Monday, December 31, 2007

As Promised, my BCS defense

The BCS is very popular to bash. The hosts of ESPN’s shows, like College Game Day and even Sportscenter take shots at it, along with the ‘analysts.’ When they roll highlights of the I-AA playoffs, they often say things like “they are doing it the right way with a playoff.” Computers shouldn’t decide the National Championship they say.

Here’s what I say, the BCS is almost fine. In fact, there are only two things I recommend the BCS do. First, bring back the old formula with strength of schedule and quality wins as components. If the AP still doesn’t want to be apart then fine, but without these components a team like Kansas or Missouri can “make their case” for going to a BCS game despite playing no one.

Second, add the plus one game. Let the four BCS games pick whoever they want to pick. At the end of the day Jan 1, we should get a consensus #1 and #2, and let them play next week. For instance, this year Ohio State would play USC and LSU would possibly play Virginia Tech again or even Georgia. That would pretty much be all we needed to fix the “mess” this year.

How could I defend the BCS you say? Easy, it’s the sole reason that college football is so exciting. Every week we’re at the edge of our seats. After each upset, another team’s hopes and dreams go down the drain, making the experience that much more emotional.

Imagine if there was a playoff, West Virginia’s loss Pitt at the end of the season would be meaningless. This year, it was the sole reason they didn’t make it to the BCS championship game.

Second, a playoff would be hard to pull off. A lot of people suggest using the bowl games as sites or having an 8 or 12 team playoff and keeping the rest of the bowl games. Not only will that not fly politically, it’s just not practical.

Keep in mind that these players are technically student athletes. December for college students is basically finals month, then vacation. For a playoff to happen, something would have to give, practice or exam preparation. Even though many of them probably don’t care about their education, we have to at least give them a chance.

Third, football isn’t basketball. I think the main reason people want a playoff in football is because the playoffs in basketball is so exciting. Basketball doesn’t have the first two issues I addressed when it comes to their playoffs. In addition, it’s easy to play 32 games in about three weeks. Basketball isn’t as physically taxing as football, where you need about a week off just to recover.

Another thing to consider is that basketball teams are often closer in talent than football teams. The nature of the sports is different, so it’s harder to get a team full of blue chippers in basketball, because everyone wants their shine.

In football you can have a Top 5 QB, RB, OT, C, DE, LB, CB, and Safety on the same team and it’s all good. Also, the “Any Given Sunday” principle applies more to college basketball than football. In football, at the most there may be four or five teams with a semi-legit claim to the title. In basketball, you could have up to ten teams with a legit shot.

That’s my case. In fact, this year’s mess wasn’t really that messy. That’s the beauty of college football, just win all your games and play a quasi-tough schedule.

Ohio State lost once to a BCS team. LSU lost twice in triple overtime!

As for the rest, Hawaii didn’t play anybody. Kansas played a cream puff schedule and lost to Missouri. Missouri turned around and lost to Oklahoma. Oklahoma lost to Colorado and Texas Tech. Georgia lost to South Carolina and got dismantled by Tennessee. Virginia Tech got waxed by LSU, nuff said. USC lost at home … to STANFORD.

All of these teams with “gripes” defeated themselves. If USC would have just beat Stanford, they’d be in right now, etc.

Ohio State didn’t have a tough schedule, but they did what they had to do. After they get waxed by LSU, everything will be right with the world, as LSU has been the team that most people felt was the best anyway.

No comments: