So far, 2012 has been the year of the kicker. The day before in the University of Phoenix stadium, Jay Feely of the Arizona Cardinals nailed a game winner in OT. A day later, RS freshmen Jordan Williamson botched key FGs for the Stanford Cardinal as they lost in OT to the Oklahoma State Cowboys, 41-38. Stanford started off well as they leapt out to a 14-0 lead. Brandon Weeden started off slowly by throwing an INT on his first attempt, but OSU tied in the game after two big touchdown plays by Justin Blackmon. With 3:12 to go in the game, Joseph Randle tied the game once again for the Cowboys in a back and forth game, meaning 3:12 for Andrew Luck to work with. Luck would set up a 35 yarder for Williamson, which the freshmen pushed wide-left. The kicker would miss the FG again in OT, and OSU would capitalize with a Quinn Sharp chip-shot. The true irony of this game is that both kickers missed key FGs that would've changed their seasons: Williamson missed the Fiesta Bowl game winner and Quinn Sharp missed a would-be game winner against ISu, their only loss of the season. It seems kicking affects football in all the wrong ways. This is how Andrew Luck's stellar college career will end. Breaking John Elway's records doesn't get you Rose Bowl berths as Stanford has finished second in the Pac 12 to the Ducks. Luck finished as runner-up for the Heisman twice. All he can hope for is being drafted 1st.
The 98th Rose Bowl featured two of the best offenses in college football but with different styles. The Bucky Badgers relied on Montee Ball to run the ball and set up big pass plays for Russell Wilson. The Ducks fast-paced spread running attack was not slowed down at all as they ran past the Wisconsin defense. The game was back and forth, till Darron Thomas threw a pick-six to give the Badgers a 28-21 lead. Oregon would tie and take the lead in the next half. The game's turning point was when Jared Abbrederis fumbled the football when Wisconsin was driving for the tie. Wisconsin would get the ball back, but with no timeouts and only 16 seconds left. Wilson would lead the Badgers to the 28 yard line, but the time expired when he tried to spike the ball. Oregon would win their first Rose Bowl in 95 years. De'Anthony Thomas showed that the Ducks running attack won't miss a beat without LaMichael James as he ran for 155 yards on only two attempts to score two TDs. Montee Ball would only tie the record for TDs in a single season as he scored once to tie Barry Sanders at 39. This was Chip Kelly's first BCS bowl win in three appearances.
Blair Walsh was college football's best kicker last year. This year, he botched two costly field goals for the Georgia Bulldogs in the Outback Bowl. Georgia jumped out to a 16-0 lead with the help of Aaron Murray and Brandon Boykin. Kirk Cousins led a fourth quarter comeback to tie the game at 27 to force OT. Cousins was intercepted in the first possession of OT, but Walsh missed the game winner. In the third OT, Walsh's game-tying field goal attempt was blocked and the Spartans capped off a big comeback.