Eh, no.

Pete Fiutak at CFN kinda gets on my nerves this morning with a twofer.

First, there’s his open letter to Heisman voters about why Tebow should win the award over McFadden. Now, I disagree with that position, but I can certainly see an argument being made for it. Nor would I have a problem if Tebow won. He’s had a helluva year.

But then Fiutak writes this…

So how does McFadden have Tebow beat in the Heisman race this year? I’m looking for anyone to provide one cogent reason why and how No. 5 has been better than No. 15. A monster game against LSU isn’t enough.

Well, wait a minute. Why isn’t that LSU game a cogent reason? Where’s Tebow’s signature victory this year? Florida’s got almost as many losses as Arkansas and won’t be playing in a BCS bowl game, either, even though many would insist that the Gators are one of the elite teams in college football at this point in the season. So what have all of Tebow’s excellent statistics gotten his team this year that any number of other great (or even very good) QBs wouldn’t have accomplished?

If you extend this reasoning out to its logical conclusion, we’re going to risk reducing this whole thing down to a numbers game. There are a whole lot of kids at less than stellar programs who should have their names thrown in the mix each year if that’s where we want to follow Fiutak on this.

And just out of curiosity, why does Tebow’s GPA matter?

Moving on, Fiutak lays down the law. Georgia shouldn’t play in the BCS title game, because

… If you’re not going to have a playoff, then the regular season has to mean everything, and that means you cannot play for the national title if you can’t even win your own conference. Double that if you can’t even win your own division…

and in case you missed his point, he repeats it…

If you can’t even prove that you’re the best team in your own division, how can you even be considered among the two best teams in the country?

Well, first off, Georgia tied for the SEC East title. It didn’t lose the division; it lost the tiebreaker to play in the championship game. Ordinarily, that’s a distinction I could care less about, but if Fiutak’s gonna make an issue over it, he should at least be accurate about it.

But it’s Fiutak’s larger point that I have a problem with. To state that any team like Georgia that isn’t a conference champ should not be eligible to play for the MNC is fine – if that’s the rule going into the season. An ad hoc change on the fly as Fiutak suggests would be awfully unfair to schools that play in conferences that have championship games and, in some years, to schools not named Notre Dame.

You want to make certain that you devalue the meaning of the regular season? Tell every player on the Georgia team that the way he did his part to help his squad claw back in the national title picture isn’t going to make any difference now because of a rule you just implemented.

This isn’t a BCS vs. playoffs argument I’m making here. You could have this same issue with a four or eight team playoff format. It’s about being fair. As Mark Richt has said, there shouldn’t be a problem with Georgia being in the mix if that’s how the process has been arranged. If you don’t like it, fix it in the offseason, Pete.

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9 Comments

Filed under College Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

9 responses to “Eh, no.

  1. hoodawg

    Don’t stop there, Senator. Fiutak has been unwilling to buy Georgia for several weeks now. In his latest rankings (whereby he makes much noise telling us that, unlike those other pollsters, “these are based on how good the teams are and NOT how they’re going to finish,” he ranks the Dawgs at 6th, behind LSU and Oklahoma. That’s right, behind a team that lost to Kentucky (who we beat) and one that lost to Colorado.

    Most telling have been Fiutak’s “why team X should be ranked lower” comments over the past few weeks. Three weeks ago, he ranked us #13 (behind Alabama) and returned to what has been a constant ballad for Fiu and Richt-coached teams — the “inconsistency” meme: “which team will show up next week?” Two weeks ago, ranked at #9, he wised up and said that, “[r]ight now this might be one of the five best teams in America.” Why he ranked us #9 at that point is an open issue, but apparently we’ve regressed, despite moving up in his own rankings. Last week, ranking us #7, Fiutak believed that “there’s still a question mark about how good the Dawgs are in a true road game.” You’d think that beating Tech by 14 on the road would solve this problem. Nope — this week, in discussing Georgia, winners of six straight, he asks “is this a mirage?”

    You know, Pete, at some point you have to believe the little men on the TV screen are doing what they appear to be doing. In Georgia’s case, they’re kicking ass.

  2. FWIW, I think LSU is getting shafted in the national polls/rankings with Va. Tech, a team the Tigers flat out waxed earlier this year, being listed ahead of them.

    You can argue their merits with Georgia either way, IMO.

    Now Oklahoma, on the other hand…

  3. hoodawg

    Oh, and on the Tebow point — does anyone really think Tebow would have 20+ rushing TDs if Florida had any other running game to speak of? Not to diminish his astounding physical gifts, but Tebow scores because no one else wearing blue and orange CAN score on the ground. Florida doesn’t even pretend at having a tailback — at most, they bring Percy Harvin across to run a delayed handoff now and then. If Pat White didn’t have Steve Slaton, Owen Schmitt, or Noel Devine, he’d run in for close to that many, too (he had 18 last year when Slaton was hurt for most of the year).

    If I didn’t have a real job, I’d look up the number of rushing TDs by Florida this year and compare it to other top schools’ rushing TD totals. Unless Tebow gets Florida more overall TDs on the ground as compared with teams with a true tailback, I’d have to discount the value of that statistic.

  4. Statistically speaking, one thing in Tebow’s favor is that Florida’s scoring is up dramatically this year from last.

  5. JD

    In regards to UGA and the title game, imagine for a moment if the SEC didn’t have a conference championship game. Depending on how the tiebreaker rules were set up, UGA could be the conference champ.

  6. SR

    I read this, too this morning and wondered if this guy is a gator fan/alum. Do you know?

  7. hoodawg

    SR, I’ve always thought Fiutak was just a habitual pot-stirrer. He says things more emphatically than is usually warranted, and he has a serious contrarian streak. I assume this is his way of staying relevant and read, but I’ve read him less and less the more I realize he’s not especially serious.

  8. SCDog

    JD, pre-championship game, here are the old senarios (to the best of my knowledge): LSU, UT, and Georgia would all be declared SEC Champions. As for who got the Sugar Bowl bid, I think it would go to the higher ranked team if there were only two teams, regarless of head to head result, but since it’s three, I think it would be who hadn’t been in the longest time, so that would be UT, since its last Sugar appearance was, get this: 1991. (I didn’t realize Peyton never played in New Orleans, nor has Fulmer coached in a Sugar – interesting.) Again, not 100% sure on the rule, but looking at some of the past champions and Sugar representatives, this is the best I could come up with.

  9. ActuaryDawg

    Despite his shortcomings Fiu is nowhere near as bad as Zemek. He’s that blowhard that writes a couple of novels on cfn’s website every week. He takes pretentiousness to entirely new realm as article discusses college football’s social implications and blah, blah, blah.

    Fiu is notoriously inconsistent. He will sometimes pick a team to win in his “Fearless Picks” column, but pick the opponent to win in his entry in the “Expert Picks” column.