Obligatory Sports Thoughts
* I’d said on a few occasions this year that I didn’t think the Buckeyes were really the best team in the country. That doesn’t mean that I’m happy that they lost. Illinois, to my thoughts at least, is one of these teams that is always tricky – even when they’re bad, they’re usually tough. Maybe I’m just remembering the Cooper years with some myopia, but that game was always trickier than it should have been. This year obviously proved no different.
Now, we’re one of a ton of teams of one loss, all vying for too few bowl berths. Luckily, if we beat Michigan next weekend (never an easy task) then we’ll at least be playing on New Year’s Day in the Rose Bowl. I don’t give us a shot in hell of getting back to the national championship game now – our schedule isn’t nearly strong enough to warrant being considered over teams like LSU or Oregon.
* The fact that Hawaii is being dismissed outright for consideration for the BCS is ridiculous. Yes, they’re from outside the BCS cabal – but shouldn’t Boise State have taught us anything? If a team is good enough to win every game they play, they deserve to be in the mix – not ignored. Otherwise, let’s shrink the Bowl Subdivision to just include The Annointed Conferences, and call a spade a spade. At least Kansas seems to be getting some respect.
* I’m told that Houston won the Western Conference Final – not surprising, considering their pedigree and the Wizards. So we have a rematch of last year’s MLS Cup on our hands. I’ll be pulling for Houston.
* Congrats to the fans in Seattle for apparently being the latest to join MLS – here’s hoping that they take the Sounders name and identity, if not their current players.
* For as much as I love the fact that San Jose is getting their team back, and that Kansas City is staying put, I cringe every time I think about the fact that we’ll be playing games in minor league baseball stadia. I’ve seen Rochester games on TV, and watched the old Miami Fusion play Fulham in person at a baseball stadium south of Miami – this is no way to watch a soccer game. Here’s hoping that Kansas City’s permanent stadium gets approved quickly and easily, so we can keep up the momentum generated by Toronto this year.
* Unfortunately, I didn’t get out to any of the high school games this weekend at Crew Stadium. My son turned 2 today, so our attention has been focused on him. He has been asking to watch soccer, however, so maybe there’s hope that we can get out to the Tecos exhibition on Tuesday. If not, there’s always MLS Cup next weekend I guess.
* Fulham lost to Liverpool, 2-0. Not surprising, considering they thumped Besiktas in midweek. Lille drew – again. 3-8-3 on the year is hardly a recipe for Europe; I just hope its not a ticket to Ligue 2.
I’ll have more substantive thoughts in a separate post…