Monday, October 31, 2005

How 'Bout Dem Bruins?

I haven't said a thing all season about the now 8-0 Bruins - maybe out of fear of jinxing them - but Saturday's 21 point comeback with less than 8 minutes left is probably noteworthy.
It's hard enough to believe a team could score three touchdowns in the final half quarter of the game after scoring none in the first three-and-a-half quarters. But it's even more amazing when you consider that the biggest comeback in major-college history (Maryland over Miami in 1984) was by a team that trailed by 31 with 12:35 remaining in the third quarter.

Which is more difficult? To come back from 31 down with 27:35 left to play, or from 21 down with 7:35 left to play?

Somehow, the Bruins did it. Including overtime, they scored four touchdowns in their final 14 offensive plays to make it happen.

This comeback probably rates just behind the UCLA-U$C 1996 game where the Bruins trailed '$C by 17 with 6 minutes to play.
In four of its five October games, UCLA trailed by double digits in the fourth quarter before rebounding to win in the final minutes or in overtime. During the month, the Bruins outscored their opponents 93-26 after the third quarter.

So is this just the luckiest team ever or what? Luck could probably explain one or - if you believe lightning hits twice - two occurrences, but four double digit fourth quarter comebacks in the span of five games? Something more than luck is suggested though I'm not willing to go this far. Just yet.

In the end, be it luck, skill, or some sort of unworldly intervention who cares? All that one needs to know is that it's fun to watch such great theater, which is to say that it's not only fun to watch such improbable finishes on the field but also to see the reactions of those involved, those who saw, and those who turned off their tvs and had to be told afterwards.

There is one last thing to think about. What's more improbable? Coming from 21 points behind with about a half of a quarter left to play? Or beating the Trojans on Dec. 3?

No comments: