Ugh. What a disgusting, anticlimactic letdown. This may be one of the few times I say this, but I think I preferred what the BCS gave us in 2005 over what a playoff might have delivered. When there are two, clear, undisputed and undefeated teams, the BCS works fine. It's when things get messy that the system breaks down.
No. 1 USC Trojans (15-0) VS. No. 3 Penn State Nittany Lions (13-1)
The Rose Bowl Game presented by Citi
Rose Bowl - Pasadena, Calif.
Saturday, Jan. 7, 2006 - 5 PM PST
Wind: SSE 1 MPH
Final Score: USC 61, Penn State 10
Player of the Game
USC RB LenDale White
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) - A year after USC became the first No. 1 seed to run the table and win a playoff national championship, the Trojans have become only the second team to repeat, after Kansas State did so in 1998 and 1999.
USC (16-0) completely dominated Penn State (13-2), 61-10, to win the Rose Bowl and hoist the ADT National Championship Trophy in front of the Trojans' adoring home fans.
The lopsided nature of the contest made for an anticlimactic end to a week of buildup. USC out-gained Penn State on 1st downs (28-9), out-rushed the Nittany Lions 394-118 and held every single player on the Penn State roster to less than 86 total yards of offense - even QB Michael Robinson, who was a woeful 4 of 11 for 53 yards and a TD.
Although Penn State led 7-0 early, the game quickly got out of control thanks to USC's "Thunder and Lightning" combination of running backs. LenDale White (22 carries, 207 yards) rushed for three of his four TDs in the 1st half and Reggie Bush (23 carries, 193 yards) scored both of his TDs in the 2nd quarter, as the Trojan advantage mutated from 10-7 to 38-7 by halftime.
Even a 54-yard Kevin Kelly FG, which split the uprights as time expired in the 1st half, could do little to stir the flagging spirits on the Penn State sideline, and things would only get uglier in the 2nd half, as the USC defense did not allow a single point after the break.
All helmet images are courtesy of The Helmet Project. Check it out - it's pretty cool.
All bowl logos are courtesy of sportslogos.net.
The 2006 FBS Playoff field will be unveiled at noon on Sunday, April 19. As usual, I will post the full bracket and assorted statistics tomorrow at noon.
- SUNDAY: 2006 field announced
- MONDAY: First half of the 1st round games played (higher seed hosts)
- TUESDAY: Second half of the 1st round games played (higher seed hosts)
- WEDNESDAY: 2nd round games played (bowl sites)
- THURSDAY: Final Four (bowl sites)
- FRIDAY: National Championship
- SATURDAY: Stats and analysis