Jacksonville Sports News, Sam Kouvaris - SamSportsline.com


So who thought the BCS was a good idea from the beginning anyway? From the minds of, as my friend Cole Pepper says, “money grubbing fat cats” comes an idea that’s flawed from the start and has gotten worse as it’s gone along.

Yes, I hate the BCS.

It hasn’t achieved any goal, and what was the goal anyway? To determine a “true” national champion for college football? That’s a noble idea that has an easy answer: have a playoff. Not something a bunch of writers and coaches have a say in, but a playoff where teams meet each other on the playing field.

The old system had some order, and when there was a question, they just split the National Championship, giving two teams the right to say they were the best. Under the new system, one team calls themselves the National Champion while two or three sit and brood about not getting a chance to at least play for the title. If the traditional Bowl alignments were in place this year, Illinois and Oregon would meet in the Rose Bowl, LSU and Maryland in the Sugar, Nebraska and Florida in the Fiesta and Colorado would have a chance to beat somebody in the Orange Bowl. Maybe Tennessee. Play those games and then come up with a National Champion. Or even better, play those games and then pick the top two teams to play one more for all of the marbles.

(On a complete tangent, how good of a representation is it of a team after they have more than a month off and then have to play in the biggest game of their season? Are they really the same team that went 11-0?)

No offense to Nebraska. They followed the rules and are in the Rose Bowl. Good for them. They didn’t make the rules; they’re just playing by them. Much like Florida State last year, Bobby Bowden said the Seminoles were in the National Championship game because that’s how the polls worked. Sure, Miami should have played Oklahoma, but the BCS brain trust had the ‘Noles in the game and Miami out in the cold.

This year both Colorado and Oregon have a legitimate gripe. The Ducks lost one game early and Colorado beat Nebraska and won the conference championship. Sure next year, they’ll change the rule and say unless you win your conference championship, you’re not eligible. But that’s a year too late. And the worst thing is the guys who invented this thing keep going around telling everybody that they knew this was a possibility and that it’s working, like we’re complete idiots.

Here’s the easy fix: a 16 team playoff that involves the conference champions and at-large teams, the bowls are a part of it, everybody makes money and a real national champion is crowned. There are a lot of reasons that won’t happen, not the least of which is how the money would have to be shared across the board. Do you think Roy Kramer wants the SEC to share all of that loot with Appalachian State? That’s how it works in basketball, and the football guys don’t want any part of that.

The conference commitments and the network contracts run through 2006, meaning they’ll tamper with the rules over the next couple of years, but this is the system we’re stuck with. The Bowls can’t really be happy with this system. All of the attention is on one game with the rest as just window dressing. A little controversy spices things up, a lot of controversy means something’s wrong.

Admit it, and fix it.