Friday, July 1, 2011

We don't need no stinkin' playoffs

We have heard for years that college football needs a playoff. Even President Obama (another government take over?) has lobbied for it. “It just isn’t fair,” they moan. “How hard can it be?” they cry.

The media, the fans, and of course the government all blame the BCS fat cats for “just wanting to make more profit” as if profit is a bad thing for a business to make.

That argument is of course ridiculous because a playoff system would allow more games, which means more television viewers, which means more advertising revenue, which means (gasp!) more profit. Perhaps the people who make this argument have never seen a tiny little game they call THE SUPER BOWL!

The Super bowl is a good example here actually. Last years super bowl featured the Arizona cardinals and the Pittsburg Steelers. Does anyone really believe that these were the two best teams in football? Could you not argue that the Giants, Pats, Chargers, or Colts were not better than at least one of these teams?

If you could make this argument then does that not make the playoff argument somewhat ridiculous?

The BCS national championship game was played between The Florida Gators and The Oklahoma Sooners. Do most people believe that Florida was the best team in the country last year?

Let us go back a little further shall we? In the 2008 Super bowl The New York Giants Beat the Pats in an unbelievable Super Bowl. With out a doubt one of the best super bowls we have ever witnessed but were the giants really the best team in the NFL that year? I believe you can say with the same degree of certainty that the 2007 LSU Tigers were the best team in college football.

Ok let us go back one more year to the 2007 Super bowl where the colts outlasted the bears 29-17. You can make a convincing argument that the colts were the best team that season, but you can make just as strong an argument that the bears were not the second best team.

Florida beat The Ohio state buckeyes for the national title that year. I believe the argument can be made that those two teams were the #1 and #2 teams in the land. I can keep going back year after year and pulling up these same comparisons but I think you get my point.

In college football, you have to be the best team every single week. In the NFL, you do not need to be good early but you damn well better get hot in November. How many people don’t watch the regular season in baseball, basketball, hockey etc…? Why is that? People do not watch these regular seasons because they are unimportant. I believe a champion needs to be the best from the beginning to end.
I believe Rocky Marciano and Muhammad Ali were great champions because they were top competitors in every fight as opposed to some one like James Buster Douglas who did just enough to grab a title fight and landed a lucky punch.

Do I think the BCS is a perfect system? No. I think it is much like our healthcare system, it could use some tweaks, but it is still the best system out there. One of those tweaks is we should do away with ALL conference tie-ins. If we have four BCS bowls, number 1 should play number two and number 3 should play number four and so on. In my opinion, this would allow more interesting match ups and we would not have that lame Hawaii vs UGA sugar bowl game to endure.

I realize the system is not perfect. No system is. It has however come a long way and I believe will continue to evolve. I am not against a plus one system at all. I think a plus one format is where we should strive to get and eventually be. In a plus one system, it only adds one extra game and does not compromise the regular season. It seems that with very few exceptions a plus one system would have truly settled all the controversy.

I would have loved to see Florida and Utah battle it out last year. Florida would have won but in a much more exciting game than people think. I believe auburn would have won the NC in 2004 if we had a plus one system. UGA could have possibly won it in 07. I am very much in favor of having a “true” national champion. I just do not want the regular season’s importance to become mythical. I would rather do away with all post-season games and have the media vote for a mythical national champion than ruin the truest playoff in sports that is the college football regular season. We need a plus one. College football will never need a playoff system.

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