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On Miles, Pelini, and general rights to play for the title

For lots of juicy details on how the whole Miles situation went down, definitely go check out the Michigan blog MGoBlog, one of the best CFB blogs around. They've got anonymous emails from former players on Miles' side, 3500-comment threads, and all kinds of other general craziness.

Bo Pelini will coach us in the Title Game. I don't know what to think of it yet, but I'll come to a decision before the game and post it so I can't go back and second guess it depending on how the defense plays. I'm leaning towards "bad idea," given Mark Richt's regretful comments on the Bowl Selection Show about his lame duck period with Florida State prior to moving on to Georgia.

Random musings: this whole thing still sorta has a slightly guilty feel to it, doesn't it? Not just because there's some debate about who deserves it, but just because we didn't handle our business and are merely fortunate beneficiaries of the most bizarre season in college football history. We are lucky, no doubt about it. That said, I have no doubt we deserve it over any team in college football:

  • USC: Playing rather well, but losing as a 6-TD favorite at home in the greatest upset in college football history makes their candidacy entirely invalid. Sorry. That just can't happen. Ever. ANY other team on the schedule, perhaps with the exception of Notre Dame or Idaho, and the world would be cool with it. But not Stanford. Understand, world: Stanford is no better than Appy State. In fact, Stanford would probably lose 6 or 7 out of 10 to those Mountaineers. That loss is a well-deserved permanent black eye.

  • Oklahoma: Has a legit argument. I'm surprised neither Kirk nor Brent on Saturday night were mentioning OU's candidacy. But alas, they lost Bradford for one game, and spotted Texas Tech a 3 TD lead that was too much to overcome. But then, we lost our QB and won the SEC Title. We win.

  • Virginia Tech: If only they'd played 60 minutes instead of 57 vs BC the first time around, we wouldn't even be having this argument. Yet a 6 TD loss to another contender reigns supreme. (Even better payback for 26-7 in Blacksburg in 2002, baby!)

  • Kansas: Lost to the ONLY good team they played all year.

  • Georgia: I love the intellectual dishonesty from Mark Richt. He thinks there should be a rule preventing conference champions from going to the title game, but since there isn't, then hey, what about us? You know, even without the SEC Title they might have an argument if they'd lost by one or two to Tennessee, but laying such an egregiously bad egg is just too much to overcome.

  • Then there's us. Unquestionably THE best win of the season, 48-7 over the team that finished first in the computer polls. Went through a gauntlet of a schedule and emerged just as scathed as most anyone else, with two losses. NEVER got blown out like Georgia or Va Tech, didn't trip up against massive underdogs (read, folks: Stanford +40 at USC, La Tech was +36 at LSU. What would the world think had we lost to La Tech?), sustained some pretty serious injuries (All American WR Early Doucet, All American DT Glenn Dorsey, QB Matt Flynn) which on the whole were just as damaging as anyone this side of Oregon. I think the "undefeated in regulation" argument is a joke, so I'll offer no defense there. We lost, plain and simple. But seriously, to the idiots saying we gave up half a hundred to Arkansas, why the hell are you losing your sanity and not paying attention to the fact that it was 28 in regulation? Anyway, on the whole whether or not our wins involved a dash of luck or general shakiness, it's a year in which we're just fortunate that external forces aligned to let us in the back door and give us a shot at the cyrstal ball. And for that I'm grateful.

And to the many people who are arguing that it should be based on who's playing the best ball right now, if your teams weren't involved, in any other year would you not be lamenting the nonsensical unwritten "early loss is better" rule? Don't be disingenuous; and don't complain because your team's on the other side of some argument this year.

Readers, you guys have anything to add there? Curious if I'm the only one who feels just a wee bit icky about the whole thing. Mountain Man seems to share my sentiment. It just doesn't feel quite as wholesome as it should. Certainly not on 2003's level.

Anyway, our fellow SBN Ohio State blogger Around the Oval will be covering the OSU angle all month, so head over there for their take on the world.