Saturday, October 25, 2008

Showdown at the Shoe

I am really surprised ESPN hasn't come up with a catchy name for this game. Ever since the "Collision at the Coliseum" proved to be more of a collapse, I think ESPN has gotten away from really over hyping a game like this.

Not that it hasn't gotten plenty of run with constant updates on the bottom line all week and Gameday showing up in Columbus, I am glad ESPN has sort of gone away from over-hyping a game.

It is No. 3 Penn State at No. 9 Ohio State, but is really has the feel of a top-5 matchup. For Penn State, this game is huge. Maybe the biggest game for this school since 2005 Michigan. Three years ago, the Lions stumbled once, and finished the year No. 3.

That same year, Texas went on to face an unbeaten USC team for the national championship. The Nittany Lions did work their way back to No. 3 in the BCS. As devastating as the Michigan loss was at the time, I was able to look back at the end of the year and see Penn State might not have played for the national championship even had they gone undefeated.

I don't think that is the case this year. Sitting at No. 3 in the BCS and facing the toughest team left on the schedule, I think Penn State can get into the National Championship with an undefeated season.

Once again Texas sits above them in the polls ahead of No. 2 Alabama this time around. I just don't see both of them going the rest of the way unbeaten. I thin one will fall before the end of the regular season potentially opening the door for Penn State if the Lions can take care of business.

It is not going to be an easy task. Ohio State is not the same team they were a month ago. Early in the year they looked vulnerable. Bennie Wells was hurt and a true freshman was stepping in at quarterback.

People were already telling me the door was open for the Nittany Lions. I knew better. The game was a long way away and a lot of time for Ohio State to right the ship. They have played in the last two national championship games so I knew they Buckeyes were not going to just lay down.

I have avoided talking much about Penn State's chances of winning the title. I have been saying I'm not going to really start getting excited until after this game. I Penn State is undefeated at the end of the night, then I will start thinking about the possibilities.

Until then. I will just sit and wait.

No comments: