2010 Pick ‘Em Prize: Death to the BCS

Michael HoppesCorrespondent IOctober 5, 2010

Death to the BCS book coverNo, not that kind of Death, it’s a book. I have secured a prize for the winner of the Pick ‘Em Game for the 2010 season: The book DEATH TO THE BCS: The Definitive Case Against the Bowl Championship Series by authors Dan Wetzel, Josh Peter and Jeff Passan. After the National Championship Game, the person with the most points will be the winner of this book. It shall be mailed directly from the publisher. You will have to give your address and agree that I can share it with the publisher in order to deliver the prize. You’ll have all off-season to read it and keep your mind on college football. I’d ask that you please read it and give us a review.

Here is the synopsis of the book and more information including websites to visit and about the authors:

Ninety percent of the public opposes college football’s answer to crowning a national champion, the Bowl Championship Series. With DEATH TO THE BCS: The Definitive Case Against the Bowl Championship Series, by Dan Wetzel, Josh Peter, and Jeff Passan (Gotham Books, October 14, 2010: $20), fans can understand why such a backward system exists, what keeps it alive, and how it can be toppled. In a no-holds-barred exposé of the greed, immorality, and downright illogic of the system that denies college football a true national champion, Wetzel, Peter, and Passan—veteran journalists who have worked for Yahoo! Sports, the most-read sports site on the Internet—argue that a playoff tournament would greatly improve the experience for everyone: fans, players, and schools alike. Unlike every other NCAA sport that decided its national champion through a postseason playoff, college football is at the mercy of the BCS. Since its inception in 1998, the BCS has drawn criticism far and wide, and DEATH TO THE BCS not only tears down the current system but offers a far superior alternative.

The BCS exists because the men in power, drunk on money and influence, will do whatever it takes to keep both. If that means keeping the BCS ahead of a playoff system that could generate $750 million—more than three times the current amount of the bowl system—and fund athletic departments, so be it. If it means encouraging premier teams to pad their schedules with cupcake opponents, pad away. If it means misleading Congress about giving a percentage of bowl profits back to charities and local communities in order to keep the BCS running, it’s the price of doing business. If it means rejecting the fundamental principles of fairness at the heart of sports in the United States, obstruction’s the word. If it means stealing college football away from the fans that make it the greatest spectator sport around, charge them with grand theft. DEATH TO THE BCS aims to take back the game from the unworthy hands of those who have driven it into the ground. Like basketball’s March Madness, college football deserves a fan-crazed, media-soaked, fun playoff that fairly chooses which two teams make it to the top. It deserves for the BCS to die, and that starts with DEATH TO THE BCS.

The Definitive Case Against the Bowl Championship Series
By Dan Wetzel, Josh Peter, and Jeff Passan
Gotham Books| October 14, 2010 | $20
ISBN: 9781592405701


Dan Wetzel is an award-winning national columnist for Yahoo! Sports, the most read sports site on the web. He has coauthored four books, including New York Times best seller “Resilience: Faith, Focus, Triumph” with Alonzo Mourning. In 2005, he co-wrote “Glory Road,” the story of the 1966 Texas Western Miners who were the first team to start five black players in the NCAA title game. The book was a New York Times editor’s choice and a Quill Award finalist, and was adapted into a Disney movie of the same name in 2006. He’s been featured in the “Best American Sports Writing” anthology four times and has been called “America’s Best Sports Writer” by Salon.com. He lives in Michigan with his wife and two daughters.

Josh Peter is an award-winning investigative journalist who has earned national attention for his reporting on the Bowl Championship Series. In 2005, he was entered for a Pulitzer Prize for a series on race and high school football in the South, and his work was included in the Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of Hurricane Katrina when he was a reporter at the New Orleans Times-Picayune.  His work has been published in the 2005 edition of the American Society of Newspaper Editors’ Best Newspaper Writing, and he has been honored bye the Associate Press Sports Editors more than a half-dozen times.  The author of “Fried Twinkies, Buckle Bunnies and Bull Riders,” he lives in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter.

Jeff Passan has been with Yahoo! Sports since 2006, when he joined its staff as one of the youngest sports columnists in the country. Since then, he has been recognized in “The Best American Sports Writing” anthology and earned acclaim as one of the top writers covering baseball. He previously worked for The Kansas City Star, where he won multiple Associated Press Sports Editors awards, and The Fresno Bee, where he covered the corrupt Fresno State basketball team. He lives in Kansas with his wife and son.

About Gotham Books:
Gotham Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA), was launched in 2003 by industry veteran William Shinker.  Bestsellers that have helped to establish its solid foundation are Eats, Shoots & Leaves, Game of Shadows, The Official eBay™ Bible, The Lucky Shopping Manual, Almost French, Letters to a Young Brother, Letters to a Young Sister, The Conversation, The Miracle of St. Anthony, The Tao of Willie, It’s Called Work for a Reason, Do You, The House of Mondavi, Every Shot Must Have a Purpose, How Starbucks Saved My Life, Body Drama, Always By My Side, I Can Has Cheezburger. How to Take Over Teh Wurld, and The Girls from Ames. Penguin Group (USA) Inc. is one of the leading U.S. adult and children’s trade book publishers, owning a wide range of imprints and trademarks, including Berkley Books, Dutton, Frederick Warne, G.P. Putnam’s Sons, Gotham Books, Grosset & Dunlap, New American Library, Penguin, Penguin Press, Philomel, Riverhead Books, and Viking, among others.  Penguin Group is owned by Pearson plc, the international media group.