Following the PAC-12 Championship Game: David Shaw earned
PAC-12 Coach of the Year and also nationalCOACH OF THE YEAR. Both USC & Stanford would lose their respective bowl games; USC dominated by the Big Ten champs the Buckeyes of Ohio State; while Stanford playing in the Alamo Bowl lost a close one to Big 12 runner-up TCU.
*** The College Football National Championship game was played earlier this month in Atlanta, Georgia. I have no complaint about an all-SEC national championship. Alabama after all has played in three straight championship games. Call it guts! Coach Nick Saban's halftime decision to substitute a true freshman backup
over a proven starter
-- who possessed
a 25-2 win-loss record --
produced an eventual OVERTIME game winner supplying Saban's
filed 12/04/2017CFP Final rankings 8 - USC - Pac-12 champions, will face Ohio State, BUT in Texas, not in the Rose Bowl. 11 - Washington Wait? Stanford beat them! I saw this game featuring Stanford's season-best second half performance. 13 - Stanford 9-4 -- 2 of its 4 losses were to USC, both of which I also witnessed. 14 - Notre Dame Irish lose to Stanford in final regular season game to finish season ranked just behind the Cardinal 15 - TCU 10-3 record - 2 of its losses to #2 Oklahoma, TCU will face #13 Stanford
Stanford heads to its 9th straight bowl, seven straight under Coach David Shaw, this time in Texas (San Antonio) to face a team from Texas (TCU). Both teams lost their conference championships, so each lost out on "New Years Day" (NY6) bowls. Cardinal & Horned Frogs will face each other instead on Thursday Dec. 28 with coverage by ESPN. I will NOT be in attendance.
Game recap: Still hurts. Hard for me to look at the replays and not
'what might have been'. Stanford showed improvement from early September the last time these teams met, but USC defense used their bye week to be much better prepared. Stanford won the field position game with amazing punts. But Stanford defense, coming off a short week after dominating Notre Dame (which had crushed the Trojans 49-14) missed too many tackles. The 4th-and-1 play in the fourth quarter with the Cardinal trailing by 3, when Shaw went for the TD instead of a sure field goal, will be second-guessed for years. USC responded with a 99-yard drive that sealed their victory. USC wins its first Pac-12 Championship game ever in a season in which they did not play Washington, lost to WSU, and the Trojans' only wins against top-25 opponents were both against Stanford.
PAC-12 season wrapup commentary: So Washington does not play in the championship yet moves up 2 in the final rankings, higher than Stanford which defeated them in their regular season match-up. This upward move by Washington is "unprecedented". Who gets less respect: Stanford itself or the entire PAC-12 conference? On the one hand, the conference places two teams in NY6 bowls with their large multi-million dollar payouts ($8M). But the conference champ does not make the playoffs. In fact the two teams who played in the PAC-12 championship lost ground. And Shaw's team gets no respect again, yet another season with playoff week rankings below other teams from the conference that they beat in the regular season. Stanford loses the championship by a field goal yet ends up in an inferior bowl where I believe even a win will not help the program in terms of recruiting.
Heisman Watch 2017: It appears that once again a Stanford player will finish #2 in the Heisman balloting. That would be five second-place finishes for Cardinal star players in the last nine years. Brutal.