The last time USC visited Ohio State, John Cooper gave up.
No, really. He gave up.
I was there and saw it at The Horseshoe. It was 1990 and the teams were ranked 18 and 12 or something like that. It wasn’t a huge game but it turned out being one of the weirdest in Ohio State history. It certainly didn’t help Coops standing with Bucknuts.
USC ran for 331 yards and would have had more – if the game was completed. The second-half was played in a dangerous lightning storm. After USC recovered an onside kick with 2:36 left the game was stopped. Too risky, the officials deemed.
USC won 35-26. Sure, the game was out of reach but you never know, right? One report stated that Cooper told officials that if the onside kick didn’t work, that was it.
The way I remember it after a lengthy delay, the skies cleared somewhat and officials came to Cooper and asked if he wanted to continue. Nah, we’re good, Coop said. Game over.
"We had some momentum," Ohio State quarterback Greg Frey told the Associated Press last year. "I had been down this road before. I'm thinking, 'We've got a ton of time.' "
I distinctly remember Ohio State president Gordon Gee (during his first term at the school) muttering some sort of disparaging remark as I passed him on the stairs to the interview room.
The situation certainly didn’t help Cooper with Ohio State fans. He would go on to bang his head against the wall against Michigan.• You missed a lot Thursday if you weren’t on a CBS conference call previewing the network’s SEC package.
The participants were Philip Fulmer, Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson, Spencer Tillman and Tim Brando. Some of these comments are bombastic – and great.
Danielson on Tim Tebow: “He does have a ways to go to be a professional quarterback. I’m one of those people who believe that’s his only position in the NFL.
"I don’t think he’s a tight end. I don’t think he’s a fullback. I don’t think he’s fast enough … He does need to learn to be more of a pro-style quarterback."
Fulmer on Lane Kiffin: “If you’re going to be brash you better be able to back it up.”
Brando on Kiffin: “What Lane Kiffin has done is energize the base. It’s what Sarah Palin did to the Republican Party. It doesn’t necessarily mean he’s going to be successful but he energized the base.”
Danielson on Florida’s invincibility: “There were two unbeatable teams in the modern BCS. The Miami team of 2002. It had 14 first-round draft choices on it, eventually. It lost to an Ohio State team that kicked field goals all year.
“That USC team (in 2005), out of their 12 games they scored more than 50 points seven times and they lost the championship game. Florida can easily lose a game (and still be champions).”
Danielson on LSU: "I felt that Les Miles lost his team last year by sticking too long with his quarterback (Jarrett Lee) … He benched everybody else but he failed to bench his quarterback. I thought he lost his team the second half of the season.”
Brando on prize LSU freshman Russell Shepard: “According to people I’ve talked to, his (off-field) abilities are Tebow-esque … On the field what he can do is similar to Percy Harvin.”
Danielson on Shepard: “If Russell Shepard is the leader of this team, they are not going to be a good football. If Florida would have hung it on Tebow, Florida would not have been good the first year either.”
Tillman on Shepard: “His talent is literally off the charts. This kid is more gifted than Vince Young was at this point in time.”
Fulmer on LSU defensive coordinator John “Chief” Chavis: “I hired him when nobody knew him at all … On a very poor football team offensively; I think we had the third or fourth-ranked defense in the country." (Tennessee was No. 3 last season.)
Danielson on Chavis: “He will not approach is stats last year at Tennessee. People who played Tennessee knew they didn’t have to score many points. People who play LSU know they are going to have to score points.”
Fulmer on Tim Tebow: “There’s nobody who is all of that. Well, Tim Tebow is all of that He put that team on his shoulders after the loss and won the championship … I’m sitting in the box (at the SEC championship game) and he puts the team on his shoulders again in the fourth quarter and goes on to win the national championship."
Lundquist on Tebow: “I’ve never seen anybody quite like him. There’s this danger we all have of going overboard. He walks the walk as the old phrase goes. He is remarkable.”
Danielson on Sam Bradford: “I personally wish … that Bob Stoops would have said to Sam Bradford, ‘I’m sorry I can’t let you play for my team this year. I can’t risk $70 million knowing some guard could turn a linebacker loose and blow your arm and your knee.’ I thought Sam should have been in the NFL.”
Brando on the Heisman race: “There is a backlash that Tim (Tebow) faces this year because he can’t be all that. There was a clear media backlash against Peyton Manning in his last year at Tennessee.”
Fulmer: "Don’t get me going on that subject."
Brando on BYU: It's really going to incense the SEC fan base more than any. It could come to an unbeaten BYU against a one-loss SEC team. Who do you take (for the BCS title game)? If BYU runs the table from this point forward. They have the schedule to give them the credibility that no other non-BCS team has had.
"You talk about shaking the rafters. If BYU is there and are denied, Sen. Orrin Hatch is going to have some fun ..."