Commentary

If ND, USC, OU or Texas were after me ...

Updated: October 16, 2009, 12:02 PM ET
By Jay Corbin | ESPN RISE Magazine

Full disclosure: I was never a top football recruit. I played a little ball in my day, but I never would have been an ESPNU 150 recruit. If we extended the list to the ESPNU 1,500, maybe.

Even though I never had BSC contenders knocking down my door, that doesn't mean I can't fantasize about it and think through what it'd take for a school to win my services. So, with Saturday's tradition-heavy USC-Notre Dame and Texas-Oklahoma matchups on tap, I spent some time trying to figure out where I'd go if my decision came down to those four schools.

USC vs. Notre Dame

[+] EnlargeWill Ferrell
Shelly Castellano/Icon SMIWill Ferrell is just one of many Hollywood stars likely to pop up on USC's sideline for Trojans games.

Uniforms: Although USC's maroon and gold look great, Notre Dame's navy and old gold scream tradition and success. Advantage: Notre Dame

Tradition: The modern era has belonged to USC hands down, but Notre Dame is like the New York Yankees of college football. Advantage: Notre Dame

Extracurricular activities: Show me movie stars, 80-degree weather and a beach in Indiana, and I'm sold. Until then, it's all about SoCal swagger. Advantage: USC

Coach: USC's Pete Carroll is a winner at this level, plain and simple. Charlie Weis may have won a Super Bowl ring as an offensive coordinator for the New England Patriots, but in college that really doesn't mean a thing. Give me Carroll and his national titles. Advantage: USC

Fans: It's easy to get crazy and root for a team in great weather, but when the mercury drops and the snow starts to fall the Irish faithful turn the heat up on the opposition. Advantage: Notre Dame

Mascot: The Trojan soldier riding in on a horse beats the cart-wheeling leprechaun at Notre Dame. Advantage: USC

Alumni: USC has recent stars like Matt Leinart, Troy Polamalu and Reggie Bush, while Notre Dame has greats like Jerome Bettis, Joe Montana and Rocket Ismail. Advantage: Notre Dame

And the winner is ... Notre Dame

Texas vs. Oklahoma

[+] EnlargeBevo
Brian Bahr/Getty ImagesAustin, Texas, is home to many familiar faces, too. None of them, however, is as imposing as Bevo.

Uniforms: The Oklahoma crimson and cream may be traditional, but you've got to love the burnt orange and white. Advantage: Texas

Tradition: Texas has always been a great football school, but when it comes to OU you're talking seven national titles and five Heisman Trophy winners. Advantage: Oklahoma

Extracurricular activities: I don't know too much, but I heard everything is big in Texas. So is the fun. Advantage: Texas

Coach: Mack Brown and Bob Stoops are good, but they've each delivered only one national title. Advantage: Push

Fans: I know diehard OU fans can get loud, but when you have tens upon tens of thousands of fans decked out in orange yelling, "Hook'em Horns," it's pretty hard not to be intimidated Advantage: Texas

Mascot: The Sooner Schooner can't hold a candle to Bevo, a gigantic steer that's been part of UT since 1916. Advantage: Texas

Alumni: Texas had Ricky Williams, Cedric Benson, Earl Campbell and Vince Young, while Oklahoma housed Billy Sims, Roy Williams, Jason White and The Beast, Adrian Peterson. Advantage: Oklahoma

And the winner is ... Texas

Jay Corbin is the lifestyle editor for ESPN RISE Magazine.