Tuesday, December 5

Blogpoll ballot #15: Now let the fisticuffs commence.

About this whole Florida/Michigan thing: Look, I feel for the Wolverine fans here, and Lord knows I wish it was Michigan that had had their tickets to Glendale punched weeks ago and Ohio State was the one sweating out their bowl destination. But can Michigan fans really take that much offense at the fact that people didn't want to see the Buckeyes and Wolverines play the same game twice in a row?

What Michigan really needs to do right now is focus on beating USC in the Rose Bowl and thus avoid the Kansas State Syndrome frequently contracted by teams who feel like they deserved better bowl bids than what they actually got. If Michigan loses to USC, then they've basically validated all the poll voters who thought they weren't good enough to deserve a second shot at the Buckeyes. But if they beat USC, there are two possible outcomes: Either 1) Florida does what neither Michigan nor anyone else could do and upsets OSU, thereby earning a national title fair and square, or 2) Florida loses to OSU, drops in the polls, and Michigan rises back up to No. 2 -- which is where pretty much everyone (Michigan fans included) thought they should be to begin with.

Look, you want to pass around the petition that says the BCS is a crock of bullshit, I'll sign it twice. But this year, at least, it is what it is. There's nothing that can be done about it now except to a)beat the Trojans and b) tell your Big Ten university presidents/ADs to lobby for changes in the system.

Anyway, now that the proselytizing is over with . . .

Games watched: First half of Louisville-Connecticut, flipped back and forth between Wake Forest-Georgia Tech and Army-Navy, the last couple minutes of UCLA-USC, Florida-Arkansas, part of Oregon State-Hawaii before I fell asleep.

1. Ohio State (last week: 1)

2. Michigan (2)

3. Florida (4)
Yeah, I've got Florida still below Michigan in my ballot, but I hardly think it should just be taken as a given that the Wolverines would beat the Gators. The BCS is fucked up, but it was fucked up long before this latest controversy arose.

4. LSU (5)

5. Oklahoma (9)
Though I consider myself a Longhorn fan, I have to feel a little happy for any team that recovers from the dismissal of their starting QB and a season-ending injury to their star tailback and a world class jobbing at the hands of the refs to fight their way into a BCS bowl anyway.

6. Louisville (6)

7. Wisconsin (8)

8. Arkansas (7)
Have to give them credit for at least putting up a fight, thereby treating us to the first SEC title game since probably LSU-Tennessee in 2001 that wasn't decided before the Dr. Pepper football throw at halftime. Everybody and his brother are going to be touting the Razorbacks for an SEC and, probably, a national title in 2007.

9. Southern California (3)

10. West Virginia (12)

11. Boise State (11)
A feel-good, the-system-actually-worked story in a BCS season that desperately needed one. A win over Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl would be 10 times bigger than Utah pasting a mediocre Pittsburgh team two years ago.

12. Auburn (13)
If Alanis Morrissette is still confused as to what actually constitutes irony, here's what it is: Irony is Tommy Tuberville bitching and moaning practically the entire season about how an SEC team can't make it to the BCS title game under the present system, and then having to watch as an SEC team does just that -- and it's a team he beat earlier in the season. I giggled just typing that.

13. Rutgers (10)
Michigan fans, you want to know what being screwed is? It's being no more than a triple-overtime two-point conversion from going to the Orange Bowl, but getting knocked down to the Texas Bowl, which 90 percent of the country couldn't even watch if they wanted to because it's on the fricking NFL Network, instead.

14. Tennessee (14)

15. Texas A&M (17)

16. Texas (18)

17. Wake Forest (20)
This is not to take anything away from Wake's victory, because I think it's awesome they've won their first conference title in nearly four decades, but the ACC should be embarrassed by what they saw in Jacksonville last weekend -- not what they saw on the field (though the game was certainly a snoozer), but what they saw in the stands. If I had just been idly flipping through the channels and didn't know what I was seeing, I would've assumed it was the C-USA title game, or worse. Even UAB can pack more people than that into the stands once every season or so.

18. California (15)

19. Notre Dame (16)

20. Boston College (21)

21. Virginia Tech (19)
On paper they should probably stomp the Bulldogs in the Peach Bowl, but the way Georgia's been playing the last couple weeks I'm not so sure. I'm just glad we ended up with a good bowl and a strong matchup.

22. Brigham Young (23)

23. Nebraska (22)

24. Georgia (24)

25. Texas Christian (NR/25)

The next five: Clemson, Georgia Tech, Oregon, State, Penn State, Missouri.

Dropped out: Georgia Tech (25).


Anonymous said...

All you guys get off on cursing the BCS. Without it, you have only personal opinion of those participating in the polls. With it, you have the same opinions PLUS some objectivity about records, strength of schedule, etc. A playoff system is unmanageable- a meaningful system would add 3 weeks to the schedule if you only had 8 teams, and you would still have all the fights about who the 8 teams ought to be. It's like democracy- it is bad, but it is better than the alternatives.

Anonymous said...

Irony/Tubbyville comment: awesome, Doug.

Anonymous said...

God, I'm so f'in si - no wait, I'm so FUCKING sick of this whiny "it will add 3 weeks to the schedule" bullshit. First, it would add three weeks for only TWO schools out of 100+ Division I institutions - and I'm pretty sure those two schools will be mighty happy with it. It will only add TWO weeks for four schools, and ONE week for eight. Not exactly a large chunk of the populace. Plus, if we can get rid of some of these pansy games during the regular season, it won't even extend the season by three weeks.

Plus, I would much rather the #9 team be complaining about unfairness than the #3.

(Oh, and democracy is bad, just like our founding fathers said. That's why we're a constitutional republic - in theory, at least).

Anonymous said...

Why not shorten the season to 8 weeks, have a 64 team playoff with the loosers in each bracket paired against each other for a guarantee of 12 games? That way it only makes a max of 14 games for a team in a year and only adds a couple of weeks to the schedule. 8 games should be plenty to get the traditional rivals in (If you have more than 8 traditional rivals then you have at one time or another pissed everyone off. Most big schools could pick up a week or 2 in thier schedule by dropping the div II patsies they play every year, and you could level the funding playing field by splitting the revenue from every game after the tournement starts. The current bowls keep their identity, and you could add more to make up all the games of the tournement field. This seems so apparent I can't imagine no one has thought of it before, so there is probably a hidden flaw somewhere.

Anonymous said...

1) A I-A college football playoff is perfectly feasible. The other divisions get by just fine and those players are more student than athlete.
2) Surprised by Oklahoma? Anything is possible with Stoops working his evil. Evil that he learned from the master. Herr Spurrier.

nyc-steelers fan said...

bill from jc, you wouldn't just be able to incorporate the current bowls into a playoff system, just from the sake of attendance. What, are people from the northeast and midwest supposed to fly to Boise Idaho, Mobile, and hawaii to watch some field of 16 game involving their alma mater, and then turn around the next week and fly to Orlando or dallas for a quarterfinal, and then finally to N'awlins or LA for a semifinal and for the finale, if they're lucky, phoenix? A playoff with an 8-team field might work, and a 4-team playoff would seem to be fine. Anything larger needs home-field advantage, and the bowl people just aren't letting it happen...