Last night we all watched a totally badass national title game between Auburn University and the University of Oregon. The matchup went down to the wire, but in the end Auburn was able to pull it out 22-19 and emerge as 2010's undisputed college football national champion. Well maybe not "undisputed" per se, as usual somebody in college football is pissed off that they got a raw deal and were screwed out of a fair shot at the crown. This year that somebody would be the players, coaches, and fans of Texas Christian University. This year TCU went undefeated just like Auburn, but ended up on the outside looking in when it came to a piece of the championship pie. Don't get me wrong I think Auburn annihilates the Horned Frogs if match up head to head, but it's still fucking preposterous that this opinion can't be proven on the field of play. Obviously this issue comes up every year regarding the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) system that uses computers to determine who the two best college teams in the land are, that should meet in the title game.
I am about the 784,890,543rd person to have a beef with the BCS, and suggest that college football implement some sort of playoff system that provides a fairer way of determining the sport's champion (like EVERY other sport). Most people however, just bitch about the BCS without really presenting a logical solution for a playoff format. Which just allows the douchebags that run this idiotic system to say "yeah well...it's easier said than done, you don't understand the complex issues that go into making that happen." Well I for one think I do understand these supposedly "complex" issues, and could logically come up with a sensible solution to this annual shitshow known as the BCS..by the end of this post. Without further ado, lets go issue by issue.
1. The college football regular Season IS your playoff
This is by far the most utterly retarded argument I hear from old school college football pundits opposing a playoff system. How exactly is playing an entire regular season schedule within one conference equivalent to going through playoffs? In every other sport (pro or college) teams get to play at least 1/3 of their games outside of their division/conference and prove themselves against foes across the country. In college football team play 2-3 games outside of their conference with one of those games being against an in-state/border rival, and another game being some cupcake college with a total enrollment of 100 people. So a team might play ONE game against a major squad outside of their conference/geographic area/comfort zone. Putting it in the most simplistic terms there is no truly fair way to rank a team from the West Coast against one from the South, if neither team ventures outside of their conference schedule. Obviously there are "naked eye" tests and stats that show that certain teams/regions always have the highest ranked football recruits. But the fact remains that if a team from Texas never plays an SEC conference schedule you can't just say "they would OBVIOUSLY not go undefeated with that schedule."
2. A college football team can't play that many games.
Obviously football is different from other sports, due to the physical beating players take. You can only play so many football games in a season, before your body breaks in half. With that being said, in my lifetime alone the college football season has expanded from 11 games to 14 games. So why not cut down a team's regular season, or hell even eliminate a conference championship game to allow for a couple playoff games. I.E. play your 8 or 9 game conference schedule, play your border rival, and then move right into the playoffs. You could even implement the few conference championship games into the first round of the BCS playoff format. Just eliminate one of your team's games against the Eastern Mississippi Hellen Keller Institute for the Impaired that you win 77-3 every season. Basically, a team could play all the relevant games on their schedule, go through an entire four week playoff run to the championship (16 teams), and still play only 14 games a season under my format.
3. You could interfere with players' December education schedule
I just threw up a little in my mouth writing that sentence. "Education." Give me a fucking break. Football players don't even take real majors (Communications? Kinesiology? Ballroom Dancing?). If a female lacrosse player can manage to fit in studying for her biochemistry exam between practices, I think Cam Newton can put away a couple hours to ensure he passes Flower Planting 101 while playing one playoff game a week. This is honestly a moot point anyways. Bowl games start in mid-December (after most school's finals end), and end around January 10 (before schools open or at least right in the first week). Really the only thing players in a college football playoff might lose out on in December, is some quality holiday time with their family. Who cares? The holidays blow anyways. College basketball players skip spring break in Cancun with slutty coeds each year to participate in March Madness, which in my opinion is a far greater sacrifice than missing some quality time with mom and dad fighting about your GPA. Suck it up guys.
4. How do we allot bids to teams and format these playoffs?
The most basic problem with the BCS is really the easiest to solve. Namely, the issue of how to actually format a college football playoff. Simple. Sixteen Teams. Four Weeks. Every major conference champion gets a bid. Then you give the rest of the playoff slots to "at-large teams." I.E. the best of the rest based on BCS rankings. This way the power conferences will still control the postseason, but the best of the little guys will get a fair shot at the crown as well. Obviously there will be some teams that bitch about being snubbed, but after years of undefeated teams being screwed out of championship games, nobody should give two shits about the 17th best team in the nation that's crying about being left out.
5. What about all the money that bowls/sponsors bring to the greedy ass NCAA?
Again simple as pie. We all know the NCAA are a bunch of greedy assholes. That's fine. They would lose absolutely no money from implementing this revamped logical playoff system. First of all you can keep ALL of the bowl games and ALL of their sponsors. In college basketball you have the postseason NIT for all the shitty teams that weren't quite good enough to make the real playoff tournament. In college football you could still let all the mediocre college football squads play their hearts out against each other in the Beef O'Grady's Bowl, GMC Motor City Bowl, and all the rest of the shitty meaningless postseason games. They don't mean shit now and still bring in sponsors and ticket money from alumni who attend the game. So keep them, and play them during the week in between each week's playoff games. You could still play meaningless college football every day from mid-December to January, except now there'd be a set of meaningful games each week to compliment these shitty games. You wouldn't have to wait from Thanksgiving to New Years Day to get a football game worth a shit. As for the major bowl games? Just keep them and make them the quarterfinals/semi-finals of the new BCS playoffs. The Tostitos Fiesta Bowl winner plays the winner of the AT&T Rose Bowl, for a chance to play the winner of the Orange Bowl champ vs. Sugar Bowl champ, etc. etc.
So all the bowl games stay. All the sponsors stay. The NCAA's greedy assholes make even more money than they currently do. Everyone deserving of a shot at the title gets a fair chance. We don't even have to make the season longer. The players, coaches, and fans are all happy. It just took me an hour to come up with this. So why is it so fucking hard for a bunch of people who actually get paid to run college football to accomplish this? When he was elected two years ago, President Obama promised us a college football playoff system. Well get to it Barack. You wouldn't need more than three people with an IQ equivalent to mine to form a committee focused on accomplishing this. People ain't gonna stop bitching about universal health care or the shitty economy anytime soon, so you might as well do something that will undoubtedly boost that approval rating in a hurry. Namely, remove the BS from the BCS.