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Running Blog Of BCS Championship: No. 1 Alabama Vs. No. 2 Texas

I wasn’t going to do this initially. I share the majority opinion that Alabama is just too good for Texas and that this should be a should be  a double-digit win for the Tide. But 33 days can be quite the equalizer. We’ve seen that throughout this (lackluster) bowl season. Plus, if this turns out to be another title game like the last one that was held in the Rose Bowl, I would regret not doing a running blog on it. So, better to be safe than sorry, let’s see what happens.

5:29 p.m. Vegas likes ‘Bama. The nation likes ‘Bama. But it’s all about the orangutan. That’s a big equalizer!

5:30 p.m. I feel the need to predict a close score. The long lay-off makes both teams even, no matter how badly Texas played in the Big XII title game. And Texas is still extremely talented. But I always side with teams with better running game and stronger defense — although the stats say that is too close to call. Alabama, 31-23.

5:31 p.m. I have no ground-breaking analysis. Colt McCoy needs to do everything well for Texas to win. Everyone knows that. Mark Ingram needs to run effectively for Alabama to win. Everyone knows that. Just like every other game, it’ll come down to turnovers. I just want to see if Texas can prove all of us wrong.

5:32 p.m. Flea and Josh Groban on way stage, performing the national anthem? I don’t get it. Which drunk producer thought that one up?

5:33 p.m. What I want to know is who the hell that happy drummer is in the background. He looks like he had a smile surgically plastered to his face.

5:35 p.m. Keith Jackson tosses the coin, then makes a direct route for Brent Musberger, hits him in the back of the head, steals the mic and, like Deion Sanders, says “This is MY house!”

5:37 p.m. Keith probably should have known that he was not mic’ed up. I would have loved to hear to what he said, but instead, no one can hear him and he is just looks senile.

5:39 p.m. Texas keeps the ball away from Arenas, keeps the kickoff short and Alabama will start at it’s own 34. HERE WE GO!

5:42 p.m. You can’t put much stock into anything this early, but the Texas defense is swarming. I expect ‘Bama’s to be the same. The better team will appear by sometime mid-way through the second quarter.

5:43 p.m. And we have the first play that sports writers will pick apart until our ears bleed! What was that, Nick? A fake punt pass on your own 20 with less than 2 minutes gone by in the first quarter??? Texas picks it off and now the Longhorns are rolling with the no-huddle.

5:44 p.m. I didn’t know that running back for Texas was Nate Newton’s kid. I wonder if he has failed any drug tests?


I didn’t see what the problem was, but he’ll be fine. It’s the last game in his college career. He better need an amputation if he is going to miss the rest of this one.

5:50 p.m. Well, McCoy is still out, but right now, Texas’ running game is cutting right through ‘Bama’s defense.

5:53 p.m. And just like that, Alabama’s defense stands tall as they stuff Texas twice on the ground and then force backup QB Garrett Gilbert to throw it away on third down. First-and-goal at the 3 and Texas is left to take a field goal.

5:55 p.m. The real story is now McCoy. It’s a right shoulder injury, his throwing shoulder. He has been taken to the locker room. What a crushing moment for one of the best QBs in college football history.

5:57 p.m. Wow! Alabama, both coaches and players, look completed blinded by the moment. The Tide doesn’t go after the kickoff and Texas recovers at the ‘Bama 30. HOLY CHRIST! They are playing stunned.

5:59 p.m. But Texas settles for another field goal, so it’s just 6-0, Longhorns, despite two Alabama brain farts.

6:00 p.m. After that last incompletion, did Kirk Herbstreit compare Garrett Gilbert to Gilbert Brown. I see the similarity.

6:02 p.m. The McCoy family looks pleased. They look like someone just robbed their house.

6:03 p.m. So, by the way he was holding it coming off the field, it certainly looks like McCoy separated his right shoulder. If it’s not broken, I would think he would try to do whatever he can to tough it out. Or is Garrett Gilbert the next Lou Gehrig?

6:05 p.m. That’s three sacks already for Texas. That’s not going to help open up Alabama’s running game and if that’s the case, this is not only going to be an upset, but a blowout.

6:06 p.m. McElroy gets smashed again, but that was just based on good coverage. The protection on that play was superb.

6:09 p.m. Just pop that baby right back in there, Colt!

6:10 p.m. Speaking of pop, McClain pops Newton and it’s a quick three-and-out for Texas. The punt is kicked out of bounds. Javier Arenas better get used to that.

6:14 p.m. Now the Tide is starting to move a little bit with its running game. Three plays — eight, nine and five yards. It looks like Alabama has finally decided to show up to the BCS Championship.

6:16 p.m. End of the first quarter. Texas is up 6-0, but that’s the only good news for the ‘Horns. Alabama is getting into a nice offensive groove, the Longhorns should probably be up more than six points with the two gifts ‘Bama has handed them, and their stud QB is lying on a metal table in the bowels of Rose Bowl.

6:18 p.m. … In an X-ray room. McCoy is lying on a metal table in an X-ray room. It’s not like he’s dead. He’s not being examined by a coroner. Didn’t want any confusion there.

6:20 p.m. You know Alabama’s offensive line has opened a huge hole up the middle when Terrence Cody is able to jog right into the end zone with Ingram. Untouched. How easy was that? 7-6, Alabama.

6:25 p.m. I give credit to Texas for trying to mix it up, but in the end, a double reverse is still a run. The arm of Garrett Gilbert is going to have to do something other than hand-off for Texas to have a chance.

6:27 p.m. Now Gilbert is shaken up. FYI, Texas’ third-string QB is Sherrod Harris. He’s a fourth-year junior who has played in five games in his Texas career. Get me Rex Kramer! Chris Simms!

6:32 p.m. This Texas QB fiasco is taking us off the point: We have a one-point national championship game. Texas’ defense just rebounded with a nice series.

6:35 p.m. McCoy’s dad just went to join his son in the locker room. He’s done like Barbaro. He might as well be a cow at a beef farm.

6:36 p.m. Gilbert finally throws a couple of passes. One is too low, one is deflected down. This season, Gilbert is 15-of-24 passing for 124 yards. I’m interested just to see what Harris could do.

6:41 p.m. Trent Richardson says don’t forget about me. Herbstreit he may have “a little bit more” speed than Ingram. Um, that’s no doubt. 14-6, Alabama. It’s only a one-possession game and Texas is in deep, deep trouble.

6:45 p.m. D.J. Monroe, who was suspended for the final three games of the season, looks like another Texas running back: Jamaal Charles. Wow. That’s all.

6:47 p.m. Just when the Texas’ offense shows life, Gilbert gives it away. Oh boy.

6:48 p.m. And now we’ve got Ingram getting whatever he wants and Texas not being able to tackle him. Brent Musberger is right. You don’t hear the words “will-breaking” on a drive in the second quarter, but that’s what this is. Texas has to be so depressed right now.

6:52 p.m. Texas forces a punt, but why did Alabama even try to throw it on second-and-5? Just keep pounding the ball!!!

6:53 p.m. The Longhorns would have to feel soooooooooooooooooooooooo fortunate to get this game to halftime, trailing only 14-6.

6:54 p.m. Gilbert has Shipley wide open. I’m sure McCoy hits him with that pass. Gilbert tosses it too far.

6:56 p.m. Run, run, run, run, run, run, run. That’s all ‘Bama needs to do. Texas can’t stop them right now. They have to be expecting it and they still can’t stop it.

6:58 p.m. Third-and-short, I would kick it here.

7:00 p.m. Saban finally plays it smart on fourth down and now it’s 17-6, Alabama. Texas should just take a knee. Let’s get to halftime and TRY to regroup.

7:02 p.m. I’m not exactly sure what Texas is trying to do here. Gilbert hasn’t shown anything positive. Why chance another interception?

7:04 p.m. You have got to be kidding me? I’m sure many Texas fans are absolutely irate and screaming at their TVs right now, so I will calmly ask the question that everyone will ask tomorrow: Mack Brown, why don’t you just want to go to halftime down by 11?

7:06 p.m. No, that is not as safe as it gets, Mack. A shovel pass is not as safe as a freaking kneel-down! Just take the knee!! TAKE THE KNEE! Halftime. 24-6, Alabama.

7:07 p.m. Screw being calm. That play call was asinine.

7:09 p.m. Man, that shovel pass is going to be talked about so much, you’re going to be sick of hearing about it by Saturday. But that’s not going away for a long time.

7:10 p.m. I thought Texas would be lucky to get out of that half down 14-6. Then, 17-6 was well enough. But now at 24-6, this thing is over. It’s not just the score but it’s how Alabama scored. Everyone in that stadium and around the nation than this was going to be a 17-6 game at half. Now, everything changes and the Longhorn players have to be shocked.

7:13 p.m. Lee Corso sounds like he’s either really tired or has been hitting grandpa’s cough medicine a bit.

7:14 p.m. But enough fluff. Back to the issue at hand — WHAT A PATHETIC PLAY CALL BY TEXAS! I WANT TO CLAW MY EYES OUT …

7:17 p.m. I’ll watch all the pundit shows tonight and early tomorrow, but I’m going to stop watching after that. This play call is going to be shown and dissected over and over and over again. Just like how I am doing here. I can’t let it go. But it’s still so fresh. The idiocy. Absolutely re-tarded.

7:21 p.m. The second topic everyone will talk about is how much McCoy’s absence changed the outcome of this game. But if Alabama ends up winning by some absurd score, like 48-14, which seems possible, his absence wouldn’t have mattered THAT much. There would be no reason to have any sort of “yeah, but” or asterisk surrounding this game.

7:26 p.m. A local news tease, which was obviously filmed before the game started just said: “BCS Championship games are always decided in the second half.” Whoops.

7:29 p.m. Mack Brown is trying to put a positive spin on things and trying to give his kids hope. What do you expect? But the suspense here is over.

7:30 p.m. Colt McCoy will not return to this game. First of all, I really feel for him. What a devastating way for him to end his career, especially on this stage. I can’t imagine his emotions right now. Secondly, he’s got to make sure that he doesn’t blame himself. This game is going to get ugly. But it’s not his fault. Injuries are just part of the game.

7:32 p.m. A first down for Texas! WOOOOOOOOOOOOO!! HOOK’EM!

7:35 p.m. OK, let’s keep the 39-yard screen play in the book, Mack.

7:37 p.m. Alas, that’s the highlight of the drive — probably of the night — for Texas. Punt!

7:38 p.m. There were more flashbulbs going off when the “idiot” went on the field than at kickoff. If he had just cut to his left, he would have scored. But he was taken down at the Texas 5-yard line. That streaker had no shiftiness, cutting ability.

7:41 p.m. Colt’s got the pads back on. You never know.

7:43 p.m. I’m just trying to give myself a reason to stay interested in this game.

7:45 p.m. This would be a fitting in to a lackluster bowl season. All of the BCS bowls were not very entertaining. The Rose Bowl — the real one — was probably was the best one. But even that wasn’t all great. This season was basically Auburn vs. Northwestern, Idaho vs. Bowling Green and then a lot of average-decent games.

7:50 p.m. Best thing I can say about Texas: That drive was … better. But that ‘Bama defense really bows up as soon as Texas starts starts to approach midfield.

7:58 p.m. Colt McCoy’s mother looks really happy.

7:59 p.m. Hey, congrats, Colt! You are the Player of the Year. Gooood for you.

8:02 p.m. This is probably going to be a quarter that Alabama end with less than 10 yards of total offense, but this game is just a stalemate right now. Neither defense is giving up ground — or maybe it’s neither offense gaining ground. Rating are through the roof, I’m sure!

8:05 p.m. Very nice throw by Gilbert to breathe some life back into this game. 24-13, Alabama, with 1:31 to go in the  third. Maybe this is a wake-up call for the Tide’s offense. You can now say Texas is playing better offense than Alabama in this second half. Who would have thought that?

8:08 p.m. Oooo, interesting. Texas’ kickoff hits an Alabama player and recovers at their own 42. As Brent Musberger said, how big Mack’s gaffe at halftime look now?

8:09 p.m. Jordan Shipley has to catch that ball there.

8:11 p.m. Alabama gets away with a couple of PI penalties on that drive, but let’s see what Texas’ defense does with ‘Bama inside its own 10. I would still run the ball at least twice, maybe three plays on this series.


8:13 p.m. “The Tooth Fairy.” It pains me to watch the previews on that one.

8:17 p.m. Texas knows what Alabama is going to do. But they can just continue. Herbstreit says it’s predictable. I say it’s effective.

8:18 p.m. Back-to-back killer penalties against Texas. But if that second one is pass interference, the referees probably owe Texas at least one from its last drive.

8:21 p.m. Correction: Three consecutive penalties. Amazing.

8:23 p.m. Third-and-5, run the bootleg.

8:23 p.m. Nope. ‘Bama throws a pass and Julio Jones — who has been invisible tonight — slips on the route, incomplete.

8:24 p.m. Now, I only say this because Tiffin missed the field goal, but why would the Tide attempt the field goal there? Let’s say he makes it. OK, so now you’re up by 14 instead of 11? Either way, Texas is going to need two scores. Why not just pooch punt it and move Texas’ offense back? Instead, Texas gets another short field, thanks to a stupid decision from Saban.

8:27 p.m. Alabama is playing pretty well for how many mistakes the players and coaches are making tonight.

8:31 p.m. Considering the time left and the field position, I think Texas is entering four-down territory here.

8:33 p.m. What is up with Shipley tonight? He’s been pretty good tonight, but he’s also dropped about three passes tonight.

8:34 p.m. You can see the confidence oozing out of Garrett Gilbert.

8:36 p.m. TOUCHDOWN, TEXAS! Blown coverage on Shipley! And then the Longhorns convert the two-point conversion and how about this, kids?? WE HAVE A THREE-POINT GAME WITH ABOUT 6 MINUTES TO PLAY!!

8:38 p.m. I think that just maybe the ‘Bama defense let its guard down for the second half. They saw that there was no McCoy. They had truly stolen all of the momentum just before the half. They thought Texas would just roll over. But now, they find themselves in a dog fight.

How big is that shovel pass-interception NOW?

8:40 p.m. Ingram’s back in. It’s business time.

8:42 p.m. Again, I’d run until Ingram blows a calf out. McElroy has been horrid tonight. Can’t trust him in this situation.

8:44 p.m. Yes, part of the failures of ‘Bama’s passing game should be attributed to Texas’ defense and the confusion it causes. But most of it is put on McElroy. He has gotten good protection since the first couple of drives and he has just been terrible all night.

8:45 p.m. You can say that Alabama got too conservative in the second half, but it was turned into a one-dimensional offense. Now, it’s a damn good dimension and one that I wouldn’t fault them for using continuously. But the Tide can’t throw the ball for a dime.

8:47 p.m. So it comes down to this. A freshman QB, called upon due to injury to a school legend, 93 yards away from a national championship against the best defense in the nation. WHAT A FREAKING STORY!!!

8:49 p.m. And the story gets squashed because Eyrk Anders comes in unblocked for the sack and Alabama records the fumble at the 3.

8:52 p.m. Third-and-goal at the 1. PLAY-ACTION PASS TO THE TIGHT END! It always works. Trust me.

8:54 p.m. Mark Ingram, second effort. What else is new? 30-21, Alabama. Nice late try by Texas.

8:58 p.m. I can’t wait until Gilbert struggles next year. You are going to have so many “What’s Eating Garrett Gilbert” headlines.

8:59 p.m. That’ll do it. Garrett Gilbert really played well for a freshman in the second half. But that defense got to him a couple of times too many.

9:00 p.m. And now let the talk begin:


The answer: Gigantic.

Of course, McCoy’s injury is probably the bigger story now, since the game turned out to be relatively close.

9:03 p.m. Good thing it wasn’t a tie game, Mr. Tiffin.

9:04 p.m. Overall, this game turned into the double-digit margin that I thought it would. It just took some very unusual routes to get there.

9:05 p.m. Greg McElroy was the quarterback of Alabama, but let’s not give him too much credit. 6-for-11 for 58 yards. He was horrible. That’s like saying that Derek Fisher “led” the Lakers to an NBA title because he was the point guard.

9:06 p.m. You think Alabama will throw a shovel pass here or take a knee?

9:09 p.m. Congrats, Alabama. You definitely deserved it. No matter what happened, you were still the better team tonight and all season. And I thought you were overrated in August.

9:10 p.m. Colt McCoy’s draft profile: Dead arm. That sound you here is the money rolling out of the back of Colt McCoy’s Brinks truck.

9:11 p.m. Nah, it won’t have any impact on his draft stock, but I really feel bad for McCoy. He didn’t deserve to go out like this. But sometimes, that’s just the way it happens.

9:12 p.m. OK, I am going to get out of here so I can write some other things. Thanks a lot for all of those you who followed along or just checked in. College football season is just eight months away.

  1. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 6:40 pm

    Murph, this game is a nightmare. Must they show a commercial after every three and out? Horrible.

    • spokes310
      January 7, 2010 at 6:51 pm

      This game is about to turn into a nightmare.

      • Scott
        January 7, 2010 at 6:56 pm

        Garrett Gilbert with a Starksian performance of 1-9 so far.

  2. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 6:41 pm


  3. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 6:42 pm

    And another commercial weeeeeeeeeee

  4. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 7:04 pm


    • spokes310
      January 7, 2010 at 7:06 pm


  5. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    Karl Malone, Karl Malone what are you doing?!?! KARL MALONE YOU GOTTA FOUL!

  6. Charles Barkley
    January 7, 2010 at 7:39 pm

    OH MY GAWD, LOOK AT DAMON JONES’ SUIT! Pleeease go back to Damon Jones’ suit after this dunk.

    • spokes310
      January 7, 2010 at 7:43 pm

      OK, OK guys in the truck. We’ve seen the replay five times now — go back to Damon Jones’ suit.

  7. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 7:52 pm

    Sid Bream, Mack Brown, and Jack Sikma on a motorcycle….

  8. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    How many Rum n’ Cokes do you think Joe Namath has gone through so far this game? And as I type this, Texas scored a TD, STOP THE PRESSES!

  9. Larry Bird
    January 7, 2010 at 8:09 pm


    • spokes310
      January 7, 2010 at 8:11 pm

      This has gotten a little interesting.

      A little.

  10. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 8:14 pm

    How sloshed is Joe Namath right now? He has to be so confused at the wierd turn of events going on right now.

    • spokes310
      January 7, 2010 at 8:22 pm

      He couldn’t care less about the team. He just wants to kiss you.

    • Scott
      January 7, 2010 at 8:37 pm

      Right now Joe is so drunk he has no clue what is going on. He is like whaaaaa their QB has two td passes now?!?! We’re only up by 3?!?!

  11. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 8:25 pm

    I can’t BELIEVE Nick Saban just tried a 52 yard FG in the 4th quarter up by 11 points, instead of pinning Texas inside the 10!

    • spokes310
      January 7, 2010 at 8:33 pm

      If you are reading this, you’ll see that I wholeheartedly agree.

  12. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 8:39 pm

    I’m telling you crazy shit happens in championship games, especially at the Rose Bowl.

    • spokes310
      January 7, 2010 at 8:43 pm

      Uh, this qualifies.

  13. Scott
    January 7, 2010 at 9:04 pm


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