Don’t ask. Do tell.

I was sitting in a Mexican restaurant Monday night drinking a beer when I looked up at a big screen TV that was tuned to ESPN’s Monday Night Football preview show.  There was no sound, so I hadn’t been paying attention, but a question posed across the bottom of the screen caught my eye and reminded me why I don’t like the NFL and do like college football.

It was a simple question about the upcoming NY Giants – New England Patriots football game:  Do the New York Giants owe it to the rest of the league to play their starters against New England? 

You see, both teams have already clinched playoff spots and the outcome of this game makes no difference to either team’s seeding.  But the Patriots are on course to set history by going undefeated over a 16 game regular season.  The question essentially is, should that matter to the New York team?  And the answer is, at least in the context of the NFL, nope.   There’s no reason for the Giants to jeopardize their postseason with an injury to a key starter in what has become a meaningless regular season game.

Those are scales I hope I never see a D-1 football team have to balance.

I’m not opposed to a playoff.  But I am opposed to a postseason format where considerations like that could become part of the equation.   The day I hear Mark Richt asked a question like that before a Georgia Tech or Auburn game is the day I find another sports interest.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs

12 responses to “Don’t ask. Do tell.

  1. Pingback: DawgsOnline » Sit ‘em or play ‘em?

  2. Jeez – now I’m an echo chamber for Stewart Mandel.

    Whether you agree or disagree with it, the biggest positive to college football’s oft-criticized championship method is that it rewards teams’ play over the course of the entire season. Contrast that with the NFL. As is painfully obvious by now, the New England Patriots are the best team this season. They stand a win away from finishing the regular season 16-0, something no team in the history of the sport has ever accomplished, and they’ve already beaten the two teams with the next-best record (the Colts and Cowboys). Yet as of next week, those four months of achievement will basically be rendered meaningless. If by chance the Patriots stumble during what is essentially a separate, three-game season next month, some other, less-accomplished team will be remembered as the sport’s champion for 2007.

    The day that happens to college football is the day I “retire” from covering the sport.

    Be afraid. Be very, very afraid. I am. 😉


  3. TripleR

    We don’t need a playoff for just the reason you cite. I want my team to focus on winning their conference, beating their rival(s), and getting into a good, fun Bowl game. People just need to accept that the whole BCS and National Championship thing may be subjective. Lot’s of things in life are subjective. The value of the regular season and winning the conference is all important. A plus-one game – sure. But a full blown playoff – not on my priority list.


  4. Bulldog Bry

    Senator, I understand about not having a play off. But why isn’t there more of an outcry over coaches voting in polls? As the money grows, I think the adverse impact that has will become more problematic and could corrupt the current system.
    That and the fact that not every conference has a championship game.


  5. tsos20

    You misses the point. They are resting for the “play-offs”. College football standings are voted on by sportswriters. If you like that better, it’s because you are a fool. College football is for kids, if it mattered, they would have playoffs too.
    The Sultan on Sports


  6. Dawg 05

    Great argument Sultan. You’re a fool. NFL is for kids. If it mattered, the regular season would be exciting.

    I think you misses the point. Individual games still matter in college football. No one single game in the NFL season means anything. College football has huge games every weekend that matter.


  7. Pingback: Top Posts «

  8. tsos20


    College sports is played by amatuers with hopes of being professionals one day. College sports are beneath minor league sports in quality. Only fools place too much importance and bet on games played by kids.

    Little league baseball has big games every week also, maybe you should go to those games. The players cry when they loose and everything.

    The Sultan on Sports


  9. But why isn’t there more of an outcry over coaches voting in polls?

    BB, I couldn’t agree with you more.


  10. You misses the point. They are resting for the “play-offs”.

    Sultan, it doesn’t sound like I’m missing the point at all. I don’t like the idea of taking off a game during the regular season (I’d like it even less if I’d paid for a ticket to that game).

    You’re obviously OK with that. To each his own, sir…


  11. Bulldog Bry

    Let’s take it one step further. Only fools place too much importance and bet on games played by ANYONE. As the Senator said, to each his own.

    But thanks for stopping by and hocking your professional football web site.


  12. Dawg 05

    Sultan King Ego Shah Emporer of Sports,

    I don’t think anyone was arguing the quality of athlete between college and pro. Nor do I think anyone here mentioned betting on sports. What was mentioned was a reason college football is better than the bland product the NFL puts out. I have yet to see an college athlete take a game off to prepare for a bowl, but I’m going to see several NFL players ride the pine this weekend in meaningless games.