The poor Citadel.
A lamb pulled from the vast meadow that is the NCAA's Football Championship Subdivision led to the sacrificial altar of various Football Bowl Subdivision teams like Florida this season and Wisconsin last season.
The Badgers won 45-31 and the Gators won 70-19, but both of those programs got what they wanted from the game; a win to inch them closer to bowl eligibility, at the very least.
The Bulldogs also got what they came for. Trading pride for cash obviously isn't something the military school of South Carolina is ashamed of. It's not the Citadel's fault though; any of us would probably do the same thing.
So both teams got what they wanted. What's the problem then? College football fans have had enough. Amongst those complaining are Bleacher Report's top writer Lisa Horne and not Bleacher Report's top writer (not even close) Tim Seeman.
The latter will now propose to you, the reader and college football fan, something that might interest you.
Guaranteed interconference matchups between the Bowl Championship Series conferences in the form of conference "challenges," similar to those in men's college basketball.
While it's not a new idea, hear me out and consider my suggestions.
One weekend early in the college football season would be known as "challenge weekend," during which all of the challenge games would take place.
There would be three different conference matchups set up to appeal to three different audiences.
For the audience seeking historically significant games, there would be a Big 10-Pac 10 challenge, setting up some rematches from Rose Bowls past.
Wisconsin-UCLA. Penn State-Southern California. Minnesota-Oregon. Northwestern-California. Stanford-Michigan State.
Another audience might be looking for unpredictability. Coin flip games about which no one can accurately prognosticate about. The ACC-Big East challenge would be for them.
Miami-West Virginia. Cincinnati-North Carolina. Rutgers-Duke. Connecticut-Clemson.
The last audience is the one looking for future NFL players and elite college football. They want to see powerhouse teams delivering haymaker after haymaker at each other and see who is left standing. Ladies and gentlemen, the SEC-Big 12 challenge (presented by Dr. Pepper?).
Oklahoma-Florida. Texas-Alabama. Texas Tech-LSU. Texas A&M-Mississippi. Oklahoma State-Georgia. Baylor-Mississippi State. Missouri-Auburn. The list of great games goes on.
Each season, the teams would play teams from the other conferences based on last season's results, meaning the top team from the Big 12 would play the top team from the SEC every single year. This would create big rivalries similar to the New England-Indianapolis rivalry that has developed in the NFL in recent seasons.
This is something fans would embrace. Tickets would sell and corporate sponsors would be very happy. Less happy would be the big-time schools, who wold lose a guarantee victory. More importantly, the smaller schools would lose hundreds of thousands of dollars that would be difficult to replace.
Certainly, something could be worked out for these schools. Perhaps a share of the revenue the big schools would make thanks to these games. Because, as fans, you and I both know that they would drive the exchange of many millions of dollars across the country.