Tag Archives: Oregon

Would you take 75 to 1 odds?

By Kaleb Page

Let’s hop back in time for just a moment.

Let me take you back to a marquee game under the lights in Columbus, OH on September 6, 2014.

The game was between The Ohio State Buckeyes and Virginia Tech Hokies. A night game in the Horseshoe is a tall task for any team let alone Virginia Tech. However when the Hokies came to town they went all out on an Ohio State team that was still in the infancy stage in their season development.

The buckeyes just prior to the start of the season lost their center piece, the one everyone thought the entire season hinged on: Braxton Miller. When Miller went down, in stepped someone who everyone was scrambling to figure where he even came from. J.T. Barett took the reins and in only his second start faced off with the talented defensive mind of Virginia Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster. Foster also took advantage of an offensive line that was replacing four starters, three of which went on to be starters in the NFL.

All night Ohio State could just never seem to get it going. Whether it was dropped passes, poor blocking or even missed assignments on defense; there was a multitude of deficiencies to point out.

Upon losing the game 35-21 in a stunning home defeat, many looked to this team as a lost cause. A team that had no chance to even get anywhere near the college football playoff. The teams’ odds after the first game were 12 to 1. After the defeat, ESPN’s Darren Rovell found a ticket in Las Vegas that had the buckeyes at 75 to 1 odds to win the national championship.

Now I am no betting man but whoever had that ticket has to be doing a happy dance at this very moment.

Even though there were countless naysayers, tough road games, a loss of another quarterback and even the death of a teammate; this team became the ultimate definition of a team. Each and every week players on both sides of the ball stepped up to make plays and show how the team was growing. Even if I was not a fan of Ohio State I would have to be blown away with the resiliency and manner with which this team handled itself after so much adversity.

The college football playoff berth by the Buckeyes was set up after a 59-0 demolition with a third string quarterback (Cardale Jones) making his first ever start. It didn’t get any easier when the seeding gave the Buckeyes a match-up with the king of the SEC: Alabama. A game essential in Alabama’s back-yard, was just the second start for Jones but at the same time a coming out party for the talent, speed and physicality that this team developed from that loss early in September.

This past Monday night saw the improbable tale culminate the way it was meant to with Ohio State beating another stout team in Oregon. The first ever undisputed champion in college football history. Most teams that would have experienced the things this team did would have crumbled and maybe would have even struggled to go .500.

This team took that notion that they should feel sorry for themselves and threw it out the window. From “the slobs” (nickname of Ohio State’s offensive line) upfront developing into an unmatched force, Ezekiel Elliot fulfilling his potential to be a potent threat, a defense that found its mojo (the silver bullet defense is brewing up) and arguably the best coach in college football Urban Meyer; this team is complete. Their mantra of “The Power of The Unit” grew and grew as they needed everyone to make this dream a reality.

So do you want to take those 75-1 odds now…I sure wish I had way back when.

The Buckeyes mission is complete.

Who Spiked the Kool-Aid?!: SEC shocked, the miracle ride continues and more

By Kaleb Page

As the final days left in the college football season start to dwindle down, this bowl season gave us all some great moments, players and story lines. Whether it was the Camellia Bowl or the Rose Bowl this season of bowls and the inaugural college football playoff brought a great end to what was (at least for me) a season where almost every Saturday was a great slate of college football games.

As this cap played out over the weeks the theme of how dominant the SEC is took a huge hit. Even though the SEC did go 7-5 overall as a conference, the mystique of the conference left many in the sports world wondering what happened since the conference only went 2-4 against ranked opponents. Even though the piece was full of satire the title of Clay Travis’s piece on Fox Sports was something of interest. The title read “The SEC is Dead, Long live the SEC,” yes it is over the top and it is supposed to be, but there needs to be a discussion on this topic; discussion on is everyone else finally starting to catch-up?

With the introduction of the playoff and new varying bowl match making, is the SEC starting to come back down a bit? I would agree with some analysts who say that the conferences are starting to show parody but to say the SEC is completely terrible now is something I won’t go forth in saying quite yet. It is better in the end to see that more teams are coming into the fold and we aren’t being completely hammered with how the SEC is better than everyone else. Parody no matter what the sport is makes it that much more enjoyable because it makes things more interesting and competitive, instead of seeing the same old same old year after year.

The SEC has their bad teams just like every other conference. For those still over sipping on the SEC kool-aid and notice that nasty taste in your mouth don’t look at me, instead look at the Big Ten and other conferences that crashed the party.

The perception change that happened over the past few weeks to the SEC could really put in full effect by one team slaying the SEC’s biggest giant.

The Ohio State Buckeyes went into New Orleans, LA and faced the big bully on the block from the SEC: Alabama. As big as a nine-point underdog, it looked like the magical run by the buckeyes was doomed to be ended with such force that it might as well not even be played. Isn’t that why we play the game though? You play the game to prove that sentiment that the underdog has no chance wrong and for the buckeyes they did just that. Even though they got down early in the game, the buckeyes showed that they had the heart to win and continue their magical journey. The journey though still has another huge task in the way.

Monday night puts the end to all the talk on who the best team is in college football. Finally with the playoff we all will know that there is a definitive champion. Oregon off its impressive win versus FSU showed how potent their offense is and that the talk of them being “finesse” is something far from the truth. As mentioned above Ohio State looks to cap off an impressive season full of adversity by winning it all and showing what it means to be a complete team. It will be interesting to see these two teams play since both teams are full of great players and coaches. Making this game a battle more than just a physical one on the field, but one that is a mental chess match as well.

For the way this season will come to an end it pushes the old phrase “don’t drink the kool-aid” to the front. For all that we heard that the majority trend for people was to lean one way or the other (mainly on SEC teams), it truly shows at the end of this season that putting your full confidence towards one frame of mind is almost foolish. It also has shown that to essentially “drink the kool-aid or go only off of the thoughts of the majority,” is a habit we all need to break. To say I’ve been insusceptible to this would be foolish too, but I will say for the majority of this season I stayed away from the punch bowl so many others drank out of.

Hopefully next season we all can stay away from the kool-aid and make our own thoughts. Until then don’t drink the kool-aid too much…you’ve been warned.