1) Cam Newton
The Heisman Trophy winning quarterback wasn’t even playing in the NCAA a year ago and is about to put a cap on one of the most electrifying seasons in the history of college football.
At 6-foot-6, 250 pounds the physically imposing beast can run over players on the ground and has a strong, accurate arm making it next to impossible for opposing defences to keep him in check.
Like many players before him in the biggest Bowl games, it is expected that the Auburn star will one day be a force in the NFL. It’s always a blast to watch future pro stars in their biggest college games.
“I think Cam Newton can play for anybody, including the NFL,” Oregon coach Chip Kelly said. “He can throw it and he can run it. He’s the top football player in the country.”
“When it happens, Cameron is an unbelievably gifted young man that’s going to bring he is going to bring a lot to the table to somebody,” Auburn coach Gene Chizik said. “And I think he’s got all of the things that it takes to be a great player at the next level.”
2) Ducks can fly
They may not have the national profile of Auburn, which came out of the tough SEC, but Oregon is a high-powered, high-tempo scoring machine.
The Ducks led the U.S. in scoring average at more than 49 points a game and never trailed going into the fourth quarter this season. Most impressive was their quick-strike ability which feature 53 plays of 25 yards or more, 22 of 40 or more and eight of 60 or more.
Said Oregon coach Chip Kelly of his no-huddle attack that keeps opposing defences off guard: “I think we can be faster.”
3) Boseko Lokombo
A Canadian by the way of the Congo has made a significant mark in his first full season of NCAA football, a fact even more remarkable given that he only started playing the game in Grade 8 at home in British Columbia.
Lokombo is listed as the second-string inside linebacker but he essentially shares snaps with Josh Kaddu. In just his first season, Lokombo is considered a legitimate NFL prospect should he continue his rapid ascent.
“It’s just a privilege to be in this game,” Lokombo said this week. “I know a lot of people in Canada are interested in my career and it’s great to represent the country here.”
4) No. 1 vs. No. 2
As long as there isn’t a true playoff system in U.S. college football, the BCS Championship will have its critics, some years louder than others.
With apologies to TCU, which capped off a 13-0 season with a Rose Bowl win over Wisconsin, few would dispute that the best two teams are meeting for the title this time, however.
It hasn’t always been the case and both Auburn and Oregon make their first trip to the championship game despite each having seasons this decade in which they can make the argument they should have been there.
“Is there a better (system)?” asks Chizik. “I don’t know. I don’t think that there’s one perfect idea (for a playoff system) yet that everybody can come to great agreement on.”
This is the first time two teams which began the season not ranked in the top 10 have made it to the title game.
5) Starts two hours before Leafs-Kings
Plus it’s the last Monday night football game of the season. And once it is done, there are only seven more NFL playoff games.