In the heart of Dallas, in the old Cotton Bowl, the Boise State Broncos squared up against the Boston College Eagles.
...for all of four series.
Boise State started with the ball, but was unable to do that thing that you always want to do when you start with the ball: Score. They then punted and didn’t do the second thing you always want to do: Stop the other team from scoring on their first possession. After just two series, the Eagles went on top with a 19 yard AJ Dillon touchdown.
Boise State 0, Boston College 7
...aaaand that would be the final score. Actually not even that, because there wouldn’t be a final score. With no alternate plan in place, despite the weather forecast having indicated this was a possibility for the last week, bowl officials canceled the game and it was officially declared a no-contest.
This, of course led to some predictable outcomes:
UCF has declared itself the winner of The First Responder Bowl.— Paul Schneider (@PaulJKBOI) December 26, 2018
Some highly relevant questions, criticisms, and observations:
And at least one person making the best of the situation:
Curtis Weaver said he had to make sure his jersey got dirty... pic.twitter.com/LK1xFTIJV9— Will Hall (@WillHallKTVB) December 26, 2018
Since the Broncos strengths matched up so well to the Eagles' weaknesses, it’s disappointing to not be able to see how the Broncos might have responded to what wasn’t the best start for them in this game. Most of all though, this is unfortunate because it means that the seniors are just...done. After that slippery farce of a Mountain West Championship game (don’t worry, I hated ‘whoever-slips-least-wins’ games well before it was cool—not just sour graping that), this was a chance for some of them to end their college careers on a high note. Unfortunately, this is how the college careers of Rypien, Frazier, Horton and all the other seniors will conclude. Some of them are done with football forever.
Now for some silver linings
No one yet knows what Alexander Mattison’s decision is regarding the NFL. Could this manner of ending the season sway him in the direction of choosing to stay? The old ‘unfinished business’ angle? And also the opportunity to be the feature back of a probable run-heavy team, breaking in a new quarterback? Who knows. But it’s possible.
Secondly, this is a highly unique scenario. I can’t recall a bowl game ever being canceled outright. It’s not a loss, but I would imagine it’s a similarly motivating outcome and that it can only help prepare the players and make them hungrier for a better 2019.
Any thoughts, questions, or comments you’d like to add? Add them in the comments!
In the meantime, and always...