Monday, December 3, 2007
The BCS Worked Perfectly - Part 2
Thanks to Dave Wannstedt's finest hour in his decade and a half of abject failure as a head coach, the BCS system has been thrown into its greatest level of chaos since its inception.
All West Virginia had to do was beat 4-7 Pitt, at home, and they would have secured a spot in the BCS Championship game. They would face either Missouri, or if the Tigers lost the Big 12 Championship game (which they ended up doing, big time, 38-17 to Oklahoma), they would face Ohio State, the only other BCS Conference champ who had one loss.
But, as we all know by now, West Virginia was no match for the awesome power of the ruddy faced, half-moustached Wanny and his crutches. The Mountaineers shit the bed, losing 13-9, and all of a sudden we've got college football Sodom and Gomorrah.
Ohio State will, in fact, play for the BCS title. They will face LSU, the champion of the SEC.
Ohio State hasn't beaten anybody who is any good this year. That is true. But they didn't lose to anyone who isn't any good either. In fact, they blew all those teams out. Here's their resume:
33-14 over Washington (the same Washington team that the only team with a better W/L record than the Buckeyes, Hawaii, struggled mightily to beat this past weekend). 23-7 at Purdue, 37-17 at Penn State, 38-17 over Wisconsin. 14-3 at Michigan. Those are all double digit wins over teams that at one point were ranked in the top 25.
Ohio State has been dominant this year against the opponents they've played. They are a BCS conference champion. They have only 1 loss. No other team in the country can say all those things. If there's a BCS Championship Game, they deserve to be playing in it.
As for LSU, they are champions of the SEC. The SEC is the best conference in college football. By a lot. It's not even close.
In my opinion, the only teams that should even be considered for the BCS Championship game are teams that are either:
a. Champions of a BCS Conference or
b. An undefeated team who does not play in a BCS Conference, but has demonstrably shown they would win a BCS Conference if they played in one.
So who does that eliminate?
That eliminates Kansas. They lost to Missouri, who in turn got thrashed by Oklahoma. They are the third best team in the Big 12, and are damn fortunate to be invited to the Orange Bowl given that fact. They should be the ones freezing their asses off in the Cotton Bowl against Arkansas, not Missouri.
Georgia is eliminated. Sorry, but a team that did not even play in its conference championship game has no case, even if that conference is the SEC. The Bulldogs lost 35-14 to a Tennessee team that just got beat by an LSU team that had its backup QB playing. There is no logic that puts them in the title game. Their school will get a huge payout from playing in the Sugar Bowl. I'm sure they like that a lot better than getting to the semifinals or quarterfinals of some playoff system from which there is no payout guaranteed.
It also eliminates Missouri and West Virginia. They had their playoff games this weekend. They both lost. Missouri's punishment was too harsh in getting booted out of the BCS entirely, and I think they may be the only team that has a legitimate beef with the system right now.
It also eliminates the team that Georgia meets in the Sugar Bowl, Hawaii. Hawaii is 12-0, but they've done nothing to show they would be the best team in any BCS conference. I went over some of the more shaky outings they've had this year in last week's column, and they did nothing to expunge those by falling behind 28-7 to Washington, the LAST place team in the Pac 10, this weekend.
So that leaves us with 3 teams that still meet the qualifications I've set forth:
USC is one of them. However, if you think Ohio State doesn't belong because they haven't beaten anyone good, then you have to say the same thing about USC. What's their most impressive win? At Cal? At Arizona State? Puhleez. Oh, and they lost at home to Stanford. They'll play in the Rose Bowl, that's not bad.
Virginia Tech lost 48-7 to LSU earlier this year. There is no way they win any sort of tiebreaker with LSU that would put them in the title game instead of the Tigers.
Finally, there's Oklahoma. They blew out the #1 team this weekend, they have a case. You can be sure that the final spot in the Championship Game came down to Oklahoma or LSU. LSU got the nod because the SEC gets more respect than the Big 12.
Would I like to see LSU and Oklahoma settle it on the field, with the winner going to the title game to face Ohio State? Probably. I think in this case a BCS+1 game would be the best way to settle things. Other than that, I'm satisfied with the way things played out, and I'm certainly more than satisfied with all the excitement the last month of the college football season provided.
Your BCS Bowl Matchups:
ROSE BOWL JAN 1
USC v. Illinois
SUGAR BOWL JAN 1
Hawaii v. Georgia
FIESTA BOWL JAN 2
West Virginia v. Oklahoma
ORANGE BOWL JAN 3
Kansas v. Virginia Tech
BCS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP JAN 7
Ohio State v. LSU
Posted by GRRM Jr. at 7:33 AM