Sunday, November 25, 2007

Musical Chairs, BCS Style

If ever there was a season to prove that college football needs a playoff to crown its champion it's this season. With all the upsets and everyone (except Hawaii) having at least one loss who is to say who the top two teams are?

This season is like a giant game of musical chairs and whoever is sitting in the two remaining chairs when the music stops gets to play for the crystal football. If the music would last a note longer or a note less the teams would be different.

Remember last year Ohio State led the polls from wire to wire. They were the consensus best team in the country. Except they weren't. Florida removed all doubt that OSU was the best. Still I can't say Florida was the best, either. And that's the problem with this whole damned thing.

I'm hoping OSU makes it to the big game again and gets blown out again. It seems to me that the only way to blow up the BCS and bring about a real tournament is to have a series of unwatchable blowouts arranged by the pollsters and the computers. Only then will people begin to question whether we really are getting the two best teams in the country.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

why does it have to be ohio state that gets blown out to blow up the BCS? wouldn't a wvu blowout of missouri accomplish the same thing?

Henry Gomez said...

It doesn't have to be OSU but having the pollsters fall for the same exact fraud again would be fantastic.

Anonymous said...

Most well-stated summary of this college season I've seen. Awesome job, guys!

Since an OU win over Mizzou seems inevitable, then why not root for a Buckeye blowout loss in the title game?

Plus it would only be apropos for a team to "win" this year's "national title" that literally nobody had on the radar in mid-November (and some still don't). Even after everything else that's happened I'd still be in shock and awe to see West Freakin' Virginia actually playing for the BCS title.

peachy said...

Mizzou getting stomped by WVU would be one game too late for Tebow's Heisman hopes. Ergo, OSU getting stomped is preferred.

Henry Gomez said...

In Florida CBS switched to the UF/FSU game. But I think the day when the whole country will be watching is next Saturday. And Chase Daniel will be able to state his case. If the Gators had had a defense they'd be playing on Saturday too and giving Tebow the stage one more time.

UF Gator DMD said...

Okay, but honestly how does a playoff solve the problem? Think 8 team playoff. You take the BCS top 8, right? But what if, say, a 3 loss UF crept into the top 8, and won it all. Does that mean they were the best team in the country, or that they had the best match up against the teams they played in the playoffs, or that they were the hottest team at the end of the season? I've seen best of 7 series in baseball end with NOT the best team in winning. We've seen a silly number of upsets in CFB this year. So playing all of these extra games at the end of the year really only penalizes a team that has played well throughout the year and had only 1 loss, putting them at higher risk for just 1 more game of bad bounces, playcalling, injuries, officiating combined to lead to a loss and knock them out of contention.

I understand that maybe on paper the playoff looks good, but does it really solve the problem of some small degree of parity in CFB?

I'm more for a plus 1 where you take the BCS top 4 teams and play 1-4, 2-3, then the 2 winners and 2 losers play off for a final to 4 ranking, and all the other teams in the country can continue their postseason fun with whatever bowl games are available otherwise...

My 2 cents.

Henry Gomez said...

A tournament does not necessarily mean we know the answer to who the best team in the country is, but it does answer who the champion is in a legitimate way. Here's what I mean. Last year the St. Louis Cardinals won the world series despite the fact that they had the 13th best record in the majors. But NOBDOY disputes the fact that they were the champions. What we have now is a 2-team tournament. And the problem is that the criteria is way too subjective. Just winning is not enough (ask Hawaii) and how you decide among the all the 1-loss teams?

I have a totally unrealistic proposal for a playoff. You can read it here.

Henry Gomez said...

Let me finish an unfinished thought. Under the current 2-team playoff format, the chances are significantly high that the actual best team is not in it. I think the right number is 8 teams but that's just my opinion. The current system rewards playing a weak schedule. Also anybody that watches college football knows that teams progress as the season wears on. The fact is that practice time is very limited. But lose a game or two early and you are done even if you have the the most fearsome team by the end of the season.

Troy said...

Henry,

Last year I kept advocating a plus-1 format, under the theory that in most years the #5 team really didn't have a gripe if it were left out of the title game. Of course, I also believe conference championships should matter, and my 2006 top 4 would have been Ohio State, Florida, Louisville, and... I don't know. USC probably since they won the Pac-10, but Michigan had a decent case too, I suppose, since their conference is less clear--they, unlike OSU, had to beat Wisconsin, after all.

Anyway, this year again picking the top 4 (and excluding #5) would be pretty tough. WVU, OSU, OU/Mizzou winner, LSU?

An 8-team playoff using the pre-2006 BCS system as a jumping off point would probably be the best (as long as you gave automatic bids to the BCS conf champs) but I still think that's an awful big change to expect the system to make all at once, and a plus-1, while not perfect, is at least a reasonable stepping stone that adds at least a little more legitimacy to the thing.

Troy said...

But then again, I'm probably crazy: I still think the Big East should take advantage of having only 8 members and create a Big East Tournament to take place over the final 3 weeks of the regular season. As kind of a "see? playoffs don't cause the world to collapse" message to the rest of the BCS conferences.