Saturday, December 19, 2009
Last night, the Villanova University Wildcats beat the University of Montana Grizzlies in the Division 1 FCS Football Championship, 23 - 21. It was an amazing game to watch between two great and classy teams. Montana had a great first half, Villanova a tremendous second half, and although either team could have won, it was Villanova's night at the end of a soaking wet game in Chattanooga.
In case you are wondering what FCS stands for, it is football championship subdivision (as opposed to FBS, which is football bowl subdivision). In other words, in the FCS, they actually determine the champion with a 16 team play-off as opposed to the nutty FBS system of selecting two teams and letting them play. Every other really good team in the FBS gets to play in a totally meaningless bowl game. Yes, the FBS has the bigger teams, more money, and the best players, but what kind of a crazy scheme to decide a champ is that? Fans of Texas Christian, Cincinatti, and Boise State, all undefeated this year but with no chance to even compete for a championship, might agree with me. Decide the champion with a champtionship series? What a novel idea! Hey, I know! Maybe they could try that in college basketball! We could call it "March Madness!" Naw, that would never work!
So Villanova (14-1) and Montana (undefeated coming in but now 14-1) did it the right way. They not only had to have great years to get in the field of 16, they each had to win three playoff games to get to the finals. As a Villanova alum, I am really proud of this championship and of the team. GO WILDCATS! V for Villanova, V for Victory.
And to Montana Grizzly fans - congratulations on another great year in the tremendous football tradition you have up in Missoula. I know it hurts to come up just a bit short, but I know that you are justifiably proud of your team. They had a tremendous year, and were three points away from an extraordinary one. You have great fans, a fantastic young coach, and a wonderful tradition. Good luck next year. I predict championships in your future.