Grant Halverson/Getty Images
Jason Campbell waving the white flag--of victory--at the 2004 SEC Championship Game.
The Bowl Championship Series was created to end all controversy. It was meant to be the absolute solution in determining the national champion...at least, the solution the corporations that sponsor and profit off the bowls let the NCAA come up with.
If you were an Oregon or Auburn fan in the first part of the 2000's, however, the majority of descriptions you could come up with to describe the BCS then wouldn't be fit to put in a family-friendly article.
In 2001, Joey Harrington led the Ducks to a 10-1 record, claiming a share of the Pac-10 championship, and the conference's automatic BCS berth, by virtue of its head-to-head victory over Washington State.
Despite the Ducks' stellar season, the BCS, which favored strength of schedule more heavily back then, decided to pit the University of Miami against Nebraska.
In the case of Miami, people didn't have a problem with them; they were clearly the country's best team. However, Nebraska was a team that not only failed to win its conference title—thought to be a requirement for a national title hopeful—but that didn't even win its division.
You can imagine the outrage in Eugene when a team that should have been playing in the Holiday Bowl instead was chosen to play for all the marbles. It was even worse when the Cornhuskers were blown out of the water by the Hurricanes, 37-14.
To top the whole episode off, Oregon then crushed the team that Nebraska finished second to in its own division, Colorado, in the Fiesta Bowl.
Auburn experienced its own "We got shafted by the BCS" moment when the Tigers finished undefeated in the SEC in 2004. Behind future NFL starter Jason Campbell at quarterback, Auburn sliced through the rugged SEC like a sharp knife through thin paper, capping their regular season off with a victory over Tennessee in the title game.
Now, I'm no fan of the SEC, but I agree that any team that goes 8-0 and wins the title game in that conference should definitely play for a national title. Too bad the BCS thought USC and Oklahoma were both better.
Auburn didn't let the terrible break ruin their season, however, defeating Virginia Tech in the Sugar Bowl, 16-13.
And that year's national title game? The Trojans rolled the Sooners in the Orange Bowl, 55-19.
These two cases were, and still are, Exhibits A and B in the case against the BCS. The system was eventually revamped, and while it's still far from perfect, this year it's given the two programs arguably hurt the most by it a shot at its greatest prize.