William Correro column

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 15, 2008

New Orleans atmosphere great for Sugar Bowl

The thing about New Orleans is you really have to try to find any bad food. I know that’s not the subject here but it was all good down there.

Well, it was almost like a day of emancipation for the SEC when I heard the well-known national sports network admitting the true superiority of Southeastern Conference football in front of God and everyone else after the game. And the conference really delivered in the bowls finishing with a huge six wins and two losses.

The top two teams in the final ranking, LSU and Georgia, really were impressive making their opponents just look bad. It was interesting to see the Ohio State players as the game progressed.

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They were up as they scored twice to take a 10-point lead. But then as LSU settled down and started to work, you could see the demeanor along their sideline start sliding down. There were too many sitting on the bench in the first place and a lot of them had their heads down mid-way of the second quarter.

In contrast most all of LSU’s players were crowding the sidelines. And don’t believe any of that “home game for LSU” baloney. I will guarantee that at least half of the 80,000 plus in the Super Dome were dressed in red. The ones in purple and gold just had more to yell about.

It all started with a NCAA mandated meeting at the Super Dome the day before the game. This is to go over the schedule of events and the details of each part of the game administration.

Represented were the BCS, the Sugar Bowl staff since it was played in New Orleans, the FOX producers, the AD’s from each school and a few of the coaches. I figured I was sort of part of the BCS staff since they hired me for this gig. I had to explain more than I thought I would about the TV coordination procedures and how I did my job.

After that it was to the TV trucks to sit down with the FOX staff for over an hour to be sure all was understood about the different breaks and the time allowed. We even went over the procedures for stopping the game in case the flying camera over the field went down. Then it was wait.

The time finally came to ride to the Super Dome and by then the old adrenaline pump was in overdrive. I lost count of the number of people I knew who spoke before the game.

Commissioner Slive of the SEC and outgoing BCS Coordinator, several of my CBS friends who managed to get credentials and my sister who had Governor and Mrs.. Barbour in their company box were just a few. The atmosphere was incredible and it only got louder as kickoff time approached. Then it was time to go to work for the seventeenth time this season. What a game but then I’m thinking most all of you saw it.

All was good with the powers that be after if was over. The BCS was happy, as was FOX, so it appears my job was successful. I also saw Archie, father of Peyton and Eli, before the game and he said things were heating up in his world for sure. Now I’m hoping the Giants and Colts can go all the way.