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Day 12 of the Long March: Fiesta Bowl chat
2008-01-02 15:30
by Bob Timmermann

Only one game to draw people's attention and I'm guessing that not a lot of people are going to watch. But from Glendale, Arizona, it will be the Fiesta Bowl between #3 Oklahoma (11-2) and #11 West Virginia (11-2) at 5 pm PT.

The Sooners missed out on a chance to make it to the championship game because of road losses to Colorado and Texas Tech. But they did beat Missouri twice.

West Virigina was primed to play in the BCS Championship but lost its final game of the season at home to Pittsburgh. The Mountaineers have since lost their coach, Rich Rodriguez, to Michigan and will be lead by interim coach Bill Stewart. So far there have been five interim coaches in bowl games this season and they are 0-5 and only UCLA came close to winning. The other teams were Georgia Tech, Texas A&M, Arkansas, and Houston.

Oklahoma is 24-15-1 in bowl games. They are 1-2 in the Fiesta Bowl, defeating Wyoming in 1976 41-7 and then losing to Arizona State 32-21 in 1983 and to Boise State 43-42 in overtime last year.

West Virginia is 11-15 in bowl games. The Mountaineers lost their only previous trip to the Fiesta Bowl, 34-21 to Notre Dame back in 1989.

Oklahoma and West Virginia have played three times, each time in Norman. The Sooners have won two of the three meetings. The teams have not played each other since 1982.

My prediction for the game: Matt Vasgersian will make too many pop culture references. Terry Donahue will talk a lot about coaching in the Rose Bowl. Pat Haden will kid Terry Donahue about beating UCLA when he played there. The game will last longer than it should.

2008-01-02 16:08:26
1.   Xeifrank
How's the exhibition season going?
vr, Xei
2008-01-02 16:13:18
2.   Bob Timmermann
It really felt like Mao was leading me around yesterday on the Long March.
2008-01-02 17:02:44
3.   Andrew Shimmin
For his sake, I hope D4P didn't just see that. Of course, I hope he did, more, since I'm not particularly concerned with his sake.
2008-01-02 17:13:55
4.   Andrew Shimmin
Red tie man has his bottom coat button buttoned.
2008-01-02 17:20:11
5.   Bob Timmermann
Noted college football star Mark Grace performing the opening coin toss.
2008-01-02 17:20:35
6.   Andrew Shimmin
Huh. It's Terry Donahue. Didn't recognize him.
2008-01-02 17:33:23
7.   Gagne55
5 Mark Grace played football in college? I didn't know he was a two sport star.
2008-01-02 17:35:55
8.   Bob Timmermann
I don't believe Mark Grace played football. Hence my surprise that he did the coin toss.

He didn't even go to college in Arizona. He attended San Diego State.

2008-01-02 17:53:45
9.   Bob Timmermann
The actor playing the kicker in the Allstate commercial looks like he could barely kick the ball 10 yards.
2008-01-02 17:56:59
10.   Indiana Jon
Another exciting Bowl tonight. Let's hope for anything but another blowout. I have high hopes for the entertainment value of this game after turning it on, seeing a long Oklahoma run, and then hearing the tackler was named John Holmes. It's already a better game than the Sugar Bowl.
2008-01-02 18:07:04
11.   Bob Timmermann
OU's offense is mostly kickoff returns.
2008-01-02 18:22:42
12.   D4P
For his sake, I hope D4P didn't just see that. Of course, I hope he did, more, since I'm not particularly concerned with his sake

I have no idea what you're talking about. But speaking of sake: we ordered some at a Japanese restaurant the other day (Asian pear flavor), and it was served cold. Unlike revenge, I'm not sure sake is best served that way.

2008-01-02 18:31:18
13.   Andrew Shimmin
There was a pregame video bit with an Oklahoman of whom you do not approve.
2008-01-02 18:39:53
14.   D4P
Hmmm...I can't think of any Oklahomans off the top of my head of whom I do not approve. But then, again, I don't know where everyone's from, so I wouldn't rule it out.

Is Mr. Montana from Oklahoma...?

2008-01-02 18:43:18
15.   Bob Timmermann
Mr. Montana is from Pennsylvania.

But Toby Keith is from Oklahoma.

2008-01-02 18:49:09
16.   Bob Timmermann
The interim coach curse could be coming to an end tonight.
2008-01-02 19:07:59
17.   Johan
Note to self: Wager against Bob Stoops in his team's bowl game next season.
2008-01-02 19:17:10
18.   bobsbrother
I think that was the Oklahoma band playing "Thriller" at halftime. They may need to spring for some new sheet music.
2008-01-02 19:27:53
19.   Jon Weisman
9 - Isn't that kinda the point?
2008-01-02 19:36:23
20.   Bob Timmermann
I meant that his actual kick they actually used in the commercial looked like it would barely go 10 yards.

And he is supposed to have made the field goal.

2008-01-02 19:38:03
21.   Andrew Shimmin
So the Pac 10 officials aren't necessarily the worst. Unless they're reffing this game, too.
2008-01-02 19:44:52
22.   Bob Timmermann
How could anyone have thought that was safety? The kick provided the original impetus of the ball.
2008-01-02 19:57:23
23.   Bob Timmermann
Bob Stoops is determined not to be out trick-played this year.

However, they need to work.

2008-01-02 19:58:47
24.   bobsbrother
More curious was that whoever does the score graphic gave two points to Oklahoma.

Having covered a bit of college football, I would say I've never met a kicker who was that wimpy. It's a really bad stereotype.

2008-01-02 20:01:18
25.   Bob Timmermann
Another reason why the muffed punt never could have been a safety is that Oklahoma never had possession of the ball.
2008-01-02 20:02:23
26.   Eric Stephen
I'm normally more on the pro-Vasgersian side, but I'm not a fan of him continually referring to West Virginia as "WVU". It just sounds too long to be correct.
2008-01-02 20:03:20
27.   Bob Timmermann
Why is West Virginia's kicker wearing a huge fanny pack?
2008-01-02 20:04:01
28.   Andrew Shimmin
I'd like to meet the person responsible for inserting commercials into the middle of the announcer's explanation of scoring plays. Do they think Mountaineer fans are more suggestible at the very instant a touchdown is scored? "Hooray, my team scored! I should go buy a television with mirrors in it because I'm so happy about this."
2008-01-02 20:13:08
29.   Bob Timmermann
Rick Neuheisel hasn't called me again today.

And I was so ready to chat with him.

2008-01-02 20:20:28
30.   Bob Timmermann
Now OU doesn't have to try another 2-point conversion after missing that one.
2008-01-02 20:25:15
31.   Bob Timmermann
Oklahoma hasn't given up this many points in a bowl game since last year.
2008-01-02 20:44:01
32.   The Mootz
Toby Keith isn't pleased.
2008-01-02 20:49:15
33.   Bob Timmermann
Oklahoma hasn't given up this many points in a bowl game since 2005!
2008-01-02 20:50:18
34.   Johan
26 I was about to post the same sentiment. It sounded so odd from the start for him to be saying WVU. Back in the first quarter I even went so far as to count syllables with my fingers to make sure it was less efficient than West Virginia.
2008-01-03 15:51:18
35.   outdoorminer
As the only native West Virginian I've spotted in this thread, I can assure you that "WVU" is common usage back home, as is just plain "West Virginia." Either would be fine. Dunno if the announcer asked WVU's info person what the preferred way to refer to the team was, but he's not out on an extemporaneous limb there.

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