2009 Monday Thoughts: Championship Saturday Helps Put 2009 in Perspective

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What a Saturday of football! Unfortunately, only one of the teams I rooted
for won (East Carolina), but for the first time all season, I got to veg out in
the recliner, fire up the picture-in-picture and the DVR, and gorge on college
football. I couldn’t have picked a better day for it, and when all was said and
done, I felt a sense of closure on the Hokies’ regular season. Watching the
games Saturday put things in perspective for me.

The Hokies didn’t play this past Saturday, but that didn’t stop me from
viewing every game I watched Saturday through a Virginia Tech filter.

Cincinnati 45, Pittsburgh 44

The game most removed from the Hokies was Saturday’s de facto Big East
Championship game between Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, a thriller won by the
Bearcats. With every week that goes by, and with every game Cincinnati wins,
Virginia Tech’s 2008 Orange Bowl win looks more and more impressive. The
Bearcats have won 18 of their last 19 games, with the only loss coming to

And it wasn’t just a victory by the Hokies, it was a whipping. Tech
controlled Cincinnati and dispatched of them rather easily, 20-7. The seven
points scored by the Bearcats are their lowest total by far in their last 19
games; the next lowest score is 24 points.

Of course, no one on a national scale is parroting those statistics. That’s
fine. We O-and-M’ers know.

the way, I have now watched two full Cincinnati games in the last year — the
Orange Bowl and last Saturday’s Pitt game — and I have come to a stunning,
earth-shattering conclusion: Brian Kelly is a jerk on the sidelines. Brilliant,
I know, but please allow me to explain.

Kelly specializes in what I call “negative leadership.” A negative
leader, when things