Thursday, June 21, 2012

BCS Playoff--Fair For The Big Ten?

Yesterday, headlines were made when a proposed BCS playoff system "model" was submitted by league commissioners. Supposedly, the commissioners came to an agreement on a 4 team, seeded playoff system that would hopefully begin in 2014. Though many of the details involved with this new postseason model remain unresolved , the commissioners will present their recommendation to a committee of university presidents that is scheduled to meet in Washington next Tuesday. The 12-member BCS presidential oversight committee, chaired by Virginia Tech President Charles Steger, still must approve the four-team playoff before it goes into effect.
As for selecting the teams, Scott and ACC Commissioner John Swofford indicated there has been serious discussion about implementing a selection committee similar to the NCAA tournament in men’s and women’s basketball.  A key issue will revolve around who exactly will be on the proposed committee and how much weight they would give to winning a conference championship and strength of schedule. Revenue sharing must also be resolved in the coming months.

Okay, I'll stop boring you with details you've heard a dozen times already. We actually debated this topic on our blog before and you can read it here.  However, there are still some things that trouble me about this new playoff.
So the impression we're all getting is that any concept of the "plus-one" model is out the window. You know, play the playoffs then have the championship game. Which is fine with me. I know Jim Delany and Larry Scott (PAC-12 commish) were hoping for it, but I'm not quite sure why. The biggest thing is that there really should be 8 teams. Magic 8-ball. Start with 8, then 4, then 2 for the national championship.
Next, the king of the SEC seems to be the major vocal person in the room. I'm not sure if it's his ego or just the way he is, but Mike Slive is keeping his hands around the kitchen stove people, waiting for the kettle to blow. I know right now SEC football is the dominant conference, but in time that will change. It always does. Why does this bother me? I can't really put a finger on it, but it seems slippery to me.
Another thing is there might be a selection committee that chooses these teams that will be among the 4? Just as they do for the basketball season? Come on now, that's a joke. Who's going to be on it? How would they make their selections? Would the major 4 conferences (Big 10,  Big 12, SEC, Pac 12) be the only ones involved in the selection since they are the major proponents of this playoff?
I'm going to move on from that an address one other concern I've noticed some people seem to have. There are those who want a 16-team playoff format. One, it's not going to happen people. 16 teams is too watered down when it comes to college football. You cannot possibly tell me that the 16th seeded team would have a 50/50 chance of beating the number 1 seed. It might happen on a fluke Saturday afternoon, but that's not what you want for this. Do that, and the playoff system will die faster than parachute pants. The NBA and NHL already have 16 teams in their playoffs, and people have been harping on them for years to decrease that number.

Bottom line--I'm happy there's going to be a playoff for college football. I know it has to still go through many hurdles (why a presidential oversight committee I'll never agree with) but in the end it can work out.

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