“It hurts too much to laugh, but I’m too old to cry.”
Adlai Stevenson spoke those words in 1952, minutes after conceding the presidential election to Dwight Eisenhower. While my own aspirations paled in comparison to Stevenson’s, our ultimate goal remained the same: we both just wanted to win.
Like Stevenson’s failed bid to become Commander-in-Chief, my own attempt to rise up and grab the brass ring didn’t quite go according to plan. I’m still not sure just where I went wrong. Wait, what am I talking about? I know exactly where I went wrong. It was casting my lot with Oregon.
I learned this lesson on Monday night when the Ducks took on Ohio State in the inaugural College Football Championship Game in Arlington, Texas. After entering the game as the favorite, Oregon proceeded to, like the elderly test subject in Mel Brooks’ classic film “Young Frankenstein,” collapse like a bunch of broccoli.
I should have seen this one coming. After all, when was the last Pac 10 (or 12, or 14, or whatever) team to win a championship without cheating (USC)? If you said Washington in 1991 (and judging by the conversations I’ve had with people today, you didn’t!) you got it right. It’s been 23 years since a West coast team won it all. The high powered offenses favored on the West coast just don’t seem to translate to doing so.
So I lost. So what? It isn’t the first time my prognostications have failed me, and it certainly won’t be the last. I feel no shame in officially proclaiming Matt Maxwell as the 2014-15 Maxwell Brothers Bowl Prediction Spectacular champion. I’ve tasted victory before in our annual throw down, let him have his moment in the sun this year.
But what a ride! There is a reason why college football is so popular. Over the course of 39 games I witnessed dominant performances, insane comebacks, epic collapses, great individual efforts, ridiculous penalties, terrible calls, incredible highs, dispiriting lows, and everything in between. Some memorable moments:
-BYU and Memphis engaging in an ugly brawl following the Tigers’ double overtime 55-48 win in the Miami Beach Bowl.
-Navy squeaking out a 17-16 win over San Diego State in the Poinsettia Bowl in a game that was more or less a home game for both teams.
-Western Kentucky blowing a 35 point lead in the Bahamas Bowl, only to hold on for a 49-48 win when Central Michigan, which had just scored a touchdown on a 75 yard, three lateral prayer on the game’s final play, failed to convert on a two-point attempt.
-Texas A&M and West Virginia combining for over 1,000 yards of offense in the Aggies 45-37 win in the Liberty Bowl.
-Houston rallying from a 31-6 fourth quarter defecit to beat Pittsburgh in the Armed Forces Bowl.
-My beloved Georgia Bulldogs taking Bobby Petrino and Louisville to the woodshed in the Belk bowl behind Nick Chubb’s 266 rushing yards.
-The SEC East, after being looked down on all year, going 5-0 in bowl games vs just 2-5 for the SEC West.
-Michigan State scoring 21 unanswered fourth quarter points to knock off Baylor despite Bryce Petty’s 550 passing yards.
-Ohio State and Alabama slugging it out to the very end in a heavyweight fight eventually won by the Buckeyes.
-The excitement and intrigue of college football’s first ever playoff. If anything, it has made the game even more fun to watch.
Well, that just about does it for the 2014-15 MBBPS. I’d like to congratulate my brother Matt on his 22-21 win this year. Good sportsmanship dictates that I tip my cap to him and shake his hand. On a final note, I’d just like to remind him that I won last year 19-16, so there!
That’s it! Another bowl season in the books! To all of you who followed our series of random picks this year, thanks for reading. We always appreciate it. To see our final standings, and revist our picks, check out the chart below. I’ll leave you with a final word from legendary coach Vince Lombardi: “Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing. Unless you lose, in which case this quote is meaningless.”
Until next year!
|Bowl||Date||Team 1||Team 2||Keith pick||Matt pick||Winner|
|New Orleans Bowl||12/20/2014||Nevada||Lousiana-Lafayette||Nevada||Nevada||Lousiana-Lafayette|
|New Mexico Bowl||12/20/2014||Utah State||UTEP||Utah State||UTEP||Utah State|
|Las Vegas Bowl||12/20/2014||Utah||Colorado State||Colorado State||Utah||Utah|
|Idaho Potato Bowl||12/20/2014||Western Michigan||Air Force||Air Force||Western Michigan||Air Force|
|Camellias Bowl||12/20/2014||South Alabama||Bowling Green||Bowling Green||Bowling Green||Bowling Green|
|Miami Beach Bowl||12/22/2014||BYU||Memphis||BYU||Memphis||Memphis|
|Boca Raton Bowl||12/23/2014||Marshall||Northern Illinois||Marshall||Nothern Illinois||Marshall|
|Poinsettia Bowl||12/23/2014||Navy||San Dieo State||San Diego State||Navy||Navy|
|Bahamas Bowl||12/24/2014||Central Michigan||Western Kentucky||Central Michigan||Western Kentucky||Western Kentucky|
|Hawaii Bowl||12/24/2014||Fresno State||Rice||Fresno State||Rice||Rice|
|Heart of Dallas Bowl||12/26/2014||Illinois||Lousiana Tech||Louisiana Tech||Illinois||Lousiana Tech|
|Quick Lane Bowl||12/26/2014||Rutgers||North Carolina||North Carolina||North Carolina||Rutgers|
|St. Petersburg Bowl||12/26/2014||North Carolina State||Central Florida||North Carolina State||North Carolina State||North Carolina State|
|Military Bowl||12/27/2014||Cincinnati||Virginia Tech||Virginia Tech||Cincinnati||Virginia Tech|
|Sun Bowl||12/27/2014||Arizona State||Duke||Arizona State||Duke||Arizona State|
|Independence Bowl||12/27/2014||Miami||South Carolina||South Carolina||South Carolina||South Carolina|
|Pinstripe Bowl||12/27/2014||Boston College||Penn State||Penn State||Penn State||Penn State|
|Liberty Bowl||12/29/2014||Texas A&M||West Virginia||West Virginia||West Virginia||Texas A&M|
|Russell Athletic Bowl||12/29/2014||Oklahoma||Clemson||Oklahoma||Clemson||Clemson|
|Music City Bowl||12/30/2014||Notre Dame||LSU||LSU||Notre Dame||Notre Dame|
|Foster Farms Bowl||12/30/2014||Maryland||Stanford||Stanford||Stanford||Stanford|
|Fiesta Bowl||12/31/2014||Boise State||Arizona||Arizona||Boise State||Boise State|
|Orange Bowl||12/31/2014||Mississippi State||Georgia Tech||Georgia Tech||Mississippi State||Georgia Tech|
|Cotton Bowl||1/1/2015||Michigan State||Baylor||Baylor||Baylor||Michigan State|
|Rose Bowl (semifinal)||1/1/2015||Oregon||Florida State||Oregon||Florida State||Oregon|
|Sugar Bowl (semifinal)||1/1/2015||Alabama||Ohio State||Alabama||Alabama||Ohio State|
|Armed Forces Bowl||1/2/2015||Houston||Pittsburgh||Pittsburgh||Houston||Houston|
|Taxslayer (Gator) Bowl||1/2/2015||Iowa||Tennessee||Tennessee||Iowa||Tennessee|
|Alamo Bowl||1/2/2015||Kansas State||UCLA||UCLA||Kansas St.||UCLA|
|Cactus Bowl||1/2/2015||Washington||Oklahoma State||Oklahoma State||Washingon||Oklahoma State|
|Birmingham Bowl||1/3/2015||East Carolina||Florida||Florida||Florida||Florida|
|GoDaddy Bowl||1/4/2015||Toledo||Arkansas State||Arkansas State||Toledo||Toledo|
|National Championship||1/12/2015||Oregon||Ohio State||Oregon||Ohio State||Ohio State|
|(Tie breaker)||Final score of National Championship game:||37-30||38-31||N/A|