Thursday, January 04, 2007

Another Battle of the Blogs

Like they did with the OSU-Michigan game, is running a Battle of the Blogs for the national championship game. We're on day three of the battle. To bring you up to speed, on Tuesday Pfef drew the unenviable task of debating Orson from EDSBS on each school's fans, while yesterday, Annapolisbuckeye went up against We Are the Boys, debating which school has the better bowl tradition. Pfef did well, I think. I'd argue that he won the debate, as much as one can win these things. He presented an excellent argument, while Orson mostly cracked jokes (good jokes, though; this is EDSBS we're talking about here). I thought Annapolisbuckeye also took care of business, though he had a few more decades of bowl tradition to work with. We Are the Boys did about as good a job as one could hope to do with what they had to work with.

I drew Swamp Ball as an opponent for today's battle, the Florida offense versus the Ohio State defense. As a savvy veteran of Battles of the Blogs (Battle of the Blogses?), I went for every dirty debate trick I could apply at midnight, when I was writing my side of the debate. Balance, reasonableness, and honesty went out the window (not all the way out, maybe, but I at least dangled them out the window, as though they were Vanilla Ice to my Suge Knight). I cherry picked statistics that helped my argument. I ignored everything that might weaken my argument. I even set up a bit of a straw man, just to get a shot in at the SEC:

I don’t know for sure, but I suspect my colleague and opponent across the page is arguing that Ohio State’s numbers came against inferior competition, while Florida’s stats came against tough SEC defenses; it’s the argument I would make were our situations reversed. However, let me present a counter-argument: SEC defenses are no better than any others. In fact, an offense approaching competent is all it takes to win the SEC.

Look at the SEC championship game: it pitted a team (Arkansas) whose best quarterback was a running back (Darren McFadden) against a team (Florida) whose best running back was a backup quarterback (Tim Tebow). That isn’t innovation; that’s desperation. It’s the sort of thing you do when you’ve exhausted all other options. It’s the sort of thing that went out of style decades ago. It’s the sort of thing that’s good enough to win the SEC.

Meanwhile, how does Swamp Ball attack? With a calm, reasoned essay outlining the sort of gameplan that might be successful against the Buckeyes, based on results of previous games. It was well-thought out and well-written. Who does that in online debates?

As it turns out, there's a lot less trash-talking in an OSU-Florida debate than an OSU-Michigan debate, which I probably should have expected. Regardless, I feel like I come off a little message board-y, when I could have afforded to be more evenhanded in my site of the debate. But I'm not going to get too concerned about it. After all, if you don't get a little fiery in a college football debate, when will you?

Anyway, there's been a lot of good work done in this Battle of the Blogs, by both sides. So go check it out.


Anonymous said...

Sean - good job on the battle of the blogs. You made some great points, and perhaps I should have been the one that came across a little more fired up in the debate.

However, have you watched the Gators offense this season? Despite the fact that we are in the national championship game and that there have been some pretty explosive plays out of the Gator playmakers, I must say that at many time I've been pretty frustrated watching these guys out there. And it's tough to trash talk a 12-0 opponent who has had little trouble dismantling teams this season.

Anyways, I wish the Buckeyes good luck, I hope they don't get too upset when they lose, and good job on the battle of the blogs.


buckfan1 said...

How to attack the vaunted Gator defense. Are you kidding me? Like we did all season long: Ginn, Gonzo,Hall, Robiski,Hartline,Nicol, and White JR. The all time vote winning heisman winner throwing to them with massive protection and mobility in the pocket. This will be an exciting game to watch and one for the record books as we become the first ever OSU team to beat three number two teams in a season!

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