|COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFF CHAMPIONSHIP
Mon, Jan 12, 2015
AT&T Stadium, Arlington TX
Here we are, folks. The final game of the 2014 college football season is upon us, with nothing to look forward to for the next seven months but darkness and cold and misery. Well, except for National Signing Day. And spring ball. And whatever excitement we can muster from the NFL Draft. But there are no more games until the calendar again turns toward autumn, so we have to try and enjoy this last one to the fullest. Of course, that becomes a little more difficult when your team's not playing in said game, but in this case -- for most of us, at least -- there's a fairly clear rooting interest. And on that note, let's get to what it is we're rooting for in the first place.
Here we are, folks. The final game of the 2014 college football season is upon us, with nothing to look forward to for the next seven months but darkness and cold and misery. Well, except for National Signing Day. And spring ball. And whatever excitement we can muster from the NFL Draft. But there are no more games until the calendar again turns toward autumn, so we have to try and enjoy this last one to the fullest.
Of course, that becomes a little more difficult when your team's not playing in said game, but in this case -- for most of us, at least -- there's a fairly clear rooting interest. And on that note, let's get to what it is we're rooting for in the first place.
The game: The Oregon Ducks take on the Ohio State Buckeyes in the inaugural College Football Playoff Championship Game. It will be Oregon's second shot at playing for the undisputed national championship of top-flight college football, having previously lost the BCS Championship Game to Auburn following the 2010 season. Ohio State claims seven national championships, although two are of the somewhat dubious nature (1961, FWAA, and 1970, NFF). However, the Buckeyes do hold four AP championships, and on two of those the coaches concurred; additionally, the coaches gave the Buckeyes the 1957 title. They were 1-2 in BCS Championship Games, defeating Miami after the 2002 season before falling in consecutive title games after 2006 and 2007 (to Florida and LSU, respectively).
This will be the ninth meeting all-time between the Ducks and Bucks. Ohio State has won all eight previous contests.
You like coincidences? Oregon and Ohio State are the two teams which have beaten K-State in top-level bowl games. They were the only two teams to defeat Michigan State in 2014. And most amazingly, the two schools whose teams are playing for the championship of the first college football playoff are the same two schools whose teams met to determine the very first NCAA men's basketball championship.
Odds: Oregon is a six point favorite; the over/under is at 73.
Tipoff: Monday, January 12 at 7:30pm CT, AT&T Stadium (75,000) in Arlington, Texas.
Tickets: Seriously? It's less than three hours to game time. You're not looking for tickets online; you're either watching on TV or looking for them in the parking lot. But hey, if you insist, you can find standing room tickets on the secondary market for the low, low price of only $237. You want a seat? Okay, that'll set you back anywhere from $338 to $1800, and we're not counting the dude trying to sell two club level seats for over $6K each. Average seat price in the secondary market is running right around $600.
Television: It's everywhere.
As you're probably at least vaguely aware, ESPN is unleashing the Megacast tonight. Here's the rundown:
- ESPN proper: the main broadcast, with Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Heather Cox, and Tom Rinaldi.
- ESPN2: Film Room, with Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen, Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi, Nebraska coach Mike Riley, and Vanderbilt coach Derek Mason breaking down the action.
- ESPNU: ESPN Voices, with non-CFB analysts Jay Bilas, Aaron Boone, Julie Foudy, Barry Melrose, Mark Schlereth, and Michael Wilbon discussing the game as it transpires.
- ESPN News: Off the Ball, featuring Bob Wischusen leading a panel including Kevin Carter, Matt Millen, Jason Sehorn, Matt Stinchcomb, and Amari Toomer in studying what's going on in the game away from the main action -- offensive line play, pass coverage away from where the pass went or on run plays, and so forth. (We're pretty interested in this one, in principle.)
- ESPN Classic: Sounds of the Game, or "the feed without those annoying people talking". Instead of announcers, you get extra crowd and field mics.
- ESPN Goal Line: Commercial-free split-screen coverage featuring the ESPN Radio crew on audio, with lots of additional replays and lots of stats.
- ESPN3: In addition to all the above feeds being available via WatchESPN, ESPN3 is providing so many different things we have to sub-bullet!
- Oregon Home Team Radio: the main visual broadcast feed, except with more focus on the Oregon sideline and featuring the Oregon radio broadcast crew of Jerry Allen and Mike Jorgensen.
- Ohio State Home Team Radio: same thing only for the Ohio State crowd, with Buckeye Radio voices Paul Keels, Jim Lachey, and Marty Bannister.
- Spider-Cam: Spider-Cam, does whatever a camera can while hovering over the field. This feed, like Sounds of the Game, will have no announcers.
- Data Center: Commercial-free, will include social media reactions and other graphic content.
- Taco Bell Student Section: Commercial-free option which will include frequent camera feeds from within a special section of the stadium where Taco Bell provided tickets for students from both schools.
Radio: In addition to the schools' individual radio feeds (broadcast talent noted above), the game will also be available nationally on ESPN Radio with Mike Tirico, Todd Blackledge, Joe Schad, and Bill Lemmonier. That feed is also the satellite feed, available on Sirius/XM 91.
Online: As noted, all video feeds will be available via WatchESPN. In the very unlikely situation at this point where none of the above methods of enjoying the game are available to you yet you still have internet access and speakers, you can visit the Oregon and/or Ohio State websites and grab free audio streaming from there.