Division I-A schools.
They come from all directions. From the Hawaiian Islands to "Death Valley." From Ann Arbor to Austin.
They come in all shapes and colors. You have Domers, Devils, and Dawgs. You have Bears, Bulls, and Bobcats. You have the Mean Green, Black Knights, Cardinal, Green Wave, and Golden Flashes.
Eleven conferences and 120 teams competing for the same prize...a national championship.
Really? All 120 teams? Do they all really have an equal opportunity in obtaining this goal?
The answer is a resounding NO.
We have dissension in the ranks of Division I-A. Sixty-six teams have staged a coup to form their own private club with a sign out front that reads, "No Vacancy."
That club is called, "The Big Six Conferences + Notre Dame."
As fans, why do we turn away from this glaring problem in college football? Why do we complain more about the shortcomings of the BCS than we do about the lack of equal representation among Div. I-A schools? And this problem has been around long before the BCS era began, so we can’t point a finger of blame at them.
To put this dilemma in perspective, it is like saying that the NFC East and the AFC West are no longer on the same level as the rest of the NFL. Those divisions still belong to the NFL...but only on paper. Furthermore, they also lose their rights to participate in the draft. Instead, they can only pick over the undrafted athletes and players from the CFL.
Lastly, even if they go undefeated, they will never be able to play for the Lombardi Trophy.
Can you imagine if Commissioner Roger Goodell stood behind a podium and actually said that? There would be rioting in the streets, and he’d have to flee for his life.
However, in college football, this is widely accepted as normal. Teams from the WAC, Sun Belt, MAC, Mountain West, and C-USA, along with three Independents, are told that they belong to Div. I-A, but they will never be able to play for a national title. Their best will never be good enough. Their highest achievements will always fall short.
We all know the examples out there. Boise State in 2006 and 2008. Hawaii in 2007. Utah in 2004 and 2008. All went undefeated in the regular season, and all were left out of playing for a national championship.
If I were a player on one of those teams, I’d have to seriously question why I’m playing this game in the first place.
In my opinion, if the non-BCS schools will never play for a national championship, then get rid of them. Put them in another division and allow them to play for their own national title.
But we know that this will never happen.
So, what can be done to level the playing field in Division I-A?
Would a playoff make things equal? Would allowing all 11 conference champions into BCS bowls help in creating equality in college football?
How about getting rid of the term "BCS Conference?" Would that help in dispersing the talent among all 120 teams?
Open to comments and opinions.