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Man, that BCS is a great system, eh? All that work, all those atom smashers crunching all those numbers, and what do we get? A beatdown. What did we get last year? A title game that didn't involve the AP national champ. Fool me into thinking I'm watching the best two teams in the country once, shame on you. Fool me into thinking I'm watching the two best teams in the country twice, shame on me. I should have watched Friday the 13, Part VI on Cinemax 6 (it was really on); I'd have seen a better matchup. At least Jason is only stronger than his prey, not faster, too. Next year that's what I'm doing.
Sincere congratulations are in order for Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville for not flipping his wig at halftime. It's got to be frustrating not to be able to play your way into the title game and then see one of those teams get comprehensively outclassed.
This is what gets me: Everyone keeps pointing out that the Tigers' weak non-conference schedule killed them, and that if Bowling Green hadn't asked out of their game (and been replaced with a I-AA opponent), the Tigers might have had a respectable enough slate to make their way into the top two. Come on. You really mean to tell me that had Auburn beaten a decent MAC team instead of a I-AA team, then that would make them one of the two best teams in the country? Auburn ran the table in the SEC. You do that, I don't care who else you play.
After seeing Oklahoma lie down Tuesday night, you can't tell me Auburn couldn't have given USC a better game. I say this not because I'm an Auburn supporter (I'm not); I say it because I hate the notion of the BCS, and it's only going to get more stupid now that the AP poll is out of the mix.
Guys, play a tournament. Eight teams, 12 teams, any way you want it. We'd all welcome one with open arms. Every other division does and, lo, the Earth continues to spin on its axis.
Man, oh, Man
For the 17 or so soccer fans out there, allow me to vent. Did you see the Man U-Spurs game Tuesday? (If you're not one of the aforementioned 17, Manchester United is very much like the Yankees. They have a ton of money and a sort of superiority complex and you either love them -- faithfully -- or you absolutely despise them.)
Man U avoided defeate on what might have been the worst call in the history of soccer. Pedro Mendes of Tottenham Hotspur (that's a London team) pounced on a ball in the dying minutes of a scoreless tie and spotted Man U keeper Roy Carroll (who took over for American Tim Howard, who's been relegated to third-string at this point -- soon I suspect he and the club will touch and go their separate ways) way off his line. So Mendes let loose with a 55-yard lob. Carroll got back to it in time, but the ball hit off his chest and crossed the goal line. It was at least two feet past the line before Carroll scooped out the ball. The ref waved play on, and Man U salvaged a draw.
The non-goal result was unspeakably bad ... but kind of understandable. The linesman is the one who should have made the call, but he's got to keep himself in line with the last defender, so he was a pretty good distance away (why there's no goal judge I'll never know). It's just one of those things that's so frustrating to see when it goes against a team looking to pull an upset.
On a brighter note for you Man U haters out there, that team is just getting thinner and thinner as the injuries mount up. Jonathan Spector (an American phenom) was brought in for the last couple of minutes at central defense, pushing Rio Ferdinand into an attacking role. It's not a good sign when Rio is the most threatening player on the pitch.
And now, the good stuff
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When you read a headline like "Ashlee Simpson Says She Can Burp the Alphabet" (what can you say, the girl can't help it), you initially think, wow, this kind of puts her ahead in that sibling competition. But you read on and find out that Jessica's even better. Wow. I especially enjoy how much thought Ashlee has given the process of belching letters. There's some pretty good analysis in there. Only the young, I guess.
So the guy who's going to buy the Cavs apparently got busted for having a big role in a gambling ring in college. Does this make him unfit to own an NBA team? No. Might it raise an eyebrow or two in the approval process? I'm guessing so.
Idiot of the Week: Nothing worse than seeing a couple of guys get drunk on the power they wield down at the local Blockbuster and then humiliate a small-town girl living in a lonely world. What was on their mind? Lovin'? Touchin'? Squeezin'? Speaking of Blockbuster, the company's advertising No Late Fees. Apparently after seven days you have to buy the DVD. That kind of sounds like a late fee to me.
And finally, given the reaming I took from Clay Aiken fans, I give you this link without commentary. It's a Steve Perry fan fiction site. Which means it's filled with stories people have written about Steve Perry -- yes, that Steve Perry, the tight jeans wearing former lead singer of Journey -- imagining what he's like by analyzing his lyrics. The site warns "If you are offended by fan fiction, any characterization of Steve or role playing, then this site is NOT for you." SI college football editor Mark Mravic asks, "What if you're offended by all three." But I'm not saying anything.
Stay classy, and please, be good to yourself.
Mark Bechtel covers NASCAR for Sports Illustrated and SI.com.