MOTSAG Pretend College Football Playoffs: #2 LSU versus #3 Clemson; 1st Quarter

Semi-Finals

The last “close game” The Joey Burrow led Tigers of LSU has was October 26th against a very game #9 Auburn Tiger team that had one game plan, try to keep the ball out of his hands. The Auburn Tigers failed(23-20) but the Clemson Tigers and Trevor Lawrence played it almost perfectly in a first quarter that saw them go on top just as the quarter ended.

Etienne and Burrow lead the charge in the first quarter

Almost every scripted first drive by Clemson this season has ended up in a TD. Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne combine for all of the rushing yards until 3 and goal from the 4 yard line and an incomplete pass intended for Tee Higgins. Dabo Swinney took a time out but chose to kick the FG and go up 3-0.

The key stat here is Clemson ate up more than 7 minutes of the 1st quarter clock(7:13) and turned things over to their defense, hoping to force a three and out and get back to work quickly.

Joey Burrow was not going to have any of that and only needed 1:52 of the clock to score. Derek Stingley gave LSU great field position and a short field after a 47 yard return. After two quick hitter to Jamar Chase, Burrow found a wide-open Thaddeus Moss over the middle for the 34 yard score.

On the ensuing kick-off disaster almost struck as Joseph Ngata muffed the short kick that bounced off the back of a teammate and into his hands. He then advanced to their own 39 yard line for Trevor Lawrence.

Etienne picked up where he left of chewing up short yardages and giving Clemson better efficiency on RPO as Lawrence kept it himself a few times to gain first downs. With 3rd and 11 from LSU’s 22, Trevor Lawrence found Tee Higgins who made maybe the best catch of the season in the corner of the end-zone as time expired in the first.

Clemson heads to the second quarter leading 10-7.

MOTSAG Pretend CFP Playoffs: Quarter finals; #2 LSU versus #7 Oregon

This should be a match-up for the ages as far as playoff games go in this first ever quarter final, but #7 Oregon hasn’t had much of a break after winning the PAC12 championship game and coming right back and playing a very game Appalachian State the following week in a play-in game.

Justin Herbert had to lead the ducks down the field on the final drive to defeat the Mountaineers 35-28.

These two teams met in 2011 and it was mostly the Tigers as they won 40-27.

Joe Burrow and his on fire Tigers of the Bayou have had a nice rest since rolling over Jake Fromm and the Georgia Bulldogs 37-10 in the Mercedes-Benz Dome in Atlanta, Georgia and appear perched for a run to possibly meet his former Buckeyes in the final.

First Quarter – The Tigers wasted little time scoring and Joe Burrow had nothing to do with it. On the first play from scrimmage for the Ducks, Derek Stingley Jr. stepped in front of an Justin Herbert quick out and took it to the house 27 yards later. The next drive by the Ducks stalled at their own 43 and after a 45 yard punt, Joe burrow and the guys took over at their 17.

The expected winner of the Heisman Trophy completed a 12 play 83 yard drive eating most of the first quarter clock and made the score 14-0 at the end of one.

Second Quarter – Justin Herbert, Oregon’s all-time leader in pass completions (827) and pass attempts (1,293), took a golden opportunity after a great kick-off return by Mykael Wright for 65 yards to LSU’s 35 yard line and then connected with Johnny Johnson III on a 35 yard scoring strike and pulled within 7 at 14-7.

That lasted for all of 15 seconds as Edwards-Helaire return the kick-off for a 100 yard score and put the Tigers back up two scores 21-7. That’s would be the score at the half and neither team had much offensive statistics to boast. Herbert finished 4-9 for 57 yards, one pick-six and one score. Joe Burrow wasn’t much better but was enjoying a perfect day throwing the ball, 8 of 8 for 75 yards and one score.

Third Quarter – Joe Burrow and the tigers got the second half kick-off and did what they have been doing all season. Continuing to be perfect in the passing category, he lead the team down the field and finished the drive with a 7 yard TD toss to a wide open Thaddeus Moss all but sealing the Duck’s fate. 35 – 7

Fourth Quarter – Justin Herbert tried to make things better for his draft prospects but finished he day with two pick-sixes and two scored himself finishing with stats he’d probably like to forget. Joe burrow finally had an incompletion but did what he has been doing to defenses all season. The former Buckeye finished the day 15 of 18 for 234 yards and three scores. Final Score from the Bayou, Tigers 42 the Ducks 14.

OSU Women’s Basketball String Ting with Special Guest Madison Greene

Charles, Scott and Chris hang out with Ohio State women’s star point guard Madison Greene. Have a great conversation about the rivalry and how the season went. Charles, Scott and Chris express their feelings once again of how this team would have finished!

Came on strong halfway through the season and started 21 games at PG for the Buckeyes

From ohiostatebuckeyes.com Played in all 33 games and started the final 21 at point guard; Averaged 7.7 points and 2.5 assists per game; Was fourth among Big Ten freshmen with 82 assists; Earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors on Feb. 17; Had three games of 20+ plus points including back-to-back efforts that led to her FOW honor; Led the team in free throws made and attempted (76-of-96); Scored 23 points on 8-of-10 shooting and carried the team to a win over rival Michigan on Jan. 9; Was 8-of-11 from the floor and 9-of-11 from the free throw line to finish with a season-high 25 points vs. Minnesota on Feb. 13. Also dished-out a season-high seven assists with no turnovers in the win; Followed that with a 22-point effort in the upset win at No. 20 Indiana on Feb. 16. She was 4-of-4 from the floor and 4-of-4 at the line for 14 points in the final eight minutes to help the Buckeyes erase a 10-point deficit; Had a solid Big Ten Tournament, averaging 10.3 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists and shooting 13-of-14 from the free throw line in the four games.

MOTSAG Pretend CFP: First Round; #8 Memphis versus #9 Boise State

The only matchup between two non-Power 5 teams, 9th seeded Boise State faced off against 8th seeded Memphis.  Both teams entered the game with matching 12-1 records with their one loss coming in upsets; Temple knocking off Memphis and BYU beating Boise State.  In this first year of the new 12 team format, both schools felt a lot of pressure to show that the non-Power 5 programs deserved to be included.

Boise State got on the board first with a passing touchdown by quarterback Hank Bachmeier on the opening drive of the game.  After a couple stalled drives by both teams, Bachmeier hit leading receiver John Hightower for a 60 yard touchdown to put Boise up 14-0 at the end of the first quarter.

The second quarter started with both teams struggling to get anything going on offense but Memphis took advantage of a better punting game to win the field position battle and midway through the second quarter, the Tigers started a drive at midfield and quickly took advantage thanks to a 6 play drive that ended with quarterback Brady White finding receiver Kedarian Jones in the corner of the endzone to make it a 14-7 game.  Boise State’s offense couldn’t do anything on their next drive but their defense came up big, intercepting a Tiger pass to give the Broncos the ball deep in Memphis territory.  However the Bronco’s offense could only manage one first down and they had to settle for a field goal to give themselves a 17-7 lead.  Boise State looked like they had the chance to score again late in the half but Bachmeier was intercepted and Memphis took advantage, putting together an excellent final two minutes that culminated in Brady White hitting leading receiver Damonte Coxie for a 27 yard touchdown right before half.  Both teams headed into the locker room with Boise State up 17-14.

Memphis received the kickoff to start the second half and a nice 30 yard return set them up in good field position.  The Tigers continued their momentum from the end of the first half, putting together a nice drive that culminated with running back Kenny Gainwell punching it into the endzone from the 2-yard line to give the Tiger’s their first lead of the game, 21-17.  The teams exchanged punts before Gainwell once again showed off, this time breaking a few tackles to turn a short pass into a 60 yard gain and a 1st and goal at the 4.  After an incomplete pass by White, Gainwell finished the drive himself with a 4-yard scamper to extend the Memphis lead to 28-17.

Boise State was on the ropes and after a three and out, Memphis landed what looked like the knock out punch as White and Gainwell teamed up for what would be the third touchdown of the day for each of them, giving the Tigers a 35-17 lead to start the fourth quarter.  The Broncos weren’t done though, keeping calm despite the large deficit, they put together an efficient mix of running and passing plays that ended with Bachmeier’s third passing td of the day to make it a 35-24 game with 8 minutes to go.  Momentum seemed to be swinging the Broncos way as they forced a three and out and then quickly moved the ball into Tiger territory.  The clock was becoming an issue though, forcing Boise to abandon their running game and rely on the passing game, which had been hit or miss all season.  This time it missed as Bachmeier threw his second interception of the game, ending the Broncos drive.  Memphis managed to burn a few minutes off the clock, ending the Broncos hopes and coming away with a 35-24 win to advance to the second round.

Memphis quarterback Brady White and running back Kenny Gainwell were the stars of the game.  White had 325 yards passing and 3 touchdowns, with only 1 interception, while Gainwell ran for 2 touchdowns and caught one other.

MOTSAG Pretend CFP: First Round; #7 Oregon v. #10 Appalachian State

#MOTSAGPretendCFP #MOTSAGRising

It’s the final #6 CFP and winners of 3 straight as well as PAC12 champions taking on winners of 7 straight and winners of their fourth straight Sun Belt Conference title, finishing the season 20th in the final committee poll.

Both teams combined only lost 3 games all season and present a pretty good challenge for each other with their high scoring offenses and conference MVP’s in tow. Justin Herbert and Darrynton Evans put on a good show for everyone.

Justin Herbert gave himself some more publicity for the 2020 NFL draft finishing the game 18 of 21 for 242 yards, 4 TD’s and no INT’s.

Darrynton Evans finished the game with 26 carries for 154 yards and three scores but it wasn’t enough as the Ducks stopped a late drive to defeat the Mountaineers 35-28 to move on to round two.

They await their fate until the rest of the first round is finished. Stay Tuned!

Kansas Jayhawks win 6th NCAA Title

Dominating run by National POTY runner-up Udoka Azubuike against the national POTY Obi Toppin propels Jayhawks to title.

1 Kansas vs. 1 Dayton- Udoka Azubuke continued his “disappointed he did not win the NPOTY award” tour and wasted little time taking down Obin Toppin and the Flyers.

Azubuke accounted for all but two of the Jayhawks points through the first ten minutes of the game but held Toppin in check on the big stage. Devon Dotson had another remarkable game from the free throw line and matched Azubuke in scoring as they both finished with 19 a piece.

The Jayhawks continued their destruction of other teams offense and held Dayton to their lowest point total of the season with 61 and Toppin with 15 points and 6 turnovers. Kansas moves on to their 12th NCAA final(5-6) 79-61.

1 Gonzaga vs. 3 Michigan St.- Cassius Winston and Xavier Tillman took on Filip Petrusev, Corey Kispert and Killian Tillie in a showdown for the ages.

Both teams already knew the winner would get Kansas but did not want to spend everything they had on this victory. They traded punches early and often and Xavier Tillman hits a three at the buzzer to end Gonzaga’s season.

The Spartans move on to take on Kansas in the title game and not with many fresh legs after several OT’s to get there. MSU 98-95 3OT.

Championship Game:

1 Kansas vs. 3 Michigan St.- The Spartans and Jayhwaks have faced each other 14 times in historic fashion. The series is tied 7-7 with the last win coming for the Jayhwaks in 2018 via 92-87.

This rivalry is one that can go either way every-time the two teams meet(kansas leads in scoring 1125-1118) and the match up between two future HOF coaches in Bill Self and Tom Izzo is one to enjoy.

It also provided us fans with a one on one match-up between Udoka Azubuke and Cassius Winston and neither player backed down.

Regulation would not be enough and the Spartans had no answer for Azubuke in OT as the Jayhawks made everything in the extra period and MSU couldn’t make anything. Kansas wins their 6th overall title 89-81 in OT

The last time they met – November 2018

MOTSAG Pretend March Madness; Midwest Sweet 16 and Elite 8

#1 Kansas versus #12 Liberty –  Liberty guards McGhee, Cuffee and Pacheco-Ortiz Continue to give teams fits during their cinderella run through these pretend NCAA’s. Liberty had no answer for the Jayhawks Udoka Azubuike as he finished with a monstrous double-double of 35 points and 20 rebounds. At one point in the game Azubuike outscored Liberty on his own little 12-0 run in the second half to put the game away. Kansas 89 – 74

#2 Kentucky versus #6 Iowa – The match-up of all match-ups between Luka Garza and Nick Richards did not disappoint. Neither chose to play very much defense and each ended with double-doubles. Iowa continues to represent the physical toughness of the B1G and moves onto the Elite 8 to face off against Kansas. Iowa 81 -79 OT

The Elite 8 showdown for a chance to the Final Four between #1 Kansas and #6 Iowa did all it could to make itself an all-time great NCAA game. The triple OT thriller brought the Lucas Oil Stadium crowd to it’s feet to stay halfway through the second half.

The battle between Wooden Award Finalist Luka Garza and Udoka Azubuike was one for the ages and defensively got both layers into foul trouble late. Azubuike sat through the first OT period but returned midway through the second to give the Jayhawks a spark that Garza could squelch. Kansas 101 – 98 3OT

The Kansas Jayhawks are the Midwest regions representative in the Final Four.

MOTSAG Pretend March Madness; East Region Second Round by Scott Halasz

The second round of the East Region only had one major shock as a B1G team blew a big lead in the second half.

No. 1 Dayton 85, No. 8 Colorado 67 Dayton avenged one of its two losses by baffling the Buffaloes. Obi Toppin and Jalen Crutcher combined for 32 points, while Trey Landers added a triple double with 10-10-10. Colorado led 10-7 early but then the high flyin’ Flyers scored 20 straight. Colorado had two use a pair of timeouts within seconds of each other because Dayton’s smothering defense was too much

No 12 Richmond 69, Maryland 68 Jacob Gilyard hit a three-pointer as time expired to give the Spiders an upset. Richmond trailed by 11 points with 4 minutes left, but Maryland missed 8 of 10 free throws down the stretch to let Richmond back in the game. Blake Francis scored a game-high 22 points to help the Spiders.

No. 3 Villanova 61, No. 6 Penn State 57 In one of the most boring games in NCAA Tournament history, Villanova escaped this back-and-forth game. Justin Moore scored 11 points to lead the Wildcats. Neither team led by more than five points and neither team shot better than 30 percent from the field. The Federal Communications Commission threatened the NCAA with sanctions if it ever aired a game this ugly again.

No. 2 Florida State 80, No. 12 Utah State 66 Another laugher in the East Region. Ten Seminoles scored at least five points and Utah State turned the ball over 14 times in the first half as Florida State jumped out to a big early lead. Trent Forrest grabbed a career-high 14 rebounds and dished out 17 assists.

On to the Sweet 16 round in NY city, MSG and some good match-ups! No.1 Dayton versus No. 12 Richmond and No.3 Villanova versus No. 2 Florida State.

MOTSAG Pretend March Madness: Midwest Second Round

#1 Kansas versus #9 Marquette – These two teams haven’t seen each other since early in the regular season in 2018 and back then Markus Howard and Sam Hauser were almost way too much for the Jayhawks. This time senior Udoka Azubuike was all Marquette could handle finishing with a triple-double 25 pts, 14 rbs and 10 blocked shots(new career high) #1 Kansas 91 – 68

#4 Wisconsin versus #12 Liberty – The Flames cinderella run continues for this pretend March madness behind hot shooting guards of Liberty as Darius McGhee, Elijah Cuffee and Georgie Pacheco-Ortiz lit the badgers up for 17 total threes and 10 of them coming in the first 15 minutes of the game. Wisconsin never recovered although they made it close in the end. #12 Liberty 84 – 78

#3 Duke versus #6 Iowa – Luka Garza continues to make an argument for the John Wooden Award given to the best overall player in College Men’s Basketball. Exploiting Duke’s foul trouble early on the Hawkeyes went to Luka early and often and had 21 points at halftime. He finished with a double-double in the big win moving to the sweet 16. #6 Iowa 81 – 74

#2 Kentucky versus #10 Arizona State – John Calipari has been here many times and he may just have the best team to win it all. Nick Richards continued his onslaught of opposing post players with his versatility of posting up and just beating them to the hoop. #2 Kentucky 76-54

The sweet sixteen is next week featuring a hodgepodge of seeds from the Midwest and all being played at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

#1 Kansas versus #12 Liberty

#2 Kentucky versus #6 Iowa

MOTSAG Pretend March Madness (East Region) by Scott Halasz

No. 1 Dayton 91, No. 16 Robert Morris 50

Obi Toppin and Jalen Crutcher are too much for Robert Morris, which is still gassed from its double overtime win in the First Four, ironically on Dayton’s home court.

No. 8 Colorado 65, No. 9 Florida 59

Not sure why the committee placed Colorado in the same bracket as Dayton since they played earlier this year. But the Flyers get a chance for revenge in round two.

No. 12 Richmond 70, No. 5 Butler 68, OT

The Butler didn’t do it. The Spiders did. They bit the Bulldogs as a sexy upset pick coming out of the First Four. Blake Francis looked like Steve Francis, scoring 30 points.

No. 4 Maryland 90, No. 13 Akron 56

The Terps pulled away in the second half to cruise to an easy win. Anthony Cowan Jr., was a one-man wrecking crew, scoring 18 points, while dishing out 11 assists and grabbing 14 rebounds to go with 10 steals. He was six fouls away from a quintuple double and was only in the game to see if he would be allowed to commit 10 fouls.

No. 6 Penn State 56, No. 11 NC State 50

In one of the uglier tournament games in recent history, the teams combined for 45 turnovers and 35 fouls.

No. 3 Villanova 72, No. 14 Hofstra 70

Desure Buie had a last-second shot go off the back of the rim and Villanova escaped with a hard-fought win. Neither team led by more than four points and the Pride opted to go for the win at the end after calling a timeout to set up a play.

No. 10 Utah State 81, No. 7 West Virginia 74

The game wasn’t as close as the score indicates as four Aggies scored in double figures. Utah State led by as many as 20 in the second half before a late flurry of WVU garbage buckets made it respectable.

No. 2 Florida State 91, No. 15 Northern Kentucky 75

NKU gave the Seminoles fits early but they eventually pulled away as Malik Osborne scores a game-high 17 points.

Stay tuned to MOTSAG next week for the results of the 2nd Round Matchups in the South Region. Matchups are as follows:

  • #1 Dayton vs. #8 Colorado
  • #12 Richmond vs. #4 Maryland
  • #6 Penn State vs. #3 Villanova
  • #10 Utah State vs. #2 Florida State

We will ask for your opinions in Twitter polls soon so again stay tuned into MOTSAG.