Choosing a 2012 Theme Song for 50 BCS Contenders
The creative ways we find to talk about college football are unlike any other sport in the world, and that is why so many believe this is the best sport out there.
The countdown to the start of the season is now at 70 days, which means the drooling will soon begin for all the die-hard fans that love nothing more than Saturdays in the fall.
I am comparing the top current hit songs (according to Billboard) with the top 50 BCS contenders.
As some of you may realize and understand, a few of these selections may not have a ton of relevancy and that is what makes this water cooler talk more enjoyable.
So, here are your 50 BCS contenders (no order) with a theme song that best represents their team (and their future) heading into the much-anticipated 2012 college football season!
Note: Boise State would not be in the Big East until next season, assuming everything goes through, but I still threw them in since they have been perennial contenders for the last five-six seasons.
Virginia Tech: Wiz Khalifa, "Work Hard, Play Hard"
Frank Beamer and his Hokies are never the most talented team in the country, but they often play like such thanks to their tremendous coaching staff.
The reason is simple and it starts off with discipline and consistency.
Posting eight straight seasons of double-digit wins is absurd to even ponder, but Virginia Tech’s football program has become one of the top in the country thanks to their “Work Hard, Play Hard” mentality that they use every single game.
Clemson: Nicki Minaj- Starships
“Starships were meant to fly”, but I really think God just wanted Sammy Watkins to fly because the kid cannot be human.
We have only seen two other freshman in the history of the game named All-American (Hershel Walker, Adrian Peterson) and they were quite the names to remember for all of eternity.
Watkins is that gifted of a superstar wide receiver and he entertains the nation every single time he takes the gridiron.
The talents for Sammy can be restated for his Clemson Tigers. This ACC program just landed the number one recruit in the country and with Dabo Swinney getting that coaching extension; some believe they will be BCS bowl bound once again this season.
North Carolina State: One Direction, "Chasing the Sun"
Tom O’Brien and his Pack are still searching for answers on how to reach the brightest of achievements.
It starts in the opener on national television against a solid Tennessee squad that will draw similar comparisons in the gauntlet of an SEC.
Mike Glennon is a quarterback that is close to achieving solid success, but his receivers need to quickly develop a winning attitude or else this signal-caller’s talents will be wasted.
Miami FL: Kelly Clarkson, "Stronger"
The Hurricanes have gone through a lot, both on and off the field in the last two seasons, but better times are likely ahead.
Their thick skin and strong mental attitude should allow them to keep on moving up the success chart, as Al Golden is destined to get Miami “Stronger” in the immediate future.
North Carolina: Rihanna, "Cheers"
There will be lots to cheer for once Larry Fedora hauls in a few of his own recruiting classes. North Carolina football needs to get back to kicking in the teeth of its opponents and Fedora looks like the perfect fit.
He actually has the right pieces to catch us all by surprise this season as they should be favored in perhaps nine or as many as ten of their games.
The future looks bright, but the present might bring some of the faithful in Chapel Hill to a few toasts as well.
Virginia: Trey Songz, "Heart Attack"
For those Wahoo fans that had the displeasure of watching their Chick-Fil-A contest against Auburn, they must have blown a few gaskets over the special team issues that Auburn exposed.
Overall, the defense looked a step out of place and slow. In what was supposed to be a great finish to a great season that Mike London put together, it quickly escalated to a “Heart Attack” type of ending to the season.
Will they be able to bounce back with ease, or will UVA struggle to appear in a bowl?
Georgia Tech: Rita Ora, "Party & Bull****"
The Yellow Jackets appeared in the 2010 Orange Bowl against Iowa (losing 24-14), and it has not been smooth sailing having gone just 14-12 (9-7 in ACC) since.
Paul Johnson is a fine coach and his option has been nearly impossible to slow down, and his star quarterback, Tevin Washington, is returning. However, they could use a few more dynamic playmakers on the defensive side of the ball to boost their chances of beating every team in the ACC.
Although the fans in Atlanta may believe they can win the Coastal if they were to upset the Hokies in Blacksburg in the season opener, there will be no partying if the team can't show a bit more consistency.
Northwestern: Jason Mraz, "I Won’t Give Up"
Is there a better description for the Northwestern Wildcats?
The program only has one bowl victory in its program history—in 1949.
Pat Fitzgerald and his Wildcats must keep on fighting for a bowl berth because they have to eventually break that terrible, terrible curse that no program wishes upon its most hated rivals.
There is a great chance that they will not only return to a bowl game, but should finally be favored in a game (having been TD dogs or worse in their previous four bowls).
Louisville: Nicki Minaj, "Right by My Side"
This song perfectly describes Charlie Strong, because of how passionate and loyal he is to his Cardinals.
The ‘Ville seemed poised to represent the Big East in the BCS (no AQ’s, but they could go 10-2 and sneak in) if they can cap off a sensational season.
Still, even if they fall short off a BCS bid, we know that this coach will fight to the death for his program, through all the good times and bad.
South Florida: Usher Ft. Rick Ross, "Lemme See"
Is there a greater song title for the Bulls of South Florida?
The USF Bulls are picked every season by a few experts to win their conference, but this team finally has the looks of staying consistent and perhaps appearing in a BCS bowl.
Now, can they stay healthy and put all the pieces together with a big stud such as Florida State on the slate?
Cincinnati: Luke Bryan, "Drunk on You"
The fans might be drinking a bit right now with all the success that Butch Jones is bringing with him to the Bearcats program.
A few more double-digit win seasons and this program might soon become one of the best in the country, outside of SEC country.
Rutgers: Imagine Dragons, "It’s Time"
Greg Schiano is now gone with Rutgers and the Kyle Flood era is underway. Perhaps “It’s Time” they get back to relevancy on the national landscape, seeing as they are finally due to reach the BCS.
The Big East isn’t the toughest of BCS conferences, but it still is a respectable conference that is at least better (arguably) than any non-BCS conference.
Rutgers has a lot of talent coming back, but Flood—and the way he handles all that talent—may decide just how far they go.
Ohio State: Rihanna, "Where Have You Been"
Urban Meyer is finally back home in the state that he grew up in, and Columbus has to be beyond ecstatic to finally have him home.
Meyer’s program may not be eligible to play in a BCS or Big Ten title, but the near future certainly looks great for the Buckeyes.
If and when Ohio State puts together a ten or eleven-win season, the Buckeyes clearly will be shouting one of Rihanna’s latest hit songs.
Penn State: John Mayer, "Shadow Days"
Last season was not your typical season for any program, and the Nittany Lions now must be able to move forward as the Bill O’Brien era begins.
It's arguable whether all of last year should have never happened to any program, but it has helped this program become stronger as a community.
Penn State may not become a legit top-10 team nationwide, in the immediate future, but this program will be headed in the right direction under O’Brien and his new staff.
Wisconsin: Kirko Bangz, "Drank in My Cup"
The Badgers have plenty of drink (or drank) in their cup to celebrate with these days, albeit they would have loved to win one of the two Rose Bowls they appeared in.
Still, Wisconsin are the kings of the Big Ten at the moment, and Bret Bielema will not accept anything but another championship.
Returning Montee Ball and a stellar pair of linebackers (Mike Taylor, Chris Borland) will give them the power to once again live life large.
Michigan: One Direction, "What Makes You Beautiful"
You could compare this song to Denard Robinson and how beautiful his running is to watch as he seemingly glides past the opposition in his sleep, but how about the job that Brady Hoke has done?
His entire coaching staff deserves a ton of props (Greg Mattison, Al Bores) for turning around a defense that was once ranked 110th in total defense.
Hoke will have a ton of battles with Urban Meyer coming up that will be great to look forward to, but at the moment he has turned around the winningest program in the history of the sport back into perennial contenders.
It doesn’t get much more beautiful than that in the city of Ann Arbor!
Iowa: Linkin Park, "Burn It Down"
The preseason expectations and national perceptions of Kirk Ferentz and the Iowa Hawkeyes will be burned to the ground in 2012.
The emergence of quarterback James Vandenberg and an extremely favorable schedule should allow them to catch everybody by surprise.
Nobody is expecting a nine or ten-win season, which means the Hawkeye nation will gladly “Burn It Down” at Kinnick Stadium in 2012.
Michigan State: Travis Porter, "Ayy Ladies"
The ladies love eye-popping defenses and the Spartans will be flexing their muscles in 2012 to that tune.
William Gholston, Denicos Allen, Max Bullough and Chris Norman will wreak a ton of havoc up front on defense and there will be ladies, men, children and fans around the nation screaming for this team to lay the smackdown on every opponent on the schedule.
The question remains as to whether or not Mark Dantonio will finally catch a simple break to burst into the BCS.
Nebraska: Pitbull, "Back in Time"
The 2012 season may seem like we are “Back In Time” because the Huskers are capable of putting together a memorable season, thanks to a few special players.
Rex Burkhead is capable of throwing a chunk of virtuoso performances together against a few top-10 caliber teams.
Wisconsin, Ohio State, Michigan State and Michigan are all likely to be ranked in the top 15 (at the worst) when they meet up with Nebraska.
Plus, if they can at least split those four games, then we may witness Nebraska get back into the BCS fold like the good old days (last BCS appearance, ’01-’02).
Kansas State: The Wanted, "Glad You Came"
Bill Snyder is one legendary coach that cannot be thanked enough by the fans of Manhattan.
Turning around this program in two separate stints is crazy, but he has done just that and he finds electric and leader-driven quarterbacks as well.
Ell Roberson was a superstar for Kansas State not too long ago (’01-‘03), but Collin Klein might be capable of carrying this team on his back like he nearly did (Darren Sproles says hello).
A ton of talent returns to make this Kansas State squad fearsome, although its schedule will be very challenging.
Regardless of where the 2012 team ends up finishing in the polls, it would be nowhere without Bill Snyder.
Oklahoma: Flo Rida, "Wild Ones"
The Oklahoma Sooners have had some issues with obeying all team rules as a few of their star wide receivers (Trey Franks, Jaz Reynolds) recently had their scholarships removed from the team.
Bob Stoops is not the guy you want to tick off because he will send you packing home in a second. Throwing all of that to the side, this group is still loaded with a few “Wild Ones”.
Quarterback Landry Jones is a stud that I have stood up for many times, but the loss of Ryan Broyles down the stretch of last season really caused his production to drop completely off the chart.
Is he still an All-American quarterback?
I shout yes, but time will tell if Ryan Broyles made it because many “experts” (Athlons) have slighted him in the preseason All-Conference teams.
This defense (especially “The Sharks”) is loaded with studs, but they need to live up to it and put together a sensational season, since they fell apart (based on expectations) after being rewarded as the top team to start off last season.
Oklahoma State: Ellie Goulding, "Lights"
Mike Gundy’s offense is full of electric “Lights”, if you will, since they put up points with such ease.
This offense was absolutely loaded last season, with Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon, but not all will be lost upon the return of star running back Joseph Randle.
Texas: Future, "Same Damn Time"
The future is bright for these young and improved Longhorns, who just seem poised to breakthrough this season.
Their defense has several next-level players, and if they play together as a team, the sky will be the limit for this talented bunch.
West Virginia: Katy Perry, "Wide Awake"
The Mountaineers should be “Wide Awake” thanks to the excitement of playing in the Big 12, as opposed to the Big East.
Geno Smith has a bevy of stars at his disposal, which actually will cause opposing defensive coordinators and coaches to stay up at night—“Wide Awake”.
Dana Holgorsen has the talent to turn this group into an unstoppable bunch, but a banner start to the Big 12 could change the conference for as long as their mad scientist stays in Morgantown.
Baylor: Gotye Ft. Kimbra, "Somebody That I Used to Know"
The Baylor Bears will be missing Robert Griffin III and it is just not due to him bringing Waco their first ever Heisman Trophy.
R.G. III brought an electric atmosphere to the game that may never be duplicated again in its program history. He had a once-in-a-lifetime-career junior year, and his overall experience, presence and leadership ability will be tough for the Bears to find this season.
Texas Tech: Rihanna, "Birthday Cake"
Once the season starts and is a few weeks old (9/18), it will be time to celebrate the 58th birthday of the “Gambler”, also known as Tommy Tuberville.
He has had solid success at his two previous programs (Ole Miss, Auburn), so is this the season where he takes them back into the postseason?
TCU: Flo Rida, "Good Feeling"
It not only is a “Good Feeling” but a great feeling that the Horned Frogs are officially in a BCS conference.
Winning a prestigious conference will not only get you into the BCS, but it will give your squad an opportunity to play for all the marbles.
Just think of how Gary Patterson's Rose Bowl team a few years back drew so much excitement. It will be twice that amount heading into a season where they are not picked by most to represent the Big 12 in the BCS.
Still, the talent will be a thrill to watch and they will be serious threats when all is said and done.
Washington: Calvin Harris Ft. Ne-Yo, "Let’s Go"
The Huskies are simply waiting to show up on defense, in terms of becoming relevant, and that Alamo Bowl performance was anything but.
Keith Price has several legit weapons for spreading the wealth, but it should be stated that they need to start knocking off the Pac-12 teams they are expected to dethrone.
It kills your program even if you beat Oregon, Stanford or USC if you later lose to a mid-tier squad. Many of the fans, you could argue, are just shouting, “Let’s Go”.
Utah: Tyga Ft. Lil Wayne, "Faded"
The Utes have a chance to shine as they host the USC Trojans on a Thursday night primetime game that will decide their Pac-12 fates.
However, most might argue that they will be no match for the receivers and that their own offense will not be able to consistently move the ball enough against a solid USC defense.
If they do pull off the shocking upset, the chances of the preseason darling will be a bit “faded” since they could fail to win their own division (thanks to an inspired Utes squad).
Notre Dame: Fun. Ft. Janelle Monae, "We Are Young"
The Notre Dame Fighting Irish are a young squad that will be playing with a bit of house money since the entire nation essentially will be picking them to only win seven or eight games this season.
Their five crucial contests against Stanford, Michigan, Michigan State, USC and Oklahoma will test them a ton.
However, the youth of this team could propel them to greater things than most expect.
There are a few veterans (Zach Martin, Cierre Wood, Tyler Eifert and Manti Te’o), but the quarterbacks and receivers are still a bit unproven (talented nonetheless).
Boise State: Rihanna Ft. Calvin Harris, "We Found Love"
Boise State has been blessed to have Chris Petersen as their head coach. What an enjoyable ride it has been for the last six seasons, going a ridiculous 73-6 in the process.
They have fallen short of a chance at the BCS National Championship, but they are 2-0 in the BCS and have achieved so much success in a short span of time.
It has not mattered which players have returned or not after every season. Petersen is able to rally the troops together, as he has seemingly put forth a tremendous team every season.
The Smurfs on average have seemingly been able to compete with every team in the country, and time will tell if they can take that next step as conference affiliation continues to shape up (move to Big East among other thing).
Auburn: Drake, "HYFR"
“HYFR” is what many fans from all over the country will be shouting if they too knocked off the top-ranked team in the nation.
Hosting LSU will give them an excellent opportunity to become nationally-relevant, assuming they can avoid obliteration at the hands of the Bayou Bengals.
Auburn is loaded up front on defense and they have quite a few playmakers that can stretch the field. The consistency just needs to be taken up a notch, if the pieces are perfectly set in place to succeed.
Texas A&M: LMFAO Ft. Lauren Bennett & GoonRock, "Party Rock Anthem"
The Aggies are partying it up in College Station and they will continue to throughout the season, because their fanbase is quite the joy to follow.
Their rabid bunch treats every home game as if it is the Super Bowl, but win or lose in year one with the SEC, we should bank on the A&M faithful to show up—and then some.
Mississippi State: Train, "Drive By"
Dan Mullen had tremendous success two seasons ago, as he eclipsed the double-digit victory mark, but everybody wants to see more of that instead of the moderate success we saw last season.
So, was that 2010 season just a “Drive By”, and a fluke per se, or did that season show what the future will look like with Mullen in charge?
Florida: Kayne West Ft. Big Sean, Pusha T, Chainz, "Mercy"
Most of the opponents that go up against the Gators defensive line will be screaming for mercy, because they can inflict a ton of pain.
This youthful group has the makings of becoming one of the best in the game and Will Muschamp should be chomping at the bit to get UF back among the nation’s elite.
Georgia: Calvin Harris, "Feel so Close"
Mark Richt has to “Feel So Close” to a BCS bowl game and an SEC Championship, because we have not seen as many talented players on defense in Athens in quite a while.
The stars need to rise to the occasion, obviously, but even both sides of the ball possess a boatload of studs.
If all the pieces come together, bank on UGA returning to the SEC title game with a solid chance to play for all the marbles, depending on the outcome of that game.
Tennessee: Drake, "Crew Love"
The cast of offensive weapons that the Volunteers have heading into the season will be a fun bunch to watch.
Tyler Bray, Da’Rick Rogers and Justin Hunter alone will put on some clinics against quality SEC teams. Many are counting them out, but they should stand a legit chance against the likes of Florida, Missouri, Georgia and South Carolina.
South Carolina: B.O.B., "So Good"
Life is “So Good” for Steve Spurrier and the Gamecocks these days, since they are just coming off the best two-year stretch in their program’s history.
Winning 20 games in two seasons was once mission impossible for this program, but they have the studs to compete with nearly every team in the entire SEC nowadays.
They should be able to keep it up, but now they just need to breakthrough and appear in a BCS bowl.
Vanderbilt: Nicki Minaj Ft. 2 Chainz, "Beez in the Trap"
James Franklin and the Commodores faithful cannot be concerned about what anybody has said or thinks of their current program.
Vandy is in great hands with Franklin in charge, and they will get their dues in the near future. A few more bowl games and wins in the SEC, and everything will take care of itself.
Missouri: Adele, "Rumour Has It"
Will Missouri defeat Georgia to start off the SEC season? Because these Tigers are much better than they have been given credit for.
Many people start and/or believe in these types of rumors, but Gary Pinkel’s squad sure brings a ton of excitement to the SEC.
Heading off to the East as opposed to the West should help them right off the bat, but there are not many (if any) easy outs in being part of the SEC.
UCLA: Big Sean Ft. Nicki Minaj, "Dance"
Jim Mora Jr. may return the Bruins to a prominent program that can become immediate factors in the Pac-12.
They have the talent base to improve and become a ranked team sooner than later, and for that they should be dancing in due time.
California: Jana Kramer, "Why You Wanna"
“Why you wanna make me keep wanting you” is something fans in Berkeley might be asking themselves after continuously falling short under Jeff Tedford.
The unfortunate thing about sports is the word expectations. Not living up to them can cost you your job and it often can grind your program to a halt.
However, Tedford has continued to show up in respectable bowl games, thanks to the solid NFL talent that he manages to haul in essentially every season.
Washington State: Jennifer Lopez, "Dance Again"
Washington State’s football program would love to dance again as soon as possible and Mike Leach might lead them far.
It helps to have All-American Marquess Wilson and a respectable quarterback, Jeff Tuel, but Leach's winning resume should allow this team to start hitting the dance floor in terms of success.
Stanford: Maroon 5 Ft. Whiz Khalifa, "Pay Phone"
Andrew Luck meant the world to this program as he brought them to consecutive BCS trips, but the great programs will always reload.
We are about to find out a whole lot more of what David Shaw can bring to the table.
With a tremendous coach, this squad will hopefully not have to feel as if they need to use a “Pay Phone” to haul in a successful quarterback (Brett Nottingham, Josh Nunes).
Arkansas: Karmin, "Brokenhearted"
Many may be “brokenhearted” with the way things sadly ended with Bobby Petrino as the Razorbacks' head coach.
It hurt so much because this team is loaded with talent and the fanbase certainly will not expect anything less than a BCS bid.
Tyler Wilson and Knile Davis are arguably the best QB-RB duo in the country, and there is no excuse for at least a New Year’s Day bowl, but at the end of the day, this program could be brokenhearted if they fall short again.
Oregon: David Guetta, "Titanium"
This Ducks offense is practically “Titanium” because it has not even come close to stalling under Chip Kelly.
Sure, there have been some games in which they faltered (see Boise State ’09, 2010 Rose Bowl and USC last year), but overall this offense is on a different level compared to everybody else.
LSU: Drake, "The Motto"
The simple motto of the 2012 season for the LSU Tigers is to finish what they started.
They beat the Crimson Tide in their own backyard last season, but were unable to finish them off when it mattered the most.
Now, they get to give Alabama some of their home cooking and this team has the looks of perhaps being every bit as good as last year.
A different quarterback and some playmakers will change things up a bit, but the defense overall may only get better.
If they can avoid getting tripped up by the brutal schedule, they will once again be appearing in the BCS title with a much better chance at winning this time around.
USC: Justin Bieber, "Boyfriend"
This article is humorous like the intention is, but Lane Kiffin is essentially the “Boyfriend” of this current Trojans program.
Or you could argue the same for quarterback Matt Barkley, as his elite status sort of has this football team destined for a berth in the BCS title (or least a BCS bowl).
This Heisman frontrunner has what it takes to lead them to the promise land, but Lane Kiffin needs to come out and prove that last season was not a fluke with his ability to have everybody in the program behind him.
Florida State: Carly Rae Jepsen, "Call Me Maybe"
The Big 12 would love for Florida State to give them a lovely phone call, just to say they want to be a part of the current conference that just has ten teams.
The Noles however, have no interest and probably would rather head off to the SEC if they were to go anywhere.
Even legendary Bobby Bowden says they are much better off staying in the ACC if they want to dominate the landscape of college football.
In terms of BCS title contenders, will the boys from Tallahassee finally give them a call?
We have seen them ranked a bit too high in recent memory (we could go back last decade), but this team finally looks like they may break through.
Will they finally burst into the spotlight under Jimbo Fisher?
Alabama: Havanna Brown Ft. Pitbull, "We Run the Night"
Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide football program might as well shout out, "We Run The Night" because they simply cannot be stopped right now.
Their offensive line will be owning the night arguably every weekend on the gridiron and the reloaded defense will make Saban and his squad look as if he never lost a few defensive All-Americans (superstars).
Plus, that Trent Richardson guy who was a world-beater will somehow be replaced, thanks to a stockpile of talent that keeps on getting better.
Yes, the rich are only getting richer, and it looks as if the Crimson Tide will be BCS title contenders for many years, with the best coach in college football.
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