CFN asks the musical questions today if Utah has grounds to complain about last year and if the MWC deserves an automatic BCS slot. Fortunately for us, Matt Zemek only answers the first one.
Q: Does 2008 Utah have a beef? How about the Mountain West and its complaint that it belongs in the BCS?
A: Sure they do.
Why? Simple: 1984.
BYU, playing a schedule far easier than what the rival Utes had to endure in 2008, was crowned national champion. The Cougars were able to play–and beat–an okay Michigan team in the Holiday Bowl and avoid playing Washington, Oklahoma, or another similarly credentialed superpower in a bowl game. If Utah couldn’t receive at least a split national title (with Florida) from voters and systems in light of its body of work, it’s clear and–from a historical perspective–plainly undeniable that the Utes got the shaft last year.
You know, there might be something to this line of reasoning – if there were no BCS last year, or if there were a BCS regime in place in 1984. Since that wasn’t the case in either instance, his argument is nothing more than your classic example of apples and oranges (ironically, it’s BYU’s MNC that led to the push for what eventually became the BCS). It’s akin to arguing that Georgia got the shaft in 2007 because it would have been recognized as a SEC co-champ under the rules before 1992. Technically true, but why does it matter?