Football 2004 Recap

December 06, 2004

I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm tired of hearing people complain about how LSU did this season. There are two reasons that these complaints are annoying. First, we just won the doggone national championship! And in fact, we are still the national champions for another month. (Read that bold part again, and just try not to smile.) More importantly, LSU had a good season this year. Keep reading, and I'll back that up.


First, let's talk more about the national championship. Let's agree right here and now that any team that wins it all can't complain before four more seasons have come and gone. Do you really want to hear Yankees fans griping about what a raw deal they got this season? I think four years is a good amount of time, because five years is how long we had to suffer through both the Dinardo and Hallman eras. I don't think I missed a home game during the Hallman era, and in most of those games we were losing bad. In the rain. And up until 1991, I was probably there with an ugly date. So don't even begin to tell me this season was disappointing.

Come to think of it, my freshman year was the one where Mike Archer's team was raked fifth in the preseason, and he complained about that ranking being too low. Then, the Tigers went on to a losing season. Clearly, my being an LSU student brings bad luck.

So let's think about this season a minute. We lost to two top 10 teams, both on the road, both early in the season. We lost a lot of good players to the NFL, and had no quarterback with any real experience. We had Auburn, Georgia, and Florida all on the road in consecutive weeks, and had a hurricane threat right in the middle of it all. Then, the team had to get fired up for Troy and Vanderbilt sandwiched between bye weeks. It was about as horrible a schedule as you could put together.

Auburn has a legitimate claim to the title game, and it took them two fourth-and-long conversions and a bad referee call on an extra point at the very end of the game to get past LSU by a single point. Man, that really hurts to relive, doesn't it? Getting a title takes some breaks during the season, and Auburn got them this year. Change any one of those plays, and it's LSU vs. Tennessee in the SEC championship game last weekend, and probably LSU's third Sugar Bowl berth in four years. Oooh, the thought of it makes my stomach hurt. But that's football, and I'll take a 9-2 season with a New Year's bowl any year. Ask your favorite Mississippi State fan if he doesn't agree.

Now, let me go a little bit off topic for a minute. Remember a few years ago when LSU clobbered rent-a-win Miami of Ohio, and Nick Saban got a letter from their quarterback thanking the team for showing class during the romp? We thought that the kid would go on to a successful session in dental school, or insurance sales training, right? Wrong. Ben Rothlisberger is the darling of the NFL media. I thought I'd mention it, since I haven't heard any of our local media people bring it up. Besides, the Saints are playing for draft position, so I figure that anything that makes a Sunday game at all interesting would be worth sharing.

Remember: 3 more football seasons before you get to bitch. Good luck in your bowl pools.