This article from espn.com, posted on August 11, 2009, concludes with this statement: Don't let us monopolize the conversation. Have your own debate, determine the merits of both conferences and decide which conference should be an automatic qualifier.
So, here it goes.
After a proposal by the Mountain West Conference for inclusion in the BCS and even statements by President Obama that a playoff system should be put in place in college football, BCS Committee Chair David Frohnmayer had this to say, "My colleagues and I on the BCS Presidential Oversight Committee have discussed the future of postseason football on many occasions and we do not believe a playoff would be in the best interest of the sport, the student-athletes or our many other constituencies.”
Translation? “We’ve already got a lock on the money and don’t want to share it”. Does it stun anyone that Frohnmayer is also president at the University of Oregon?
After all, it wouldn’t be in the best interest of the sport, certainly Mr. Frohnmayer. Think of how dull and boring college basketball is with its playoff system. Er….huh?
In any case, there has been plenty said regarding playoff systems and who should be given automatic qualifying spots for the big money BCS games. Since it appears the BCS Committee isn’t budging anytime soon on a playoff system (which deep down, we all know is the best way), at least give us this one thing:
GET RID OF AUTOMATIC QUALIFIERS.
The original article on espn.com asked us to debate who should get the automatic qualifying bids. My answer? No one.
The point I am trying to make lies in the 2009 Orange Bowl, where 19th ranked Virginia Tech (winner of the ACC, an automatic qualifying conference) played 12th ranked Cincinnati (winner of the Big East, also an auto qualifier). The espn.com article mentions that “the Big East may be in a down cycle right now…” even though claiming the conference champion still deserves a spot in the BCS monopoly. Really? Here’s a quick breakdown.
Cincinnati (11-2) and Virginia Tech (9-4) got in over the following higher ranked teams:
7 – Texas Tech (11-1): Sorry, only so much room for the stacked Big 12 South.
9 – Boise State (12-0): You didn’t do enough…by going undefeated.
11 – TCU (10-2): Only one non-BCS allowed, even though 4 show up in the top 16.
13 – Oklahoma State (9-3): See above for Texas Tech
14 – Georgia Tech (9-3): Win your conference next year with a mediocre record and you’re in!
15 – Georgia (9-3): You’d think the BCS would love them after dismantling Hawaii.
16 – BYU (10-2): Probably ok – convince us first you can play in big games.
17 – Oregon (9-3): As long as you’re in the same conference as USC, kiss it goodbye.
18 – Michigan State (9-3): Your conference champ unfortunately is the BCS whipping child.
The Big 12 South on its own really could have filled 2 BCS games nicely with Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State. In the end, 2 got snubbed by not winning that automatic qualifying spot, and on a side note, I’m sure Texas still feels great about Oklahoma getting the shot to play for the title, all thanks to the BCS.
So many times there is the notion that it’s only the “little guys” (the same little guys that showed up in Ute attire and beat the crap out of Alabama) that are clamoring for change in the BCS. Automatic qualifiers are hurting everyone, not just non-BCS teams. If we didn’t have automatic qualifying, then the best teams would play in the biggest games, regardless of conference. Isn’t that what everyone wants?
But then again, Mr. Frohnmayer, that might not be good for the sport. So either change it, or count on your Ducks being left out of every BCS game as long as USC is around. But, hey, at least you’ll keep getting your millions in BCS payout money.