Monday, November 10, 2008

How it Could Happen

As avid Beardown Readers should be aware, I hate the BCS System. I'm not asking for a +1, or an 8 or 16 team playoff (though I proposed a 16 team Playoff at this point last year). I am just sick of the BCS and how wrong it has been, so many times in the past. Hell it promised no more split titles when it originated, and then as you may remember, in it's thrid installment - there was a split National Champion.......Whoops.

So as I said, as a proponent for more BCS blunders and bloopers, here is how I would love the remainder of this season to turn out.

BCS Rankings (as of this morning):
1. Alabama 10-0 (6-0)
2. Texas Tech 10-0 (6-0)
3. Texas 9-1 (5-1)
4. Florida 8-1 (6-1)
5. Oklahoma 9-1 (5-1)
6. USC 8-1 (6-1)
7. Utah 10-0 (6-0)
8. Penn St. 9-1 (5-1)
9. Boise St. 9-0 (5-0)

Here's where the hypotheticals come in, all of which are very, very possible:

Bama's upcoming schedule consists of Mississippi St., Auburn, and #4 Florida. If Bama beats Miss St. and Auburn and drops to Florida they will be 12-1 (8-1) to end the regular season atop the SEC West.

Texas Tech will be looking at #5 Oklahoma, Baylor. Going 1-1 in that stretch (with the loss to Oklahoma) would put the Raiders at 11-1 (7-1) ending the regular season and the Big XII Championship.

Texas has a pair of wins in the bag looking at Kansas and Baylor which would mark them at 11-1 (7-1) ending their regular season in a tie with Texas Tech for the Big XII South, but Tech holds the tie-breaker.

Florida has South Carolina, Citadel, Florida St, and Alabama. What if they drop the game to South Carolina but win out over the other 3. They would end the regular season at 11-2 (7-2) and atop the SEC East.

Oklahoma matches up with Texas Tech and Oklahoma St. As we said earlier beating Tech but losing to Oklahoma St. They would thus end the season at 10-2 (6-2), and out of the Big XII Championship.

USC looks at Stanford, Notre Dame, and UCLA and wins out to end their season at 11-1 (8-1) atop the Pac 10.

Utah has San Diego State and #17 BYU. Utah beats SDSU and BYU in the de facto Conference Championship game at the end of the season, they finish up at 12-0 (8-0) and win the Mountain West.

Penn State has Indiana and #15 Michigan State to end the season. If they win out they finish up 11-1 (7-1) and winners of the Big Eleven.

Lastly, Boise State makes it past Idaho, Nevada, and Fresno State to take the WAC Title and a nice 12-0 (8-0) record.

Then we head to the SEC and Big XII Championships:
SEC - West Champ Bama faces the East Champ Gators in a rematch of their last loss, and drops to the Gators again.
Big XII - South Champ Texas Tech faces the North Champ Mizzou and gets upset.

So what we would be looking at going into the BCS Championship would be:

Alabama: 12-2 (8-2) SEC Runner-Up
Texas Tech: 11-2 (7-2) Big XII Runner-Up
Texas: 11-1 (7-1)
Florida: 12-2 (8-2) SEC Champion
Oklahoma: 10-2 (6-2)
USC: 11-1 (8-1) Pac-10 Champion
Utah: 12-0 (8-0) MWC Champion
Penn St: 11-1 (7-1) Big Eleven Champion
Boise St: 12-0 (8-0) WAC Champion

So who goes to the National Championship:
A two loss team who didn't win their conference (Bama and Tech)?
A one loss team who didn't play in the Conference Championship (Texas)?
A two loss team who won their conference (Florida)?
A two loss team who didn't play in the Conference Championship (Oklahoma)?
A one loss Conference Champion in a weak Conference (Penn St. and USC)?
Undefeated non-BCS Conference Champion (Utah and Boise St.)?

Arguments can be made for each of these teams:
You can't put both Utah and Boise St. in the National Championship, but then again, if you take one, don't you have to take both?
Can you take Penn St. or USC since they don't have Conference Championship games and the risk associated with them like the Big XII and SEC?
What about Florida, they would have won a tough conference, and beat former #1 Alabama TWICE in the closing weeks? But they have two losses and there are 1 loss and 0 loss Conference Champions in the mix.
Can you consider Texas? They only have one loss but they didn't even play in their Conference Championship.
What about Bama and Texas Tech? They both have two losses, and neither of them won their Conference Championship.

I want this scenario to happen. I REALLY want this scenario to happen. At the very least we could expect varied voting from the AP again like USC in 2003, and perhaps another split title. That would mean that in the BCS era, an era that promised no split titles, we would have 2 years out of 10 in which there was a Split Championship, that's 20%.

What if Penn St. and USC are both snubbed from the National Championship game. Well the Rose Bowl would feature a great match-up. If one of these teams won by a convincing margin, I guarantee many people would be suggesting that the winner be mentioned in the same breath as the National Championship.

What if snubbed Boise St. faces off against Texas in the Fiesta Bowl, and wins. or Snubbed Utah beats Florida in the Sugar Bowl? There would be plenty of people backing both Utah and Boise St. as a real National Champion contender.

If there was only a way to get these top tier match-ups out of the way earlier, and have the National Championship Game come after all the other games have given us a real look at who deserves a shot at the Title. If only there were a format that would let these teams face off and prove who really deserves to be there.

I will mention here that after this was originally published (November 10, 2008) it was pointed out to me by one of our readers, that I am not smart. In fact this anonymous person was much more courteous by pointing out to me that Florida and Bama are set to play each other in the SEC Championship and it is already on the schedule, thus this throws off part of my argument. So without deleting the prior mis-statements, so you will all know and ahve a record that I am in fact an idiot, what we would be seeing here would not be a rematch and Bama would have one less loss and Florida one less win.

Meaning that instead of Two 2 loss teams who hadn't won their Conference Championship as previously noted we would actually have Bama as a 12-1 and the SEC runner up and Florida as 11-2 and the SEC Champion.

This would leave us with Texas Tech as the lone two loss team who didn't win their conference and add a one loss Alabama who didn't win their conference to this mix.

So who do you take from the SEC a two loss Conference Champion or one loss runner up? Who from the Big XII 3 loss Conference Champion Mizzou? One loss Texas or two loss Oklahoma neither of whom played in the Conference Championship or the aforementioned two loss Tech who lost the Conference Championship? How do you leave out the Pac-10 or Big Eleven one loss teams in that mix, or the aforementioned undefeated teams.

The point remains the same, the BCS is a Mess. Thank you to the reader for pointing out my error, and please feel free to continually point out when we are wrong.


Anonymous said...

Alabama and Florida don't play in the regular season. They have both clinched their division which is why their conference championship matchup is already set.

Matt Randle "el" said...

how about this...if Oklahoma beats Texas Tech and then they both win out after that there would be a 3 way tie atop the Big 12 standings with a split of the tie breakers...the 2nd tie breaker in the big 12 is the two highest ranked teams in the AP polls receive berths to the title in an age where the BCS is supposed to lessen the impact of the "opinion" polls they would in fact completely shape the whole thing...Just a footnote to your great point about how big a mess this could all be