Wherefore art thou, BCS?

Condoleezza RiceI have a joke for you.  Barry Alvarez, Archie Manning and Condoleezza Rice walk in to a sports bar… and are then asked to determine college football’s national champion.

Surprise, sports fans!  Just when you thought you were on the road to salvation, the joke is on you.

Don’t get me wrong.  I’ve got nothing against our former Secretary of State or any of the other of our soon-to-be, most questioned college football watchers in America.  Rice may very well know more about the sport than the rest of us.  She certainly knows more about diplomacy.

She will soon need to.

I’m just spit-balling here but why in the world are we selecting Rice, and a handful of other so-called experts, to determine the four teams that will play in next year’s highly anticipated, yet still inevitably debated, college football playoff and who the hell selected these people?  Furthermore, who the hell selected the people that selected those people?  Is this the best we could come up with?

Peyton’s dad Archie, Andrew Luck’s dad, Oliver (how ironic is that!), along with Condoleezza, Tom Osborne and a handful of other rapscallions will now be in charge of determining next year’s national champion, or at least the schools who get to play for it.

May the last program out be the first to bitch.

Here’s the thing.  College football is, and has always been, perfect in its imperfection.  It is the only sport, college or pro, in which the regular season actually means something.

college footballI’m going to go out on a limb here and say that no four-team playoff, or eight-team playoff for that matter, will determine a true national champion any more than the previous systems have.  A four-seed can always upset a one, injuries can happen and, well, let the debates continue.

Here’s what I would like to know.

These thirteen committee members, are they going to watch every single minute of every single game?  Are their Saturdays reserved for just such activity?  Will they be huddled up watching football in a conference room together with Ring Dings and Pepsis, wires taped to their foreheads to measure blood pressure and body temperature?  Will they be watching only the Top 25 or just the highlights that SportsCenter shows them?  Are they getting paid for this responsibility and if so, how much?  Will our former Secretary of State, or any of the others for that matter, not ever hit the links on Saturday?  What if there’s a scheduled family gathering?  Most importantly, how can we ensure allegiances won’t come into play?

In addition to Rice, Manning, Alvarez and Osborne, Tom Jernstedt is on the selection committee.  You haven’t heard of him until now.  He worked for the NCAA from 1972 to 2000.  He also played football for Oregon in the ‘60s.  Do you mean to tell me he has no allegiance to his Ducks?  Dan Radakovich is also on the Super Friends committee.  He’s the athletic director for Clemson and a former AD for Georgia Tech.  Will he be able to shed his conference allegiances if an ACC team is on the cusp of elimination?

By no means am I questioning each individual’s qualifications.  I only question the process itself, which to me appears no better than any we have had so far.

For some reason, I keep panning back to John Cusack trying to sway Gene Hackman’s trial in “Runaway Jury.”  I wonder why.

For years, we complained about the BCS and how it failed to determine a true national champion yet all we’ve done to improve that process is enlist a bunch of millionaires who have far better things to do on Saturdays than watch college football for fifteen hours.

Good old American ingenuity.

Color me skeptical.

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29 Replies to “Wherefore art thou, BCS?”

  1. I am more qualified than any single one of them. I DO watch football for 15 hours on Saturdays. I am willing to bet that I have watched more in the first half of the year than any of them will for the whole year. The SEC only has 3 voices on the committee so I have no doubt it is an attempt to break up the SEC reign of dominance…not the SEC’s fault the other conferences suck. The unbalance in general needs to be addressed.

    Ohio St. has no business playing for anything regardless of record. The fact that in week 4 the Northwestern game was hyped as Ohio St. only chance to lose should speak volumes. Louisville is another team that plays no ranked opponents all year…what a joke!

  2. Pingback: Wherefore art thou, BCS? - BallHyped Blog Network, NCAA Football | BallHyped Sports Blogs

  3. Chris

    And the credibility of the BCS system now comes into further question . This is the type of idiocy that mirrors the incompetence now seen with the US political arena and the government . Yet , there are some now suggesting that this gives even greater meaning to Collegiate Football . That’s akin to saying that the US Roman Catholic Church in all candor , did the best it could in addressing its sexual abuse scandal .

    More bull#hit as usual with the only people to profit from this all being the sports’ broadcast networks , who will have a greater say than the panelists and BCS themselves would care to admit .

    My take on it all , see link provided to view .

    It’s not always the journey , but the first step taken on the road to that destination

    tophatal ……………………..

  4. Simple solution… Get rid of this ridiculous “plus one” crap… There are 6 super conferences so you’ve got 6 conference champions and then 2 wild cards for an 8 team playoff unless they decide to finally do the right thing and go with 16 teams… then it’s 10 Division 1-A conference champions along with 6 wild cards… AND SCREW THE BOWL GAMES!

  5. Division II Football can manage a 24 team playoff with a first round bye for the top 2 in each conference.

    Division I delivers a four team playoff 40 something years later. Woah, let’s not get crazy here Division one. Slow it down.

  6. Heavyd,

    Please get a life before you get diabetes. Put the crisco down, and walk outside for once.

  7. Chris

    By solution , I hope you don’t mean the latest piece of buill#hit the government now seems to be under the impression they seem to have averted, in terms of the nation’s debt-crisis ? I mean this idiocy with the BCS is all being done in obeisance and the wishes of the tv broadcast outlets . Anyone who hasn’t factored that into the equation , has to be mindless and a complete buffoon . Rice may well have been Bush’s (Dubya’s) National Security Adviser and then Secretary of State during his second term ( lousy performances on both part,s in her case) not one piece outstanding solution on the international diplomatic front but yet , many are trying to suggest that she will bring something fresh to the table . More like a piece of her stank draws no doubt .

    These guys will show about as much impartiality as the members of a KKK rally , while they’re hanging effigies of minorities from a tree . More fecal matter from a bunch of a#$holes looking at other ways of increasing the coffers of the BCS and major conference coffers , jointly . ‘bets’ seemed to be under the impression that these candidates bring integrity and character into the mix . Yeah , that’s like saying your elected Senator or . Congressman gives a rat’s @ss as to what their constituents actually feel or think .

    tophatal ………….

  8. Chris

    Is Colts’ owner , Jim Irsay that much of a moron ? You don’t burn bridges and you certainly don’t bite or in this case chomp at the hand that made your franchise relevant . I guess Peyton won’t be inviting Jim over for either Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner ?

    tophatal ………………………

  9. Al…

    I think we need to look back and ask ourselves, how difficult is it really to determine a true national champion and go from there.

    In fact, I’d go so far as to suggest there doesn’t even need to be a set structure but rather one that changes by year.

    Let’s look at a few examples. At the end of year one, you have two undefeated teams. That’s an open and shut case. They play for the national championship.

    Let’s say in another year you have four teams that are undefeated, and obviously from one of the major conferences. Round robin them to determine your champion.

    Now, if you have three undefeated teams, then just add a the best fourth one-loss team.

    This can’t be as difficult as we’re all making it out to be.

    And I barely paid any attention to the Irsay comments as I’m sure they were taken out of context. He does need to stay off Twitter though, that’s for sure.

  10. Chris… That’s been the problem all along. The bowl people didn’t want to see a playoff just because the playoffs would actually generate more dollars to the participants than the bowls and they know it… The bowl people wouldn’t be getting their cut… They can still have their little bowl games but the top teams won’t be in the mix… Too bad…

  11. Chris

    It’s not about the system as it now currently stands , as I stated in the piece initiated on my site . It comes down to money and how much of a say , the broadcast networks will have their say in determining this all . Money will remain the driving force behind this all . Placing thirteen individuals in a room, will be as meaningful as watching members of the Senate or House on the floor, debating an issue . I mean when was the last time that particular came up with a piece of meaningful legislation that was to the benefit of many ? .

    Many of the teams play powder puff schedules and no question that issue , as it plays a part in the current rankings . Yet no one question that issue and it is something that will undoubtedly be used in the formatting of this current system .

    If Irsay didn’t want his comments taken out of context , then he would have taken care in how those comments were made . Do you recall his comments , when it was revealed the Colts would be cutting ties with Peyton Manning ?

    Wonderful display offered up last night by the Dodgers . The French military would have been proud in the way they (Dodgers) laid down , but did they raise the white flag of surrender before the ninth inning of game six ?

    After this series’ loss do you think that Magic Johnson will be offering half price admission at the Magic Johnson Theaters for the fans of the team . And will that be the case at the Starbucks Restaurants (125) that he owns around the country ?

    Charlie Strong can’t have imagined that he would be so embarrassed in such a way .

    tophatal .,…………………..

  12. Bucs-Falcons, Al?

    I know Atlanta’s dinged up but what makes you think the Bucs stand a chance today on the road?

    The new BCS? Well, like I said, I’m sure they’ll give us plenty more reasons to complain. Are each of the voters going to be held accountable for their positions and are we going to be able to see who voted for whom?

    Inquiring minds want to know.

  13. So, Al, does Schiano make it through the season?

    I mean, a few more losses and you think they’d have had enough, don’t you?

    Or are the owners not paying attention?

  14. Damned tough to read through such rambling rants from lonely Al… but here goes…

    In the past 40 years there have never been more than 8 teams in any given year that could rationally be claimed as the best in a given year. I’t’s always come down to less than 8. Find a year to dispute that fact… there are none.

    Thus an 8 team playoff selection would solve all above issues FAR better than the current BCS and FAR better than any glad handing group of doddering old fools or some ex Secretary of State. Condi Rice may be a football fan and she may be smart but WTF does either of those have to do with her being involved in the selection process?? She has no more business being involved than than mental lightweight heavyd.

    Thus if the Buckeyes have won 19 in a row, and counting, beating all comers then they deserve to be included in the 8 as well.

    No perfect system exists but an 8 team, 3 weekend playoff system, using a rotation of major bowl game sponsors would be the closest thing I’ve heard of to date.

  15. I don’t disagree with that, Tree.

    Here’s the thing though.

    The powers that be will feel obligated to select a ‘certain eight teams,’ for example one or two from each conference plus conference champions.

    So the conference champion for say, the Big 12, will be automatically awarded a spot, as will two at-large teams, when they may in fact have no business being there in at all.

    No matter what, politics is going to come into play. That’s what we need to resolve.

  16. Cap

    The system is flawed and slanted in favor of BCS conference and the programs in question . So pray do tell , how it can be made supposedly better when we all know that how much ongoing bias is being shown in favor of the conferences and schools ?


    Glad to see the sword of Damocles didn’t fall that hard on the Canes’ program by way of the punishment meted out by the NCCA . Their Infractions Committee screws up the original investigation , falsifies records and documents. Now the Collegiate Athletics’ governing body simply gives the school a mere slap on the wrist and a pat on the backside .

    tophatal …………..

  17. Al…

    In the coaches poll, the coaches have always been known to sway their votes for the highest ranked team in their conference. I’m not sure how we get rid of bias when there are people doing the voting but it should be pretty damn simple to pick eight, one would think.

    Canes got off easy, I agree, but the damn infractions were so long ago, who can remember whether the punishment was just or not?

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