The BCS conferences.
These leagues are supposed to be top tier, the best of the best. The big Kahuna’s.
Yet, let’s face it, some teams get into BCS conferences by just being at the right place at the right time.
Look at the Big East.
UConn has been impressive under Randy Edsell. But the fact of the matter is that when they were included as a football member of the Big East, they had just moved up from Division 1-AA and did not have much of a football legacy or fervent fan base built up.
But the Big East needed another football team and they already belonged as a basketball member, so they got the nod.
Same thing with Louisville, Cincinnati and South Florida. All three were members of Conference USA.
South Florida was a new program to the top tier, Louisville... decent, but certainly no powerhouse, and Cincy, a team that never did much on the gridiron and can’t fill their stadium for home games.
But the Big East had just been raided by the ACC for Boston College, Virginia Tech, and Miami, so these three were elevated to BCS status.
Utah has just accepted an invitation to join the Pac-10.
Once again…right place, at the right time. The Pac-10 really wanted to raid the Big 12, but when that went by the skids, they grabbed the Utes.
So what of the BCS conferences? Are all their members deserving?
I say "no" and here is my list of ten current BCS schools that should make like a penny stock and get de-listed.
Bronco Nagurski. Leo Nomelli. Pug Lund. Dick Wildung.
The list of Golden Gopher players in the college football Hall of Fame is a long and illustrious one.
And the Gophers have 18 Big Ten championships to their name.
Unfortunately for them, the last was some 33 years ago in 1967, and their true glory years were done by the early 40’s, with another brief flash in the early 60’s.
Minnesota is an example of a team with a rich heritage and tradition who just never kept up.
They have been serving as mid-tier fodder for the Big Ten bullies for quite a while now.
Maybe it's time to let them go.
Da ones in Tampa.
These guys are the Lucky Pierre of college football.
They started as a 1-AA program in 1997. Upgraded to D-1 in 2001. Joined the Big East in 2005.
Why? Because they were kicking butt and taking names?
Uh, not exactly.
They were a team coming off a 4-7 Conference USA schedule. But, the Big East was desperate, and they happen to live in a nice fat TV market. So they got invited.
Since joining they have really set the world on fire with stunning mediocrity. They are 17-18 in league play, never finishing higher than a tie for third. Good thing for them the Big East is lacking.
BCS worthy? Give me a break.
OK, they’ve done alright over the past few years.
Won a couple of BCS bowl games, first against Pitt and then against Bama.
Continued to play well last year, beating California handily in their bowl.
But they are the second best team in Salt Lake City... After BYU.
Utah has four Mountain West and two Western Athletic conference championships, and draws a little over 46,000 to their home games.
BYU has four Mountain West…and 19 Western Athletic Conference championships. Unlike the Utes, they are no Johnny come lately, having produced excellent teams for several decades.
They draw over 64,000 fans to their home games, better than all but three of the current Pac-10 schools. And they consistently draw well on the road, given their affiliation with the LDS, and have much better TV ratings.
So why the Utes?
Oh yeah. The liberal thinkers at places like Cal and Stanford just can’t stand to have a religious university in their midst (well, except for Notre Dame, who they would accept with open arms, hosanna’s and a high mass for the Pope if the Irish required it.)
So the Utes are in.
But they don’t deserve it over BYU.
SEC laggard Mississippi State plays in one of the oldest stadiums in college football.
You know who their last head coach with an all time winning record was?
Darrell Royal, who went 12-8 there back in 1954 and 1955 before moving on to greener pastures at Texas.
Last, and only, SEC championship? 1941.
That’s the year the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, for you history buffs.
The Bulldogs have served as handy fodder for the rest of the league for a long, long time. But do they really deserve BCS status?
Based on their record, nope.
They won the Missouri Valley Conference.
Back in 1911 and 1912.
And tied for the Big 12 North Division.
Six years ago in 2004.
That is it.
For decades the perennial punching bag for Nebraska and Oklahoma in the old Big 8, since the formation of the Big 12 they have….been pretty much the same.
Four winning seasons since 1990.
Let’s face it. They are not good. Have never been good. Never will be good.
The best they can do is 7-5 or maybe, just maybe, a “miracle” season of 8-4.
Time to get rid of them, and perhaps add a decent TCU or BYU to the Big 12 mix.
When Penn State joined the Big Ten, rumors were swirling that the league was doing the groundwork to ease out Northwestern, who had a pretty bad spell in the 70’s through the 80’s.
The Wildcats ruined all that, however, by winning a couple of Big Ten titles and managing to field a competitive team (they have the third best record in the league over the past five years).
Maybe the honchos should have axed the Hoosiers of Indiana.
They have won a total of two Big Ten championships, the last occurring in 1967.
They have only appeared in the top twenty poll five times in their entire existence, the last being back in 1988.
With Notre Dame and Purdue situated in the same state, and Ohio State and Michigan in hailing distance, it seems that the Hoosiers have never been able to really get the athletes needed to compete.
They used to be known for hoops…but that has been on the skids recently also.
On the gridiron, however, BCS worthy they are not.
Pullman, Washington ain’t the end of the earth, but you can see if from there.
Home of the Huskies, proud member of the Pac-10, the Cougars draw a whopping 25,000 fans per game in their dinky 35,000 seat stadium to watch their boys get the tar beat out of them by the rest of the league.
Year after year after year.
But things have taken a turn lately. For the worse.
Under the tutelage of Paul Wulff, the team has gone a stunning 3-22 over the past couple of years. Ouch.
The Cougars really don’t belong here. They’ve never really been competitive, garnering just four Rose Bowl appearances in their history, and only two in the modern era.
Maybe it’s time to admit it. They just can’t cut the mustard. And the Pac-10 can replace them with someone who can.
Like Boise State.
Well, they play good basketball.
Last time the Dukies had a winning season was back in 1994… in other words, when this years college seniors were being birthed.
From 1999 to 2007, Duke's football win-loss record was at 13-90 and from 2005 to 2007 Duke suffered a 22-game losing streak
In 2008, a judge ruled in favor of Duke after they pulled out of a four-game contract with the University of Louisville.
The judge stated that it was up to Louisville to find a suitable replacement since he wrote, in the ruling, that any Division I team would be equivalent or better.
Maybe the ACC would be better off with the East Carolina Pirates or the Navy Midshipmen
Last time the Baylor Bears had a winning record was a whopping fifteen years ago.
And it’s not like they set the world on fire before that. In their long association with the old SWC, they had only 5 championships, one of which was shared.
They were never really that good. Their fan base is mediocre, drawing less than 37,000 per game to their 51,000+ seat stadium.
So why are they in the Big 12?
Because the then Governor of Texas, Anne Richards, was a Bear alum and made sure that they got taken along with Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Tech when the SWC imploded and the Big 12 was formed.
Never mind that Houston, who at the time had a perennial top twenty program, a recent Heisman winner, and had won several SWC crowns, was not only more deserving from a playing standpoint but also from the standpoint that they are a public, tax supported institution (shouldn't the Gov stand up for such?).
Nope, Ol’ Anne wanted her Bears in and that is what she got.
So the proud Cougars program plummeted, while the Bears… pretty much stayed in the cellar.
Maybe it’s time to right an old wrong.
Baylor has not demonstrated that they are really capable of playing BCS conference level football. Houston, which is under resurgence, knocked off both Texas Tech and Oklahoma State last year. The Cougars are also solid in hoops (men’s and women’s) and baseball.
Time for the green and gold to go.
The whipped dog of the SEC, Vandy has not won a conference championship since 1923, and has a total of four bowl appearances in the programs long history.
They basically topped out back in 1922 when they played Michigan to a 0-0 tie.
Vandy stinks. A 7-5 season is considered a major accomplishment.
And they have not just recently stunk. They were putrid in the 90’s, 80’s, 70’, 60’s and 50’s. Over a half-century of complete futility.
Why does the SEC keep them? People cite tradition, but the league had no problems kicking out Tulane back in the day when they couldn’t cut the mustard.
Get rid of them. Just because they were 'okay' in your great-granddads time is no reason to have them now. Boot them along with the Bulldogs and make it a ten team league…or grab Texas A&M and TCU or Houston.
But Vandy SEC worthy or BCS league worthy? No way, Cornelius.