...Congrats FIU. The Golden Panthers ended their 23-game losing streak by knocking off North Texas 38-19. FIU has steadily improved as the season has progressed. After averaging 8.5 points per game, 234 yards per game, and 3.7 yards per play in their first 8 games, the Golden Panthers averaged 28.3 points per game, 340 yards per game, and 5.1 yards per play. 'Of such inconsequential beginning dynasties are begun.'
...Not to be outdone by their Sun Belt instate brethren, the FAU Owls upset Troy on Saturday to win the Sun Belt title and gain a berth in the New Orleans Bowl. Unfortunately, for the Sun Belt, the Troy Trojans get left out of the bowl picture despite finishing 8-4 with their other losses coming on the road to Arkansas, Florida, and Georgia. Oh and don't forget their 18-point thrashing of Oklahoma State.
...Hawaii's comeback win was huge on Saturday night. For the conference, for Colt Brennan's Heisman hopes, and especially for the school. This bowl appearance will do wonders for recruiting and the $$ from Sugar Bowl will go a long way toward ensuring Hawaii's continued ability to field a football team. Those flights ain't cheap.
...In other mid-major news, Bronco Mendenhall has started a mini-dynasty in Provo, Utah. The BYU Cougars have won 16 straight Mountain West conference games, including 12 by double digits.
...In other, I suppose bigger news, the BCS got it right. I guess. As one of only two major conference one-loss teams, Ohio State has certainly earned a spot, despite the dearth of quality wins. LSU on the other hand, does appear to be the best two-loss team. However, every team with an argument has their fair share of flaws and ugly marks on their resume. Ohio State has by far the best loss (Missouri has the best losses), but they lack the quality wins LSU has. Georgia has several good wins, but when you lose by 21 to a decent Tennessee team and at home to a 6-6 South Carolina team, you have no room to bitch Mark Richt. Oklahoma may well be the best team, but falling in half of the road games they played to teams that range from pretty good (Texas Tech) to average at best (Colorado) should keep them out. As mentioned earlier, Missouri has the best set of losses, but unfortunately it came to the same team, so we pretty much know without a doubt they are not as good as Oklahoma. Virginia Tech? Please. Where's the beef? Their best wins are Clemson and BC. Good, but not great teams. Then there's the matter of that drubbing at the hands of LSU. No champion should get thrashed by 41 points. Yet if their hands team hadn't failed them in the first BC game, they'd have a chance to beat Ohio State for the title deserved or not. Southern Cal? Stanford. And let's not forget they may not even be the best team in the conference had Dennis Dixon stayed healthy at Oregon. As for Kansas? Well, I love the Mangenius, but their schedule does not have anywhere near the bulk to get them in the title game barring an undefeated season.
...One more note on the BCS. Actually two. Missouri got screwed. They beat two BCS bowl teams (Illinois and Kansas) and lost their only games to BCS bowl participants (Oklahoma). I do have a problem with them being left out at the expense of Kansas. As for Hawaii, they probably don't deserve their BCS bid considering the schedule. But I remember a certain independent playing in 3 undeserved BCS bowls this decade (and getting routed in everyone to my delight). If the hallowed teams garner rediculous BCS bids, I have no problem with the little guys using the system to their advantage.
...Finally I'll end with a commentary on Les Miles. Good coach? Sure. Great coach? Ummm excuse me? By my estimation, he has had the most talent in the SEC 3 years running, yet has somehow managed to lose 2 games every year and finally won his first conference title on Saturday. It's probably best Michigan didn't get this guy, especially if they end up with Brian Kelly. For my final note on Miles, I leave you this video.