Category Archives: BCS/Playoffs

No hard feelings, Bobby.

Everything that’s bullshit about the playoff selection committee, in one anecdote:

With No. 3 Louisville (3-0) moving up the rankings after its 63-20 win against Florida State last week, that makes it possible Long could sit in on committee discussions about including the Cardinals — led by former Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino — in the Playoff.

They are discussions Long said on Wednesday before a meeting of the Northwest Arkansas Touchdown Club that he won’t recuse himself from, despite the fact he fired Petrino in 2012. The coach wrecked his motorcycle, leading to revelations of a mistress who worked in the athletic department.

“No, there’s no reason for me to recuse myself,” Long said. “I think Louisville is a fine football program, and they demonstrated that after three weeks of the season. We’ve got six more weeks before we rank a group of teams.”

Members of the committee recuse themselves from the selection process when their own schools or conflicts of interest arise.

When asked if he was concerned about the perception of a lack of objectivity concerning Petrino, Long simply said, “No.”

Now, on one level, an accusation of partiality here is silly.  Long had no choice but to cut ties with Petrino after his misbehavior came to light.

But ask yourself this:  if Louisville narrowly misses a shot at the semi-finals, in part because Jeff Long decides it’s not one of the four best teams in the country, you don’t think there’s going to be plenty of yelling and finger pointing about his motives?  It may not be fair, but it’ll certainly be fodder for every talking head bringing up references to Caesar’s wife in December.

You may not have liked the BCS computers, but at least nobody could accuse them of getting emotional about anything.

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Thursday morning buffet

Come, you must be hungry.

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Filed under Georgia Football, BCS/Playoffs, Georgia Tech Football, Recruiting, Stats Geek!, Auburn's Cast of Thousands

Chaos, I tells ‘ya.

If the Alabama-LSU rematch for the BCS title was the spark that lit the fuse to end the old postseason order and replace it with the current four-team college football playoff format, what do you think this would lead to?

Suppose the committee did put the two Tigers plus the Tide and Seminoles in ahead of, say, a one-loss Washington or Michigan or TCU. This sort of thing is why we have the playoff in the first place. Two SEC teams making the BCS National Championship Game in 2011 immediately preceded the creation of the new system. The rest of the power conferences thought enough was enough and finally decided to expand the championship system. (Ironically, the SEC had been pushing for a four-team arrangement for years by then.)

If the majority of the power conferences get left out this year, there will be tremendous pressure to Do Something About It. This could go anywhere from tweaking the committee guidance to more heavily favor conference championships to possibly setting a date to expand the bracket. Only the situation of all four playoff teams coming from just two conferences could do that because the other three P5 leagues have voice and influence in a way that the G5 conferences do not. That’s why I put this scenario far ahead on the nightmare scale than Houston—even an undefeated Houston—not making the playoff.

If you’re one to root for chaos, then your best bet is pulling for the actual four best teams to be Alabama, Clemson, FSU, and LSU in some order. The committee will either have to break its own rules to avoid putting all four in or follow its rules and potentially set fire to the whole system. The Big 12 has been having an existential crisis ever since its one-loss champion(s) failed to make the 2014 bracket. Imagine what could happen if the Final Four only came from two leagues.

It’s an eight-team playoff proponent’s wet dream.

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The hateful eight

I guess you can file this under “a stopped clock is right twice a day”, but even though I don’t want to see any further playoff expansion, Paul Johnson is on the mark to argue that if college football is going to head down that road — and it will — the powers that be should at least make the selection process more objective than it currently is.

“I’m an old guy – I came out of the I-AA deal where, if you won your conference, you went to the playoffs,” he said. “I just think you could take more of the subjectivity out of it.”

Johnson was highly successful at Georgia Southern, which won four national championships in Division I-AA (now FCS) playoffs. The FCS playoffs now includes 24 teams, beginning on Thanksgiving weekend, going three weekends into December and concluding in January.

Johnson’s solution would give automatic berths to the champions of the five power conferences – the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC. The highest-rated champion from the other five conferences (American Athletic, Conference USA, MAC, Mountain West and Sun Belt) would also get a bid, as would two wild-card teams.

“At least only the wild cards would be subjective,” he said.

Admittedly, I would get a kick out of one thing that would happen in the wake of Johnson’s proposal being adopted.  Big 12 expansion would turn out to be a complete waste of time and effort.

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I love the smell of capitulation in the morning.

Bill Hancock, tower of Jello.

“We had healthy discussions with a lot of people who love college football and we concluded that making these changes would be the right thing to do for our fans.” said Hancock.

“We tried to do something special with New Year’s Eve, even when it fell on a weekday. But after studying this to see if it worked, we think we can do better.  These adjustments will allow more people to experience the games they enjoy so much.  For these four years, our previous call is reversed.”

Translation:  ESPN was pissed off that our stubbornness was bleeding viewership and we had no choice but to give in.

If you want to know where the CFP is headed, just listen to what Hancock guarantees will happen and figure on the opposite instead.

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This CFP aggression will not stand, man.

A Jim Delany – Bill Hancock showdown?  One can only hope.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Big Ten Football

You can never have enough data points.

The Big 12 is a ten-team conference.  It determines its conference champion in the fairest way possible, by requiring its schools to play a round-robin nine-game conference schedule.

That, of course, isn’t good enough.  With no championship game, there’s money being left on the table.  With no championship game, there’s a feeling that something’s missing for the CFP selection committee to weigh in comparison with the other P5 conferences that have championship games.

And so, even though it’s completely unnecessary, and in fact is just as likely to make things messier in the event that the team which lost in the regular season comes back to win the conference title game, the Big 12 is moving towards having a championship game.

That’s all right with Bill Hancock.

… Hancock praised the Big 12’s decision to reinstitute a championship game in 2017, mirroring the other four major conferences. He emphasized, though, that the primary benefit is not necessarily the fact that all champions will now play 13 games but that the Big 12’s champ will now add another top 25-caliber opponent to its resume.

“How much the Big 12 will be helped by getting another game against a quality opponent — to me, that’s the game-changer,” said Hancock.

That’s a real game-changer, alright.  It’s a perfect example of sacrificing the significance of the regular season to enhance the postseason chase.  And it’s the path that college football, just like men’s basketball before it, is steadily traveling down.  The morons running the game are slowly destroying the character that makes college football unique, the emphasis on regional interest and the regular season.

I’ll keep saying it:  enjoy what you’ve got now, folks, because ten years from now, it won’t be the same.  Not even close.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Big 12 Football