Thursday, June 28, 2012
Best and worst of the BCS
By Heather Dinich
It’s time to say farewell to the BCS as we know it. I know, I know ... sniff, sniff. Before we move on and officially embrace a four-team playoff, though, let’s reflect on the best and the worst of the BCS for the ACC:
ACC’s best of the BCS: Former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden used to keep an empty picture frame in his office, a spot reserved for his first perfect season. Following the 1999 season, which ended with a 46-29 win over Virginia Tech for the national title in the Sugar Bowl, Bowden put a photo of his 12-0 Seminoles in the frame.
The 1999 team became the first in the history of The Associated Press poll to go wire-to-wire as the No. 1 team in the nation. It was the first perfect season of Bowden’s career and included his 300th win. Quarterback Chris Weinke threw for 329 yards and four touchdowns, and receiver Peter Warrick got the final word over Michael Vick and helped the Noles to their second national title. Warrick set a Sugar Bowl record of 20 points.
According to The Associated Press, Bowden received a call from President Bill Clinton after the game, and the first thing he asked the president was, “How come you’re not working tonight?” Bowden is no longer working the sidelines for the Noles, but he set the standard in Tallahassee, and this game confirmed Florida State’s status as college football’s team of the 1990s.
ACC’s worst of the BCS: West Virginia. The jokes are still running with the Mountaineers’ offense. Clemson’s defense in the 2012 Orange Bowl was without a doubt the ACC’s worst moment in the history of the BCS. West Virginia set a bowl scoring record in the 70-33 win over Clemson. That’s right --seventy points more than Virginia Tech, Florida State and Wake Forest scored in their bowl games combined. Geno Smith tied the record for any bowl game with six touchdown passes. Tavon Austin tied a record for any bowl game with four touchdown catches. Clemson’s defense allowed 589 yards of total offense and seven touchdowns in West Virginia's seven trips to the red zone.
West Virginia scored 49 points ... in the first half.
Embarrassed? More like “ass-kicked,” according to former defensive coordinator Kevin Steele (note the word former). This was a monumental collapse on the ACC’s biggest stage, and it came at a time in which the ACC was ridiculed by many for having two teams in BCS games for the first time in league history. With Clemson’s loss, the ACC finished with a 2-6 record in its bowl games and dropped to 2-13 in BCS bowls. Instead of celebrating Virginia Tech’s at-large bid to the Sugar Bowl, the ACC and its fans were left cringing after Clemson’s performance, which did absolutely nothing to validate the conference’s place in the BCS.