First true playoff in big-time college football.
It was Alabama, Florida State, Oregon and…
Well, we all know who it was. But pretend that you didn’t, and keep an open mind. Consider the following:
**Common opponents: One.
TCU 30, Minnesota 7
Ohio State 31, Minnesota 24
**Defeats: One for each team.
Ohio State AT HOME to Virginia Tech, 35 to 21.
The Hokies were two games under .500 (4-6) in their other regular season games vs FBS teams.
Texas Christian ON THE ROAD at Baylor by three points in a 119-point shootout. The Bears went 11-1 in the regular season and received serious consideration for the national playoff themselves.
TCU averaged 47 points per game; Ohio State averaged 45 ppg.
TCU allowed 20 ppg; Ohio State gave up 21.
TCU’s average margin of victory was 27 ppg to Ohio State’s 24.
While the differences in these numbers are not statistically significant, the slight edge has to go to the Horned Frogs.
Only three of TCU’s wins were by less than three touchdowns (21 points). Ohio State had SIX games decided by 17 points or
fewer, including one win that took double overtime!
Now, one could rightly argue that Ohio State proved it belonged with a scintillating, come-from-behind 42-35 win over Nick Saban’s powerhouse Alabama, followed by a 42-20 beatdown of Oregon in the national championship game. Fair enough.
But let’s not overlook what TCU did in the Peach Bowl. Gary Patterson’s team had a 42-0 lead in the fourth quarter before
Ole Miss kicked a filed goal just to avoid being shut out. That would be the same Mississippi team that beat Alabama!
TCU’s victory over the Rebels was the least competitive, most one-sided of all the 38 bowl games. As I watched it, I thought to myself, “Thorough domination.”
If the Buckeyes proved they belonged in the playoff, so did the Horned Frogs.
More on this later, i.e., in a future post at College Football Review/Preview!
Tell your friends.