If everyone is special, then no one is.

You know, today Tony Barnhart indulges in the kind of reasoning that makes you understand why so many people are playoff proponents.

… Texas beat Oklahoma on a neutral field and that should stand for something. So here is the answer. The Associated Press media poll finished 1) Florida, 2) Oklahoma, 3) Texas. The 65 voters in the AP poll are not bound by the BCS championship results. If Oklahoma beats Florida for the BCS title, the AP championship should go to Texas. There is nothing wrong with a split national championship. Southern Cal was No. 1 in both human polls in 2003 and did not get into the big game. The AP poll gave the Trojans their championship. That would be the right thing to do here.

No, it wouldn’t.  #1 plays and beats #2 and winds up behind #3?  Why bother to play the games at all, Tony – let’s just go ahead and give both schools MNC trophies and be done with it.  Give the Gators one, too; if Florida and Texas both win their bowl games, heck, both of ’em beat Oklahoma, so they should tie anyway.

This isn’t what the polls are for.

Besides, Barnhart leaves out one little detail in his argument for 2003 as precedent.  Going in to the bowl games, Southern Cal was ranked ahead of LSU in the AP, so that when both schools won, the AP was preserving the order of the teams.  Barnhart is arguing for something very different here when he proposes that the voters jump Texas over Oklahoma if both win.

Granted, the AP doesn’t count for anything in terms of how the BCS is structured these days.  But I can’t think of a faster way to destroy its credibility, whatever that might be, by having an agenda.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Media Punditry/Foibles

11 responses to “If everyone is special, then no one is.

  1. Scott

    Say, I forgot to watch the SEC title game Saturday. How did the GPOOE do?


  2. As long as we’re talking college…GPOOE = Vince Young. Discuss.


  3. I guess it depends on what your definition of “era” is, but for my money, the GPOOE in college football was Tommie Frazier. He can play on my team any day.


  4. Michigan was #1 in both polls going into the 1/1/98 bowl games, they beat Washington State, and they dropped behind Nebraska in the coaches poll. There is precedent for what Barnhart is discussing. The counter would be that Michigan dropped because it won a close game over Washington State whereas Nebraska blew Tennessee out. Washington State and Tennessee were viewed as roughly equal. Oklahoma would be playing a far better opponent in its bowl game, so any win ought to be enough to hold onto the #1 spot.


  5. The only reason- I repeat, the ONLY reason- Nebraska jumped Michigan in the Coaches’ is because Tom Osborne was calling it quits.


  6. Wasn’t Nebraska’s game the one designated as the championship game that season?

    IIRC, that was the last year of the old Bowl Alliance, so they didn’t get a #1 vs. #2 matchup because of the Rose Bowl. Under the current BCS rules, Michigan and Nebraska would have faced off against each other.


  7. I don’t think either Michigan-WSU or Nebraska-Tennessee was “designated” as the national-title game that year since it was before the BCS, but if my (admittedly hazy) memory serves, the AP was treating the Rose Bowl as the presumptive national championship because it involved the #1 team. The coaches, obviously, thought differently.


  8. According to Wikipedia,

    … The Bowl Alliance involved the SEC, Big 12, ACC and Big East conference champions and two at-large teams (the Southwest Conference champ in 1995; there were also special provisions for Notre Dame). It included the Orange, Sugar and Fiesta Bowls. The championship game rotated among all three bowls. The top two teams in the combined played in the title game.


  9. Hobnail_Boot

    Nebraska Bogarted half of Michigan’s national title when Scott Frost got on TV and threw a temper tantrum.

    I loathe Nebraska to this day because of it.


  10. I’ve been waiting for an opportunity to share this news story from the BCS:

    US Ranked 4th

    After determining the Big-12 championship game participants the BCS computers were put to work on other major contests and today the BCS declared Germany to be the winner of World War II.

    “Germany put together an incredible number of victories beginning with the annexation of Austria and the Sudetenland and continuing on into conference play with defeats of Poland, France, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium and the Netherlands. Their only losses came against the US and Russia; however considering their entire body of work–including an incredibly tough Strength of Schedule–our computers deemed them worthy of the #1 ranking.”

    Questioned about the #4 ranking of the United States the BCS commissioner stated “The US only had two major victories–Japan and Germany. The computer models, unlike humans, aren’t influenced by head-to-head contests–they consider each contest to be only a single, equally-weighted event.”

    German Chancellor Adolph Hiter said “Yes, we lost to the US; but we defeated #2 ranked France in only 6 weeks.” Herr Hitler has been criticized for seeking dramatic victories to earn ‘style points’ to enhance Germany’s rankings. Hitler protested “Our contest with Poland was in doubt until the final day and the conditions in Norway were incredibly challenging and demanded the application of additional forces.”

    The French ranking has also come under scrutiny. The BCS commented ” France had a single loss against Germany and following a preseason #1 ranking they only fell to #2.”

    Japan was ranked #3 with victories including Manchuria, Borneo and the Philippines.