I tell you what – the excuse making out of the Big Ten after the BCS title game continues unabated.
First, it’s about balancing academics and athletics, which, in the mind of Commissioner Delany, is an area where the SEC comes up short in comparison to the Big 10. This is especially true in those cases involving fast athletes.
But that’s not the only thing holding the Big 10 back.
… The Big Ten traditionally ends its football season the week before Thanksgiving in most years, so players can spend the holiday at home.
Many fans and some coaches and athletic directors believe the early ending date has put the conference at a disadvantage as the Bowl Championship Series and conference championship games have extended the season.
This season, for example, Ohio State lost to Florida in the BCS title game on Jan. 8 after a 51-day layoff. Michigan lost to Southern California after a six-week layoff.
The Wolverines also sat idle while they were also passed by Florida in the final Top 25 coaches poll and the Harris Poll used by the BCS, after the Gators won the Southeastern Conference title game on Dec. 2…
Now as you get into the linked article, you see a number of quotes from coaches, ADs and Delany that this discussion is really about getting a bye week back on the schedule that was lost in the wake of going to twelve game seasons. But somehow the conversation keeps getting turned back to the post season and the SEC:
… Michigan athletic director Bill Martin said he’s torn on pushing back the season.
“This isn’t an open and closed situation,” he said. “There’s the issue of conditioning with the long layoff. There’s the popularity contest side of the BCS. There are a couple of reasons why you might want to play in December.
“But if you take a look at how the Big Ten has done against other schools … against the (Southeastern Conference) the last five years, we’re 8-6 in bowl games. The Big Ten is 8-7 in BCS competition the last nine years, all outside the Midwest.”
It’s obvious that going in to the BCS title game, most of us read the tea leaves wrong. Ohio State didn’t stand a chance against a fast team that played in December. I feel sort of foolish now.
Any bets on how this decision goes?
(h/t The Wizard of Odds)