BCS Title Game: An Outsider's Perspective

Jennifer MercerCorrespondent IDecember 25, 2008

The BCS National title game between Oklahoma and Florida is an intriguing matchup.  Both teams have super athletes at every position, great head coaches, good coaching staffs in general, and both will be prepared as they have certainly earned the right to be in this game. 

(Well Texas deserves to be in this game more because they beat the Sooners head to head.  And, given my intense disdain for the 'Horns it almost kills me to say that they should be the team playing Florida for the NC, but I digress terribly.) 

I heard some commentator say that Florida has the advantage here and the rationale was that OU's losing RB No. 7 makes them comparable to Alabama.  Bosh Flimshaw can be blamed for this ridiculous notion. 

Alabama has one serious receiving threat, Julio Jones, as they are primarily a running team.  OU has about six serious receiving threats and can run the ball almost at will regardless of who lines up at the RB spot.

This game could be close because bowl games are funny.  When teams have a month plus to prepare sometimes they can come out flat. 

Florida has a chance in this game: 1) if OU comes out rusty and/or lays an egg offensively (the Heisman curse), 2) because OU's defense is a bit suspect and 3) the Sooners have struggled in recent bowl games. 

There's no question in my mind that UF will be able to move the ball and score points.  However, Florida needs to be VERY careful in this game because, in my opinion, it is a slaughter just waiting to happen.  Oklahoma should win this game. 

Furthermore, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if the Sooners crush the Gators much like 1995 Nebraska did.  Oklahoma just has way too much offensive firepower. And contrary to their woeful defensive statistics they can play some really good D when they are focused.

For me the game boils down to three matchups: 1) OU's OL vs UF's DL, 2) how will UF's D cover OU No. 18) 3) turnovers. 

1) If Oklahoma's OL can protect Sam Bradford, as I think they will against the Gators front four and/or blitz packages then OU wins this one going away. 

2) And No. 18 for OU how do you cover this kid?  With a LB?  Yeah right.  He'll run away from any LB.  With a FS?  He'll out-muscle a FS.  With a SS?  Nope.  There's probably only one SS in all of college football that could cover, shut down, OU No. 18 and that's Taylor Mays of USC.  However, USC is playing Penn State in the Rose Bowl but I ramble. 

Look for OU's No. 18 to have a big night.  The only way to cover No. 18 is to employ some sort of bracket coverage, LB underneath and FS / SS over the top.  But then if you do that other people will be one and one. 

3) Which team will lose the turnover battle?  In this game OU can probably afford to lose a couple of turnovers and still win.  If UF turns the ball over a couple of times things will get ugly real fast for the Gators.

A "safe" prediction would be Oklahoma 35 Florida 27, but that's just not my style.  I'll go out on a ridiculous limb and prognosticate a huge Oklahoma win.

Oklahoma 63

Florida 24