Wednesday, January 2, 2008

So Much For Hawaii's Undefeated Season

I finally took the time to watch a college bowl game this year (well technically its a new year now so the year is young). Too bad I picked the game that turned out to be a major disappointment. After going undefeated during the regular season, Hawaii got smacked by Georgia 41-10 in the All State Sugar Bowl. Perhaps this gives credit to those in charge of the BCS Standings who didn't give much love to Hawaii despite going undefeated because they played easy teams. Many thought if they were pit against a very good team, they would get embarrassed. This theory was proven Tuesday night.

Overpowering the country's last unbeaten team, black-clad Georgia took out its frustration at getting passed over for a shot at the BCS championship with a 41-10 rout of Colt Brennan and the Warriors on Tuesday night.

Next Monday, on the very same Superdome field, Ohio State will meet LSU in the national title game. The No. 4 Bulldogs feel they're as deserving as either of those teams, and they'll certainly get no argument from Hawaii, which came to the Big Easy with a perfect record and left all beaten up.

"We're No. 1," Georgia safety Kelin Johnson proclaimed. "We're supposed to be in the national championship game. The nation knows it, everyone knows it."

Added linebacker Marcus Washington as he celebrated on the field: "We're the best in the land. We should be playing next week."

Georgia (11-2) established itself as a leading contender in 2008 with a total whippin' of the 10th-ranked Warriors (12-1), who cracked the BCS with an unbeaten run through the Western Athletic Conference, then fell flat in their biggest game ever.

When a powerful offense meets a powerful defense, traditionally the cliche "defense wins championships" is used. That cliche certainly applies here. Knowshon Moreno ran for a pair of touchdowns in the opening quarter and the Bulldogs' defense made life miserable for Brennan, a Heisman Trophy finalist and catalyst for the nation's highest-scoring team. He was sacked eight times, threw three interceptions and lost two fumbles, one of them recovered for a Georgia touchdown.

After getting slammed to the Superdome turf one last time by Geno Atkins, Brennan staggered to the sideline, his night mercifully done. The junior had the worst showing of his career in a game played to the finish, going 22-of-38 for just 169 yards, less than half of his 348-yard average this season.

"This is not how I wanted my career to end," the senior said.

Heisman winners don't usually fair well in bowl games. The most notable example I can remember is Vince Young's upset victory over Matt Leinart. However, now look at these two players in the NFL. One is struggling to keep his team in contention and the other became injured and out for the season.

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