Sunday, November 19, 2006

Weekend Football Roundup

Michigan Loses to Ohio St.; Remains No. 2

That seems about right. Ohio St. won the game, so they deserve to be number one, and it's had to think there's another team in the three-pont difference between Michigan and Ohio St.

That being said, I do have a problem with that No. 2 ranking translating into a rematch in the BCS Championship Game. Michigan had their crack at the Buckeyes; they didn't take advantage of it. None of the other teams may be "as deserving," but Michigan definitely isn't.

To put my cards on the table, I've never thought that a college football season ending with some ambiguity over who was the "national champion" was a tragedy. The BCS has resulted in some great games -- last year's Rose Bowl, the Ohio St.-Miami game from a couple years ago -- so I like it as far as it goes. But I never thought it was a grave injustice if the two best teams didn't match up with each other in a bowl game. It's nice to know what your ceiling is, but if you need to be declared "national champion" in order to feel good about an undefeated seaon, there's something wrong. It's not enough to win all your games -- you must be declared better than everyone else.

So I've also never been in favor of a playoff system. It would remove the last semblance that these guys are supposed to be students, for one thing. Also, as last year's baseball season demonstrated, a playoff does not guarantee identifying the best team.

I also think the BCS has concentrated too much attention on the teams in contention for the No. 1 ranking. For example, last year's Heisman nominees were Reggie Bush, Matt Lienart, and Vince Young, all of whom were in the national championshop game. Lienart one the previous Hiesman. The year before, Leinart won it for #1 USC. The year before that, Jason White won it for #1 Oklahoma. Now, I know there's usually a correlation between outstanding individual performances and team success, but this seems beyon conincidental.

I propose one change to the BCS system -- you must win your conference in order to be in the champtionship game, and each conference must declare a champion. This would prevent re-matches, and things like Nebraska getting to the championshop game despite not even getting to its on conference title game. It would also return some focus to winning your own conference instead of positioning yoursel for a national title.

Panthers Shut Out Rams

Stick a fork in the Rams -- they're done. Without Orlando Pace, the Rams couldn't protect Bulger, which takes away their two Hall of Fame-caliber receivers. This will not end well. I don't see Bulger making it through to the end of the year.

McNabb out for year

The Eagles are done, too.

I had high hopes for this year. I thought that with the Owens thing in the rear view mirror, the Eagles could be poised for a good year. But things never quite came together, and you wonder if their window has close.


  • Not too worried about the Colts, despite their loss.
  • The Rutgers ride was fun while it lasted.
  • This was one of the oddest endings I've seen, with Denver seeming to want to blow the game, and San Diego not quite letting them.

    These odd endings seem to happen a lot in prime-time games, by the way.
  • If you don't have the NFL network, you will miss NFL games! I like how they worded these ads to make you think you'll miss games you would have seen in previous years, and try to make you think you'll miss playoff games.


TenaciousK said...

Given the impact of the BCS on recruiting and the lock some conferences have on BCS bids, all the lack of a playoff does is ensure a midmajor team can never, ever win a national championship.

As a graduate of a midmajor University - the only one who has appeared in a BCS bowl game, BTW, I resent that. In the basketball tournament, Gonzaga and St. John's are frequent contenders (and the University of Utah did make it to the title game in the basketball playoffs). It can never happen in college football.

A lot of people were upset when BYU won the championship in the 80's, and the current BCS system was imposed in part as a response to that. Whether or not they deserved to win the championship, however, wouldn't have been decided that year either, under the current BCS system - they never would've made it to the championship game, given their strength of schedule (just as the University of Utah didn't make it a few years ago, despite their unbeaten season).

But, I'm sure it won't change - there's too much money involved, and the people who are currently benefitting are understandably reluctant to jeopardize their sure source of revenue. At least in College basketball, the nation can identify the latest Cinderella teams and cheer them on, against the odds. College football would benefit from such drama. Shame we'll never see it.