Best Tournament Ever: The BCS Championship Playoffs
It's simple, really, from a fan's point of view. Take the eight top teams at the end of the year, and in three weeks, hold a playoff. First weekend you get Alabama at 13-0 vs Ohio State at 10-2, Texas 13-0 vs. Oregon 10-2, Cincinnati 12-0 vs. Boise State 13-0, and TCU 12-0 vs. Florida 12-1.
Play two games Saturday, two Sunday, and the NFL better watch out 'cause they could get outdrawn by these meaningful college football games.
The following weekend the winner of 1 vs. 8 plays 5 vs. 6's winner. So maybe you get Alabama vs. Florida again. Tebow's tears get a chance to dry. If they lose twice, you know Alabama is the better team.
Your other matchup, again on Sunday, is perhaps Cincinnati vs. Oregon in a shoot-out. I'm paying to see that, even on a Sunday.
Finally, perhaps in the null week between the end of NFL playoffs and the Super Bowl, you have a much more legitimate national championship.
Perhaps Alabama slaughters Cincinnati, or Oregon, or Texas for that matter, if they really are that good. Maybe TCU wins the playoffs and the championship.
Finally, though, some of these big teams will have played each other in elimination games. You'll have a pretty good idea who your actual national college football champion is and why.
The season will be too long, natter the purists. Well, if everyone takes a Toledo or Willington, or Troy or Florida International off their schedule, everyone will play one less game while the best eight teams will play the same number of games.
If you figure the top eight BCS teams would have played in bowl games anyway, then really only two elite teams in all of college football will play one extra game to determine a national champion. They can manage it, and a real national champion will be declared.
"The regular season will be damaged" profess the naysayers. I don't really see much value in a regular season where, say, Boise State plays one top 20 school all year at the beginning of the season.
Teams that realize they just need to make it to the top eight to have a chance at a national title won't treat an opportunity for a loss like a chance to contract syphilis.
Actual regular season match-ups between Top Ten schools might become more common. They'll see it as a chance to measure themselves against a great team. It's an opportunity to learn how to beat a team they might meet in the playoffs.
They can learn how to win big games against top-notch opponents. Or they'll learn something about the team that beat them, maybe enough to win the next time around. It's hard to tell what TCU learned when they thumped UNLV 41-0.
A college football playoffs will make money, could compete with the NFL, and will produce great meaningful games. Otherwise, you have a bevy of meaningless bowl games, and one semi-meaningful—but always suspect—national championship.
I usually catch two or three bowl games a year and bits of the BCS championship. I'm not a rabid college football fan, but I would watch all of these seven playoff games. They might not all be good, but they'll mean something.
Hopefully in my lifetime the powers that be figure out a playoff scheme for football to rival March Madness.
December Delirium, anyone?
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