Playoff expansion: it’s all good.

Scratch a college basketball coach and you’ll find a guy who thinks the bigger the tournament the better.  In fact, Wisconsin’s Bo Ryan feels that anybody who has qualms about expansion at this point in time is a fool who’s ignoring the historical success story of the NCAA tourney.

… The NCAA tournament began as an eight-team bracket in 1939, moved to 16 teams in 1951, 32 in 1975, 48 in 1980 and 64 teams in 1985, when there were 282 Division I teams.

In 2001, the NCAA adopted its current format. A play-in game increased the field to 65 teams.

“To me, it’s foolish for those people who are saying it’s perfect the way it is,” Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan said. “Obviously, they’ve lived a very shallow life when it comes to looking at change and what change can do and how it can affect things. The history of expansion with the NCAA has been very successful.

“The only people who would be disappointed would be all those people that have already printed out their 64-game bracket sheets. I think those can be changed.

“For the expansion not to take place, it can only be because there are some people behind the scenes that are controlling certain entities that will not allow us to do this. But, if this doesn’t happen, it’ll be a crime.”

I swear I didn’t make that quote up.

Meanwhile, on another front, the Football Division Formerly Known As 1-AA has run into a bit of  a logistical problem as it considers moving its championship game to Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas:  a conflict with the Cotton Bowl.

The next championship game is scheduled for Jan. 7, 2011, the same day that the Cotton Bowl Classic is to be played in prime time on Fox. Burnett said the NCAA told him that if Frisco gets the game, it would work with local officials and ESPN, which televises the game, on the date.

“We don’t want to be going head-to-head with the Cotton Bowl in this market,” Burnett said.

The game has normally been played in December. But next season, the FCS will add another round to the playoffs, making it five weekends. That will force the final two teams to play in January amid the bowl activity.

Hey fellas, add another round to that and problem solved!  Just sayin’…



Filed under BCS/Playoffs

7 responses to “Playoff expansion: it’s all good.

  1. Todd

    It’s amazing to me how different CFB and CBB coaches are.

    The football guys will bend over backwards to take shots at one another, create rivalries and stab competitors in the back. Coaching trees are everything, and a guy who comes from one tree naturally dislikes those from another tree.

    The basketball guys, whom I consider, on the whole, some of the most vile humans on earth, are all about defending the fraternity. There is the rare occasion of Jim Calhoun vs. Calipari, or Rick Pitino vs. Calipari, but for the most part these guys all scratch each other’s backs.

    It never ceases to amaze me how these guys will go to bat to defend an opponent’s performance, and in the case of this tournament expansion idea, to help their competitors get a better resume.

    I guess I am just more of a football guy, as Dick Vitale’s inability to say anything bad about anyone, even to most indefensible scum on earth, makes me sick.


  2. Go Dawgs!

    These coaches obviously have only one reason in mind for their universal support of an extra round to the NCAA Tournament: job security. They want it to be easier to make the Big Dance, and therefore justify keeping their jobs. That’s all fine and good, but here’s what I don’t get: why do they think simply making the tournament will be enough when it becomes that much easier to do it?! I think Georgia fans would be over the moon if Mark Fox takes us to the Tournament next year. But what happens when it becomes easier to do? Part of the reason that it’s a special event is… well, it’s a special event. Once every guy in school gets with the hot girl, some of her allure is gone.

    Plus, I hate to break it to Bo Ryan or any other coach agitating for extra rounds to the NCAA Tournament, but, EVERY team in Division I is “in” the Tournament already. Ever hear of a conference basketball tournament, Bo Bo? Turns out that you can lose every single lousy, stinking game that your team plays in the regular season. Put together four or five wins over the course of one week, and YOU’RE IN! Just ask Dennis Felton, who got to enjoy an extra year of Athens-Clarke County thanks to his improbable SEC Tournament Championship. If your team didn’t get into the NCAA’s, you have nobody to blame but yourself, bubble team. If you didn’t do the heavy lifting during the season, you’ve still got a back door way into the Dance. And, one other thing, if you take it up to 92 teams or however many, it won’t be teams 66-70 who are bitching about getting left out, it’ll be teams 93-96. Don’t wanna get fired? Make sure your teams play well, and STFU about screwing with the NCAA Tournament, which is perfect the way it is.


  3. mdr

    The Cotton Bowl is being played on January 7??? Good Lord! When is the BCS championship? February???


    • Macallanlover

      Not in favor expansion beyond 8 for a real title, but I wouldn’t knock it if the season meant more CFB games. Selfishly, I could get into CFB lasting for the entire year myself, never get enough of it. As Yogi said, “Can’t get enough of that Sugar Crisp, Sugar Crisp!” After all, those scholarships last two full semesters…..