Reality Check

By the end of today’s Rose Bowl Game Presented by Citi I was beginning to think that Brent Musberger and Kirk Herbstreit are on the Southern California payroll with the lovefest they were having with the Trojans and the PAC 10.  I certainly do not want to diminish what USC has accomplished in recent years and in their record 3rd straight Rose Bowl win.  However, a few facts:

1) Penn St was co-champs of the Big Ten, yes, but the previous two years USC was playing the Big Ten’s 2nd best team, as Illinois and Michigan were replacing Ohio St teams slotted for the national championship game.

2) The Rose Bowl is essentially a home game for USC.

3) The PAC 10 had a perfect bowl season, which is nice.  But they have no BCS at-large teams this season and no tie-ins to a New Years Day game except the Rose Bowl, so they are not going against the stiffest competition.  Their #2 slot was Oregon to the Holiday Bowl to play the Big XII’s 4th team.  Their 3rd slot was to the Sun Bowl to play someone not good enough to win the Big East.

4) The Big Ten is struggling in bowls this year with only Ohio St in the Fiesta remaining they are 1-5.  But the fact Ohio St. got a BCS at-large means that everyone else played up one game from their nautural slotting with the exception of Penn St.  Put Ohio St. against Georgia, Sparty against S. Carolina, Iowa against Missouri, Northwestern against Kansas and Minnesota takes the Motor City tie-in to play Central Michigan and the Big Ten I’m sure has a better record.

5) The Big Ten plays mostly road games in their bowls every year.  They play a PAC 10 team in Pasadena, CA.  They play bowls in Orlando and Tampa against SEC schools.  They play a Big XII team in San Antonio, TX.  This year’s slotting against an ACC school in Orlando proved to be Florida St.

All I’m saying is don’t build USC too high a pedestal and stop trashing the Big Ten.  I happen to think that the Trojans might be the best team in the country and they got unfairly forgetten after their loss to Oregon St.  All the more reason to institute a playoff system.  But when you got 3 guys in a broadcast booth, and the most restrained is USC alum Keyshawn “Just trow me the damn ball” Johnson, you are getting a little overheated.


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