Kansas Beats Virginia Tech, World Shrugs…
So this is what the BCS had in mind: four meaningless games leading up to their championship game that should, after the game is over, make everything about as clear as mud. Sounds like a great way to award a clear-cut winner to me…
Anyway, the Kansas Jayhawks finished off their best season ever last night by beating Virginia Tech by the score of 24-21. In a telecast devoted to showing viewers the respective school bands, Mark Mangino’s Jayhawks used a solid defensive plan and some guile on special teams to give Kansas their first BCS Bowl win ever. Of course, when you are going against a team that’s as offensively inept as the Hokies, you don’t have to have a Baltimore Ravens defense to be effective.
The highlight of the game was probably cornerback Aqib Talib’s interception return for a touchdown, complete with the Neon Deion high-step to finish the play off. Predictably, Talib, the MVP of the Orange Bowl, was penalized for his exuberance.
While KU should definitely receive accolades for their accomplishments this season (easily their best ever), last night’s game emphasized the staggering difference between the upper and lower echelons of college football. By my count, there are currently four teams that are head and shoulders above the next rest:
West Virginia certainly deserves a look here as well, although their loss to Pitt late in the season still stings (although, they could take LSU’s or OSU’s place if either team serves up a dud on Monday). After these four or five, you can throw the rest of the bowl teams in a hat and there still wouldn’t be a clear-cut answer as to who is the best of the rest. ESPN darling Oklahoma looked absolutely lost against the Mountaineers, while the Warriors of Hawai’i looked like they belonged in a non-January bowl instead of the BCS.
So here we are, one game away from declaring either LSU or Ohio State as “Champions” of the most recent college football season and there is still a level of confusion the current system doesn’t even come close addressing. And why are we at this point? Tradition.
As it stands, Kansas deserves credit for their great season… but they should also have an opportunity to see where they stand in regards to the bigger picture. Do they deserve to be in the same conversation as the USCs, LSUs and Georgias of the world or do they belong in the “also ran” category?
Too bad we’ll never know.