Skip to comments.Don't Hatch A Rematch
Posted on 11/22/2011 8:09:02 AM PST by Kaslin
There is a problem with the Bowl Championship Series, but its not the one you probably think.
College football doesnt need a playoff. A traditional playoff system an eight-team or even four-team bracket brings nothing in the way of advantages over the current system and probably would make things considerably worse.
Dont tell me the traditional architecture for playoffs is the only or even most accurate way to determine a champion. The St. Louis Cardinals just won the World Series under that system despite having fewer wins in the regular season than any other team that made the playoffs. They finished six games behind the Milwaukee Brewers in their own division. In fact, wild card teams have won half of the last 10 championships.
Yes, people would watch the playoff games, but people are going to watch the bowls as well. And college administrators are right. The present system gives 68 teams a shot at playing in the postseason. Does anyone argue all 68 teams ought to get a second chance at the national championship? No. Plus, ask the coaches. Teams that advance to bowls get three extra weeks of practices. See how many want to cut the number of teams that receive that privilege from 68 to eight.
Besides, bowl teams and their fans get an enjoyable week in a far-off city, a few doo-dads from the bowl committee and a chance to finish the season against an opponent of comparable accomplishment. We all love the NCAA basketball tournament, but does it really help the 16 seeds to get in for one game, only to get crushed by a No.1 seed in the first round every single year?
No, the problem with the BCS this year is the prospect of a rematch. Full disclosure: Im an LSU fan. I was born in Louisiana, went to a system school, have attended games there since I was a young child and have rooted for the Tigers every day of my life. I want that out there, even though it has little to do with the point Im trying to make.
Thats because, if LSU wins its last two games, it is in and nobody will argue. If the Tigers dont win out, its their own fault if they miss the big dance.
My argument focuses on the other question: Who will they play?
As of today, the top prospect would be Alabama provided Alabama beats Auburn in the Iron Bowl on Saturday. But LSU already has beaten Alabama, 9-6, in as epic and thrilling a game as youll ever see.
I dont think a traditional playoff system works for college football for a variety of reasons. How do you choose eight deserving teams out of 119 that have played wildly diverse schedules? Not all 12-0s are created equal. Boise State and TCU and this years unbeaten darling, Houston, play teams week-in-and-week-out that have perhaps one or two future pros. The LSU-Alabama game probably had 35-40 future pros. The mid-majors simply are not playing the same game.
Plus, the beauty of the present system is that every game among contenders is a playoff game. Stanford was eliminated by its loss to Oregon. Oregon was eliminated by its loss to LSU in Week 1 of the season. USC beat Oregon, but it was eliminated because of its status as a continuing criminal enterprise. Sorry, couldnt resist.
But similarly, Alabama has been eliminated. It had its shot at what most now must agree is the top team in the land. If Arkansas loses to LSU, it has even less claim on another chance having lost previously to Alabama.
If all the present seeds hold serve, LSU should advance. Its most deserving opponent as things stand now -- would be Virginia Tech. Virginia Tech will have won a division championship, a conference championship if it can prevail in the ACC title game, and will have lost only once to a then-Top 10 opponent at the top of its game.
No team in the Big 12, Pac 12 or Big Ten can claim a better resume. And the Big 12 has a higher burden of proof since it no longer has a conference championship game. The problem with the BCS is that, at present, its points system would give the second berth in its title game to Alabama. Im not sure how to fix that except to bar rematches.
College football does not have a traditional playoff system, which doesnt bother me one bit. It chooses champions in a way more similar to auto racing than basketball, and that is OK.
But it does have an elimination system, and that system requires that no team, under any circumstances, gets a rematch. Sorry, Alabama, but you had your chance. Its time others have theirs.
Since the very first sentence is wrong the rest of it doesn’t matter. There are probably 50 NCAA sports with playoffs, football should be no different.
Which, of course...means, not at all.
If, at the end of the current season, LSU and Alabama are determined to be the best two football teams in the country, then they should play again. I'm in favor of a playoff, but it would require elimination or major restructuring of the current conferences and schedules. I could see a five game season followed by an extensive single-elimination playoff.
Sounds to me like he's skeered! Roll Tide!
BCS is a joke..VaTech at #6...look at their schedule..if they were in the SEC, they'd have 2 wins..
This discounts the whole article IMO. LSU knows that Alabama won in every way but the one that counts. LSU wants no part of another game with the Crimson Tide.
Full Disclosure: I'm a UGA fan. I don't have a dog in this hunt, other than being another speed bump on LSU's road to N'Awlins.
I disagree with the logistics argument — what’s to stop them from using the current BCS system to determine seeds #1-8 for a playoff system, while still letting anyone who can manage to scrape up 6 wins make it into a bowl game? A 3-round playoff is only 7 games total — 3 more than what the 8 teams would have played in their BCS bowl assignments. Considering that “bowl season” already covers 2 weeks (and more) plus the BCS title game a week later, this wouldn’t even affect the length of the season as compared to now.
I mean, not that I’m entirely thrilled with how the BCS rankings are determined, but from a logistics standpoint, it would be quite simple to implement.
The BCS is a joke, but look what it has to work with. There is no consistency in scheduling or conference structures.
The author needs a new dictionary. The words “epic and thrilling” should not be used in refernce to a score of 9 - 6 for a football game.
They could set up a playoff and have a very rigid entry requirement — CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS ONLY!
Right now there are 11 conferences, these could easily be consolidated down into 8 conferences — indeed some of the smaller ones are looking at combining already.
BY combining and making larger conferences you force a Conference Championship game. The champions then enter the playoff, and everyone else is available for bowl games just as they are now.
With an 8 team playoff of conf champs and the conf champ games you end up with a defacto 16 team playoff.
FYI...RealClearSports..under college football..a fascinating article “Big 10 looks INWARD”...well worth the read..
BTW..see my #13,,good read..
Did you watch the game? This was two BIG BOY teams slugging it out unmercifully for 60+ minutes.
I will taking an EPIC and yes THRILLING battle like this over some silly 56-52 VIDEO GAME.
The Super Bowl usually features two teams that also played in the regular season, so what’s the big deal?
The best three teams in the country are in the SEC, deal with it....it’s just too bad one of those teams will miss out on a BCS bowl entirely.
True, but those 3-4 teams already had their 'playoff' furing conference play and the Conference Chamionship Game.
I am all for an LSU-Alabama rematch under the current system, but a playoff system I feel should just be the COnference Champions. Just my opinion.
As would I, that was a fantastic game to watch, just like a classic pitcher's duel.
Do you realize that there is a good chance that the National Championship game will feature a team that was not good enough to win its own division, much less its own conference?
Besides, I've already watched LSU vs. Alabama. I have no desire to watch the two largely inept offenses play another snoozer game against each other.
Very true. But, imagine the chaos if UGA somehow upsets LSU in the Conference Championship (yes I am expecting LSU to beat down Arky). It is quite possible that a late FG or overtime win by UGA would leave LSU in the top 2. In that scenario the BCS does allow 3 teams from a Conf in. UGA would get the auto-qualify to the Sugar Bowl while LSU-Bama would play in the BCS Championship.
Full disclosure: I am a UGA fan, but even I know that the above is almost a 99.99999% pure fantasy. I would love for my Dawgs to win, but the reality is LSU should win by at least two TD's.
Stranger things have happened.
BTW RIP Larry Munson....he was a legend, although "Run, Lindsey, Run" still brings back bad memories.
This last spate of conference realignment was temporary..more will come..maybe in 1-2 years..ultimately we end up with four 16 team superconferences , and you'll have a FOUR team playoff each year..
As soon as ONE conference, IMHO most likely the PAC 12..goes to 16..then everyone else is on board...the KEY is where ND goes...look..they can't stay indie that much longer...they're NOT that good, and the TV $$$ will dry up..and their brand will start to erode. Also, if they try and stay indie, and we have superconferences..then ND will find scheduling harder..wither ND..no way the Big 10..either the SEC or the ACC..and I think it's the ACC..where they can rule the roost..
Alabama: Rushing - 16th, Scoring - 20th (35.5 points a game)
LSU: Rushing - 21st, Scoring - 14th (37.9 points a game)
First time in my life I have seen teams scoring 38 and 36 points a game called INEPT.
The reason for the 9-6 score:
Alabama - Scoring D - #1 (8.7 Pts a game)
LSU - Scoring D - #2 (10.1 Pts a game)
After a playoff - heh.
Without playoffs, what sucks is we won't see an Oklahoma State vs. LSU, Oregon vs. Alabama, Stanford vs. VA Tech or any other highly competitive game unless they're actually playing for something.
If they're playing a consolation game, then the motivation just isn't there (see: 2009 Sugar Bowl: Utah 31, Alabama 17).
I don't buy the "regular-season-is-the-playoffs" argument either, when a powerhouse team has Georgia Southern on their schedule this late in the year.
On the other hand, who cares about college basketball until the tournament starts....you pretty much know who is going to be in the tournament before the season starts, there’s no drama in the regular season.
I remember the Giants/Patriots game was a rematch, but what other ones have there been in recent memory?
Indeed. If the UGA team that shows up is the same one that thrashed Auburn and not the fuzzy-headed one that stumbled to a win over Kentucky, LSU had better come in with their helmets strapped on tight.
As far as the thread topic goes, LSU-Bama were the best two when they met earlier and still look to be the two best teams in the country. The two best should play.....period.
PS....Larry was the best. (and I'm sure Appleby to Washington hurts as well. But hey, you guys have had revenge for the last twenty years)
This is just laughable. I suppose the author would say, "yes, people watch the NCAA basketball tournament, but they are going to watch the NIT as well". This just isn't true. The NCAA is recognized as the legitimate crowning tournament. The NIT is basketball's version of a bowl.
I don't watch a bowl game unless I have a rooting interest or the matchup is intriguing. I do not stay up on a Thursday of Christmas Week to watch a WAC team face the ACCs 4th place finisher. However, I would stay up all night if that same match up was part of a single elimination tournament.
I think if basketball had only 10-13 games on their schedule and they were played on Saturdays, the games would become a lot more important. The tournaments would be even more epic.
But if you had a 8-team playoff in football, there’s no guarantee (at the beginning of the season) any school would make it. I don’t think it will happen anytime in the near future, however.
If there were an 8-team playoff using this week’s BCS Standings:
#8 Houston (11-0) at #1 LSU (11-0)
#7 Boise State (9-1) at #2 Alabama (10-1)
#6 Stanford (10-1) at #3 Arkansas (10-1)
#5 Virginia Tech (10-1) at #4 Oklahoma State (10-1)
I would be excited to watch all four of those games, even though my team isn’t in it. More so than any NFL playoff games.
Absolutely! We can have bowl games AND a real National Championship playoff series. The BCS will trot out any weak minded argument that comes along if they think it will help maintain the status quo that makes them so much damned money.
There are controversies every year regarding who gets in, but it's not an outrage (except for the junkies who can't let go of a snub).
Football could easily do an 8 or 16 team tourney without a conference structure; just continue to use the BCS criteria. The further from number 1 your ranking, the less outrageous it is that you don't get in. Yes, you miff the alums from the #17 ranked team, but so what?
And for people who claim that the regular season wouldn't matter, that's just silly. It would matter no more or less than it does now; you would be vying for rankings based on polls and computers. The only tweak I would make is withholding rankings until after a few games are played.
Nope, I was at an actual college football game where points were scored by crossing the goal line. The game also featured a competent kicker, unlike the one fielded by Bama. The final score was 52-45. Call it a video game score if you like but I'll go with George Patton's evaluation of offense vs. defense.
As an Alabama fan, let me give my perspective.
I was against a rematch before the game. If LSU had lost, I would still be against a rematch. I see no reason to change the principal just because Bama would benefit.
That being said, if the rematch occurs, and Alabama wins, I’ll holller “No. 1” as loud as the next Tide fan.
But to get to some specifics of his article. There is no rule agaisnt rematches currently. Maybe there should be, but it is what it is. I remember one year, long ago, when Oklahoma and Nebraska had to meet for a second time in the bowls. Neither, I think, was particularly happy about it.
Also, rematches occur regularly, and have the potential to occur every year, in conference playoffs. The big loser of the regular season, could be a narrow winner of the championship. It is what it is.
Then again, who ARE the best two teams in college football this year? So far they have been LSU and Alabama. Maybe they should meet again to settle it in a championship game rather than the regular season one.
I don’t pretend to know the answer. I really don’t like the idea of playoffs in college football. It takes away some of the mystique and tradition for me. But the money bags aren’t asking for my opinion.
So. Rematch or no rematch. ROOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLL TIDE, ROLL. RAMMER JAMMER YELLOW HAMMER; GIVE ‘EM HELL ALABAMA.
What about Oklahoma State? If the Cowboys beat OU in Stillwater in a couple weeks, they will win the Big XII outright. The Big XII is a much, much better conference than the ACC and winning it is more impressive than VT's winning the lackluster ACC with a lot of close, unimpressive wins. If you took the top ten teams from the ACC and lined them up with the ten teams of the Big XII or the top ten teams of the SEC, I'm not sure the ACC would win a game other than someone pounding Kansas.
A 9-6 OT game is hardly a decisive victory.
I think a re-match is in order.
All it proved was that LSU had the better kicker.
I have no idea how anyone can argue for anything other then a playoff system, the BCS is a fraud and is purposefully meant to keep the money “in house”. Two of the last four years the season has ended with multiple undefeated teams. It is, other then professional boxing, the biggest scam in sports and I frankly get tired of people arguing “who can beat who”, the only way to prove such an assertion is on the field.
1. The eight teams are seeded based on an improved version of the BCS formula now being used.
2. The top four teams will host the first round of games at their home stadiums in early December. This means #1 hosts #8, #2 hosts #7, #3 hosts #6, and #4 hosts #5. The losers will then be allowed to be put into other bowl games in late December to early January.
3. The winners will play in two major bowl games on New Years' Day. This will allow college finals in December to be completed with no interference.
4. The final game will be played about 8-9 days afterward.
Simple, effective, and it could even swing the balance of power back to northern teams if you get a team like Wisconsin, Michigan or Ohio State hosting a first round game, especially with the potential for bad weather in early December!
I disagree. It would be incredibly simple to set up.
I'm in favor of a smaller +3 playoff with the opening round being played among the eight teams placed in the 4 major bowls featuring the traditional matchups of the champions of the 5 major conferences - B1G, Big XII, SEC, ACC & Pac12.
Rose Bowl - B1G champ vs. Pac12 champ
Sugar Bowl - SEC champ vs. At large
Fiesta Bowl - Big XII champ vs. At large
Orange Bowl - ACC champ vs. At large
So instead of using the incredibly flawed BCS to determine the 2 best teams, use the BCS to determine the 3 best at-large teams. In this manner, the BCS can love the SEC West as much as it wants, but a non-division winner is going to have to fight its way into the national championship game.
After inserting the anticipated conference winners (per sportswriting prognosticators), the result of the Basic proposal would likely be:
Rose Bowl - Wisconsin vs. Oregon
Sugar Bowl - LSU vs. Stanford
Fiesta Bowl - Oklahoma St. vs. Arkansas
Orange Bowl - Clemson vs. Alabama
That's not a bad opening round. Of course, with upsets the next 2 weeks the following mess could also occur:
Rose Bowl - Penn St. vs. UCLA
Sugar Bowl - Georgia vs. Houston
Fiesta Bowl - Oklahoma vs. Boise State
Orange Bowl - Virginia vs. LSU
But even this mess is better than being forced to watch a Big Least team playing in a major bowl.
The Second Round would match up:
Rose winner vs. Orange winner
Sugar winner vs. Fiesta winner
The National Championship Game would then feature the Round 2 winners. This scenario would only require one additional week of play for the semi-finals and only 2 additional games beyond the existing bowl schedule. Real simple.
Sorry, Mountain West, Conference USA, MAC & WAC. Your conferences do not have enough good teams from top-to-bottom for your league champions to qualify for an automatic berth. Sorry, Big Least you do not have any good teams, period.
Independents like Notre Dame & BYU and teams in the 5 minor conferences can qualify for the playoffs, but only in extraordinary years. Unfortunately for them, the SEC has three Top 5 teams this year. And unless Stanford falls down against Cal, Stanford is better than either Boise St. or Houston.
BUT if you really wanted to things up to a wider playoff, I could support a 6-team play-in round featuring the top 6 BCS finishers who did not win their conferences. The champs of the 5 major conferences would get a 1st round bye. In this scenario, pairings would be:
Holiday Bowl - At-large #1 vs. At-large #6
Cotton Bowl - At-large #2 vs. At-large #5
Gator Bowl - At-large #3 vs. At-large #4
Adding in teams (again using anticipated results of the next 2 weeks), the opening round would look like this:
Holiday Bowl - Alabama vs. Oklahoma
Cotton Bowl - Stanford vs. Houston
Gator Bowl - Arkansas vs. Boise St.
Round 2 would then be:
Rose Bowl - Wisconsin vs. Oregon
Sugar Bowl - LSU vs. Gator winner
Fiesta Bowl - Oklahoma St. vs. Cotton winner
Orange Bowl - Clemson vs. Holiday winner
Round 3 would match up:
Rose winner vs. Orange winner
Sugar winner vs. Fiesta winner
The National Championship Game would then feature the Round 3 winners. While this scenario is more complicated, it would still only add just one additional week of play for the semi-finals and only 2 additional games beyond the existing bowl schedule.
If you use the BCS rankings for the full playoff schedule you will reward the computer geeks who have cooked their results to rank an inept 4-loss Texas team ahead of likely B1G champ Wisconsin who is just 2 fluke plays away from a perfect season. The BCS rankings are not reliable as the ONLY resource for a playoff. Please see my earlier post for 2 different realistic playoff scenarios.
Alabama had their shot. At home. And lost. Why should Alabama have to beat LSU once while LSU has to beat them twice?
Ever seen a 1-0 pitchers duel in the playoffs? Or a 1-0 hockey game? Thrilling as it gets where literally one single play could make all the difference.
Round 1 Nightmare would be:
Holiday Bowl - LSU (at-large #1) vs. Houston (at-large #6)
Cotton Bowl - Arkansas (at-large #2) vs. Boise St. (at-large #5)
Gator Bowl - Oklahoma St. (at-large #3) vs. Alabama (at-large #4)
Round 2 Nightmare would be:
Rose Bowl - Penn St. vs. UCLA
Sugar Bowl - Georgia vs. Gator winner
Fiesta Bowl - Oklahoma vs. Cotton winner
Orange Bowl - Virginia vs. Holiday winner
While Penn St., UCLA, Georgia & Virginia are rewarded for being upset league champs, most of the top 10 BCS teams still have a chance to play their way to the top.
Most importantly, the Big Least is still nowhere to be seen.
I smell fear from this LSU fan.
Best line of the article - except for the apology.
Yes, I've seen those things. LSU vs. Bama was not the same.
Multiple missed field goals and an inability to complete a forward pass are never thrilling.
You want the equivalent? LSU won the Bama game advancing to 1st base on a couple of 3rd strike passed balls, a fielder's choice and a pop-up sac fly to the 1st baseman where the throw to the plate ended up in the dugout. This "game" also featured 3 infield singles, a bloop Texas leaguer, and 12 full count walks.
There's your equivalent baseball comparison. Blech!
There is already an SEC Championship Game, that’s all the playoff we need.
There are three football conferences that really matter;
I know it’s hard to take for some folks, but Vanderbilt could kick the shine-ola out of 95% of the rest of the Division One teams out there on any given day.
(and they’ll probably do it to Rocky Top this weekend...sadly)
Take the top 16 based on computer rankings and seed them based on those rankings. The ones on the edge will be nervous or upset if left out, but play a tougher schedule and win games and get into the top 10.
A play-off would be very simple.
The existing big bowls can rotate the games including the championship game. All the small, insignificant bowls can still do their games.
Can you imagine the TV ratings for these games? Sweet 16, elite 8, final 4, UNDISPUTED CHAMPIONSHIP!!!!
I hope it happens in my lifetime.