My good friend Ken sent me a text Saturday night right after his beloved USC Trojans surrendered 52 points to the Oregon Ducks that evening.
“Oregon is the real deal,” he texted.
I agree. But not for reasons one might think. I’m an Oregon fan because they’re the only team that has had the guts to play Boise State in a home- and-away series.
Of course, Boise State crushed them in Autzen in Sept. 2008, leading 37-13 in the 4th quarter before Oregon’s faux comeback closed the final score to 37-32 making the game look closer than it really was.
Oregon then had the mettle to travel to Boise State in a nationally televised game on the Blue ‘Smurf-Turf’ in their 2009 opener, and they were man-handled once more. In fact, Oregon couldn’t even manage a 1st down until midway through the 3rd quarter, losing again 19-8.
Boise State Broncos 2, Oregon Ducks 0… Care to dance another time?
Meanwhile, give credit to Ken Goe of the Oregonian, who remarked, “Any team that is too chicken to test themselves against a Regional challenger, has no business playing on the National Stage in the BCS Championship Game.”
So, now it appears that the only thing preventing Oregon from keeping its #1 BCS ranking are the Oregon State Beavers in the upcoming Civil War. The OSU Beavers, also lost to Boise State a few weeks back by two touchdowns. In addition Oregon State lost earlier this year to TCU 31-20.
Maybe we could ask TCU, another team that jumped past Boise State recently in the BCS rankings, if they think Oregon is the real deal?
TCU LOST to the Boise State Broncos 17-10 in last years Fiesta Bowl, so their opinion would be a qualified one as well.
Perhaps we could ask San Jose State Head Coach Mike MacIntyre if he thinks perhaps Boise State is the real deal? His San Jose State Spartans played Boise State (lost 48-0), Alabama (lost 48-3), and Wisconsin (lost 27-14 in a hard fought game). Meanwhile Wisconsin beat Ohio State, and Big-Ten power Iowa on the road!
On Labor Day Weekend, when Boise State traveled 2,000 miles east on a hot, humid night to open the 2010 season against Virginia Tech, there were 80,000 crazed Hokie fans there to cheer on their team. Meanwhile, Boise had small section that resembled Boy Scout Troop #86. That was the largest home crowd to ever witness a Virginia Tech game. It was every bit a home game for Va Tech, unless you want to over-emphasize meaningless trivialities.
The scene was symbolic… And the fact remains that Boise State, even though they have done everything asked of them, continues to be disrespected by many folks that simply want to exclude them for capricious and arbitrary reasons.
After the game VaTech Head Coach Frank Beamer was respectful, “They’ve got a lot of great players and they’re very efficient,” he stated.” “They really coach those guys up, and the tempo of the game, the way they move guys around, we did everything we could to beat them, and we couldn’t.”
Neither could Oklahoma…
All one has to do is observe how physical Boise State is at the line of scrimmage, and at the point of attack, and it’s obvious they can play with and beat anybody. Take a look at their veteran QB, their talented receiving corps, and their experienced running backs.
It’s far too simplistic to penalize them for playing in the WAC. “They could never make it in the SEC, the Big-12, or even the Big-Ten,” pundits will say.
Really? How do you know? It’s a vacuous statement because it can never be proven.
Frankly, they would do just fine in any conference. And no one can guarantee me with any certainty they wouldn’t win every game, I’m not buying it. By the way, the teams in the aforementioned conferences never go undefeated, either. Or, at least when it happens it’s extremely rare.
Until then, the Oregon Ducks are the real deal. If for no other reason, at least they’ve had the fortitude to give the Boise State Broncos a shot at them…twice.
And if Oregon runs the table the rest of the way, they will assure themselves a spot in the BCS Championship game in Glendale, Arizona…
How about Boise State?
In the meantime, memo to all Boise State Haters:
Hate them all you want, just give them a chance.
That…would be the real deal.
(c) 2010 BernieFratto.com