Two missed field goals effectively ended Boise State's shot at a BCS title game bid. Bodies will hit the floor in college football's penultimate weekend, but zillions of strivers are still alive - in EA Sports' NCAA Football, that is.
Reader Koda89 dusted off a copy of NCAA Football 2007 and challenged himself to take San Jose State - the worst rated team in that game - to a national title inside of two seasons. Like action flicks, you know he's going to pull it off, the question is how.
In year one, Koda89 finished the regular season 12-0 with victories over Cal and USC - both in their powerhouse days. The Spartans were ranked tenth in the BCS standings with no shot at a major bowl, until nearly everyone ranked ahead of him lost in a conference title game. That vaulted SJSU into a Fiesta Bowl matchup with Texas, which the Spartans won 36-17.
In the offseason Koda89 landed the No. 5-ranked player, overall, in the recruiting pool and the pre-season chalk was breaking his way. So the Spartans scheduled a non-conference slate of Florida, Oklahoma, Ohio State and Notre Dame, all of which had Top 10 rankings when they played San Jose State. He shredded them all, having the most trouble with Notre Dame.
After blowing out the WAC, San Jose State was ranked No. 2 in the BCS, behind South Carolina, vaulting to No. 1 after the Gamecocks fell to LSU in the SEC title game. His prize recruit took home the Heisman as a freshman (thanks, likely, to the insane stats that come from chucking the ball at him all the time.) Facing the West Virginia of Pat White and Steve Slaton in the national championship game, San Jose State led a shootout 35-31 at the half and motored to a 56-37 victory. Mission accomplished.
Here's the Box Score!
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Now the Kotaku Sports open thread commences with the sports highlights for today and tomorrow. All times are U.S. Eastern.
- College Football
It's rivalry week, and we don't mean North Korea-South Korea. That means Virginia-Virginia Tech, Missouri-Kansas, Florida-Florida State, Iowa-Minnesota, Mississippi-Mississippi State, and South Carolina-Clemson, all of which feature a ranked team. Best bets for stakes today: Michigan State at Penn State (The Battle for the Land Grant Trophy, ESPN2, kicked off an hour ago) and Ohio State-Michigan (ABC, kicked off an hour ago) will shape the Big Ten outcome. No. 21 N.C. State plays Maryland with a bid to its first ACC title game on the line. No. 10 Oklahoma State hosts No. 14 Oklahoma (ABC, 8) and No. 6 LSU at No. 12 Arkansas (CBS, 3:30) are the day's only matchup of ranked teams.
Best bets tomorrow include Jacksonville at the Giants (1 p.m., CBS), Miami at Oakland and Kansas City at Seattle (4 p.m., CBS), plus Philadelphia at Chicago (4:15 p.m., Fox). Bolts at Colts is your flex-game special on NBC Sunday Night at 8 p.m. The Monday Night turd is the 49ers at the Cardinals.
Regional coverage, but the Heat-Mavs game at 8:30 p.m. looks good if you can get that. Chicago is at Sacramento on WGN at 10 p.m. Tomorrow's best is by far San Antonio at New Orleans.
Tonight's CBC games are the Sabres at Habs and Leafs at Sens (7 p.m., both) with San Jose at Edmonton in the nightcap. Three games tomorrow, with the Blue Jackets at Red Wings (5 p.m., regional cable) the best.
- College Basketball
No. 1 Duke visits Oregon today for one of the last games to be played at venerable MacArthur Court. Tomorrow, No. 25 North Carolina hosts College of Charleston, a game the Tar Heels lost last year (Fox Sports Net, 5:30). No. 16 Florida and Florida State get in an early-year rivalry tussle (FSN, 7:30).
Remember, you may send Game of the Week nominations to owenATkotakuDOTcom, and flag it "Box Scores" in the subject header. Please include your commenter handle for proper credit. Top image via San Jose State Athletics