I try to keep my political leanings separate from my blogging here at Saurian Sagacity but suffice it so that there are very few things I agree with our president elect on. That said, I do agree with him on one important thing: college football needs a playoff.
Today a column was published in the NYT by Bryan Curtis characterizing Obama's position on the issue as a "fumble":
Yes, Mr. Obama’s proposal would spread the wealth around. Instead of one game that matches two upper-crust contenders like Alabama and Oklahoma, a playoff could include teams from football’s neglected working class, like Utah and Boise State. Unfortunately, it would also ruin what is great about college football.Hardly an original argument, does this clown actually get paid to write this tripe?
The part of the sport to savor is not the finale but the regular season. In college football, every game has the fierce urgency of now. The uncertainty of what lies at the end makes the 12-game gantlet all the more nerve-wracking. Lose once, and your team finds itself at the mercy of the voters and the dreaded computers...
Under the B.C.S., college football is about the pursuit of four perfect months. Under Mr. Obama’s risky playoff scheme, college football would be about the pursuit of three perfect weeks.
First of all a team would still have to have a damned good regular season in order to be one of 8 or 16 teams to qualify for a berth in a such a system (out of 119). But the real stupidity of this line of thinking is betrayed by history. Just last season LSU won the national title, not with an undefeated record, not with one blemish on their record, but with TWO losses. Meanwhile Hawaii capped a perfect season by getting blown out in their BCS bowl game.
The current bowls/polls system encourages teams to play inferior out of conference teams, it encourages teams to run up the score in search of style points, and it tells teams that even if they do everything right that there might not be a spot at the table for them because some pundit somewhere has a different opinion.
On the issue of a playoff for college football I am with President Elect Obama, bring on the change.