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Edskin
08-15-2008, 10:16 AM
www.edkleese.blogspot.com

College football is very popular. Not nearly as popular as the NFL (what is these days?), but I think University Presidents are pretty happy with their bank accounts when it comes to the gridiron. No complaints from them. Thus, the root of the problem.

Just because something makes money doesn’t mean it isn’t in need of repair. Just because a stadium gets sold out to watch a mismatched massacre, doesn’t mean it’s a good product. And just because they call it a “Bowl Game” or even a “BCS” game doesn’t mean it really has significance.

Yes, college football is entertaining. It always has been, and most likely, always will be. But college football is not all that it can be. It is by far the most flawed of all the major college and pro sports. A well-run sport should crescendo or peak during the post-season. College football still relies on mid-season rivalries and traditional match-ups to stir interest. The post-season is a giant letdown.

The only solution to this obvious problem is a playoff system. It can be done, if the powers that be would simply remove their heads from their posteriors, put “old school” thinking aside, and figure out a way to improve the sport, while still lining their pockets. It can be done. Easily. But the college football playoff argument is the very definition of beating a dead horse. Has any sportswriter in American not given their personal solution to this problem?

With that in mind, I am going to narrow my focus and present five ways to improve college football without going to a playoff system. Please keep in mind that nothing besides a playoff will fix this archaic system. However, these suggestions may make the system a tad less asinine.

Eliminate Pre-Season Polls: Are we talking about this season? Last season? Thirty seasons ago? When it comes to the polls, I have no idea. In my estimation, a poll should reflect only the current season. It should not take history into account, whether it be recent or ancient. Anointing a team prior to the season is not only silly, it’s unfair. Last year, Michigan began the season highly ranked. They lost their first game to a D-II school. The next week, even though they dropped in the polls, they were still ranked. So, Michigan was 0-1 with a home loss to non D-1 school, and they were still ranked in the Top 25? That’s just stupid. The rankings create a certain caste system, where teams can only gradually move up or move down. If a non-BCS school doesn’t start the season ranked in the Top 15 or so, they can kiss their chances of a National Championship goodbye. If a team starts the season ranked #1, they can probably afford two losses, whereas a team that starts the season ranked #17 can probably only afford one loss. The first poll should not be released until sometime in early-mid October.

Eliminate the Coaches Poll: I wonder how much time Nick Saban of Alabama spends watching game film of Rutgers? I wonder if Butch Davis at North Carolina is taping the Washington State game this week? College football coaches are totally wrapped up in their own little world of their team, their conference, and their next opponent. I can say with all honesty, that I probably watch a whole lot more Pac 10, Big 10, and SEC football than Mike Leach of Texas Tech does during the season. You see, on Saturday’s, Mike Leach, and most other head coaches are kind of busy. They aren’t flipping channels. They are standing on the sidelines, riding buses, and then breaking down their own game film. I don’t think Rich Rodriguez is too concerned with the outcome of the BYU-Utah game. Yet, we insist that these men vote on how to rank teams across the country. Not only do they lack information, there is also an obvious conflict of interest. Why wouldn’t you rank teams in your conference higher? Why wouldn’t there be a bias? The media is far from perfect, but the AP poll is a much more objective way to generate a poll.

Drastically Reduce the Number of Bowl Games: There are 119 D-1 teams. There are now 34 Bowl Games. That’s a total of 68 teams participating in Bowls. That leaves 51 teams at home. If 68 teams get to do something, and 51 do not, which group should feel more special? Many publications will insist that a coach is on the hot seat and that he must “make a Bowl Game” to save his job. Heck, if I was an Athletic Director, I might stipulate that not making a Bowl Game is grounds for immediate dismissal. If you don’t make a Bowl Game nowadays, you are a terrible, terrible football team.

Let’s take an average college football program (Oklahoma State) and figure out what it will take for them to be eligible for a Bowl Game this year. In order for OSU to qualify for a Bowl, they need to win 6 of their 12 games. By beating 6 of these teams: Washington State, Houston, Missouri State, Troy, Baylor, and Iowa St., Colorado, and Texas A+M, OSU will go Bowling. Aside from Colorado, none of those teams will most likely be ranked in the top 70 teams in the country this year. So basically, OSU can lose all of their games against decent competition, and still get a payday. What a great accomplishment!

Make Every Conference Play a Championship Game: If all of the BCS conferences have to play under the same system, then why in the world do certain teams have a tougher/longer road? The Pac 10, Big 10, and Big East do not play a conference championship game, while the remaining BCS conferences all do. In college football, less is more. Meaning the fewer games you play, the better chance you have of not losing, which equals a greater chance to compete for the National Title. We’ll call this the “Ohio State Way.” The Buckeyes cruise through the weak Big 10 every season and find themselves in the big game, usually, “just because.” Forcing these three conferences to adopt a Title Game would at least level the playing field a bit.

Shorten the Time Between the End of the Season and the Bowls: I think Ohio St. had two and a half years in between their final game of the season last year and the BCS Title Game. It had been so long since we last saw them play, that I’m not sure anyone even remembered, or cared. College Football makes us wait over a month to see the Championship Game—and by that time the NFL playoffs have started, and the college game gets cast aside.

January 1st should be the latest a college football game is ever played. I understand that the networks want to spread the games out, and they want to avoid putting too many games on during the holidays. But college football might need to take a small hit in the wallet on this one and insist that games never be played beyond the 1st. You can still play all of your ridiculous minor bowl games leading up to the BCS games—just play them earlier, and make many of them double-headers for television. You could then have a quadruple-header of BCS games on New Year’s Day—with the title game in primetime. The Bowl system is silly, but if it’s going to be in place, then they might as well capitalize on the tradition of New Year’s Day being a big day for the sport.

Quick Predictions:

SEC: Florida over Alabama in the Title Game: Georgia is formidable, but I wonder if they are over-hyped. Tim Tebow returns and I think Florida beats the Bulldogs this year and wins the East. The West is more wide-open, and I’ll roll the dice on Alabama squeezing by.
Keep an Eye On: Tennessee: Phillip Fulmer is squarely on the hot seat, and I have a feeling he’ll find a way to save his job this year.

Big 12: Oklahoma over Missouri in the Title Game: I’m simply not a believer that Mizzou is ready to beat a program like OU in a game with major significance.
Keep any Eye On: Texas Tech. This may be another team getting a bit over-hyped in the pre-season, but the first part of their schedule is ridiculously easy, which of course means they will steadily climb in the polls. They could have the biggest game in the program’s history late in the year in Norman.

ACC: Clemson over North Carolina in the Title Game: Pretty weak conference overall. Clemson would be a middling team in the Big 12, SEC, or even Pac 10. I’ll go with Butch Davis to have a surprisingly good season at UNC.
Keep an Eye On: No one. Like I said, the ACC is weak.

Pac 10: USC will run away with this conference in a landslide.
Keep an Eye On: Oregon was great last year until Dennis Dixon went down. Now, they think they have a QB that can run their spread offense again.

Big 10: Ohio St. by default.
Keep an Eye On: Wisconsin is the only other team in the conference that should garner any serious respect.

Big East: West Virginia.
Keep an Eye On: South Florida may have gotten too much, too fast last year before they crashed and burned. But there is still a bunch of talent there, and a very solid returning QB.

National Championship Game: USC over Oklahoma. Not sure if these are the two best teams in the country or not, but I like their respective roads to the BCS Title Game. OU needs to prove themselves on a national stage before I can be confident picking them to win a game of this magnitude.

What about the remaining 50+ D-1 Teams? Well, the BCS doesn’t give them the time of day, so why should I?

IslandRed
08-15-2008, 10:33 AM
Generally agree:

Eliminate Pre-Season Polls
Eliminate the Coaches Poll
Shorten the Time Between the End of the Season and the Bowls

Although the "start the poll in October" deal still suffers from the "poll inertia" issue. It just transfers bias from who we thought was good before the season, to schools that front-load their schedule.

Generally disagree:


Drastically Reduce the Number of Bowl Games

The extra bowl games, while largely ignored, hurt no one and help level the playing field. It's common knowledge that most of these lower-tier bowl games barely pay enough to cover the team's expenses. The real benefit of going to a bowl for a mid-level team is the extra practice time. Cut bowls way back, and you're just helping to further stratify haves and have-nots.


Make Every Conference Play a Championship Game: If all of the BCS conferences have to play under the same system, then why in the world do certain teams have a tougher/longer road? The Pac 10, Big 10, and Big East do not play a conference championship game, while the remaining BCS conferences all do. In college football, less is more. Meaning the fewer games you play, the better chance you have of not losing, which equals a greater chance to compete for the National Title. We’ll call this the “Ohio State Way.” The Buckeyes cruise through the weak Big 10 every season and find themselves in the big game, usually, “just because.” Forcing these three conferences to adopt a Title Game would at least level the playing field a bit.

This one's been a pet peeve of mine for a long time. The whining started the very first year of the SEC title game, when Alabama had to win an extra game before it could play for the national title. They're still wrong.

Ask yourself this: Who decided those conferences should have championship games? Answer: The conferences themselves. Why do they do it? Answer: Money. Nothing more, nothing less. They want the money, and they're willing to give their best teams another potential loss to get it. If they don't like the bargain, they can stop having a championship game any time they like.

Fairness? Chew on this. These leagues are taking a problem for their teams that was 100% self-imposed and attempting to solve it by forcing other leagues to do it their way. What's fair about that?

(Disclaimer: My school is in a conference that didn't have a championship game, but now it does. Didn't change my opinion on the matter.)

Chip R
08-15-2008, 10:45 AM
You can eliminate all the polls you want but someone is going to come up with some way to rank these teams before the season starts.

cincrazy
08-15-2008, 11:03 AM
I think an eye should be kept on Missouri. They return Chase Daniel and Jeremy Maclin, and they're two toughest games are a season opener against Illinois and a game at Texas. The only way they play Oklahoma is if they square off in the title game.

And of course I'm going to have to mention my Buckeyes as a threat to win it all.... :)

Edskin
08-15-2008, 11:06 AM
Island-- You make good points about the Title Games. I have no issue eliminating those as well-- I just wish it would be one way or the other. Not split half and half.

And as these conferences grow, one thing a Title Game DOES accomplish is the opportunity to play any team in your conference in a given year.

In the B10, teams don't play everyone else in the conference-- and it's not even a "fair" rotation-- OSU plays Michigan every year without a break because of the rivalry. A conference Title game would at least ensure that the two best teams played each other every year.

As for the Bowl Games....I'm sticking to my guns there. It's dilluted to the point of absurdity-- and I question exactly how much these schools truly gain from the extra practice time, etc.

improbus
08-15-2008, 11:14 AM
www.edkleese.blogspot.com
The only solution to this obvious problem is a playoff system. It can be done, if the powers that be would simply remove their heads from their posteriors, put “old school” thinking aside, and figure out a way to improve the sport, while still lining their pockets. It can be done. Easily. But the college football playoff argument is the very definition of beating a dead horse. Has any sportswriter in American not given their personal solution to this problem?

I don't love the BCS, but I really don't like the idea of a playoff and here's why. Remember the OSU vs. Michigan game two years ago? Both teams went into the game undefeated, the winner goes to the title game, the loser goes to the Rose Bowl. It was the most anticipated Regular Season game I have ever seen. If you had a playoff, it would have been a "seeding" game with no significance. Think about College Basketball. Does the regular season matter for Duke or UNC or Kansas. For all of the hype of Duke vs. UNC, those games mean nothing. They are seeding games. The only thing that matters is the tournament. Every game in CFB matters starting in September and running through November and December.

Also, if you institute a playoff, here is what will happen. Teams will load up on cream puffs in their non-conference schedule. Why take a chance at losing? Now, you need those power wins to help your position in the polls to get into the title game. You will begin to see more and more I-AA teams playing big time schools.

I do agree that a playoff would be exciting, but the damage it would do to the regular season is unacceptable.

Boston Red
08-15-2008, 11:23 AM
Last year, Michigan began the season highly ranked. They lost their first game to a D-II school.


How are we supposed to take commentary seriously from an "expert" that doesn't know that Appalachian State is Division I?

Raisor
08-15-2008, 11:25 AM
Prediction:

The West Georgia Wolves will not be going to the DivII playoffs...again.

guttle11
08-15-2008, 11:28 AM
If you eliminate the pre-season polls, OOC schedules will become even more of a joke than they are now. No top team will play anyone good. Everyone will be 4-0 heading to conference play and you'll still get the same rankings as you would in August.

RedsManRick
08-15-2008, 11:51 AM
Eliminate Pre-Season Polls: YES! A NR team can go undefeated and never get top 5 because the poll system is so self-reinforcing. Meanwhile, a team starting high can lose a few games and stay in the top 25. Wait until Week 5 or so at minimum.

Eliminate the Coaches Poll: Agreed. Coaches do have a pretty good perspective, but I'm not a big fan of any subjective polling, particularly among a biased constituency.

Drastically Reduce the Number of Bowl Games: Agreed, sort of. Bowl games are fine in so far as they make money for everybody. It would be nice if they had more character though. Have a bowl game, or better yet, a set of games that always matches up two conferences. At the top of the heap, the Bowls need to either be integrated with or replaced by a small playoff system (top 4 teams in a non-poll based rating system).

Make Every Conference Play a Championship Game: Disagreed. You'll usually end up matching up to two teams who have already played. One team, by definition, will have won that game. If the team who wins the first, wins the second, it's a waste of time. If the team who lost the first wins, what conclusion can you reach? The only scenario where this works is in Conferences that have divisions and no interdivisional play.

Shorten the Time Between the End of the Season and the Bowls: Please yes! The problem is that the 12 game schedule pushes the season in to early december, meaning an immediate game would bump up against finals. These guys are students and we should at least make an attempt to allow them time to prepare for their finals. And then you're in to Christmas. But the break seems a bit ridiculous.

The fundamental problem is that in a league of over 100 teams, with 11 or 12 games, and playing a sport so rife with injury and preparation demands, there can be no definitive best team. Period. All you can do is determine a Champion by a method the most people agree upon and move on. I prefer a playoff because at least there's a real winner decided on the field, rather than in the polls. And as for the polls, make them more formulaic with stronger emphasis on strength of schedule. If you pair that with a forced 4 games OOC, you'll get rewarded for playing better teams. You can work your way in to the elite by dominating your conference and earning OOC matchups against better teams.

Edskin
08-15-2008, 11:53 AM
How are we supposed to take commentary seriously from an "expert" that doesn't know that Appalachian State is Division I?

Number one, nowhere did I refer to myself as an "expert," only as a "blogger."

Two, you are correct, they are 1-AA, not D-II. Error on my part.

Edskin
08-15-2008, 11:58 AM
I don't love the BCS, but I really don't like the idea of a playoff and here's why. Remember the OSU vs. Michigan game two years ago? Both teams went into the game undefeated, the winner goes to the title game, the loser goes to the Rose Bowl. It was the most anticipated Regular Season game I have ever seen. If you had a playoff, it would have been a "seeding" game with no significance. Think about College Basketball. Does the regular season matter for Duke or UNC or Kansas. For all of the hype of Duke vs. UNC, those games mean nothing. They are seeding games. The only thing that matters is the tournament. Every game in CFB matters starting in September and running through November and December.

Also, if you institute a playoff, here is what will happen. Teams will load up on cream puffs in their non-conference schedule. Why take a chance at losing? Now, you need those power wins to help your position in the polls to get into the title game. You will begin to see more and more I-AA teams playing big time schools.

I do agree that a playoff would be exciting, but the damage it would do to the regular season is unacceptable.


Totally disagree. The current system makes the reg. season almost totally meaningless for MOST teams.

Yes, in that particular instance, the OSU-Michigan game had more significance than a seeding game would have had.

However, for the most part, most college football games are currently "meaningless."

Let's say Ohio St. loses a close game at USC and then loses another close game at Wisconsin this year. Well, after the Wisconisn game, their entire season is basically pointless- including whatever Bowl Game they might play in. Under a playoff system, OSU could potentially still work their way into a meaningful post-season.

I live in OKC and I went to OU and I can tell you that after OU lost to Texas Tech last year, there was VERY little anticipation for the B12 Title Game or the Fiesta Bowl-- most people just kind of wanted it to get over with. And so did the team, apparantly :)

Schedules are NOT balanced....a two loss team from the SEC is MUCH more impressive than a two loss team from the Big East or Big 10-- but at that point, we're really just guessing at who "deserves it" more. A playoff is the only solution-- and it's one that would increase the significance of the reg. season, IMO

improbus
08-15-2008, 12:24 PM
Totally disagree. The current system makes the reg. season almost totally meaningless for MOST teams.

Yes, in that particular instance, the OSU-Michigan game had more significance than a seeding game would have had.

However, for the most part, most college football games are currently "meaningless."

Let's say Ohio St. loses a close game at USC and then loses another close game at Wisconsin this year. Well, after the Wisconisn game, their entire season is basically pointless- including whatever Bowl Game they might play in. Under a playoff system, OSU could potentially still work their way into a meaningful post-season.

I live in OKC and I went to OU and I can tell you that after OU lost to Texas Tech last year, there was VERY little anticipation for the B12 Title Game or the Fiesta Bowl-- most people just kind of wanted it to get over with. And so did the team, apparantly :)

Schedules are NOT balanced....a two loss team from the SEC is MUCH more impressive than a two loss team from the Big East or Big 10-- but at that point, we're really just guessing at who "deserves it" more. A playoff is the only solution-- and it's one that would increase the significance of the reg. season, IMO

How would a playoff increase the value of the regular season? Every game matters. Ask USC after the Stanford game. Ask WVU after Pitt. Ask Michigan after App. State.

Think about it this way. Remember the Texas vs. USC game? They were clearly the two best teams in the country. Why should some team that lost to Michigan State or Ole Miss have the same chance that they did to play in the BCS title game? How is that fair? Same goes for the OSU vs. Miami game. College Basketball is all about the Cinderella's, but College Football is about the big boys. Why open the door for an underachiever?

kaldaniels
08-15-2008, 12:29 PM
I agree with Chip. There will never (yes bold AND underlined :D) be a way to elimanate preseason rankings. Some mass-media giant (hmmm ESPN?) would create some sort of de facto preseason rankings, that unfortunately would be used as a guide to the voters. Seriously, you would have to have the official voters in a cave with only access to game footage with no announcers/analysis to create an environment where the teams are truly ranked without preseason ranking bias.

Boston Red
08-15-2008, 12:57 PM
Number one, nowhere did I refer to myself as an "expert," only as a "blogger."

Sorry. I didn't know this was your blog. I didn't click the link and figured you were just copying this from some college football analyst's site.

Edskin
08-15-2008, 01:45 PM
I agree with Chip. There will never (yes bold AND underlined :D) be a way to elimanate preseason rankings. Some mass-media giant (hmmm ESPN?) would create some sort of de facto preseason rankings, that unfortunately would be used as a guide to the voters. Seriously, you would have to have the official voters in a cave with only access to game footage with no announcers/analysis to create an environment where the teams are truly ranked without preseason ranking bias.

People like ESPN could come up with whatever poll they wanted-- it's just that the "official" poll would be the one linked to the BCS standings.

I do see what you are saying in that even a "for fun" poll may influence voters...but better that than the current system.

Edskin
08-15-2008, 01:50 PM
How would a playoff increase the value of the regular season? Every game matters. Ask USC after the Stanford game. Ask WVU after Pitt. Ask Michigan after App. State.

Think about it this way. Remember the Texas vs. USC game? They were clearly the two best teams in the country. Why should some team that lost to Michigan State or Ole Miss have the same chance that they did to play in the BCS title game? How is that fair? Same goes for the OSU vs. Miami game. College Basketball is all about the Cinderella's, but College Football is about the big boys. Why open the door for an underachiever?

Because it is all so arbitrary. How do you decide between two one-loss teams, or four two-loss teams? You could easily make an arguement (just as an example) that a 3 loss Florida team was more impressive than a 1 loss West Virginia team. The only way to solve that is through a playoff. The top 8 or 16 or however many teams are involved have reason to play EVERY game all year.

Technically speaking, I suppose ANY playoff system has the possibility of "rewarding" a team that doesn't belong. Technically, it might be most fair to just have the Cubs and Angels play for the World Series at the end of the regular season.

Playoffs exsist to reward the top teams...not just THE top team. They exsist to generate interest for multiple teams/fans. It works in every other sport.

Boston Red
08-15-2008, 01:58 PM
Think about it this way. Remember the Texas vs. USC game? They were clearly the two best teams in the country.

Isn't that the same year that Auburn went undefeated? And Utah for that matter?

Those were probably the two best teams, but I certainly would not have minded a four team playoff that year to be sure that two other teams that did not lose all year were not deserving of #1.

kaldaniels
08-15-2008, 02:01 PM
People like ESPN could come up with whatever poll they wanted-- it's just that the "official" poll would be the one linked to the BCS standings.

I do see what you are saying in that even a "for fun" poll may influence voters...but better that than the current system.

For those that have major beefs with college football's ranking system/championship system...there is no perfect solution. Without a playoff there will always be a way for a mid-major/3rd unbeaten team to throw a wrench into the system.

I for one, liked it back when the Big Ten winner went to the Rose Bowl etc. and there was no BCS. The BCS system doesn't bother me much either, because it sure does produce some exciting matchups (spare the UGA/Hawaii example comments). So don't get me wrong, I'm not screaming that I want a playoff, I'm just telling it like it is.

However, there is either a playoff or there is not...all these attempts to crown a legit national champion are futile if you ask me. To crown a legit champion out of 100 plus teams, you would need a playoff system. I'm sorry but I see no way around that.

kaldaniels
08-15-2008, 02:03 PM
Isn't that the same year that Auburn went undefeated? And Utah for that matter?

Those were probably the two best teams, but I certainly would not have minded a four team playoff that year to be sure that two other teams that did not lose all year were not deserving of #1.

Different year. Auburn went undefeated in 2004...the USC/OU (1 and 2 in the BCS all year) game for the title.

improbus
08-15-2008, 02:11 PM
Because it is all so arbitrary. How do you decide between two one-loss teams, or four two-loss teams? You could easily make an arguement (just as an example) that a 3 loss Florida team was more impressive than a 1 loss West Virginia team. The only way to solve that is through a playoff. The top 8 or 16 or however many teams are involved have reason to play EVERY game all year.

Technically speaking, I suppose ANY playoff system has the possibility of "rewarding" a team that doesn't belong. Technically, it might be most fair to just have the Cubs and Angels play for the World Series at the end of the regular season.

Playoffs exsist to reward the top teams...not just THE top team. They exsist to generate interest for multiple teams/fans. It works in every other sport.
Well, I personally like the English Soccer model. The League Champion is determined solely by their regular season record. Then, they play the FA Cup, a giant playoff that involves every team in the country. Their "playoff" has nothing to do with the regular season.

As far as the Cubs vs. Angels WS, that's the way it worked until 1969. So that's nothing new.

Now, I understand the excitement of the playoffs in all sports. The tension and meaning of the games is ratcheted up. But, every sport with a playoff sacrifices much of the importance of its regular season. You can't tell me that an Colts vs. Pats game in September would mean more than the OSU vs. USC game. If there was a playoff, that game would most likely be meaningless. You can't take any team or any game lightly in CFB. Remember App. St., Stanford, and Pitt last year.

Boston Red
08-15-2008, 02:14 PM
Different year. Auburn went undefeated in 2004...the USC/OU (1 and 2 in the BCS all year) game for the title.

That's right. It was the year of USC/Oklahoma. Same idea, though, because USC and Oklahoma were preseason #1 and #2. The New England Patriots could not have won the national title if they had played Auburn's schedule that year.

improbus
08-15-2008, 02:37 PM
I agree that the conference system is unfair. But don't we make the same complaints about baseball? In 2006 the Cardinals made the playoffs with 83 wins while the Phillies, Blue Jays, Red Sox, White Sox, and Angels all had more wins and did not make the playoffs. What is the difference? They simply played in different and tougher divisions. The same can apply to the NFL where a team can win its division at 8-8. At least in CFB, the teams from the lower conferences have to go undefeated or at least have a better record than anyone else (like WVU could have done last year had they not lost to Pitt). A team from the Big East will not get a bid over a team from the SEC anytime soon when they have identical records. As far as the Auburn thing, that was an obvious oversight. Voters are often taken by the bigger named and more traditional powers. But, I believe that the BCS title game has pitted the two best teams in the title game more often than any other sport has since it started. It isn't perfect, but it more often than not picks the best teams.

15fan
08-15-2008, 02:51 PM
[QUOTE=Edskin;1722863]

Eliminate the Coaches Poll:

I disagree. Think sunshine laws. Open records requests.

Publish the ballots on a public website every week so that we can see how each coach voted. With increased accountability I think you'll get less bias in the voting.

Another angle would be to prevent coaches from voting for teams in their own conference. It would keep the coaches from putting themselves in a precarious position of having to cast a vote when a conflict of interest might be present.


Make Every Conference Play a Championship Game:

As has already been pointed out, the conferences chose to add the layer of a title game for $, $, and more $. Nothing more. If you sold yourself out for the $ associated with a title game, I find little pity for the conference if it makes it "tougher" to get into the national title game.

Quick Predictions:

ACC: Clemson over North Carolina in the Title Game:

Not sure I get all of the love for UNC this year. They went 4-8 last year, losing every single road game they played. The conference schedule is kind in that they don't play Clemson, Wake, or FSU during the regular season. But that's still going to require quite a leap from going winless on the road to winning enough road games to get to the conference title game. And after the opener (McNeese State), they don't really have any non-conference breathers: @ Rutgers, vs. UConn & vs. Notre Dame. All 3 of those programs have enough talent that UNC will have to bring it for 40 minutes to get out w/ a W. They're still a very young team, which means they'll likely struggle with consistency. It also means that there isn't much depth so injuries will be more of an issue for them than the average team.

Personally, I'd go with VT as the pick from their division, though I think that Miami and GT have some interesting talent. If one of those teams gels early, I think they'll make a nice run.

As far as Clemson, I'd hedge and go with the winner of the Wake-Clemson game going to the title game. That game is on a Thurs night in Winston-Salem. Clemson has a ton of talent at the offensive skill positions, but there are ?s on the OLine. Wake brings back a very stout and experienced defense. IMO, the Clemson O vs. the Wake D will be as good of a match-up of O vs. D as any other in the country this year.

Chip R
08-15-2008, 03:22 PM
Because it is all so arbitrary. How do you decide between two one-loss teams, or four two-loss teams? You could easily make an arguement (just as an example) that a 3 loss Florida team was more impressive than a 1 loss West Virginia team. The only way to solve that is through a playoff. The top 8 or 16 or however many teams are involved have reason to play EVERY game all year.

Technically speaking, I suppose ANY playoff system has the possibility of "rewarding" a team that doesn't belong. Technically, it might be most fair to just have the Cubs and Angels play for the World Series at the end of the regular season.

Playoffs exsist to reward the top teams...not just THE top team. They exsist to generate interest for multiple teams/fans. It works in every other sport.


Since every other division plus FCS (1-AA) can do it, why can't the brainiacs that run BCS do it?

BuckeyeRed27
08-15-2008, 07:59 PM
I posted something last year about this, but I really think that more should be done to change the regular season and leave the BCS alone. I don't like the idea of the playoff because of what some people have said about lessening the importantance of those match ups. But somebody made a good point about the schedules not being balanced. Now there isn't a perfect answer to this, but I think if you required each school to play two games against another BCS conference as thier OCC it would go a long ways to fixing the issue. I think you can let the schools choose their own game for one of the two and the other game is set up like the Big 10/ACC Challenge in college basketball is set up in basketball where you play the team that finished in the same place as you did in your conference the year before. Then rotate which conference plays which each year in a round robin style.

bucksfan2
08-16-2008, 09:05 AM
I posted something last year about this, but I really think that more should be done to change the regular season and leave the BCS alone. I don't like the idea of the playoff because of what some people have said about lessening the importantance of those match ups. But somebody made a good point about the schedules not being balanced. Now there isn't a perfect answer to this, but I think if you required each school to play two games against another BCS conference as thier OCC it would go a long ways to fixing the issue. I think you can let the schools choose their own game for one of the two and the other game is set up like the Big 10/ACC Challenge in college basketball is set up in basketball where you play the team that finished in the same place as you did in your conference the year before. Then rotate which conference plays which each year in a round robin style.

I would like to see each team toughen their OCC schedule but how and by how much? Look at OSU's OCC schedule this season; YSU, Ohio, USC, and Troy. YSU is most probably a payday for YSU for Tressel's services. Ohio is another payday to a state institution. Troy is an ok game and year in year out there are a couple of SEC teams that beat up on Troy in the OCC schedule. YSU and Ohio both serve as preseason games as well. Granted every century you will have an Appy St knock off a UM but most early games are played similar to preseason games. The USC game shoud be great this season but when the deal was signed it could have very easily been like Washigton last season. I would imagine that this deal may have been signed pre Carson Palmer at USC.

Last years college football season was one of the greatest in history. All the upsets and movement in the polls made for a very exciting season. I think a playoff will take a little away from the regular season which is something I don't want to see. The best option may be a +1 game but some years a +1 isn't needed.

One thing I would love to see is an SEC team travel north in November. I would love to see a southern team have to deal with the cold of playing at a PSU or OSU. I know its never going to happen but why should a commish of the Big East or Big 10 or Big 12 for that matter agree to a playoff system in which home field is not taken into consideration. Don't get me wrong I am sure the players love playing in the south or our west but if a northern team is #1 where do they have the biggest advantage, in a warm climate or in the cold?

MaineRed
08-16-2008, 01:55 PM
As has already been pointed out, the conferences chose to add the layer of a title game for $, $, and more $. Nothing more. If you sold yourself out for the $ associated with a title game, I find little pity for the conference if it makes it "tougher" to get into the national title game.


You don't have to find pity to think it makes some sense for every league to operate the same way. Obviously money is involved and I can promise you that the Big East would love to have some sort of championship game. However they don't have enough teams to justify it. Right now every team in the Big East plays the other teams whereas in the ACC, SEC and B12 that isn't the case. Should the SEC be like the Big 10, just one giant cluster of 12 teams? I think these conferences that split in two and then hold the title game are only operating in a sensible fashion. Its no surprise to see the Big 10 lagging behind.

The Big 10 doesn't want a championship game for one reason, Jim Delaney is a my way or the highway jerk. Look how long he held out on a conference basketball tourney.

The only thing I feel when it comes to championship games is joy because it makes for very exciting stuff and that is the only thing I am looking for from college football, excitement. Waiting six weeks to watch someone play is lame.

BearcatShane
08-16-2008, 05:26 PM
The only thing I have to say is Go Bearcats.

NorrisHopper30
08-16-2008, 06:04 PM
The only thing I have to say is Go Bearcats.

We gotta prove the doubters wrong once again!

MaineRed
08-16-2008, 10:47 PM
The Bearcats are to college football what the Toledo Mud Hens are to baseball.