USC and Texas both completed their quests to make the Rose Bowl Saturday by annihilating their opponents--UCLA and Colorado, respectively-- by a combined margin of 136-22, leaving only one question unanswered in this year's strikingly clear BCS championship picture: which team will complete the process by losing by 60 in Pasadena?
"We know it's coming, and you can bet it's a debate we're prepared for," said Trojans head coach Pete Carroll, who was obviously still planning ahead despite a 66-19 dismantling of cross-town rival UCLA. "The BCS, designed to give us a boring, one-sided, and meaningless title game between one of the nation's best teams and an overrated squad of tackling dummies, has accidentally yielded a quality matchup."
One team, no matter how talented, will have to take their turn in the Jason White seat.
"Clearly this isn't the way it's supposed to be, but it sure as hell won't be us on the end of the beating," said Texas head man Mack Brown, speaking from his offices in Austin earlier this morning. "Somebody was supposed to lose by now, so now one of us gets it in the poop chute. That won't the be the Texas Longhorns. Hell, they're the ones named after Greek soldiers. You ever seen a cow that was into sodomy? Didn't think so. You try climbing up on the back of Bevo and see what happens to you."
Brown's passionate comments didn't sway BCS commish Kevin Weiberg, who reiterated a full commitment to the formula on the part of all concerned parties.
"We set up the BCS to give the people exactly what they wanted: controversy, lobbying in the media, and ultimately a one-sided, ugly, unwatchable, bear versus midget-style skull-fucking the American fan has become accustomed to in sport. It's a proven product, we believe in it, and those are the rules of the road for any and all teams concerned. One team is just going to have to buck up, get out there, and take a shameless, bare-knuckled, unmitigated red-assed beatdown and let the real champion claim their bloody crown in front of snoozing millions."
The announcement dampened postgame celebrations for both teams. Matt Leinart, last year's Heisman Trophy winner, thinks the system should try something revolutionary: allow the natural outcome to occur on the field without manipulation.
"Frankly, it's disappointing to think that we just can't play the game. It would have been cool to finish out my career with a great game against a great team like Texas. I have no idea what I'll do to console myself if we lose," said Leinart from his sedan chair borne aloft by naked, comely USC coeds. "I'll...I'll just move on, I guess," he said, clearly overcome by the emotion of his final home game as a Trojan and dabbing at his tears with a crisp hundred dollar bill.
Texas qb Vince Young took a more measured approach to the BCS dilemma.
"If we get the booty end of the stick, I'm not gonna be a happy man, don't get me wrong," said Young. "But I'm coming back, so I've at least got another shot. And we can't have a year without controversy and a lopsided blowout--it's college football tradition, like the Liberty Bowl, The Capital One Mascot Challenge, and all that other shit. So I can't worry about stuff that we can't control."
The charismatic qb did have one closing taunt for his opponents, though:
"I'm just glad Reggie's getting the Heisman and not me. That means we'll probably be the ones cracking out the pipes on the Trojans, right? Jason White, nothin' but love, son!"
The decision will come down to a coin toss conducted in Kevin Weiberg's offices on Monday, the results of which will be kept secret until moments before kickoff. Experts say that keeping the secret isn't the only challenge offered by the system.
"Making otherwise talented players lose not only on purpose, but by huge margins, presents serious logistical problems for BCS officials," said Dave Flechette, former BCS official and current BCS watcher for EDSBS.com. "How do you slow down an unstoppable player? Jason White made the job doubly easy over the past two years by coming without knees or any innate sense of composure. All that officials had to do was give him two cups of black coffee before the game, and nerves did the rest. "
Others, even pre-BCS championship game participants, required more clever covert tactics to ensure the traditional blowout, however, according to Flechette:
--In 2001, Eric Crouch was given a Heisman Trophy made entirely of lead, making him woozy and lowering his IQ by twenty points before an eventual blowout against Miami.
--In 1993, Sugar Bowl officials solved the puzzle of getting through a heavily armed University of Miami camp by hiring long-distance snipers to pump tranq darts into the neck of Gino Toretta during the Sugar Bowl.
--In 1996, fixers under Flechette performed what may have been their finest work, pumping four different amphetamines and steroids into the Gatorade fed to the Nebraska Cornhuskers, who then went on to administer one of the great BCS title humiliations by plowing the Florida Gators 62-24. "We were worried that we gave 'em too much, and that they were going to turn on the crowd and start ripping people apart. But rubbing all that deer musk on Wuerffel's pants really paid off---they went for him like it was a conjugal visit and he had bacon and hundreds stapled to his ass."
Flechette agreed with other experts that strategies for the teams involved in this year's games could vary wildly.
"If it's Texas, they might give Young some acid before the game--just enough to freak him out and make him throw three or four picks. If it's USC, you gotta triple it up with them. Leinart's tricky, too, since you can't just wear him out with a squad of hookers like you can with most guys."
"Bush is hard too--might bust out the tranq darts on him again, but he's so fast he might dodge 'em. I say kidnap 'em all with a squad of ex-Special Forces guys, give 'em enough intravenous
to make things fuzzy for them, and drop 'em all off at a meth lab north of Rancho Cucamonga. Story of the year, even if they make the game."