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Urban Meyer wins another title!

Well, football fans, we might be witnessing the making of an all-time coaching legend in Urban Meyer. In the first ever (and long overdue) official college football National Championship, Meyer took fourth-seeded Ohio State all the way and won his third national title as a head coach!
The Buckeyes were a controversial selection, as many believed that Big 12 co-champions Baylor and TCU were both more deserving of playoff bids. But Meyer, using his third string quarterback and shepherding his team through a season full of adversity, quieted doubters with back to back thumpings of both playoff opponents.
Early on, the game looked like it might be the shootout many folks predicted. Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota led the second-seeded Oregon Ducks down the field in short order, putting six on the board to open the scoring. But then the Ducks began to miss opportunities, and third-string quarterback (seriously?) Cardale Jones and running back Ezekiel Elliot took over.
Jones has become widely known, in short order, for almost stupefying arm strength; but Jones was also masterful in his decision-making, and impressive with his variety of throws. He threw receivers open, hit wised open guys downfield, threw from the pocket, and delivered back-shoulder passes to the sidelines. He also showed his running ability, buying time with his legs and using his 250-pound frame to impose his will in traffic. And Elliot was dominant, scoring four touchdowns and shredding the Ducks’ defense for 246 rushing yards.
Going into the fourth quarter, the game was still 28-20. When the Buckeyes took a two score lead, the floodgates opened and the Ducks never recovered. The final score was 42-20, and Ohio State fans felt vindicated, while Urban Meyer entered the conversation as one of the best college football coaches ever. One can make the argument that losing two key wideouts during the playoffs hurt the Ducks’ chances, but one thing is clear: the Ohio State Buckeyes earned their national championship. The inaugural college football Championship will be a hard act to follow for next year’s final two!
What do you think were the key moments and factors in the game? Who do you think are the best bets to dominate college football in 2016? Who’s your pick to win the first college football national title? Tweet us @BracketHead using the hashtag #FanCrazy and sound off. You can also send us fan photos, make bold predictions, and post photos to our Facebook wall.
Remember, here at FanCheer we’re all about the fans and their love of the games. If you or someone you know is a REAL #FanCrazy fan, send us proof in a picture with a catchy caption! And don’t forget to check in and follow us for a chance to win fun prizes!
May the brackets bust in your favor,

The folks at FanCheer

#GoFanCheer

College Football’s first National Championship!

Will Marcus Mariota go all the way?

College football fans, the day so many of you have waited for is finally almost upon us. On Monday, January 12th, 2015, division I College Football will finally see its official title-deciding game. After an exciting weekend in which the Ohio State Buckeyes beat up on the Florida State Seminoles and the Oregon Ducks upset the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide, the stage is set for an exciting final. The Ducks and Buckeyes are both extremely hot teams, and in many ways this game is a study in contrasts. Oh yeah, and this game is on pace to be the most ever wagered-upon game in college football history!

The Buckeyes are coached by the 50-year-old living coaching legend, Urban Meyer. Meyer is a proven winner who’s seeking his third national championship (of course, we needn’t remind anyone that this is the first official national championship), and has managed his team through the loss of two starting quarterbacks as well as the tragic death of one of its players. Ohio State relies heavily on the run, bruising their way to enormous margins of victory by pounding opponents at the line of scrimmage. They can throw the ball if they really need to—quarterback Cardale Jones can reportedly throw the ball 80 yards on the fly and a ridiculous 65 yards from one knee—but they mostly prefer to win on the ground. Ezekiel Elliot is one of the nation’s best runners, rolling up 220 and 230 yards in his past two games.
The Ducks are coached Mark Helfrich, a 41-year-old relative newcomer. Helfrich has the Ducks using a wide-open, up-tempo offense, led by Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota. Helfrich uses an uncommon approach, in which he favors “horizontal leadership” and minimal yelling. The Ducks do need to be able to run inside the tackles, but this is mainly to balance out their fast-paced passing attack. Mariota is widely believed to be NFL-ready, combining size, speed and a good arm with practically nonexistent turnovers and an even temperament. The Ducks have been rolling up points in big chunks, and once they get in a rhythm, they render defenses exhausted and off balance. As for the Ducks’ defense, it’s been opportunistic and tougher than their lack of hype would suggest. Their pass rush is capable of causing problems, and if they create just a couple of turnovers, their games get out of hand—in their favor—in a hurry.
This game should be evenly matched on the field, despite its numerous contrasts, but the Ducks have a few situations they’re dealing with. Freshman receiver Darren Carrington will miss the game after failing a drug test; Carrington was second on the team with 704 receiving yards this season, and racked up 165 yards and two scores in the Rose Bowl. The Ducks are also missing, for the second straight game, cornerback Ifo Ekpre-Olomu because of a knee injury. As if that isn’t enough, freshman receiver Devon Allen inured his knee on the opening kickoff of the Rose Bowl and is also done for the year. This has contributed to a fluctuating betting line in what might be the most anticipated college football game in a decade.
Once kickoff starts and the bright lights go on, it’ll all come down to energy and execution. Who’s your pick to win the first college football national title? Tweet us @BracketHead using the hashtag #FanCrazy and sound off with your predictions. You can also send us fan photos, make bold predictions, and post photos to our Facebook wall. If you or someone you know is a REAL #FanCrazy fan, send us proof in a picture with a catchy caption! And don’t forget to check in and follow us for a chance to win fun prizes!
May the brackets bust in your favor,

The folks at FanCheer

#GoFanCheer

College Football Playoff Preview

Well, college football fans, the time is finally nigh: the inaugural NCAA football playoff is here! Here at FanCheer, we’re going to give you some stuff to look for in the two big first round games.
Game one is the Rose Bowl, set for 5:00 Eastern Time on New Year’s Day. It features kind of a study in contrasts: the mercurial, controversial Jameis Winston against the polished, seemingly NFL-ready Marcus Mariota. Another clear contrast is in the Ducks and Seminoles’ paths to victory. Florida State always seems to cut it close, and in fact has often taken its first lead of the game within five minutes of the end of regulation. On the contrary, Oregon has often had games well in hand from early on. This doesn’t mean that haven’t at all been tested, but they’ve had a better knack for controlling the flow of play. The Noles’ tendency to cut it close—often due to early blunders—has made them a highly controversial choice to appear in the playoff, and they come into it with a lot to prove in the eyes of many. Despite neither being the top ranked team in the nation, both come in with a championship-or-bust aura. As for the matchup, it should be interesting: the Ducks can really throw it around, and the Seminoles have at times been leaky in their pass defense. As for Winston and company, he’s got game-breaking talent and late-game resilience as well as a platoon of speed merchants that can make secondaries look bad. If the Seminoles catch the turnover bug early, the Ducks won’t be as easy to make up ground against. But if both teams bring their A games, this one might be a serious shootout.
The next playoff game is the Sugar Bowl, set for 8:30 Eastern Time on New Year’s Day. It features the number one seeded Alabama Crimson Tide, widely considered the best team in the country. The Ohio State Buckeyes, meanwhile, are another controversial selection despite destroying 13thranked Wisconsin 59-0 to close the regular season. The Buckeyes have stayed the course despite losing multiple quarterbacks to injury and one of its players to a tragic suicide; they come in looking to validate their selection over Big 12 co-champions Baylor and TCU. If the Buckeyes have a chance to upset the Tide, it might be downfield: Alabama was just 57th in the country in passing defense in terms of yards allowed. If the Tide get caught looking ahead, this could get interesting.
Here at FanCheer, we think it’ll be the Ducks meeting the Tide in the national title game on January 12th. Who do you think wins the first round of the first ever college football playoffs? Tweet us @BracketHead using the hashtag #FanCrazy and sound off with your predictions. You can also send us fan photos, make bold predictions, and post photos to our Facebook wall. And don’t forget to check in and follow us for a chance to win fun prizes!
May the brackets bust in your favor,

The folks at FanCheer

#GoFanCheer

the top four hold serve

There weren’t as many upsets and fantastic finishes this week, but Week 13 in NCAA Football still had its share of excitement.
First of all, unbelievably, the FBS single-game rushing record was broken again. Oklahoma’s Samaje Perine ran for a whopping 427 yards against Kansas; this broke Melvin Gordon’s record of 408, which he set only a week ago. Meanwhile, Gordon had another great day for the 16thranked Wisconsin Badgers, as they outlasted unranked Iowa 26-24.
The top teams held serve this week, though third ranked Florida State needed yet another late comeback to stay unbeaten against unranked Boston College. Rounding out the top four, the Oregon Ducks, Mississippi Sztate Bulldogs and Alabama Crimson Tide won by a collective 143-24. Ohio State and Baylor won handily, while the day’s lone upset was a doosy: unranked Arkansas pummeled 8th ranked Ole Miss 30-0, continuing the latter team’s struggles. Blowouts were the theme of the week, though no. 25 Minnesota won a 28-24 top-25 thriller against no. 23 Nebraska.
Week 14 has a ton of intriguing matchups and local rivalries. Arizona State-Arizona, Clemson-South Carolina, Georgia Tech-Georgia and Ohio State-Michigan are just some of the promising games on the schedule. Saturday night is this year’s Iron Bowl, between Auburn and top ranked Alabama!
Who will win these big-time rivalry games? Will the top 4 hold serve again, with the playoffs approaching? Will TCU finally play its way into the top four? Will someone else break an FBS record? Tweet us @BracketHead using the hashtag #FanCrazy and sound off with your predictions. You can also send us fan photos, make bold predictions, and post photos to our Facebook wall. And don’t forget to check in and follow us for a chance to win fun prizes!
May the brackets bust in your favor,

The folks at FanCheer

#GoFanCheer