What’s the biggest thing wrong with the BCS?

Subjectivity.  And I don’t mean that in the narrow sense of whether Alabama or Oklahoma State is more deserving of playing LSU in the title game.  I mean it in a systemic sense.

Listen to Chris Petersen’s complaint here:

… Petersen also questioned the polls, saying they lack credibility when teams ranked in the top 10 can’t get into BCS games. Arkansas, South Carolina and Kansas State were top-10 teams that were also left out of the marquee bowls. “When I’m voting, I’m trying to make the best case for Boise State to get in there,” said Petersen, who voted his team fifth in the final USA TODAY Coaches Poll. “I probably shouldn’t be voting. Why are we voting at all if it doesn’t really mean anything?”

On the one hand, you have to admire his honesty for admitting his purpose in voting and acknowledging that he has a conflict of interest in doing so.  On the other hand, is there any doubt at this point that the Coaches Poll is a complete, total and absurd joke?  It’s not as if Petersen is the only voter out there thinking like that.  He’s just the only one saying it publicly.

And don’t stop there.  The Harris Poll shouldn’t be considered any better, at least as long as clowns like this are allowed to cast a vote.

The Harris Poll panelist who voted Houston No. 5 and Oklahoma State No. 6 this weekend said he believes the system that selects the teams for a national championship through polling and computer rankings needs to go, in favor of a method decided on the field.

“I think the BCS is just a mess,” said George Wine, 80, who retired as sports information director at Iowa in 1996 and still writes stories for the Hawkeyes’ official site. “I think college football is crying for a playoff system. This voting is highly subjective. I realize that voting is subjective and often arbitrary. I probably don’t do as much research … but who the hell knows whether Oregon is better than Wisconsin?”

Talk about your self-fulfilling prophecy.  Maybe there’s a question about the relative merits of Oregon versus Wisconsin, but Houston and Oklahoma State?  Either somebody’s not even bothering to make the effort or just wants some attention.  No matter which, that’s embarrassing.

And before you go there, a playoff in and of itself doesn’t fix anything.  In fact, it makes things worse.  Petersen’s understandably pissed because Boise State missed out on playing in a BCS game, but the bowls have always been a popularity contest at heart, BCS rankings or not.  In essence, they’re nothing but gussied up postseason exhibitions.  The Broncos will get a smaller check and their fans will miss eating oysters at Acme Oyster House, but that’s as far as it goes.

But tie this garbage to tournament seedings?  Hoo, boy, are you going to have a mess on your hands.

Petersen’s suggested solution – the establishment of a committee, similar to what’s used for NCAA tournaments, to pair teams in the major bowls, then for a “plus-one” system after the bowls to decide a championship matchup – isn’t workable for several obvious reasons, starting with that his peers have fought like hell to keep the Coaches Poll in play (which is weird when you consider how few of them put the actual time in to cast a ballot).   Further, the bowls simply aren’t going to relinquish their control over the process or agree to be made completely subservient to a plus-one playoff.

College football isn’t at the point where it’s ready for the optimal solution, which is a conference champs-only playoff.  That would drain much of the subjectivity from the swamp.   (A tournament would presumably still seed the schools involved.)  We won’t see it happen until there’s a fairly level field between all the conference participants, though.  It’s something to expect with the inevitable arrival of the super conferences along with the weeding out of the rest of D-1 which will go with that.  But like I said, we’re not there yet.

In the meantime, some serious effort has to be made to weed out the bias, the conflicts of interest and the lack of care that are part of the process now or the rot will eventually consume the system.  The BCS title game isn’t corrupt but it’s in danger of being corrupted by a process that grows ever more cynical.  It’s no way to determine a champion.  College football’s powers-that-be stay blind to that at their own risk.

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71 Comments

Filed under BCS/Playoffs

71 responses to “What’s the biggest thing wrong with the BCS?

  1. Irishdawg

    It’s not just the coach’s poll. So much of college football right now is entirely driven by lazy and unserious media types. The Heisman is given to a deserving candidate about once every 5 years. The bowl selections are based on nothing more than money and media hype, not merit.

    • I agree about the Heisman. If Luck wins it, they should stop treating it like a special award, and hand it out with the rest of them. He played in two meaningful games, and made some costly errors in both. He has not been the most outstanding player this year. I wouldn’t say he’s been one of the five best quarterbacks this year. I would put RG3, Barkley, Weeden, Moore, and maybe Russell Wilson ahead of him.

      • Go Dawgs!

        ESPN has destroyed the Heisman Trophy. They start doing “Heisman Watch” packages in the PRESEASON. I remember watching football on Friday night before the UGA opener in the Dome. Robert Griffin III had a great game for Baylor against TCU, and afterwards, SportsCenter returned to Waco for more coverage, and it was all about how RG3 had just taken the lead in the “Heisman Race.” This was before most teams had even played their first game!!! It’s still a nice honor, but it’s becoming relegated now to just being background noise, just like everything else ESPN tries to crank out with the hype machine.

  2. NC Dawg

    Serious question: I know you don’t favor a playoff system, but what would you do to fix the BCS?

    • Ed

      There’s no way to “fix” the BCS – it does exactly what it was originally designed to do 14 years ago, and that is to match the two subjectively best teams in one title game. All of the other games are like regular bowls – their main concern is with making money, so they’re going to invite teams who will sell tickets. It’s that simple. Bowls aren’t about wins and who deserves to play – they’re about money.

      A big part of the problem is the rankings, which people don’t trust because the coaches really aren’t the best people to be voting for numerous reasons. But the catch-22 is that we still need the rankings because there’s not enough games between the top teams to differentiate between them.

      What honestly would help the current setup (or any setup, really) would be a system that forces the top teams to play each other in non-conference games instead of loading up on non-BCS and DI-AA cupcakes like they always do. That way more things would be worked out “on the field” and the voters would have more to work with.

    • I don’t have a problem with a well-designed playoff system. My problem is that most of the ones I see pushed are anything but that.

      As for fixing what we’ve got:

      1. Ed’s right. There should be more OOC matchups between AQ conference teams so that voters have stronger information to work with.
      2. Convert the Coaches Poll into something similar to what we do with the Mumme Poll.
      3. Clear out the idiots who vote in the Harris Poll.
      4. Give more weight to the computers and factor margin of victory into the equation.

      • The ATH

        Computers have had more weight in the past, and margin of victory used to be a factor.

        Voters didn’t like being overruled by our robot overlords, and I think a lot of people around football felt kind of dirty encouraging teams to run up the score.

      • Boz

        Senator -
        I tend to fall to your side as an anti-playoff advocate because I have yet to hear any sensible playoff system, and I don’t like the thought of a 16 team playoff, but an idea came to me the other day:
        * Do away with all Conference Championship Games, yet crown a winner via a tiebreaker system as done prior to conference divisions (yet retain conference divisions);
        * Require each BCS conference to have at least 12 teams and two divisions;
        * Automatic tournament entry for each of the 12 conference division winners;
        * Tournament has 4 at large bids taken from a ranking – no rules limiting number of teams from any conference – pure ranking;

        The total number of games played for the national champion goes to 15 games, 14 for the semi-finalists (same number of games UGA will play) and 13 for the sweet 16 bracket, which is the same as the number played for any other team today that doesn’t make it to the Conference Championship Game. The first round of the seeded playoffs are played at home field of the higher seeded team (or alternately at the sites of the existing conference championship games), the second round is played at the existing BCS power bowl facilities, and the championship game rotates as it does today. This has insignificant impact on the existing bowl system, however ticket allotment thresholds would be on an as needed basis and have no bearing on seeding – University can request as many or as little tickets as they need, minimizing the financial burden on smaller schools for having to purchase x amount of tickets to get in to the game.

        Thoughts?

  3. TennesseeDawg

    Further, the bowls simply aren’t going to relinquish their control over the process or agree to be made completely subservient to a plus-one playoff.
    ——————
    Exactly. The Fiesta Bowl chairman was making $600,000 a year to play golf for 11 months and invite 2 teams to a bowl game in the other month. Those guys aren’t giving up their cushy gigs and let someone else do that kind of hard work.

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      Where can i go to apply for that job? Any of us could do it part time and still work at a regular job full-time.

  4. Go Dawgs!

    ESPN will be along in a few minutes with 96 hours or programming to tell everyone how to feel about it, don’t worry.

  5. gastr1

    Well-said, Senator. A very insightful piece.

  6. Steve M.

    Get rid of the BCS.
    Get rid of the polls.
    Play the bowl games.
    Let the President pick the National Champion (like Nixon thought he did).
    Debate angrily all off-season.
    Repeat.

    • Doug

      Pros: If people knew the president was responsible for picking the national champion, I bet a lot more of them would go out and vote.

      Cons: See above. SEC fans in particular would cast their ballot based on how friendly the individual candidates seemed toward their team, which is little better than that “I’d have a beer with him” criteria we’ve all been so obsessed with for the last decade. “I think Candidate A’s fiscal policy is a sensible combination of prudent budget cuts and increasing revenue by ending tax cuts for the wealthiest 1%, but a couple of his high-level advisors went to Auburn so GO CANDIDATE B WOOOO ROLLTIDE.”

  7. Puffdawg

    Here is a pretty good example (or not) of the legitimacy of the Harris Poll:

    This guy – http://www.executiveaction.com/mayes – voted Auburn # 18 while leaving Georgia unranked. Auburn had three less wins than the dawgs and lost the head to head matchup 45-7.

  8. sniffer

    This thought occured to me yesterday. I allow the hype surrounding bowl season to lead me to believe that life is better if my team plays in a more prestigious bowl game. In fact, everyone wakes up to the same world when its all over, regardless of who played where. Deap, right?

  9. I find it laughable that the pollsters are arguing that there is too much subjectivity in the system because of the polls. If you remember, the original BCS formula was created to minimize the pollster bias. Then, when the teams that were selected didn’t match the polls, there was outcry that the formula was too convoluted and too scary for their feeble minds. So, it was tweaked to be simpler. The media types still didn’t like what happened, so it was tweaked again. Then, the formula was stripped bare until the polls counted 2/3 of the entire formula. And, now, there is too much bias in the system. We have come full circle, and the one thing that remains is that the pollsters and media types are all still full of shit. There will never be a system designed that will satisfy them. If you scrap this and go to a committee, they will still complain (they do now with a 68-team basketball tournament). If you take conference champs plus two at-large, then there will be gnashing of teeth still. A seeded plus one? Delaney will not allow the B1G to be left out of that more than once. A conf. champ only, plus one? And leave out Alabama and Stanford, two of the top four?

    The only change that quiets the bastards is four super conferences with eight division winners in the playoff or eight conferences with conference champs only. That is it. Any idea that continues to use polls at all is ridiculous. If we want to use them, then let’s keep what we have and recognize it for what it is. Exhibitions of amateur* athletes that happens but one glorious week per year.

    *Auburn excepted.

    • Connor

      This is critical. ANY solution that involves the polls at all is doomed to the same fate as the BCS. The NCAA basketball tournament gets away with their committee only because every single winner of a conference tourney get’s in. (As an aside, if you look at the basketball postseason as 1 large tournament starting with conference championships, 100% of college basketball teams are included in a huge single elimination – with reseeding and an arbitrary number of teams readmitted in the middle- tournament. The regular season is functionally as meaningful as the NFL pre season or MLB spring training.) As long as there is any subjectivity expanding the pool of participants only increases the areas for disagreement.

  10. Russ

    An 8 game playoff would solve a lot of this, and it could involve the bowls. I’ve never understood why the bowls had to give up anything. I think it could be rotated among the bowls, and the bowls that are left out would be in the same place they are today, playing exhibition games.

    Plus, I’d think there would be more money involved, so that’s got to make it better, right?

    • Always Someone Else's Fault

      They give up control of which teams are in their bowls.

      Let me put it this way – spend a bunch of money to get ready for a party, and then let me decide who to invite. They’ll be at your house Dec. 16 at 7 p.m. Have fun.

      • Russ

        I hear you, but there seem to be a lot of cities spending big money to host basketball parties each spring, and they don’t know who will be invited. Yet the tickets sell, the cities make money, TV is happy, so it seems to work.

        I think the BB tournament is what you have to model it after. Sell the tickets ahead of time, just like the conference football championships do. The tickets will sell out. The scalper’s market may collapse if the matchup is a dud, but so what. The tickets are already sold.

        • BuzMan

          BB tourney’s have more teams and more games. Usually there is at least one matchup that people want to see. Also a 10,000 seat arena is easier to fill than a 90,000 one. How many bowls do we see with thousands of empty seats? The BCS bowls don’t want that happening to them.

    • Dante

      Exactly. The NFL still has its bowls, right? Oh, they dropped them due to lack of interest and now we only have playoffs?

  11. Always Someone Else's Fault

    I just find it hysterical when coaches who get paid 7 figures – because it’s a big business, and that’s the market rate — suddenly shift gears at the end of the season. Hey coach – the same basic dynamic that makes you filthy rich also makes your team less desirable than Big State U.

    Can’t have it both ways.

  12. Irwin R. Fletcher

    Bravo. I think you hit the nail on the head…and pinpointed some of the exact issues we discussed on an earlier post about the subjectivity of the process.

    I’ll reserve my time for discussion on why a playoff can fix this mess for a later post….I think this one should stand by itself as a pretty good commentary. The only thing I would add is that you can’t let the ‘college football powers-that-be’ off the hook with the ‘blind’ reference. They got into this with their eyes wide open. They destroyed the old bowl system, which was pretty honest in its desire to make money, for the allure of more $$ from a Bowl Coalition and then a BCS and while helping package it as a ‘championship’ in order to keep the dollars flowing and in order to hide the fact that it is still just a money making process.

    Closing their eyes doesn’t make them blind.

    • Cojones

      Bowls are still choosing opponents to make money. Why not? Try to match comparable teams with bowl proximity to influence travel and fill the seats. It’s an enterprise folks. As good a reason as any to help economies of many Southern cities. I have no problem with linking a party atmosphere with athletic endeavors. Shotgunning beers is still classified as a sport, isnt it? It’s the Georgia and SEC way. Have sunshine: will you travel? Works for me.

      The Amnesian thinks bowl games are played until July. Thats when the hot beer-drinking season starts. Couple that with fishing(a professional sport sponsored by Wal Mart) and golf (also a sport including watching other sports play it) and that will get you back to football and fall beer drinking. Bowl arguing is becoming a sport as well. Takes me all the way back to July.

  13. Doug

    Blow it all up and go back to the pre-Coalition days. Seriously.

    I’d rather have a split national title than a “consensus” champion who got where they were thanks in part to octogenarian ex-ADs who still think TCU is in the SWAC.

  14. mp

    I’ve heard a lot of people saying this would have been a great year for a plus 1 system, as Alabama and Ok St would have to play for the right to play for LSU. True, but I haven’t heard anyone point out how Stanford would get the nod as #4 over the Pac-12 champion they lost to (and Peterson’s whines about Boise State being left out of that system would still get play in the media).

    The problem is that the “clean” solution in any given year may be different than the solution in any other year. This year, when you have such a clear #1, there shouldn’t need to be a National Championship game at all. It’s already been decided on the field. Everyone else should be jockying to see who’s #2.

  15. Eric

    Interesting article on ESPN for those who have insider.

    http://insider.espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7319837/with-lsu-alabama-bcs-put-right-teams-title-game-cfb

    I don’t necessarily agree with everything written, but he makes a good point. Fremeau basically writes that the BCS gives the best team (which is subjective of course) the best chance to win better than a playoff. Few would argue that LSU isn’t the best team this season. Now they have a 50% to win it all and prove it. If we had a playoff, they would have a 1 in 4 shot or 1 in 8, etc. Although, the top 2 will always be scrutinized and many of the other bowl games will get screwed. So if we’re looking for the “best” team and not the “hottest,” the BCS is best we have right now.

  16. Mark

    “And before you go there, a playoff in and of itself doesn’t fix anything. In fact, it makes things worse.”

    This is only true if poll voters go absolutely crazy while voting for a top seeds in a playoff. Of course, given their track record, it is certainly a possibility. (Also, I don’t have any confidence in the AP poll either.) As we discussed yesterday, most of the time it is more subjective to try to decide who is #3 than who is #7 when considering who deserves to play for a national title. Now, could the system screw it up worse? Well, if someone can rank Houston above OSU, then yea. But that goes back to the voter issue. If folks can be honest, then a small playoff fixes a major issue, i.e. picking the 2 best teams is much harder and more subjecting than picking the best 6 (or best 4). Granted, #7 won’t be happy, but since we are talking about who deserves to play for a national title, a missed #7 doesn’t have near the argument (most of the time) that a missed #3 would have.

    • The ATH

      “a missed #7 doesn’t have near the argument (most of the time) that a missed #3 would have.”

      Exactly – no system is perfect, but when otherwise reasonable pro-BCSers discuss the parade of terribles that would accompany a 4 or 8-team field, you hear: “But zen da #9 team will cry!!!1!.”

      The number nine team in the country will typically have at least two losses. That’s a lot more margin for error than OK State slipping in one game after a tragedy within their athletic department. That’s a lot more margin for error than Auburn going undefeated in ’04 and not getting a sniff of the game.

      Pro-BCSers also talk about “bracket creep.” Football and basketball are very different sports – even a 16-team field would take at least 4 weeks, pushing the season into February and making for a 16 or 17 game season for the finalists. That simply won’t happen.

      Plus One needs to happen – if this year, ’04 and ’07 haven’t convinced some people that more than two teams are capable of showing they deserve a shot, then I can only assume that those people are so entrenched in their desire to preserve the status quo, that they are unwilling to listen to reason.

      • You and I must be using a different calendar. A four-week playoff schedule starting the weekend after the end of the regular season gets you to roughly the same point in January that the BCS title game is now played.

        By the way, have you noticed how many games an FCS team plays to win that football title?

        • The ATH

          Three things work against starting the weekend after the regular season

          1) Logistics – whether the first round of games is played at home or at neutral sites (a non-starter given half-filled bowl and coference championship games IMO), those venues are going to need time to prepare, fans need time to take off from work and make travel plans.

          2) Physical toll – This isn’t the NFL. I know money can convince people of a lot of things, but I don’t think anyone is going to ask a bunch of 18 – 22 y/os to potentially play another 4 games immediately after playing 12-13 w/ only a week or two off.

          3) Academics – Similar reasoning. Right now is finals time. I just don’t see a room full of university presidents and ADs agreeing to throw these kids into an immediate playoff during final exams.

          As for FCS, they’re essentially playing an 8 team playoff, which is the furthest I would bet an FBS bracket would ever creep. They have the rouned of play-in games, but there are no conference championships, so I’d call that a wash. Finally, I think it’s fair to say that Georgia Southern and App State don’t hold themselves to the same academic standards of most of FBS.

      • This year, more than two teams didn’t show they deserved a shot. Only one did. Two years ago, it was five. How do you address seasons like that?

        The Senator has it right. Even conferences with equal paths to winning the conference and drop the polls altogether. That’s the only playoff that is better than the current system. I’m not pro-BCS, but I’m definitely anti-”anything is better than this.”

        • The ATH

          Ah – but the current system isn’t just to award LSU the championship is it? No arguments about them being head and shoulders above everyone else from me.

          And frankly, the Plus One or an 8-game playoff would never be a perfect solution either. There’s that old political line about not letting the perfect be the enemy of the good. And I think that applies in loads here.

          You saw the wrongs listed in my first post – isn’t a system that gives those teams an opportunity to prove their worth better than one that excludes them?

  17. sUGArdaddy

    Not that I’ve got all the answers, but I think if you tweak Danielson’s system, it could work. A few things probably have to happen, as the Senator says, to get us there:

    1. All conferences have to determine their champion the same way. One conference getting away w/o a conference championship game un-equals the playing field.
    2. Teams must be mandated to play a certain number of AQ teams on theri schedule. I’d probalby put that number at 10. You can play 8 league games and 2 OOC games or 9 league games and 1 OOC game.

    Then…
    1. Select a committee much like the NCAA tournament selection committee that will use the BCS much like the RPI. It’s a guide, but it’s not hard and fast. You don’t just take the teams at the top because there are other factors like scheduling and conference championships and how you lost and who you lost to.
    2. A six team playoff seems best. Any playoff that rewards all conference champions will be disastrous, as teams like West Virginia and Clemson would be in, and they have no business playing for a National Title.
    3. The top 2 conference champions get a first round bye and home-field advantage in the semis. Simply put, adding value to conference championships and excellence ups the ante on the regular season. In a year like this, LSU would have had a lot more to play for in that dome on Saturday night. This year, those 2 schools would have been LSU and Oklahoma St.
    4. The two host schools for the quarterfinals would be determined by the next 2 most deserving conference champions. This year, those two would have been Oregon and Wisconsin.
    5. Up to 2 at-large teams may be taken and do not have to be conference champions. They can be, but they do not have be. This year, those two would have been Alabama and Stanford. At large teams cannot host a playoff game. Much like the NFL and MLB, teams can’t play teams from their same conference in the opening round.

    So this is what yould have this year we’d have this:
    Dec. 10
    Alabama @ Oregon
    Stanford @ Wisconsin

    The losers go to a BCS bowl game against each other.

    Dec. 24
    LSU hosts the lowest ranked team that wins on Dec. 10. Oklahoma St. hosts the highest ranked team that wins on Dec. 10.

    The losers go to a BCS bowl game against each other on Jan. 2,3 or 4.

    The winners play each other in the BCS national championship.

    The problem with EVERY dumb playoff idea out there is two-fold.
    -They try to use the bowls. You can’t use the bowls. You’ll end up playing in half-empty stadiums and you dramatically decrease the value of the regular season. If I’m not playing for homefield advantage, then why in the world would a team like LSU even play a starter in that game Saturday night? Conference titles and excellent records have to mean something.
    -They discount the value of the bowl experiences. It’s not really fair for a semi-final loser who went 11-3 to get sent home after the playoff loss while a 7-5 Auburn team gets to go have a great experience at the Chick-fil-a Bowl. The losers need to be secured bowl berths. This seems like the most complicated part of the process to me. But my suggestion would simply be that the BCS bowls rotate which bowls are held for the losers. Or, you could just wait for those historic spots to fall to if you’re a conference champ. If Wisconsin loses, they go to the Rose. If LSU loses, they go to the Sugar.

    Boy, it’d be a hard sell to get the Rose to buy into this. But, what is becoming increasingly apparent to me is that conferences are not equal. And the only way to prove it is on the field. I used to say that if you go undefeated in a BCS conference you deserved to go, but I don’t know that anymore. I don’t know that an undefeated team from the ACC or Big 10 is better than a 1 or 2 loss team in the SEC or Big 12 anymore. It’s just not like the old days anymore.

    That’s more than my 2 cents.

    • Eric

      Sugar, your idea makes sense. My only concern is that it would solve this season, but what about next season? Like last year, we wouldn’t need any sort of playoff. It was relatively clear that All-barn and Oregon were the 2 most deserving teams and the only ones that should have a shot. Again, I am not disagreeing with your plan, but any idea for a plan cannot incorporate the scenario for the current year. Because every year, that scenario will change.

      I like the home-filed advantage idea. Gives incentive to play until the end.

      • sUGArdaddy

        That’s why I say that the biggest factor for me to make the switch from BCS to playoff is the disparity of the conferences. Oregon and Auburn were the 2 most deserving last year, but I don’t know that they were the best. I know they went undefeated, but I have no idea if the Pac-10 was better than the Big 12 or the Big 10? I know an undefeated TCU team won the Rose Bowl, so maybe the Mountain West was better than the Big 10. At the very least, the Mtn. West Champion was better than the Big 10 champion.

        Last year was a clean year as far as it being easy to pick the two teams, but I’m more unsure than ever whether one conference champion is better than another. As the SEC beats each other up, this becomes more apparent to me.

        • Eric

          Very true. Most deserving and best may not be the same every year.

          I guess the only tweak I would have is more OOC games. Just because the Big 10 champ beats the Pac 12 champ, doesn’t mean the Big 10 was a tougher conference that year. You would have to match a lot more games in the regular season with the big conference teams facing each other. Conference supremacy should not be decided by 1 game.

          I agree though, before switching to a playoff, we need to fix the regular season and conference/non-conference match-ups.

          • Cojones

            Require OOC games to involve only the BCS conferences for opponents. No more AA unless you are from So Car and ordered by the court. Stack the OOC schedule strength to match the previous year’s conference bowl winner strengths. That’s the way most preseason ratings are calculated; – from the previous year’s final rankings. Give a numerical ranking and make everyone achieve a certain number in scheduling OOC games. That will come closer to matching schedule strengths each year. If your conference opponents aren’t ranked very high, well that will really tell us some ranking news from the git-go.

            UGA’s schedule last year was a bear compared to this year and look what happened. We paid the penalty this year. No one gave a shit that we lost in years when we had the previous year’s Natl Champs and major bowl winners from the previous year on the schedule. If a numerical rating had been given to the schedule and have it weighted for the W/Ls, we would have stayed ranked for the previous three years, no matter the record. Can anyone see how this works? You don’t have this subjective turmoil at the end of the year. You frontload it and deal with it during the season. It really screws the subjectivity of the pollsters during the season. They have to use the mathematical weight of the win/lose game played that weekend. It puts the devil into the preseason ranking system that will promote more objectivity during each week’s rankings. Go back, reread and try to follow the virtual eradication of someone pissing on your front lawn.

            • Eric

              I like your idea. (Had to read it twice as you pointed out). The only issue is basing a strength of schedule on the results from the prior year. Example: Auburn. They would be put on a schedule this year and deemed to be a very tough opponent, when we all know they were not as tough as they were last year.

              Although, I see the advantages of front-loading the work and the decision making.

        • Macallanlover

          Your plan is an excellent base to work from, and is close to not only what I would propose, but also speaks to why reform should be demanded. What we have is a complete fiasco, and the way we get to it, the current polls and computers, is just as bad. Proposals which deall with a limited number of teams but recognize the need to alllow regional/conference inclusion are the ones that make the most sense to me. As bad as the Big East is (and I question why they need a an AQ spot) the current geography of PA, NJ, WVA, CT, and NY deserves to have their winner get a seat at the table. Inclusiveness is easier to deal with than explaining why someone subjectively dismisses their worthiness. It doesn’t cost much, and it validates the winner. Can you take that thought too far and include every single team/confernce? Of course, but reasonable restraints should apply and we shouldn’t abandon a sound solution for fear of overdosing.

  18. Hogbody Spradlin

    There’s always some smarter than everybody else type, like this George Wino character, who thinks his protest is more important than doing a small job with a sincere effort.

  19. BuzMan

    The biggest thing wrong with the BCS is that it tries to pick a National Champion. You have 120 teams who play maybe 13 games each. There is really no way to tell most years. The Bowls are essentially exhibition games, just as they always have been. The difference is they are tweaked to get more TV eyes and people in the seats. (I think this is why the old days of switching between bowl games all day on New Year’s have been taken away. Only one game on to watch so more people will watch it. Even if the game turns out to be horrible.) Anyone who thinks the BCS isn’t really about money isn’t paying attention.

    • Eric

      It’s all about money. Agreed. But aren’t playoffs about money also? Look at professional sports. We will not have a playoff until TV/Universities figure out how to profit more from it than the BCS.

      • BuzMan

        I’m not necessarily a playoffs guy either. I’m not exactly sure why we have to have a unified National Champ. I think some years it will be obvious and some years it will be murky. (2004 Auburn comes to mind.) A split NC would seem appropriate some years. OF course, I’m kinda old school and saw no need for overtime when you had a perfectly good tie. LSU and Alabama would have been 11-0-1 (I know creating a conference championship issue…)

        • Cojones

          Saw the trophy in half and display the good side in your trophy case. Man, I gotta watch out or someone is going to call me Soloman. Nah. My label already justifies what I think with, only lower.

  20. timphd

    If the football gods have any power, Bama will win this game 9-6 in overtime. Then the BCS will be giving a title to a team that lost on it’s home turf to the team (LSU) that had the most impressive resume of the entire field. I would rather just let voters make the decision than to have the current system.

    I do not want a watered down playoff, four teams at the most. I do think the conference championship should be a requirement. If you don’t win your conference you don’t deserve to be National Champs. Four highest rated conference champs play semi finals and finals. If it stays at four teams it doesn’t water down the regular season, and it emphasizes winning your conference. No “automatic” qualifying either. Don’t care what conference you are from, if the polls and computers put you in, you are in even if you are from the WAC.

  21. Irishdawg

    Fuck it, let’s just get that octopus that chooses the world cup winners.

  22. diving duck

    Even if Boise makes that field goal remains undefeated, does anyone believe they would have ended the season ahead of okstate or bama?

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      No but Boise would have had a damn good argument being 12-0 with a 2 TD win over SEC East Champion Georgia.

  23. You have to walk before you can run. Put in a plus 1 playoff system immediately. That would take care of a lot of my concerns.
    As to the polls, In 1966 Alabama had the best team in the nation. The Dawgs were right behind them. Notre Dame & Michigan State finished 1 & 2 In the polls. I have had little faith in the polls since that happened.

  24. Paranoid

    ESPN carries the damn game. They know who generates ratings and web hits. What business would ignore their own interests? The biggest sports platform undoubtedly influences voters – their programming is unavoidable during the season. I don’t know if they have an agenda in getting Bama to the title game, but if they did, they would probably start by screaming “Rematch!” in every show and letting Saban campaign on College Gameday. Its hard not be skeptical. ESPN can say say fair and balanced, but Disney still has shareholders.

  25. PauldingDawg323

    I’m sure this has been said before, but I haven’t heard it. For those CFB fans who think the BCS gives an unfair advantage to SEC, don’t like the pairing of 2 SEC schools in the Big Game, and want a playoff: Do they realize that the BCS may be the only way to insure that the Big Game isn’t almost ALWAYS a pairing of 2 SEC schools? The fact that this has only happened once is more surprising than the fact that it happened at all.

  26. AmpedDawg

    What would a conference champs only tournament solve? I still believe that Bama is one of the two best teams in the nation. I actually think the BCS got it right this year. I don’t get all the BS about letting someone else have their shot. Yes, Bama lost at home to LSU 9-6 in OT. LSU, widely considered to be the best team in the country, boat raced almost everyone else. If you want to have the two best teams play then it doesn’t matter if they’re from the same conference AND division. Tell me that it’s not fair that LSU has to beat Bama twice and I’ll retort that the first meeting has absolutely nothing to do with the second. The first was for the SEC rights, simple as that.