Thursday, January 8, 2009
UF 41, Oklahoma 28
Good morning from Columbia's airport, where I'm about to board my flight to Atlanta and on Fort Lauderdale to cover tonight's game. It's been weird the past three days to have been in that atmosphere around the game Saturday and Sunday and then gone. What I've observed from being outside of the cone of excitement around the game itself is that I don't think sports fans as a whole are all that fired up about this game. Part of that is because it's on a Thursday and there's been no other college football for three days. Part is the perception thanks to Utah, USC and even Texas that whichever team wins will have the crystal football but might not actually be the best team. It feels different than the OSU game did.
I do believe Florida will win tonight, mostly because they have a decided edge in special teams and no one has shown the ability to stop their offense all season despite using a variety of schemes. Oklahoma's best hopes are to completely dominate the line of scrimmage on offense, pray the ACC refs don't believe in calling holding, and throw to Jermaine Gresham over and over. Maybe the Mullen situation can throw UF's offensive rythym off, too. The Sooners are good, but I think UF gets it done. Either way, I'm looking forward to being there to see it unfold. UF's 4-1 all time in national title games with me in attendance, by the way. That's one stat even my buddy Chris Fallica can't give you.
One of this year's first mock drafts is out. If you believe their thoughts, Oklahoma has four players who'll be chosen before Percy Harvin barely makes it in as the final pick in the first round. No Brandon Spikes in round one either - not sure I'm buying that. I do think their belief the Lions would take Sam Bradford over Matthew Stafford is the correct one, although heaven only knows what Detroit will actually do.
I've got to go get on the plane, but check out this amazing story of a guy dealing with a polar bear. One more reason I'm glad I don't live in Alaska.