There were a whole lot of folks watching the marquee matchup on ESPN last night between the Boise State Broncos and Virginia Tech Hokies. This game seemed to be a set up from the beginning to get quarterback Kellen Moore, particularly, and the Boise State team, in general, some important national exposure. The whole feel is that the sports nation wants an underdog to win the National Championship, and so, they would have to knock off a top team in prime time in order to begin the process of winning all twelve of their games and be able to get the invite to the Big Game. And...they did knock off the #10 ranked Hokies 33-30 in an exciting last minute finish.
Now, it may sound like I am rooting against such talk and hope, but...not so. I am a big fan of Moore and Boise State, but...I would prefer that they would be able to get all of the above accomplished without all of the hype, but this is just the way the system works (or doesn't work, depending upon your perspective). Some of the difficulties that the Broncos are going to face is the discussion about their weaker WAC schedule...and there is going to be a recurring rant against them by some of the sports talking heads throughout the Fall. Another issue is...if there happen to be three undefeated teams at the end of the twelve game season, the two teams from more prominent conferences are going to get the invite, and Boise State is likely going to be left out...even if they are #2, (much like Penn State has been disrespected in the past...for whatever reason). So, all of this could very quickly turn into a pro-NCAA playoff message (which, as I have blogged before, I am in favor of), but I am going to refrain from going that direction.
I believe that Boise State is going to have a more challenging schedule than people think. Oregon state just lost to Boise State rival TCU, but the Beavers are still going to be a difficult team to beat. Also, they will play Fresno State later in the season, and they are not going to be a cupcake -- they just beat Cincinnati last week, a team that won 12 games last year. The Broncos do transition to the Mountain West Conference for 2011, which has more prestige and respect, so this will help their cause, nationally. At the same time, they will have to face regular nemesis TCU, among other good teams in the MWC. So, it will be interesting to see how it all plays out for them. I will root for them...unless they run up against Texas, Texas A & M, or Washington. :-)