary to this year’s Game of the Millennium, Notre Dame vs. Alabama.
Sure, Georgia’s better than you and should be in a BCS bowl. Them Dawgs probably have more future NFL players redshirted than you Huskies have on your roster now or in this decade. Yeah, Oklahoma can wonder why the Sooner chuckwagon got sent back to Dallas for the Cotton Bowl against Texas A&M. Overindulgent Sooner fans can visit the territory markings they left during OU-Texas weekend.
To continue the list wastes time. Because you obviously deserve to be in the Orange Bowl. The BCS computer says so. The BCS rules say so. You deserve this as much as AFC teams deserved to keep going to the Super Bowl during that 13-year stretch San Francisco, Washington, Dallas and the Giants shredded them so badly, fans actually started to notice the commercials often were more Super than the game.
The system, set up for the big money conferences to be even more big money, includes one little in for the MACs, Conference USAs and Sun Belts of college-affiliated football. Boise State notwithstanding, you can bet the BCS gods never thought anyone such as you guys would trip all the right tumblers to enter a vault bowl.
It’s not your fault, Huskies. You did what you were supposed to do after losing 18-17 to Iowa in the season opener. You won every game after that. Not your fault Nebraska turned into Nicholls State in the Big 10 title game against a Wisconsin team the Huskers beat in the regular season.
“I’m not watching that game…” I heard some grumble. How can anyone say that who has paid attention to college-affiliated football this year?
Yeah, Florida State should whoosh by you like gazelles on the Serengeti if the Seminoles play with want-to. And if they can’t get up for a major, big-boy bowl game in their home state with more NFL scouts than a Louisiana highway, that’s on them.
So you lost to Iowa. Big deal. You know who else lost to Iowa? Minneosta and Michigan State, two bowl-eligible Big 10 teams. You know who lost to Michigan State? Wisconsin, the Big 10 champion.
It’s not just who-beat-who that shows how bizarre this college football season has been. Both Louisiana-Lafayette and Florida got bowl games in New Orleans, The R&L New Orleans Bowl and the Sugar Bowl, respectively. The last time they were in the same town, Florida trailed 20-13 with two minutes left and needed a last-second blocked punt touchdown to win in regulation.
Good game, exactly what Louisiana-Lafayette wasn’t supposed to give Florida. Better game than Florida State gave Florida.
The Louisville team that would have satisfied folks down here, especially with the Orange Bowl, as an FSU sparring partner? When last seen in South Florida, the Cardinals needed 3-9 FIU to be down to its second-string, true freshman quarterback; third-string running back; fumble a punt; and blow an obvious fourth down strategic decision to escape with a 28-21 win.
Wasn’t the Atlantic Coast Conference title game supposed to be one of those blastings Nebraska used to deliver and now takes? The Noles needed a late interception to finally put Georgia Tech to sleep. Middle Tennessee State, an 8-4 Sun Belt team that steamrolled Georgia Tech 49-28, probably wondered what’s wrong with you, FSU?
Some of us know you Huskies will be playing their first game for new head coach Rod Carey. After the MAC championship game, former head coach Dave Doeren left to coach North Carolina State, which fired Tom O’Brien after a 7-5 season. N.C. State? Hmmm…where have I heard that before…
Oh, right. N.C. State 17, Florida State 16, Oct. 16.
So, welcome Northern Illinois. As Parliament said, everybody’s got a little light under the sun. Enjoy your time in it.
Never mind the harrumphing of those who should still be laughing all the way to the bank. ___
(c)2012 The Miami Herald
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