Sports

Bowled over

LSU fans rub their BCS championship in the noses of Ohio State fans at the end of Monday night's title game in New Orleans.
LSU fans rub their BCS championship in the noses of Ohio State fans at the end of Monday night's title game in New Orleans. AP

That debate will rage on, but there's no debating that the Big Ten currently is incapable of respectfully representing itself in the important bowl games.

The Big Ten has been now outscored in its last four BCS bowls the past two years, 160-73. This was the only time that a Big Ten team scored at least 20 points, the result of a meaningless garbage touchdown in the final two minutes when the Tigers were already preparing their coach Les Miles for his celebratory Gatorade shower.

And Jim Tressel was left once again to explain how everything can unravel so quickly and decisively.

It didn't help that the Buckeyes committed five personal fouls.

"It's a difficult thing," he said afterward . "Just like any other situation, you've got to look at the facts and make your assessments based on that."

This game never generated the electrical build up worthy of a climax to a fabulous college football season because of the general consensus that neither LSU nor Ohio State was worthy of participation.

The Buckeyes' lack of competition will once again fuel the furor of those adamant that nothing short of an actual playoff compromises the integrity of the distinction of national champion.

But the BCS got it right -- again.

As outmatched as the Buckeyes looked once again, you still can't fault them for the Big Ten's collective malaise. They were one of two one-loss teams from a major conference, along with Kansas.

And these LSU Tigers resembled the edition from the season's second week when they laid a 48-7 whipping on a visiting Virginia Tech team that ultimately won the ACC championship.

But this will be remembered as a national championship game without a generally accepted national champion emerging.

The cries for a playoff -- or at the very least some apologetic plus-one format -- will intensify in the wake of another No. 1-ranked Ohio State not even remotely living up to its electoral billing.

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