Change is Coming: Four BCS Plus-One Options Under Consideration

Posted: December 8, 2011 in Big East, Big Ten, College Football, Sports
Tags: , , , , , ,

With Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany effectively stating that BCS automatic qualifying status is going to disappear in 2014, there’s some even more important related news.  A couple of weeks ago, one of my contacts told me that the FBS conference commissioners were evaluating a plan for the BCS to only run the national title game and then revert back to the old system for all other bowl games.  That proposal has since been reported by CBS Sports to have originated from Delany.  This same contact is now telling me that the implementation of a plus-one system to determine college football’s national champion is gaining traction in principle.  The issue is that there are differing opinions as to what that plus-one system will look like.  Here are four main options under consideration by the conference commissioners (with my own advantage/disadvantage observations):

Option #1 – The Slive/Swofford Plan: Seeded Plus-One* – A seeded playoff between the top 4 teams using the BCS bowls and what most people think of when referring to a plus-one system.

  • Advantages: Taking the top 4 teams is the cleanest way to have a plus-one on paper.  It’s simple for any sports fan to understand.  From a conference perspective, the SEC, ACC and now Big 12 support this.  ESPN also wants a seeded format.
  • Disadvantages: Jim Delany and the Big Ten are explicitly against this, with presumably the Rose Bowl and Pac-12 in the same boat.  Those entities carry a disproportionate amount of power within college sports, so any proposal without their approval will be almost impossible to pass.  The bowls that aren’t semifinal games (particularly the Rose Bowl) would be diluted and drop significantly in value.

(* As a reminder, Mike Slive is the SEC commissioner and John Swofford is the ACC commissioner.  They jointly presented this proposal in 2008 to the rest of the conference commissioners and were promptly shot down.)

Option #2 – The Delany Plan: Old School Unseeded Plus-One – All bowls (including the current BCS bowls) revert to the pre-BCS system of choosing teams and tie-ins.  The national title matchup would then be determined using the BCS rankings after the bowl games are played.  The BCS itself would only exist to run the national championship game.

  • Advantages: Keeps and even enhances traditional tie-ins such as the Big Ten/Pac-12 matchup in the Rose Bowl (as their respective champions, even if they are ranked in the top 2 or 4, would always go to Pasadena again).  Despite public proclamations that he is against a plus-one system, Jim Delany and the Big Ten would likely agree to this plan (if only because they may see the writing on the wall that some type of plus-one is going to be passed).
  • Disadvantages: Not as clean as a seeded plus-one.  Sugar, Fiesta and Orange Bowls still want a BCS designation (or something concrete to distinguish them from other bowls) in exchange for the payouts that they’re pumping into the system.

Option #3 – Four BCS Bowls Semi-seeded Plus-One Compromise – Each of the 4 BCS bowls would retain the conference champs from their traditional tie-ins (Rose has Big Ten and Pac-12, Sugar has SEC, Fiesta has Big 12 and Orange has ACC).  The Sugar, Fiesta and Orange Bowls would then select at-larges in the order of the BCS ranking of their respective tie-in.  (For example, since the Sugar Bowl has #1 LSU as its tie-in, it would get the first at-large selection.)  As with Option #2, the national title matchup would then be determined using the BCS rankings after the bowl games are played.

  • Advantages: Possible compromise solution as it meets the Slive/Swofford and Delany Plans in the middle.  The tradition of the Rose Bowl is maintained, while the other BCS bowls are able to simultaneously retain their tie-ins and get rewarded if they have high-ranking teams in any given year.
  • Disadvantages: As with Option #2, not as clean as a seeded plus-one.  This would also move the BCS system back down to 8 bowl slots from the current 10.  None of the power conferences really want that, particularly the SEC and Big Ten (who have benefited the most from the 2 additional BCS bowl bids).  When Mike Slive and Jim Delany agree on something, what they say usually goes.

Option #4 – Five BCS Bowls Semi-seeded Plus-One Compromise – Same starting principle as Option #3 with the 4 current BCS bowls would retain the conference champs from their traditional tie-ins.  The Cotton Bowl or a newly created bowl (which I’ll explain later, but the Cotton will be referenced as a placeholder under this Option #4) would be added as a fifth BCS bowl.  Note that the Cotton (if it becomes the 5th BCS bowl) would NOT take the Big 12 tie-in from the Fiesta, as many people speculated would be possible.

If a top 4 team is not a member of league that has a tie-in with a BCS bowl (in the current world, the Big East and the 5 non-AQ conferences), such team would go to the Cotton Bowl.  In the event that there are multiple top 4 teams that are outside of the “Big 5″ conferences, such as 2009 with #3 Cincinnati and #4 TCU, the higher ranked team would be placed in the Cotton.  The bowls would then select at-large teams in the order of the ranking of the respective “base” team that is either tied-in or allocated to them.

If there are no top 4 teams meeting that designation, then the highest ranked conference champion would get a Cotton bid provided that it is ranked in the top 12 and one of the other 4 legacy BCS bowls does not want to select that team.  In that situation, the Cotton would pick last after the other 4 BCS bowls for its at-large team.

Finally, if one of the 4 legacy BCS bowls chooses the non-Big 5 team or no non-Big 5 champion is ranked in the top 12, then the Cotton can select any two teams ranked in the top 14 after the other BCS bowls make their selections.

As the with Options #2 and #3, the national title matchup would then be determined using the BCS rankings after the bowl games are played.

  • Advantages: Like Option #3, it’s a compromise plan that meets the Slive/Swofford and Delany Plans in the middle while maintaining the traditional tie-ins.  It also keeps the current number of 10 BCS bowl bids.  The conferences outside of the Big 5 will still get access to top bowls if their champs are ranked highly enough.  Least amount of change to the current BCS system in terms of the teams that would actually be selected for bids compared to the other options, which is a plus in a college football world that has always engaged in incremental change.
  • Disadvantages: Like Options #2 and #3, this is not as clean as the seeded plus-one.

Some other overarching points that would apply regardless of which option is chosen:

(1) AQ status will likely “go away” but traditional tie-ins are preserved – There is a strong desire among the conference commissioners to eliminate the concept at AQ status, but there’s also a concurrent interest to preserve the traditional bowl tie-ins.  As I’ve stated in other posts, this seems like a matter of semantics where what used to be “AQ status” is now converted to being called “traditional tie-ins”, except that there’s no longer an automatic bid for the Big East or a mechanism for other conferences to achieve AQ status.  The non-AQ conferences apparently have more of an issue with the class distinction between AQ and non-AQ more than being provided with a chance to move up to AQ status.  This is somewhat understandable since if the Mountain West couldn’t move up after the successes that now former members TCU and Utah have had in the BCS system, there’s likely little hope for any of the non-AQ conferences to move up after the further raids by the Big East.  Speaking of which, preventing further raids by the Big East is likely another motivating factor for the MWC and Conference USA since the people in Providence would’t make moves simply for AQ numbers anymore (although I still believe that any Mount USA Alliance member would still jump to the Big East even without AQ status).

(2) Two team per conference limit to BCS likely eliminated – The Big Ten and SEC are likely getting their way on this issue with the BCS bowls being allowed to take 3 or more teams from a conference in a given year.  Why would any of the other conferences agree to this?  Let’s get to the next point…

(3) Somewhat more equitable revenue distribution- The current non-AQ conferences seem to be willing to possibly give up some access to the BCS bowls in exchange for (a) a better shot at the national title game via a plus-one system and (b) mo money mo money mo money.  Now, to be sure, the current AQ conferences would retain the lion’s share of BCS bowl revenue.  You might see the current 90% control of bowl revenue by the power conferences move down to 85% or 80%.  However, that’s mitigated by the anticipated increase in revenue from a plus-one game.  As with anything dealing with financial issues, this sounds simple in theory, yet how the revenue is distributed is probably going to be the toughest issue to agree upon out of anything in a new BCS system (much more so than whether there’s a plus-one system in the first place).As an example of what’s being floated out there, my contact presented a revenue distribution proposal that replaced the AQ/non-AQ designation with an Equity/Participating model.  A set percentage of BCS revenue (approximately 70%) would be in an “Equity Pool”.  Each conference with at least 3/4ths of its members that were original BCS members (all current AQ conferences except for the Big East) would be an “Equity Member” and receive one equal share of the Equity Pool.  Notre Dame would also be a Equity Member and receive approximately 1/12.4ths of a share of the equity pool.  (The average Equity Member has 12.4 members, so that’s how the Notre Dame share was calculated.)  After that, 10% of the BCS revenue would be in a “Participating Pool”.  The 6 non-Equity conferences would be “Participating Members”, where each of those leagues would receive one equal share of the Participating Pool.  Independents Navy, Army and BYU would receive proportional shares similar to Notre Dame, but only out of this Participating Pool.  The remaining 20% would then be in a “Selection Pool” that would be divided into 10 equal shares, with 1 share awarded for each BCS bowl bid earned by a conference.Note that this is just one revenue sharing proposal, but it seems that the current AQ conferences may be willing to bend a little on revenue sharing in exchange for a more traditional approach to BCS bowl access.  Of course, even under this proposal (which is coming from a non-AQ conference contact), the Big 5 could still receive up to 90% of the BCS money if they receive all of the BCS bowl bids.

(4) New BCS bowl might be created instead of elevating the Cotton Bowl (or a different bowl like the Capital One) – The Cotton Bowl gets mentioned a lot as a fifth BCS bowl option since there’s an assumption that Jerry Jones can buy whatever he wants, but let’s remember that the bowl still only gets the third or fourth selection from the SEC and is behind the Capital One Bowl (which has a stadium that’s a complete dump despite the holiday vacation-friendly Orlando location) in the pecking order.  So, Jerry Jones actually has very little power in college sports matters.  (Heck, he’s only been able to buy one NFL playoff win in 15 years.)  On the flip side, the Big 12 and SEC don’t necessarily want to give up the Cotton Bowl as one of the most prestigious non-BCS bowls, as they’d have to find other tie-ins that may not pay as well.  As a result, one possible solution is to avoid elevating an existing bowl altogether and have the BCS create an entirely new bowl that can be auctioned off to a new corporate sponsor and venue (or even have it rotate to multiple venues).  So, this new BCS bowl might still be played in Jerry World but would be entirely separate from the Cotton Bowl.

So, there’s a ton to chew on here.  My personal feeling is that Option #4 is going to happen – an unseeded format is really the only way you’ll get the Big Ten on board (and they’re necessary to push this through).  While a lot of people characterize me as a BCS defender, that’s definitely not the case (as evidenced by the multiple proposals that I’ve written about on how to change the system over the years).  I simply recognize the financial and access parameters in place that are fairly intractable, so the best that we can realistically hope for is incremental change.  (Note that even “Death to the BCS” author and 16-team playoff proponent Dan Wetzel, who I don’t always agree with, largely comes to the same conclusion in this very level-headed and practical discussion with Stewart Mandel about the BCS and plus-one options.  It’s definitely worth listening to as it also features an appearance by the great @DanBeebe.)  Option #4 balances such change with traditions such as the Rose Bowl, so that would be a great place to start.

(Follow Frank the Tank’s Slant on Twitter @frankthetank111 and Facebook)

(Image from Sports Illustrated)

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Comments
  1. Christian in Texas says:

    Hook ‘em

    Like

  2. greg says:

    Hawkeyes current and future Insight Bowl champs.

    Like

  3. jj says:

    Chewy piece dude.

    Like

  4. SideshowBob says:

    I’m keen with any of #2-4. I like the idea of getting rid of the BCS and going back to more traditional bowl tie-ins. And I think having a “championship game” (still be an MNC to me) after the bowls would add a lot more legitimacy to who gets chosen for it assuming an unseeded setup — not only would the the participating teams have already had to win a game versus top competition in the bowls, but the computer rankings and general perceptions of conferences and schedule strength would be more accurate following a bunch of bowls which allow for inter-conference matchups.

    Like

  5. Kevin says:

    Any combination of options 2 through 4 elevate the traditional bowls. The Rose will always get the conference champion from the Big Ten and Pac 12. The current setup has diminished the importance of the Rose. Also, the bowls are no longer meaningless. The top teams will be playing for a shot at the NCG. Would expect ratings of these BCS bowls to grow.

    Like

  6. Eric says:

    What about separating the bowls from a playoff? Play all the bowls (including the current BCS bowls) on or before January 1st (2nd when 1st is a Sunday) and then you could rerank and do a 4 team playoff starting the next week.

    Like

    • Kevin says:

      @Eric, I think there would not be enough fan support for all the travel. Plus too many games for student athletes (could be 16) and you would likely cut into the start of second semester at some schools.

      Like

    • @Eric – I proposed something last year that was similar last year, although it was a 4-team plus-one as opposed to a 8-team playoff. Simply have 2 semifinal games separate from the bowls as a “BCS Final Four”:

      http://frankthetank.wordpress.com/2010/12/16/the-bcs-final-four-a-new-plus-one-system/

      Like

      • bullet says:

        The KSU AD implied such a thing, saying the schools could cut out the middle man.

        That might be the best combination of retaining the bowls while still finishing in a reasonable time. With the semi-finals at a school’s home field in December and the finals shortly after January 1 in a neutral site, the travel wouldn’t really be any worse than now and none of the bowls would be reduced in status relative to the other bowls. They would simply have to do without the top 4 teams.

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        • bullet says:

          You would also have only 2 schools playing 1 more game than now (the losers in the semi-finals and their fans wouldn’t have much interest in playing in a bowl–the consolation games in the NCAA basketball tourney died in the 70s because of that lack of interest–they used to have a 3rd place game in the regionals and in the national championship).

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    • Brian says:

      Really? Even after the bowls you think 4 teams should still have a shot? Why not 8 or 16 or 32?

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      • Eric says:

        I think 2 teams is all we need and the current system actually is pretty decent. A change that doesn’t create a seeded playoff though isn’t going to lessen the criticism against the system much in my opinion though and that seems to be the biggest reason we are heading this direction to begin with.

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      • jcfreder says:

        No Brian, I think Frank’s plan just had the semis occurring after the bowls, but not actually using teams from those bowls. e.g. Wisconsin plays Oregon in the Rose, and then hosts a LSU-Stanford semi the next week.

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      • Bo Darville says:

        Let’s get rid of the regular season and have one giant 128 team double elimination tournament.

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  7. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    GEAUX #1 LSU Fightin’ Tigers!

    Honey Badger for the Heisman

    Home Depot Coach of the Year – Les “the Mad Hatter” Miles

    Chuck Bednarick Defensive Player of the Year – Tyrann “Honey Badger” Mathieu

    Jim Thorpe Outstanding Defensive Back – Morris Claiborne

    Like

  8. Mike says:

    Maybe time to give the lawyer profession up….

    Like

  9. Rich says:

    I would like the conferences to develop bowls that they own and operate without the bowl executives making upwards of $800k and forcing schools to purchase tickets that they have no hope of selling on their own. If the SEC and Big 12 value their Cotton Bowl match up so much, why don’t they stage a game themselves at Jerry World? They would make far more money doing this than cutting in the Cotton Bowl committee.

    I am adamantly opposed to any playoff system that incorporates any kind of secret computer logarithms or voting by coaches with their inherent conflicts-of-interest. The coaches can’t be trusted with the voting and journalists shouldn’t be voting on subjects they are covering. This would eliminate the BCS ranking system. There should be a blue-ribbon committee similar to the way the NCAA picks at-large teams for the basketball tournament. But it would be better. The committee members would not be AD’s with conflicts-of-interest and whose regular duties prohibit them from seeing enough games to make properly informed decisions. These people would be full time proven experts whose only job would be to watch teams, every game of every relevant team, all year long.

    It seems to me the simplest solution would be to pick the four best conference champions to play semi-finals at home sites (not a bowl or neutral field) to determine a championship matchup to be played at a neutral site a week later. This neutral site would be the city who is the best bidder similar to the way the NFL picks the site of the Super Bowl. Even if it’s a cold weather site like Chicago. Playing semi-final games on campus eliminates the need for two fan bases to make two expensive trips. Sure, some fans of the visiting teams would make the trip to the semi-final games. But, those fans would likely be able to afford a second trip. I think the lack of a sellout in Indy last week was partly attributable to MSU and UW fans wanting to spend money on a bowl in a warm city rather than going to Indy. Additionally, I agree with Wentzel when he contends that an arrangement like this enhances the regular season because that home-field advantage would be very, very valuable. I also think that to eviscerate the crowd who laments a playoff would dilute the regular season, only conference champions should participate. I would make that a provision no matter how many teams are involved. Independents can get in if they are good enough. If Notre Dame (or any independent) is one of the four best teams in the country as determined by the committee, then they should be allowed in.

    These three games would operate outside the corruption of the bowls. But that wouldn’t mean the bowls could not still have their tie-ins if conferences want them. However, maybe the schools should avoid the tie-ins altogether and force the bowls to bid for the schools that they want. Say what you want about Michigan’s merit for a Sugar Bowl bid. But, if all the bowls were free to bid for Michigan to come to their games, I think Michigan would have commanded a very nice appearance fee that would supersede what the Sugar Bowl is paying. I think all the payouts would be higher if there was a bidding process or some kind of system that made the bowls compete every year to get match ups. And let’s face it: the bowls are not about rewarding on-field accomplishment. They are about economics and branding. If the Sugar Bowl wanted to match Tennessee against Notre Dame, for example, go ahead and let them.

    Under my plan, this year we would see LSU hosting Boise State (or possibly Wisconsin) and Oklahoma State hosting Oregon. That sounds pretty damn entertaining to me. The bowls could still stage games with teams from traditional conferences if they like. The Rose Bowl could then have Wisconsin play Stanford. The Sugar could have Alabama play Clemson or Michigan. The Fiesta could have Arkansas play Baylor or Kansas State. The Orange could have Va Tech play South Carolina. All of those are intriguing match ups that would be good for the fans, the schools, and the bowls themselves. Or they could get whatever teams they wanted. Or schools could arrange their own games and keep all of the money.

    Like

  10. Chas. says:

    For the sake of argument, let’s pretend that the likes of USC in the PAC and tOSU in the B1G return to national prominence. There could be a scenario in which the Rose Bowl participants would be ranked 1st & 2nd. Why should that game be cheapened as a semi-final? Scrap the BCS entirely. Who was harmed by Nebraska & Michigan sharing the title in 1997? No one.

    Like

    • joe4psu says:

      What about years like 1994? In 1994 PSU was undefeated, won the B1G and the Rose Bowl but finished 2nd without a chance to play Nebraska. No thanks. I hope we never go back to that again. The current system is crap but it’s light years ahead of the old system. The seeded plus-one should be the next step in the evolution of determining a champion of college football. Champions are decided on the field.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        The voters didn’t think PSU deserved it in 1994. In 1997 they thought both teams did. Such is life.

        Like

        • joe4psu says:

          And that is the whole point of this discussion. The “voters” didn’t think that PSU deserved it. Let the teams play. I don’t care what voters, who don’t see every team play or have an agenda to bump up their own school and conference, think.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            Clearly you do care. If PSU got the title in 1994 you wouldn’t be complaining about it any more than any other split title year.

            Like

        • SideshowBob says:

          To be fair, it’s more like “the voters wanted to give Tom Osbourne a title” probably played a massive role in the voting in 1994, something that wasn’t the case in 1997. Which does go back to the problem of the polls and the human element. Many (most?) computer rankings had PSU #1 in 1994, so at least there is an argument there that they were deserving of the MNC or at least a shot at it.

          Like

          • schwarm says:

            1994 was pay back for 1982.
            Maybe in ’82 there was a lot of sentiment to give Paternoe a title.
            In both years one team passed the other in the polls without the higher ranked team losing.

            In 1997 TO announced he was retiring which perhaps had some effect on the voting.

            Like

          • SideshowBob says:

            schwarm — I definitely think Paterno benefited from public sentiment in 1982. I mean, at that point he had already had 3 undefeated teams that didn’t win an MNC. I don’t know what you mean by 1994 being “payback” but I do think those kinds of emotions play a role in how people voted.

            I just don’t think Brian is correct in claiming that voters didn’t think PSU “deserved” the title in 1994. Some probably thought Nebraska was the superior, but many probably felt they were similar in quality or it was at least debatable, but wanted to see Tom Osborne finally get a title. And I think that’s an understandable prospective. It was just a different situation than 1997.

            To put it a different way, if Nebraska/Orborne hadn’t won titles in 1994 and 1995, I think Nebraska would have easily won both polls in 1997 over Michigan, especially with him announcing his retirement.

            Like

    • Brian says:

      I liked the old system, too, even if some teams did get screwed over. It was more fun arguing about it.

      Like

      • loki_the_bubba says:

        Those days are gone forever.

        Like

        • greg says:

          loki, I don’t think the days of teams getting screwed over have left us. What has this year been? The BCS is not much different than the old system.

          Like

      • Michael in Raleigh says:

        “I liked the old system, too, even if some teams did get screwed over. It was more fun arguing about it.”

        Easy for you to say if it was Penn State getting screwed over. What if it was a 12-0 Ohio State finishing #2 in both polls? Would the arguing be “fun” then?

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Yes. Getting screwed tends to balance out. PSU got a gift in 1982 with the NE win that led to them winning the title, so they shouldn’t complain too much. I still prefer the old system.

          Like

          • Michael in Raleigh says:

            Well, you’re certainly entitled to your opinion.

            As for me, I strongly prefer the current system to the old one, and I’d strongly prefer a four-team playoff to the current one, though not an 8- or 16-team playoff. I say this knowing that FSU has benefited multiple times from not having to deal with 4-team playoffs. In 1993, FSU did not have to face Notre Dame again or a previously undefeated West Virginia. In 1998, 11-1 FSU was given an opportunity at the national title over 10-1 and previous #1 Ohio State, even though OSU was arguably the better team. In 1999, FSU didn’t have to face a strong Nebraska team in a 4-team playoff and only faced Va. Tech. In 2000, one-loss FSU got to face OU for the national title over 1-loss Miami (who beat FSU) and over 1-loss Washington (who beat Miami).

            Like

          • Jim in Florida says:

            I am against any form of an expanded playoff despite FSU being the team in the last 20 to 30 years that would have benefited the most. They would have made a playoff what 16 times since 87 and probably would have been the favored to win it all a good 7 times. Even if say they did not win it in 93 there was a good chance they would have won it instead in say 91 or 96. During that run even the losses tended to be close.

            If there was a rematch in 93 ND would not have won or if that game was in Tallahassee. The wind played a huge roll that game taking away a lot of the passing attack.

            Like

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          Ohio State fans have been there done that. In 98 they got passed over for an FSU team based merely on having a loss later in the year.

          Like

      • joe4psu says:

        Too bad all other sports and football at all other levels, professional to high school, don’t switch to this system.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          The NFL is an apples and oranges comparison and you know it. They have pro athletes, not college students, and they have only 32 teams. As is their playoff is much too inclusive to do a good job of finding the top team, but it’s real goal is to make money not find the best team.

          Lower levels can’t justify a bowl-like system with all the travel to warm destinations and such. They also don’t have much media coverage so voters have a tougher time comparing teams. They can make a better argument for a playoff of conference champions, although I still think they shouldn’t have one.

          Like

    • Eric says:

      I’d vote for this, but I don’t think we go back now.

      Like

    • gregenstein says:

      LSU and USC split the National Championship in 2003. It can still happen under the current system, though it’s a bit less likely. If Alabama wins the game by a FG in OT, I could see many AP pollers maintaining their vote for LSU this year.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        And it could be Oklahoma State if they won impressively, especially if the SEC did poorly in bowls or the Big 12 did very well, or both.

        Like

  11. Ross says:

    Not sure I agree that the conferences could or would move ahead with a playoff system without the Big Ten and Pac-12 for a few reasons.

    1. That means sharing BCS berths with less of your contemporaries (fellow BCS conferences) and with more of the non-AQ teams, if Pac-12 and Big Ten teams are not there to fill slots.

    2. While Texas and Florida offer a lot of recruits, California is enormous. Are teams in other conferences really going to push the Big Ten and Pac-12 into their own little league which could potentially isolate California recruiting to those conferences?

    3. “Television” may want number one, but they also want the viewers that come with Michigan, USC, OSU, PSU, Nebraska, etc. I just don’t see television executives being thrilled about a competitor potentially seizing the Pac-12/B1G regular season or post season because a compromise couldn’t be reached on the playoff situation. They would much rather bid for the postseason as a whole, including those two conferences. If that means compromising on the format of the postseason, which really has very little effect upon television executives (we’ve yet to see any evidence that these playoff variations substantially change revenue one way or the other), then I would bet they would do just that.

    4. It would not be that difficult for the Big Ten and Pac-12 to simply co-opt two other conferences, say the Big East and Big 12 (or the ACC/BE, ACC/B12), and create their own postseason where the Pac-12/B1G meet in the Rose Bowl, the other two conferences meet in another bowl, and the winners play for the title. I just don’t see Scott or Delaney being pushed around on this one. They will be proactive, but also open to compromise (just not on the issue of the Rose Bowl).

    Like

    • hangtime79 says:

      “They will be proactive, but also open to compromise (just not on the issue of the Rose Bowl).”

      That’s my one big beef with this entire process. All other conferences have compromised. The Sugar gave up the SEC, the Orange gave up their traditional tie-ins, hell the Cotton Bowl got demoted so the Fiesta could thrive. The only bowl that has not joined us here in the new century has been the Rose. If traditions stand in the way of progress well traditions need to take a back seat. I am perfectly willing to let the Pac-12 and Big 10 play the Rose Bowl every year and keep it to themselves. However, the rest of the conferences can play a + 1. If the Big 10 and Pac 12 schools want to give up a chance on a title to play in the Rose Bowl, who are we to argue; but we all can’t be held captive by something by this non-sensical relationship to the Rose Bowl when everyone already sacrificed theirs for the greater good.

      Like

      • frug says:

        The reason the Cotton Bowl and Orange Bowl had to sacrifice their traditional tie ins had nothing to to comprise; their traditional tie ins simply ceased to exist.

        Like

      • Brian says:

        hangtime79,

        The Sugar has had an SEC team 11 straight times before this upcoming game and the one before that was the NCG. Big compromise, considering the BCS is in its 14th year.

        The Orange lost the Big 8 tie in because the Big 8 went away. That’s not a compromise.

        The Cotton got demoted because the SWC was dying due to NCAA violations and lower quality teams in the late 80s. Meanwhile, the Fiesta was on the rise as they bought several great match ups. The Bowl Coalition still used the Cotton, but the Bowl Alliance switched to the Fiesta as the SWC broke up and no longer anchored the Cotton. The Fiesta bought the right to the B12’s champion in 1996. Again, no compromise was made by the Cotton.

        The Rose lost it’s B10/P12 match-up 5 times in 14 years, and even had to accept a rule forcing a non-AQ on it. That is as much, if not more, compromise than any other BCS bowl.

        Like

      • Eric says:

        If that’s the cost of keeping the Rose Bowl, I’d take it in a heartbeat.

        Like

      • greg says:

        The Rose hasn’t compromised? Get your head out of your rear end.

        Like

        • jcfreder says:

          The Rose, B10 and P12 have indeed compromised. This shows that they’ll compromise again.

          Keep in mind that in the old Alliance-Coalition days, the other conferences ran a “#1-#2″ system parallel to the traditional Rose matchup. Suddenly the Rose wasn’t quite as fun when the other conferences were running a truer national-championship type model. So the B10 and P12 joined in the fun. After some tweaks (changing it so the Rose would never have to be the national championship game), the system has worked out pretty well.

          If a plus-one happens, the traditional tie-in or semi-seeded systems will eventually yield unsatisfactory results that will lead to a seeded system. Delaney’s best shot at keeping the Rose pure (as if it hasn’t already been compromised) will be to set up the traditional tie-in system. But those bowl games might decide nothing (LSU, Bama, Okla St and Stanford might all play in separate games). Semi-seeded is in some ways worse; the other conferences would be able to set up high-ranked matchups that would work as defacto semifinals, with the winner of those games possibly jumping the Rose winner because the Rose loser isn’t as good of a matchup. Eventually there will be pressure to go to a seeded system.

          Under a seeded system, I don’t think anybody is saying that the Rose will ever have to take a non B10 or P12 team; it just might lose one or both champs to the playoff. That is pretty much how things work already. And in any case, you could always build-in the option of the Rose getting the semifinal if the #1-#4, #2-#3, #1-#3, or #2-#4 combos are B10-P12.

          Like

          • bullet says:

            They wouldn’t have to compromise in an 8 team playoff. The B1G and Pac 12 could play in a Rose Bowl quarterfinal every single year and wouldn’t have to share the Rose with anyone.

            With the articles discussing only +1 and the Presidents voting to end the bowl system sooner, I suspect none of the Big 5 conferences supports an 8 team playoff at this time, so we won’t see the obvious solution.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            Being a quarterfinal is definitely a compromise. They would get their preferred match-up, but the game would have lost a ton of significance.

            Like

  12. Paul says:

    Only Option 1 is a playoff.

    Like

  13. hangtime79 says:

    Uggg…can we just kick the Big 10 and Pac-12 out? If they want the Rose Bowl, go ahead and let them. They can play for the mini-title, while the SEC, ACC, and Big 12 actually do a playoff or +1.

    Since 1998 the following conferences have appeared in the BCS game
    SEC: (7-0)
    B12: (2-4)
    ACC: (1-2)
    BE : (1-2)
    B10: (1-2)
    P12: (1-2)

    Like

    • vp19 says:

      I agree with hangtime. Let the Big Ten and Pac sit it out, staying in their own little Pasadena world, until they finally come to their senses and finally realize they aren’t bigger than the game.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Yes. How dare they value tradition?! Clearly that’s an ego trip on their part. They couldn’t possibly believe that some things are more important than staging a CFB playoff to satisfy fans.

        Like

        • joe4psu says:

          That’s a bit arrogant. The bowls exist because of the fans. They absolutely should satisfy the fans.

          Like

        • Ross says:

          I agree with this. The Rose Bowl is the oldest/premiere bowl. Other conferences may not agree, but the Big Ten and Pac-12 gave up something pretty big when they let other conferences begin to have access to it.

          Many schools/fans within the conferences still consider that compromise a mistake. They had more to give up/lose than other conferences in the first place; why should they keep giving more?

          Like

        • Jim in Florida says:

          Satisfy fans for a couple of years before they catch on that if they are not a fan of a power house school they will never see the post season. Thus attendence and donations start to fall leaving a greater gap between the haves and have nots and the downward spiral.

          Like

    • vandiver49 says:

      You can’t kick them out. Those two conferences represent at least 3/5 of the US population. Few TV execs would be willing to simply abandon that many eyeballs in the hopes that fans will somehow gravitate towards the SEC/ACC/BE/B12/everybody else playoff.

      I guess it would be instructive to see how the NCAA MBB tourney was able to surpass and eventually kill the NIT since that is essentially what people are clamoring for a CFB playoff to do to the Bowl System.

      Like

      • Ross says:

        The NIT died largely because it was a New York/Northeast centric tournament. When the CCNY scandal happened, basketball in New York took a major blow. It has never really recovered from it. College basketball would likely be much more popular in NYC had CCNY not been caught point shaving.

        In addition, as the NCAA grew in prestige while the NIT faltered, they prohibited teams from turning down an NCAA tournament bid in favor of an NIT bid (one team in particular tried to do this, if I recall correctly they felt the geography/seeding was unfair in the NCAA). Turning down an NCAA bid actually became a violation of NCAA rules. It was challenged by the school in question; the NCAA won.

        That’s pretty much why the NCAA took over in CBB.

        Like

      • bullet says:

        The original bowl coalition ignored them. The Big 10 and Pac 10 weren’t willing to play, so it was started without them. The Big 10 and Pac 10 quickly realized they were getting left behind with the publicity and got on board.

        A plus 1 absolutely can go on without the Big 10’s agreement. If the Pac 12 buys in along with the Big 12 and Big East presidents, it will happen and the Big 10 will have to go along, regardless of what Delany wants. Eventually, but not this 4 year cycle, I could see the Big 12, SEC and ACC getting impatient if the Pac 12 and Big 10 continue to block it and creating a separate system as they did in 1996. The TV execs would buy it even though it would be significantly less valuable than one involving all the conferences.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Part of the reason for the BC and BA was that the B10, P10 and Rose Bowl had existing contracts and they weren’t sure they could get out of them legally.

          Like

    • Brian says:

      It was called the Bowl Alliance and it didn’t work very well. It will result in split titles and nobody will be happy. CFB needs everybody on board, and that means leaving the Rose Bowl as is. You could still have a plus one after that, and it would work fine.

      Like

    • indydoug says:

      This is conference affiliation at time of game, e.g. Nebraska’s loss is a B12 loss? Actually you missed 1 B12 loss—B12 is 2-5. your records only have 25 participants for 13 years (26).

      Like

  14. loki_the_bubba says:

    With Houston and SMU escaping to the Big East, TCU to the BigXII, and Rice remaining in mid-major limbo and not firing the coach after three horrible seasons and not even doing basic maintenance on one of the best stadiums ever constructed, I’m not sure I even care anymore.

    Like

    • bullet says:

      Well Rice is going to be heading west and will be in the 7th best conference (CUSA+MWC), maybe 6th if the Big Country Conference weakens the schools with its ridiculous geography.

      Rice Stadium is a great stadium. I haven’t been in a huge number of stadiums, but I’ve yet to be in a pro or college stadium with better sight lines or where you feel closer to the action. It feels much smaller than 70,000 seats (slots now that they have removed many of the benches).

      Like

  15. allthatyoucantleavebehind says:

    I’m a CFB junkie and yet I STILL am missing this. I guess “plus-one” means different things. To some, it means a 4-team playoff. To others, it means adding an extra game on AFTER the bowls.

    Whatttttt? We need different terminology to discuss this guys.

    A 4-team playoff I can accept. That’s really all any CFB fan wants, right?

    But adding a game after the bowls? Really? How the heck is that a solution?

    So, to tease out your scenarios a bit…if I understand solution 3 and 4.
    Wiscy vs. Oregon in Rose.
    LSU vs. Michigan in Sugar
    Alabama vs. VaTech in Cottonish Bowl
    WVU vs. Clemson in Orange
    OkSt vs. Stanford in Fiesta

    Let’s say…LSU, Alabama, and OkSt all DESTROY their opponents, 35-14.

    What happens in the BCS championship game?

    Like

    • Mack says:

      OKSt gets enough cred from destroying Stanford that it plays LSU vs. having a rematch with Alabama. If there are only one or two undefeated teams, they can duck bowl competition. With multiple 1 loss teams, if #2 ducks, that will allow #3 and #4 to hookup and jump them in the standings. Far from perfect, but better than what exists now. At a minimum I would expect Alabama to play Boise State with this scheme.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      allthatyoucantleavebehind

      I’m a CFB junkie and yet I STILL am missing this. I guess “plus-one” means different things. To some, it means a 4-team playoff. To others, it means adding an extra game on AFTER the bowls.

      By definition, a plus one is any system with one more game after the bowls where every bowl team still has a chance to make the NCG, so it isn’t a pure 4 team playoff. Some people confuse a pure 4 team playoff that uses the bowls for the semi-finals as a plus one, but it really isn’t.

      A 4-team playoff I can accept. That’s really all any CFB fan wants, right?

      No. Lots and lots of fans don’t want that at all.

      But adding a game after the bowls? Really? How the heck is that a solution?

      Is that rhetorical? It allows for 35 more OOC games including all the top teams, mostly in games of fairly equal match ups, to give the BCS system more data to decide which are the top 2 teams.

      So, to tease out your scenarios a bit…if I understand solution 3 and 4.
      Wiscy vs. Oregon in Rose.
      LSU vs. Michigan in Sugar
      Alabama vs. VaTech in Cottonish Bowl
      WVU vs. Clemson in Orange
      OkSt vs. Stanford in Fiesta

      Only #4 has the Cottonish Bowl.

      #3
      Rose – WI / OR
      Sugar – LSU / 1st pick (AL)
      Fiesta – OkSU / 2nd pick (Stanford)
      Orange – Clemson / 3rd pick (AR)
      NCG – #1 / #2 after the bowls

      #4
      Rose – WI / OR
      Sugar – LSU / 1st pick (AL)
      Fiesta – OkSU / 2nd pick (Stanford)
      Orange – Clemson / 3rd pick (AR)
      Cottonish – 4th pick (Boise?) / 5th pick (MI?)
      NCG – #1 / #2 after the bowls

      Cottonish would get a top 4 conference champ not tied to a BCS bowl, or a top 12 conference champ that the other bowls passed on. Since there are none of those, they get the last 2 choices from the top 14.

      Let’s say…LSU, Alabama, and OkSt all DESTROY their opponents, 35-14.

      What happens in the BCS championship game?

      The BCS rankings come out after the bowls, and the top two play in the NCG. That’s LSU versus somebody In your scenario I think OkSU passes AL with a second straight win over a top opponent. The extra time for the media to show how dumb some of the voters were would be enough to switch some votes and one of the computers might switch as well.

      In my versions, LSU and AL play in the Sugar, so it would be the Sugar winner versus the Fiesta winner most likely (OR would have to crush WI and have Stanford barely beat OkSU to jump to #2, and even that might not be enough).

      Like

      • So, even if your scenario works this year, it rarely “works” most years. What if Wisconsin destroys Oregon 59-0 in the Rose? Now voters say “Hmm…their two losses are on last-minute Hail Mary’s and they beat a REALLY good Oregon team. They deserve a shot.” LSU loses to Alabama (1-1 for the season though)…and Oklahoma State wins by 7 against Stanford.

        That scenario happens and THIS is the system you are choosing as a solution. Really? I’m baffled.

        Wiscy, OkSt, LSU, and Alabama all deserve a “shot” and your ridiculous “plus-one” system fails miserably.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          I’m not choosing any of that. The only part of that scenario that was mine was the at large picks for the bowl slots.

          Nobody would give WI a shot even with a big win. OkSU and AL would play for the title.

          It’s not my plus one system. I just explained the options you were confused about.

          Like

          • allthatyoucantleavebehind says:

            I guess I’m just shocked that anyone is supportive of that plan. Essentially, all that system does is extend the regular season one more game. First, we added CCGs to get a clearer picture of the NC race. Now, we’ll add bowl games to get a clearer picture of the NC race.

            But in the end, it’s still a beauty contest decided by voters.

            Fail.

            Like

          • Mack says:

            The creation of CCGs had nothing to do with the NC. The SEC realized NCAA rules allowed one so created it to generate more money for the conference. Other conferences copied this. Upsets in these games have done more to confuse than clarify the NC picture. At the end of the regular season there is seldom more than one member in a conference that is undefeated. The CCG ensures that only one can be, but often turns one to none.

            Like

    • greg says:

      agree with allthatyoucantleavebehind. a post-bowl +1 simply moves the complaining / beauty pageant to post-bowl rather than pre-bowl.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        And it creates even more confusion. If you look back before the BCS era when #1 and #2 weren’t playing, #2 is almost always more difficult to choose after the bowls and more biased towards 1 game since voters haven’t seen anything in a month.

        Options #2, #3 and #4 are just really bad versions of the current system.

        Like

      • Eric says:

        That’s why I vote to just stick with the current system. If it’s not going to satify the pro-playoff push, then we may as well let the bowls continue to be one game (and only one game) events.

        Like

        • acaffrey says:

          I agree.

          Let’s say you go with a Plus 1 system this year. Who gets in? You mean to tell me that we wouldn’t have mega-lobbying to get that 4th spot? Boise St. v Stanford. Stanford didn’t even win their division, getting beat handily by Oregon. Boise St. lost on a missed FG. Even if Boise St. does not edge out Stanford, you KNOW that there would still be uproar.

          The system is imperfect, but not every fix makes it perfect.

          Like

      • Brian says:

        Yes, but the bowls provide a lot of data. They might clarify the picture or they might muddy it. If it gets more muddy, then teams don’t have a good complaint. I would tend to eliminate the bowl losers, but they probably won’t.

        Like

  16. loki_the_bubba says:

    Any ‘playoff’ that leaves out any conference champion is a non-starter for me.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      Because Arkansas St, N Illinois and LA Tech really deserve a chance to win the NC?

      Sagarin rankings with his preferred system, and SOS.

      AR St (SB) was #63 and played the #127 schedule.
      NIU (MAC) was #62 and played the #108 schedule.
      LT (WAC) was #42 and played the #79 schedule.
      USM (CUSA) was #28 and played the #100 schedule.
      TCU (MWC) was #19 and played the #85 schedule.
      ND (Indy) was #16 and played the #26 schedule.
      Clemson (ACC) was #29 and played the #44 schedule.
      WV (BE) was #33 and played the #67 schedule.
      WI (B10) was #5 and played the #58 schedule.
      OkSU (B12) was #3 and played the #6 schedule.
      OR (P12) was #7 and played the #29 schedule.
      LSU (SEC) was #1 and played the #18 schedule.

      Not all conference champs belong.

      Like

    • bullet says:

      FCS, Division II and Division III have long had playoffs where every champ didn’t get in. The NCAA actually has a rule limited automatic qualifying spots to half the field.

      I have never favored giving the MAC/Sun Belt/Big West an automatic spot like Wetzel’s 16 team deal. I used to favor a 16 team playoff with the 8 best conferences getting automatic bids and I’ve kept up with what it would look like since 1991. But the idea is to get a champion and some of the wildcards in a 16 team field and often the CUSA and MWC champ had no chance to win 4 straight games and really didn’t deserve a shot. 8 to 12 are all that are needed to really determine a champion.

      Like

  17. Brian says:

    Frank,

    I know we’ve discussed plus one versions before, so I won’t go into all of that here. However, I don’t buy Option #1 as a plus one. I think their plan is for a 4 team playoff. Do you really believe they intend for #5 to have any chance at making the NCG? If not, then it’s a playoff and not a plus one. I hope Delany’s (and the B10’s) stance against this is enough to prevent it from ever coming to pass.

    If they have to have a plus one, then Option #2 is the best choice. It restores the tradition of the big bowl games while providing the 1/2 game the BCS was designed to stage. You say the lack of seeding is a negative but I think it’s a positive. Seeding only really makes sense for a 4 team playoff. If you play 1/4 and 2/3, how do any other teams get a chance at the NCG? The whole point of a plus one is to give teams a chance to prove themselves. Seeding reinforces the bias in the system as overrated teams still get a shot at the title while underrated teams don’t.

    You also say the BCS would only run the NCG. Could you clarify that? Would the big bowls no longer negotiate one TV contract that covers all of them? Would their payouts vary depending on the bowl? Would they fight for TV slots? Would their be no system for how they chose the other teams for their games? I assume Delany’s plus one plan would keep them as one entity for TV negotiation purposes, just remove AQs and autobids by rank and maybe conference number limitations.

    Option #3 is a bad choice and seems unlikely. The loss of spots is a problem, as is the seeding. I see them adding another bowl, whether new or Cotton.

    Option #4 is better since it adds a fifth bowl, but the selection procedure would have to change. Why would the fifth bowl (here on referred to as the Cotton Bowl for convenience) agree to such second class status forever? The Cotton gets a top 4 anchor if one of those teams isn’t tied to another bowl. Otherwise, it gets a top 12 conference champ only if the other bowls don’t want that team? Why should the Cotton only get scraps? It would seem to make more sense that they get the highest ranked non-tied in conference champ or independent in the top 12 (this guarantees a small amount of non-AQ access) and if none are in the top 12, then they get first choice of an at large team before the rotation of at large picks can begin. Otherwise, that 5th bowl will almost always be the worst of the lot.

    As for your extra points:

    1. I think losing the AQ status is smart. It’s the easy way of taking it from the BE without the MWC having any argument. The Rose and Sugar will keep their ties. The Fiesta will try to keep theirs, but the B12 may choose to switch to the Cotton (I think it should be up to the B12). The Orange may or may not keep the ACC. The Orange can always get the ACC back if they drop them and then change their minds later. I think they long for the old days of the B8 tie in, but I think those days are gone for good. A resurgent ACC would really help them out.

    2. I could easily see dropping the limit from 2 to 3 teams, but I don’t think they’ll drop it entirely. Nobody wants to see 4 SEC teams in the biggest bowls because the system overrates them.

    3. Revenue distribution will be the real sticking point. Will the big bowls all pay the same, or will it vary by bowl? Will they be one entity for TV negotiations? Will everyone agree to relegate the BE to the little kids table for money? Will they give a higher percentage to the little guys, or just a higher total? Due to recent realignment, the number of non-AQs has changed (Utah and TCU now AQ, BE becoming non-AQ?, more schools joining I-A?). How does that impact the result? Who gets guaranteed money (ND, Army, Navy, BYU?, I-AA, etc) and how much?

    4. The Cotton Bowl versus a new bowl is an odd choice. You say Jerry Jones doesn’t have much power, but he’s got a brand new, huge stadium that can make more money per game than Orlando or Atlanta. Clearly the Cotton now has more power than the Capital One or Chik-fil-A, and it pays out significantly more than either ($6.75M versus $4.25M for Cap 1 and $3.35M for Chik-fil-A). I think the Cap 1 only has priority because it’s a B10 game. With the B12 shrinking while the B10, that probably helps the Cap 1 keep the top pick but everyone knows the Cotton is a premiere non-BCS bowl. It has the history to deserve the elevation, too.

    Starting a new bowl may require killing a bowl off just due to numbers. I like the rotation idea, but more for the NCG than the bowl. Let the traditional warm weather sites host the bowls so everyone gets a bowl experience, then rotate the NCG through other sites instead. Any warm weather or indoor NFL stadium is a reasonable choice. Let Detroit, Minneapolis, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Atlanta and San Diego have their shot at the game instead of just LA, Phoenix, New Orleans and Miami (and Dallas if the Cotton isn’t added). Ideally I’d rotate through Indy, Atlanta, St. Louis and San Diego, with Detroit and Minneapolis (preferably with a new indoor stadium) having a chance to take Indy’s spot in the rotation. There’s no reason the ACC, BE, B12, P12 and SEC teams should have a chance at home NCGs but the B10 always has to travel. The NCG is a business trip, so you don’t need a week of activities or a vacation destination. The BCS bowls have a guaranteed important game every year, so they don’t need the double hosting model.

    Like

    • jcfreder says:

      Brian is right. The Cotton lost status because of facilities and money. Now it has both. If we go to some kind of more rigid tie-in system, every conference should be trying to get access to that game.

      Like

    • bullet says:

      @Brian
      I like your idea on the rotation. We shouldn’t have it at Soldier Field, but there’s no problem with Detroit or Indy occassionally.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Thanks. Even a blind hog …

        Especially since the NCG is a business trip, I see no reason why the north should continue to be excluded. I understand not playing outdoors, but there are several good indoor choices. Just from an economics standpoint, it’s unfair to force the money to always flow south and west.

        Like

  18. Mack says:

    The unseeded +1 is some improvement, but is open to a lot of manipulation. If you are Oklahoma State or Alabama you want to play Stanford..the easiest highly ranked option. If you are LSU why not just play Virginia Tech? Can the only undefeated team be knocked out if it wins? I do not see B1G or PAC opting out if the Rose bowl is not effected. The winner of the Rose bowl could be in the ranking consideration with the winner of the other bowls. Just need a restriction that the selection for +1 is between the 4/5 bowl winners. Not a +1 if LSU could lose and go to the NC game like everyone was saying would happen if they lost the SEC CCG.

    If the conferences ran the big bowl games, it will create a much higher payout. New bowls or the regulation of the current BCS bowls should occur. Regulation means agreeing to provide a BCS type organization owned by the conferences the TV rights, determination of gate payout, allotments (someone needs to buy the tickets and if a school has no support it should come out of its end, not the school buying the tickets), etc. Once this is done at the BCS level, I expect the tie-ins to impose the same rules on the next 10 second tier bowls. Not much money in the other 20, and about half of the bottom feeder bowls are owned by ESPN. ESPN seems to own the entire bowl system now. If the Cotton is not elevated, I expect it will have more to do with it not being a ESPN broadcast bowl than the tie-ins.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      Mack,

      The bowls decide on the opponents, so I doubt they’ll pick weak teams that would cost them money. They may not take the highest team in the rankings for various reasons, but I doubt they’d drop too low.

      Like

      • jj says:

        That’s the problem with any plus one. The bowls are not picking the best teams, they are picking wallets. The Plus One Bowl will do the same thing. O

        Like

        • Purduemoe says:

          The bowls are picking like they have always picked. Unless they are serving as a playoff, why should the BCS bowls pick a team who has no following just because they may be better then a team that has a large following? Especially if those two teams, say Boise State and Michigan never played each other, and the team who a lot of people think isn’t as good actually played a tougher schedule? I understand the angst fans of some smaller programs have, I”m a Purdue fan, its not like we have been a powerhouse. But the fact of the matter is that the games I am most interested in are the games involving Purdue, the B1G, and the top teams. I think a fan of an SEC, ACC, P12, or B12 team would have a similar list, just adjusted for their school and conference. Those fans make up the vast majority of college football fans. Why shouldn’t the bowls cater to those people? If you like playoffs so much watch FCS and encourage your school to join. That is why that division was created. Schools choose to compete in the FBS, no one forces them to. I think if you are in the Football Bowl Subdivision, then you should accept the fact that the season ends in bowl games, not in playoffs.

          Like

          • jj says:

            I’m not a playoff proponent I don’t think, but I strongly believe that any school in the “power” conferences should have a legit road to winning every year. Winning a championship shouldn’t be a multi-year affair or based on fanbase sizes & means. IMO

            Like

          • jj says:

            And the bowls have not always picked. In the old days, the B10 picked its rose bowl team. I can’t believe that for awhile they basically ceded this to the horde of voters (see Wisc 2010).

            Like

        • Brian says:

          jj,

          The NCG in a plus one system has to take #1 and #2 according to the ranking system. There is no choice, just like now with the BCS.

          Like

          • jj says:

            I get that, but there will be a vote, right? Am I missing that?

            Even if not, the run up isn’t ideal to me. All top-tier conf champs have to have a lock in whatever the pool is, for me. Not sure if that includes the big east or not, but ACC, SEC, b10, b12 and PAC 12 for sure.

            Like

      • bullet says:

        This is another criticism of option #3. If the bowls with higher seeded teams get 1st pick, is that fair to the higher seeded team? Would LSU coast with Michigan or would they have to play Alabama? I could see it this year. Alabama wins a close Sugar Bowl and then LSU and Alabama play a rubber match a week later as LSU almost certainly would still be #1 or #2 in the BCS. Or if you eliminate bowl losers, BCS #1 might still be LSU but the championship would be #2 Alabama vs. #3 Oklahoma St.

        What would it solve last year if Oregon, TCU and Auburn all won their bowl games as they would almost certainly not play each other? What would happen if they all lost?

        Like

      • Mack says:

        The reference was to the unseen hand. Does anyone believe that the SEC or even B12 for that matter does not has a strong hand in picking the Sugar/Fiesta opponent within the BCS restrictions? The ACC probably has less influence with the Orange bowl since that tie does not have the value of the other 2. I can just see the Sugar Bowl telling the SEC that it picks the opponents and if they don’t like it they can take their SEC champion and hit the road. That would be the end of the Sugar bowl as it has been known.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          I think the bowl execs and conferences have very similar desires, so there isn’t much pressure. The bowls keep the conferences happy within reason, but they aren’t going to give up a big chunk of money because LSU wants it to.

          Like

  19. Andy says:

    Question, if it’s option 4, what are the restrictions on these BCS bowls as far as who they get to pick. If the idea is to get the best teams into the best bowls and put them into a position to get into the title game, would it still be acceptable for the BCS bowls to pass over #6 Arkansas, #7 Boise State, #8 Kansas State, and #9 South Carolina in favor of #11 Virginia Tech, #13 Michigan, #15 Clemson, and #23 West Virginia.

    Seems the only fair way to do it is put a hard cap on it. If you’re not a conference champion then you must be ranked in the top 10 to get a BCS bid. If you are a conference champion you must be ranked in the top 16.

    If that rule were in place this year, Virginia Tech and Michigan would be disqualified. BCS bowls would need to choose from Arkansas, Boise State, Kansas State, and South Carolina to fill those final two spots.

    Like

    • Andy says:

      Actually, WVU would be disqualified too, as there are would no longer be AQs. Any conference would be at risk of losing out if their champ doesn’t make a top 16 ranking. Under this scenario, all top 10 teams but one would make a BCS bowl as Clemson is the only conference champ ranked in the 11 to 16 range.

      Like

  20. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7331385/ted-roof-auburn-tigers-becomes-ucf-knights-defensive-coordinator

    Ted Roof is leaving Auburn as DC to be DC at UCF. He gets back with George O’Leary, but that’s a big step down in terms of programs.

    Like

  21. herbiehusker says:

    Go Big Red!

    Like

  22. Marc Shepherd says:

    Frank, you omitted one big disadvantage of all the unseeded or semi-seeded options: in years when the Big 10 and Pac-12 fortuitously have the #1 and #2 teams respectively, the Rose Bowl becomes (in effect) the national championship game, and the real championship game becomes an anti-climax.

    I do agree that the Big 10 (and likely the Pac-12) won’t sign on without a guarantee that they can continue their annual tilt in the Rose Bowl. The scenario I’m describing (where those conferences have the #1/2 teams) probably wouldn’t happen more than once a decade, so it isn’t that terrible a flaw.

    You also made no mention of Delany’s recent comment that he would like to see the championship game occur earlier. I don’t see how that could be done under any of these scenarios.

    Like

    • gregenstein says:

      With the current SEC bias of the voters, this is very unlikely. But let’s take it a step further to illustrate a point

      Is the BCS going to limit access to the title game to only the “winners” of the bowl games? If not, we’ll still be right back here. Suppose in your scenario #2 Washington beats #1 Indiana in the Rose Bowl in a battle of the only 2 remaining unbeatens in college football. What’s to prevent the pollsters from just flip flopping them and sending them right back into a rematch?

      Like

      • bullet says:

        And alternatively, when #2 Washington upsets #1 IU, is it fair to make them play #3 Kentucky who got MWCCUSA champ #10 Rice (whose only previous loss was to IU) in the Sugar Bowl.

        Like

        • Mack says:

          Just as fair as making LSU beat Georgia and Alabama twice to be NC vs. Alabama not having to play Georgia and just having to go 1-1 with LSU to be NC. That is the price to be paid to keep the Rose bowl. If you split the PAC and B1G to play #3 and #4 whose to say that both would not have been upset? It is just playing the potential upset game in reverse order.

          Like

  23. [...] FRANK THE TANK NEVER LIE. His BCS Plus-One options aren’t bad at all. [...]

    Like

  24. arkstfan says:

    A few thoughts.

    1. The NIT died because the expansion of the NCAA field made it irrelevant. When the NCAA Tournament was only conference champs (or tournament champs) and later just a few at-large teams there were some really good teams involved. Once it became the 35th and lower best at-large it no longer mattered.

    2. The commissioners may be swinging toward Plus One, that does not mean the presidents are on the train yet. They still make the call.

    3. The value of the regular season has to be preserved. That means if a playoff comes about it has to be one that does not have a lot of at-large teams. Plus One works because you’ve got to have a good regular season to be in striking distance. Seeded plus one, worst case #3 plays #4. In an unseeded, worst case barring weird bowl decisions would #6 vs. #7 for the title (assumes 1-5 don’t meet in a bowl and all lose).

    4. Of all playoff plans, in my opinion 8 is the worst. The drama this year would have been 6. Arkansas
    7. Boise State 8. Kansas State 9. South Carolina 10. Wisconsin 11. Virginia Tech 12. Baylor. The conference title games would have had some drama compared to what happened this year but not a lot. With CUSA-MWC merging and the WAC certain to take last breath soon, we are going to be down to 9 leagues. If a playoff comes, 12 is the better number. You have 9 conference races to watch and most likely then 9 championship games to determine 75% of the playoff field. Three at-large slots to fight for so no one is backing in. Four first round byes to fight for, four battles for first round home field.

    Like

    • The presidents are puppets. CFB is very, very low on the list of things they are interested in. They’ll do whatever they’re told.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Right. Like the SEC presidents did on the oversigning vote. Like the B12 presidents did the last time a playoff was approved by their ADs.

        You aren’t paying attention if you think the presidents are puppets on this issue.

        Like

    • duffman says:

      The NIT died because of the point shaving scandal and playing in NYC

      After the scandal broke, the NCAA promised not to return to NYC, and they became the premier tournament from this.

      I often think if the big conferences do break away they go to a 16 team tourney in Indy. :)

      Like

  25. bullet says:

    One thing I haven’t seen discussed is whether the exclusive time slots would continue if the BCS label was removed. That is part of what has enhanced the value. Each has been in an exclusive prime time slot.

    Like

  26. Penn State Danny says:

    Why couldn’t option #1 work if the Rose Bowl was promised a Big Ten/Pac 12 replacement if a team from one of those leagues were in the semi finals??

    I like getting rid of the AQs. I guess the TV money will still be enough for Boise St. and SDSU to make the jump to the Big East. I do think that it will be enough for UCF SMU and Houston for all sports.

    Like

    • OT says:

      Boise State and San Diego State have negotiated reduced buyout fees to depart the Big East if necessary, according to obnug.com:

      – $5 million if the new Big East TV contract exceed a certain threshold amount per school

      – $2.5 million if the new Big East TV contract does not exceed that threshold

      – $1 million if the Big East were to lose AQ status

      – $0 for the 2nd western school to depart the Big East if one of the 2 western schools decide to leave the Big East and is not replaced by another western school within a certain time frame

      (Don’t believe the buyout fee for Boise or San Diego State will ever drop to zero, as Hawaii is always available to join the Big East in football on short notice after its agreement with the Mountain West expire after the 2013 season.)

      Like

  27. jerry Prall says:

    Anybody see the politically correct BS spewed by the BIG concerning PSU?

    The PSU board is up in arms about it, and a lot of their fans are telling the BIG to stuff it, its time to go to the ACC.

    While I hope that doesn’t happen, I don’t blame them. They’ve been treated like a red-headed stepson since they joined the league, imo.

    Like

    • greg says:

      How has PSU “been treated like a red-headed stepson”?

      Like

    • Ross says:

      This is a ridiculous statement. The Big Ten said that they are looking into what happened at PSU to see if it is an institutional problem where individuals were allowed to act freely in order to protect athletics over academics.

      If this had happened at any other Big Ten school, the reaction would be the same from the B1G offices.

      Like

      • SideshowBob says:

        In what way does the university administration not properly investigation a criminal matter invovling a former — no longer employed — coach even potentially consistitute “protect athletics over academics”. It’s as silly as the NCAA saying they are going to investigate PSU, but at least that’s just the NCAA pretending to care and act important as they are apt to do.

        The Big Ten’s statement is nonsensical and insulting to PSU, espcially the odd bits about “one person having toop much power” (a clear reference to Paterno). If Paterno actually had so much power, why did he report the alleged incident to administrators and expect them to follow up on an investigation? He clearly didn’t hold enough power since they just ignored the reports and didn’t pursue a criminal investigation as they should have.

        If the Big Ten wanted to investigate this in order to evaluate how member institutions deal with internal investigations of criminal activities, that might make some sense and even be beneficial for other member institutions to learn from the situation. But what does that have to do with football? Or sports in general?

        Like

        • Ross says:

          Uh, because the guy has continued to be on university payroll and had access to any building on campus long after the initial accusations were presented and well after Joe Paterno knew.

          Their is a reason their are criminal proceedings going on – it was not properly reported to the authorities. Who knows, maybe the intention wasn’t to protect the AD, but what other reason could logically explain the decisions that were made within Penn State’s athletic department. The same questions would be asked of any AD that faced similar circumstances.

          You take issue with the wording of the B1G’s statement, but does it really matter? The one person having too much power is a broad statement; it could apply to a head coach, president, or athletic director at any school. That’s the point – that situations like this should not occur because someone had enough power to cover them up or people were afraid of someone with that much of a presence within the University. In addition, the statement’s intent stands; they want to make sure that this didn’t happen because the people involved wanted to protect the Athletic Department, at any cost. That kind of decision-making/reasoning is exactly what a lack of institutional control is.

          So you’re find when the Big Ten gets involved with OSU, or the SEC gets involved with suspending players, but the Big Ten getting involved when an athletic department covered up child rape is somehow off the table? It’s a far more serious issue, and it stems from a desire to protect something; the question is whether or not it happened because of a win at all costs mentality. If the same situation occurred in an academic department, and it was covered up, we’d be asking if it was covered up in order to protect the school’s academic prestige. Why is it impossible to imagine that this decision was made in order to protect its athletic image? If you think that falls outside the bounds of the NCAA and Big Ten’s jurisdiction, then you are mistaken.

          Like

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          I know Penn State fans like to forget this part but Tim Curley & Gary C. Schultz were both still Penn State employees (the Athletic Director & a school senior vice president in fact) when they were charged with felonies for their roles in the Sandusky cover up.

          Like

    • Bo Darville says:

      Maybe Penn St can finally join the Big East?

      Like

    • frug says:

      I have some great beach front property in Oklahoma to sell to anyone who thinks Penn St. is leaving the Big 10.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      jerry Prall,

      Anybody see the politically correct BS spewed by the BIG concerning PSU?

      The PSU board is up in arms about it, and a lot of their fans are telling the BIG to stuff it, its time to go to the ACC.

      PSU has the whiniest bunch of fans I’ve ever encountered. How about you fix your school’s culture and stop worrying about administrative groups correctly stating a desire to find out what happened and make sure it gets fixed. They’d throw a fit if the B10 didn’t do this to MI or OSU for the same sort of scandal.

      While I hope that doesn’t happen, I don’t blame them. They’ve been treated like a red-headed stepson since they joined the league, imo.

      How? What is all this abuse they’ve taken? Were teams supposed to roll over and let them win games?

      Like

      • allthatyoucantleavebehind says:

        By “our school’s culture” are you referring to the pedophile who–like most serial abusers–hid his crimes for decades and was careful enough to be borderline criminal in the eyes of a trusting administration (who are being tried for perjury–Schultz and Curley) and police department? That one guy is “our school’s culture” you are referring to, right?

        Or, should we change our #1 academic rating for football (3 of the past 5 years)? Or should we change the 500,00-plus we’ve raised to help child abuse victims? Or should we change the outrage and sadness we all have over the crimes that were committed? Or should we change the hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars that THON has raised by our students who go out in the cold of winter to help the needy?

        Turn your TV off from ESPN. Do some reading of unbiased facts. Then start typing, Brian.

        Sincerely,
        A whiny PSU fan

        Like

        • Brian says:

          allthatyoucantleavebehind,

          By “our school’s culture” are you referring to the pedophile who–like most serial abusers–hid his crimes for decades and was careful enough to be borderline criminal in the eyes of a trusting administration (who are being tried for perjury–Schultz and Curley) and police department?

          No. The culture I’m referring to is an environment where multiple employees witness sexual abuse of a child and none are willing to tell the police. The janitor was afraid of getting fired for reporting a felony committed by a former coach, so nobody got told. The GA waited a day to tell the head coach. The administration waited to do even the most minor investigation. The “punishment” was trivial and unenforceable. That culture of fear, secrecy and denial is what I was talking about.

          That one guy is “our school’s culture” you are referring to, right?

          No. Maybe that is PSU’s culture, but I don’t assume that it is.

          Or should we change the outrage and sadness we all have over the crimes that were committed?

          How about you get the janitors and GAs and administrators to be more outraged and sad, and less scared and in denial?

          Turn your TV off from ESPN.

          I don’t watch ESPN unless a game I want to see is on. I don’t watch any of their studio shows, including half times.

          Do some reading of unbiased facts.

          Facts can’t be biased. They can be incorrect if you use the loosest definition of fact, but not biased.

          Sincerely,
          A whiny PSU fan

          Yes, you are.

          Like

          • Redwood86 says:

            And the culture that creates such a cult of personality around the football coach that riots almost erupt when said coach is fired appropriately, for cause.

            The facts are that PSU essentially ceded control of its entire university to a football coach. And you think there is nothing wrong with that culture?

            Like

          • SideshowBob says:

            In what way was Paterno “fired appropriately, for cause”? Unless “for cause” is “to get the media off our backs”.

            There was — and still is not — any evidence that Paterno did anything illegal or wrong. He was not indicted on any charges, he is not under investigation for any crimes, and he has been cooperative with the investigation (even being considered as a witness for the prosecution).

            Or is “with cause” mean “fired because people think he should have done something different despite not knowing huge pieces of critical information”?

            Like

        • acaffrey says:

          PSU needs to just get over it. You’ve got a grad assistant whose first reaction is to call Paterno.
          Why? Because he wouldn’t want to do something without knowing how Paterno would react first?

          That is the quintessential example of institutional control (or lack thereof). If he saw the janitor doing this, he would have called the police. If he saw a stranger, he would have called the police. But a buddy of Joe Pa? Better check with Paterno first. That gives you a glimpse of what was wrong.

          A bunch of people milling around only following the instructions of Paterno. rather than the instructions that come from society and the NCAA. That is not the atmosphere that the NCAA tries (or pretends to try) to cultivate. Whether it is text messages, tattoos, strip clubs, or dealing with criminal activity… the goal is to have the athletic departments operate to (a) not do wrong; and (b) if you see wrong, stop it… fix it… report it… and self-impose a penalty to show that you are serious about it not recurring.

          The cover-up is worse than the crime. If PSU gets Sandusky criminally investigated in 2002, we aren’t having this discussion. Would have been some bad and weird press for a while, but nothing that cannot be overcome. Instead, they chose the path of maintaining the status quo (Paterno/football reputation). Such is life. The fact that PSU cannot see the wrong here only emboldens the outsiders who think it is wrong. It’s about time to move beyond the denial stage…

          Like

          • joe4psu says:

            He didn’t talk to Paterno first. He talked to his father, who happens to be a very good friend of Sandusky’s. McQuery knew Sandusky as a family friend since childhood. I have to believe that this had an effect on how he handled the situation.

            This was not a case of following instructions from Paterno. It is a matter of the people that Paterno reported the incident to not doing enough, if anything, to address the issue. How do people come to the conclusion that this is about a cover-up that involves the football program? If this was covered up it was done at an administrative level after the people from the football program reported the incident. If Paterno, a very smart man, was trying to cover things up why would he get other people involved? That would seem to be a very stupid thing to do.

            Like

          • joe4psu says:

            And by the way, speaking to Paterno was the right thing to do. As was Paterno’s passing it on to his superiors, according to the law and PSU SOP.

            Like

          • glenn says:

            acaffrey, you’ve not worked that much in a big-time environment, i gather.  i absolutely guarantee you that i would have gone to paterno.  to end-around to the police would be a slap in joe’s face.

            moreover, if i had been joepa, i would have done exactly what he did.  it would be up to my superiors to investigate and handle the matter, and i would assume they would deal with it appropriately.  if i didn’t have faith in them to do that, i would be considering my next place of employment.

            i am much disappointed in the penn state response, but not in joepa.  my opinion of the grad asst would depend on exactly what he witnessed, and i’ve been way too disgusted by the whole story to want to know more about it.

            Like

          • acaffrey says:

            Who at PSU–at any level–did ANYTHING to see that the victim got justice and that Sandusky was unable to ever do this again?

            Nobody.

            Why? Still waiting for an answer here. What is the “upside” in not reporting this guy?

            Even if you are not big on conspiracy theories… logically… the decision was made by SOMEONE that it would be better for the football program that this not move forward in a very public way. Whether that was Paterno, the AD, the President, or anyone… it does not matter. It is a culture of protecting the program from even the mere perception of harm.

            If Sandusky had no affiliation with the program–why not turn him in? If Paterno wants to blame the AD, that’s fine. That’s his choice. But that still means that the program stinks. The only difference is that Paterno was not as “in charge” as it seemed.

            As for why Paterno would get others involved… which “others” would those be? The two guys that shared the same interests as him?

            While PSU fans should be embarrassed for how this played out, they should be even more embarrassed for being babies about the PSU Trustees’ decision to start a new course and this minor issue of the B1G’s.

            Like

          • acaffrey says:

            Actually, I’d had to get out my diploma, but I majored in something called Public Policy and Administration. I have been involved in plenty of big organizations and am co-owner of a business. I would not expect any of my employees to come to me because a former employee was raping someone in our building. A heads up after the police had been called would be cool, but that’s it.

            If someone was taking sodas and not paying, sure… come to me. If someone sent an inappropriate email, sure, come to me. If someone commits a felony with an obvious victim, I become quite unnecessary in that link. And if it did come to me, yes… the police would be notified.

            If this was Sandusky and someone old enough to consent, yes… that changes the analysis. But when it is a kid? You just don’t.

            If people at PSU still think that going to the police ahead of Joe Pa would have been wrong, then it appears that PSU has not learned anything from this debacle whatsoever. And that is pretty sad.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            joe4psu,

            He didn’t talk to Paterno first. He talked to his father, who happens to be a very good friend of Sandusky’s.

            You’re right, he did. What does it tell you about PSU culture that his first thought is to talk to his father and not the police? Or that his father advised talking to Paterno rather than calling the cops, but felt it could wait until morning? Or that Paterno thought it best to just tell his superiors the following day? Or that the administration saw no need to investigate for days? Why did nobody at PSU think this was time sensitive? Why did nobody think the police should be involved?

            McQuery knew Sandusky as a family friend since childhood. I have to believe that this had an effect on how he handled the situation.

            This is the worst part of small town culture. Everybody knows each other, and they give each other the benefit of the doubt. It seems like everyone in State College has ties to the football program, and thus Paterno. That also influences how things are handled. It does not justifiy not calling the police, but it partially explains it.

            And by the way, speaking to Paterno was the right thing to do. As was Paterno’s passing it on to his superiors, according to the law and PSU SOP.

            This is the problem people have with PSU’s culture. Also telling Paterno is fine. Only telling Paterno is not. This is a culture that tries to handle everything internally, much like how criminal issues with players were usually handled until very recently under Paterno. Child molestation is not an internal problem and shouldn’t be treated like one. Nor should low level employees be so scared of the football program that they won’t report serious crimes.

            Like

          • joe4psu says:

            “You’re right, he did. What does it tell you about PSU culture that his first thought is to talk to his father and not the police? ”

            The latest news is that McQuery did not initially mention and may have actually denied seeing a sexual act or anything else. Until the GJ testimony McQuery apparently stated that he did not see a sex act, and that includes his written statement to police.

            “Or that his father advised talking to Paterno rather than calling the cops, but felt it could wait until morning?”

            I don’t know that his father instructed him to contact Paterno or when to do it, what his father said to him has never been made public that I know of. You are trying to determine what actions should be taken without knowledge of what was actually seen or said.

            “Or that Paterno thought it best to just tell his superiors the following day? Or that the administration saw no need to investigate for days? Why did nobody at PSU think this was time sensitive? Why did nobody think the police should be involved?”

            I have no idea what anyone thought at the time. Just as I have no direct knowledge or proof of what anyone was told at the time. There are now various stories as to what what anyone was told and when. One can only guess and speculate at this point.

            “This is the worst part of small town culture. Everybody knows each other, and they give each other the benefit of the doubt.”

            This kind of thinking saddens and scares me. Did you really say that?

            “It seems like everyone in State College has ties to the football program, and thus Paterno. That also influences how things are handled. It does not justifiy not calling the police, but it partially explains it.”

            Do you have any proof that anything was done, or not done, because of Paterno and the football program? Again, why would Paterno have gone to his supervisors and had them meet with McQuery if he intended to cover up any results of an investigation? Seems like a pretty stupid thing to do if you want a cover up.

            “This is the problem people have with PSU’s culture. Also telling Paterno is fine. Only telling Paterno is not. This is a culture that tries to handle everything internally, much like how criminal issues with players were usually handled until very recently under Paterno. Child molestation is not an internal problem and shouldn’t be treated like one. Nor should low level employees be so scared of the football program that they won’t report serious crimes.”

            If McQuery saw a rape or any abuse he should have contacted police. No one that I’ve heard or read has said otherwise. As for how Paterno handled criminal investigations and such I only know that he would suspend and bench players that would have continued playing at other schools for cutting classes and other things. If you think that he ever tried to influence investigations then you are mistaken. DA Gricar, no friend of Paterno’s or the programs, did not file charges in 1998 investigation because there was no case. What happened after McQuery saw Sandusky in the shower in 2001 has not been fully determined yet.

            You keep harping on the idea that child molestation was hidden. There is no proof of this and as more information comes out it becomes less clear that the people being accused of this were ever made aware of actual molestation. The GJ believed that Paterno was not told of sex activity and two people have been charged with perjury due to their testimony that they were not told either but it seems more likely now that they were not.

            Like

        • rich2 says:

          Might as well wait until the legal process ultimately forces into the public record testimony information about the single most important critical issue still unanswered: why did JS abruptly resign from PSU in 1999 at 55yrs old (and as National Assistant Coach of the Year)? What benefits did PSU provide to JS as part of JS’s “separation” package. I can wait and watch. It is a waste of time to post the reason why – either positive “JS announced that he wanted to spend more time with his foundation” (I realize the irony) or negative “the separation was a way to keep secret something that neither JS nor PSU wanted to be entered into the public record.” For this item, any answers that are not given under threat of perjury are just spin. When the motivation and details of this agreement are explained in detail in court then the focus on one incident such as Oct. 2002 or Oct. 2004 will go away. JS was stilll part of the recruiting itinerary of potential football recruits in October, 2011. Let’s see why JS left in 1999. The Big 10 Letter is the absolute least that the Conference should have done. It was more legal and pr posturing than principled moral stance. Still, PSU is a member of the conference and their behaviors that are already known have shamed the Conference, how could you expect the Conference Presidents to be mute?

          Like

          • bullet says:

            I don’t have an opinion on why he left at 55, but I will point out that Darrell Royal retired as head coach at Texas at age 55. He had 184 wins in 23 seasons as a head coach (most of which were when you only played 10 games). Paterno and Bowden would have been chasing him if he hung around until he was 75. Coaching is a very hard job and not everyone wants to do it their whole working life.

            Like

          • rich2 says:

            I really feel for the PSU guys who obviously love their school and want to give every benefit of every doubt to PSU. We will see. I am in Jeju Island, South Korea today and watched a CNN interview in which a defense lawyer for JS said (to paraphrase): If you knew Jerry how I know Jerry, you would realize that there was nothing unusual for him to be taking showers naked with naked boys and conducting in horseplay (on PSU facilities). Ok, I don’t know Jerry but we will see. We will see if PSU officials shared this view about Jerry — and as you suggest bullet, we will ultimately see if JS decided to retire at 55 because he was tired of it and that PSU gave him a sweet retirement package for exemplary service — or if there was a deal. I do know that until October 2011, JS was formally included in PSU’s football recruiting process and would be considered under NCAA guidelines to be a representative of the school until October 2011. We will see if any evidence was known by any PSU official between 1998 and 2011 that would lead a reasonable person to sever the relationship between JS and PSU at any point during this relationship. In my opinion, regardless of the legalities, 2011 will rank as one of the worst years for the Big 10’s reputation in football in years: beginning slowly with the now distant memory of Michigan’s major probation, gaining speed with the disgrace at Ohio State and ending with PSU. When has the Big Ten had a worse year?

            Like

          • frug says:

            I believe the official reason given at the time was that Sandusky chose to retire because the school informed him that he would not be given the head coaching job once Paterno retired.

            Like

  28. [...] Change is Coming: Four BCS Plus-One Options Under Consideration ” FRANK THE TANK’S SLANT Good readings. [...]

    Like

    • MikeF says:

      CBS Sports announces that SEC is second most valuable brand in football behind the NFL…

      New blog post by “Outkick the Coverage” writer Clay Travis:

      http://www.outkickthecoverage.com/sec-is-second-most-valuable-brand-in-football-after-the-nfl.php

      Like

      • Ross says:

        We’re comparing the entire league to a single football conference?

        Isn’t his analysis also a little off? He notes that the ABC has regional broadcasts of different games and indicates that ABC still could not beat the SEC game. But wouldn’t splitting your national broadcast into several different regional match-ups hurt your ratings? Of course the Big Ten game on ABC couldn’t get the same ratings; it wasn’t on across the nation – ACC/Big-12/Big East games were on elsewhere…am I the only one confused by this?

        Like

        • greg says:

          Ross, I would guess that regionalyzing the broadcast would help your ratings, as the local broadcast should theoretically be more interesting.

          However, comparing the CBS broadcast number to the ABC number is apples to oranges. The CBS number is a limited number (12?) of SEC games. The ABC number is a much larger number of games, split games, etc. The ABC number includes Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, ACC, Pac 10. It probably includes the 3:30 and 8pm ET games. It may include the (limited) 12pm games.

          I’m not saying a straight Big Ten package would equal an SEC package. But they numbers are two separate entities.

          Like

          • Ross says:

            I guess what I mean is, how could the ratings for, say, Michigan-Michigan State equal LSU-Arkansas when the latter was on CBS across the nation while the former was only on in the Midwest/Northeast (or who knows where)? The former is at a decided disadvantage. Now, ABC as a whole might be comparable to CBS, but I didn’t see those numbers there.

            Like

          • Jim in Florida says:

            From the context it also included the SEC CG in the ratings while ABC had no prime time CG this season. It also uses the huge outlier LSU Bama game so while this year it hit a huge number this is the type of game that comes around every 5 to 10 years not every year and the last one was the Big 10. The next one could be the Big 12 or Pac 12 or ACC you just never know with this type of game.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Well you’ve got an SEC blogger quoting the SEC network that doesn’t have any other college football. Not a lot of objectivity there.

            Like

  29. Eric says:

    This conversation illustrates why I don’t think an unseed plus one will work (even though I’m fully against a playoff). It’s not going to satisfy anyone in the end. How about this for an idea:

    1. No guaranteed ties to a BCS bowl (even the Rose Bowl), but the top 7 conference champs are guaranteed spots in the BCS if they are in the top 16 (most years this wouldn’t be 7).
    2. The conferences with tie-in are automatically put in those bowls (so 98% of the time we get a Big Ten/PAC-12 Rose Bowl.
    3. The top remaining at large teams are put against the remaining BCS bowl teams.
    4. 4 BCS winners go on to semi-finals played in the home fields (if possible, if not arrange a neutral site).
    5. Those winners go to national championship game.

    So this year:
    Rose: Wisconsin vs. Oregon
    Sugar: LSU vs. Arkansas
    Fiesta: Oklahoma State vs. Stanford
    Orange: Clemson vs. Alabama

    Reseed after the bowls, so assuming higher ranked teams won:
    Oklahoma State @ Alabama
    Oregon @ LSU

    After that we go to the championship played at neutral site (again assuming higher team won for simplicity):
    LSU vs. Alabama

    Like

    • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

      Eric – that’s just great. Under your scenario, my Tigers play 3 regular season re-matches.

      Like

      • Eric says:

        LOL That would suck, but any 8 game playoff would have the possibility. Odds of scenarios actually working out like that often are small fortunately.

        The more I think about it though, the more I just want the status quo.

        Like

      • bullet says:

        Personally, I would do minor tinkering with the seedings to avoid a rematch in the 1st round, whether it was an 8 team or 4 team setup.

        Like

    • Missing Link says:

      Completely agree…This idea basically creates the 16 team playoff. Conference championships being the first round and would be more interesting and important. The second round is the 4 bowls and now would be extremely important while still maintaining the tradition. Holiday viewing of these bowls would go through the roof. The four winners go on to a 4 game playoff over the next 2 weekends…with a real national championship. Tradition…playoff…lots of viewers (money)…a true champion settled on the field…priceless!!!

      Like

  30. Playoffs Now says:

    First, “Fuck Delany.”

    Second, only the first proposal would work. In the other three this year we’d likely see LSU, Bama, and Okie State in 3 different bowls, and should overrated Bama pull off the upset, the usual idiots would once again issue the SEC Free Pass and make LSU-Bama the title game. So nothing would be solved (other than putting another crack in the dam holding back legitimate playoffs. BTW, for those of you in Rio Linda, legitimate playoffs can use the traditional bowls, so spare us the BS argument that if you are for any type of playoff you want to kill bowls/traditions/kittens.)

    Third, let the B12, SEC, ACC, and ESPN institute (at minimum) a 4-team bowl-based playoff on their own. Call the B1G and P12’s bluff, invite them to join and if they refuse then playoff without them. The B1G and P12 would only be cutting off their nose to spite their face, it wouldn’t hurt the legitimacy of the Plus One champion because it was the B1G and P12 that refused to participate (basically forfeited their playoff game) and the majority of B1G and P12 fans will raise hell about their Presidents and Commissioners leaving them out. Won’t be long until both conferences then request a renegotiation to join in the system. Which is why if the other conferences call their bluff, I bet the P12 agrees to join at the start, too.

    Like

    • Eric says:

      I sadly think most Big Ten and PAC-12 fans would side against their conferences there. With that said, it would still lose a ton of legitamcy. If the AP votes a Big Ten or PAC-12 team champ, it would be seen a split championship.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      First, “Screw playoffs.”

      Second, none of these proposals would work. BTW, for those of you in Rio Linda, there is no way playoffs can use the traditional bowls without doing them irreparable damage, so spare us the BS argument that if you are for any type of playoff you don’t want to kill bowls/traditions/kittens.

      Third, let the B12, SEC, ACC, and ESPN institute (at minimum) a 4-team bowl-based playoff on their own. It would hurt the legitimacy of the Plus One champion and the majority of B1G and P12 fans won’t raise hell about their Presidents and Commissioners leaving them out. Won’t be long until the other conferences then request a renegotiation to get the B10 and P12 to join in the system.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        Oregon, USC-twice, Ohio St.-three times with 2 bad losses, Nebraska-1 bad loss (who shouldn’t have been there and were in B12 at time). If the next 14 years are like the past 14, they won’t be missed.

        Like

      • Jim in Florida says:

        Agree with Brian. Why do so many pro playoff people believe bowls would live on when there is a playoff? The NIT makes about 1 percent of the NCAA TV money and they have to play games at home until the finals. All the 3rd place games that used to take place no longer exist. There is just not a strong history of them surviving. The bowl payouts are going to be reduced across the board at non playoff sites and conferences will start to pull away from sending teams to their 8th bowl that pays out 140k. Bowls like the Cap one that payout 7million will drop down to 4 million than 2 million making it harder and harder to justify sending a team. The playoffs are going to have to expand to make up the loss in money in the sport.

        ESPN, Fox, CBS and Comcast are not going to pay for a playoff without the Big 10 and Pac 10. I personally don’t believe they will pay enough for any playoff system (except plus 1) that will equal the bowl system. Just because there is a playoff does not mean you are going to get viewers there is the problem of good time slots.

        Like

      • duffman says:

        Brain,

        To be fair, Delany let Leaders and Legends occur on his watch, but he did add UNL to the fold.

        Like

  31. bullet says:

    Well I’ve looked at the pre-BCS era 1991-1997 and a plus one would have been mostly worthless and often worse than the current BCS system.

    1991 would have been Miami FL 12-0 vs. Washington 12-0. The BCS would have set this up without an extra game

    1992 would have been Albama 13-0 vs. FSU 11-1. This would be worse. #1 Alabama already beat #2 unbeaten Miami FL in the Sugar and Miami had beaten FSU. FSU would get in by beating #11 Nebraska in the Orange.

    1993 would have been FSU 12-1 vs. Notre Dame 11-1. This would be worse. FSU had already won a #1 vs. #2 matchup with Nebraska in the Orange. ND beat #7 A&M in the Cotton.

    1994 would have been Nebraska 13-0 vs. Penn St. 12-0. The BCS would have set this up without and extra game and Nebraska got there beating #3 Miami FL while PSU beat #12 Oregon

    1995 would have been Nebraska 12-0 vs. Florida 11-1. This would be much worse. Nebraska had just given Florida their only loss in the Fiesta 62-24. If you eliminated losers Nebraska would have to play Tennessee whose only loss was to Florida.

    1996 would have been Florida 12-1 vs. Ohio St. 11-1. This was almost a seeded +1 as previous #3 Florida had already won a rematch (only loss was to FSU) vs. unbeaten #1 Florida St. and previously #4 Ohio St. beat unbeaten #2 Arizona St. BCS would have had the two unbeatens play.

    1997 would have been Nebraska 13-0 vs. Michigan 12-0. The BCS would have set this up without an extra game and Nebraska had to beat #3 TN while UM played #8 Washington St.

    In these years only 1992 (Miami-FSU) and 1995 (FL-TN) would have had a lot of controversy about #3 vs. #2. But the #1 game would often be worse and the teams would have to play more games.

    I’d rather have the current system than an unseeded +1.

    Like

    • bullet says:

      Looking at the BCS era, 1998-present involves making assumptions about how the matchups would play out as #1 and #2 are paired. This year, for example, would Alabama be matched against Oklahoma St. in Fiesta, play LSU in Sugar or go to Orange against Clemson? If we had the same matchups as now and Alabama, Stanford and Oregon won, would we have Alabama-LSU again? If losers are eliminated does it make any sense for an Alabama-Stanford game with LSU and Oregon shut out? An unseeded +1 just does not work well.

      Like

      • zeek says:

        Yeah, I think that’s the main problem with the unseeded +1. You may end up with a matchup featuring 2 of #1-4, but the other 2 may get way easier matchups.

        Like

        • Redwood86 says:

          Playoff (+1 or whatever) only makes sense if non-conference champions are excluded. You pair up the 4 highest-ranked conference champs in bowl games, with the winners playing in a +1 game. So this year, LSU hosts Wisconsin in, say, the Sugar Bowl while Oregon plays Oklahoma State in the Rose Bowl. The winners play each other in NCG.

          But frankly, in a year like this, where there is a consensus #1 but no consensus #2, the NCG should just be skipped.

          Like

          • zeek says:

            I agree on that last sentiment. If ever there was a year that screamed for the old bowl system with LSU facing off against say Michigan, this is the year.

            Like

  32. Tim says:

    Sorry if already posted – but here is Yahoo Sports’ Dan Wetzel solution:

    Here is your setup:

    You eliminate the term “BCS bowl” – currently the Fiesta, Orange, Rose and Sugar bowls. All bowls are equal. All can contract with whatever leagues they want and are not tied into any kind of BCS standings or arbitrary rules. Allow the four former BCS bowls to host the Football Final Four.

    I’m not opposed to letting Jerry Jones (or any other game and/or city) bid his way in and bump one out. After all, who is against the free market? Actually, college athletics is, which is why they may stick to their old bowl cronies. Either way, this is not a deal-breaker. If you want to grandfather these four in, go for it.

    The four bowls would rotate hosting a semifinal and the championship game. You need three sites each year to accomplish that (two semis, one title game).

    The Rose Bowl would sit out its turn at the semifinals, preferring to instead host a traditional Big Ten/Pac-12 matchup on Jan. 1 every year. As they do now, they would “double-host” once every four years – the traditional Rose Bowl and the title game a week later. This is a plan the Rose itself expressed interest in during a meeting last summer between Big Ten and Pac-12 athletic directors, as first reported by the Seattle Times.

    It is the single most important compromise to date.

    Here’s how it would look this season. All the other bowl games would continue as is; nothing would change there. But this would be your Jan. 2 schedule:

    1:30 p.m.: Orange, No. 2 Alabama vs. No. 3 Oklahoma State.
    4:30 p.m.: Rose, Oregon vs. Wisconsin.
    8:30 p.m.: Fiesta, No. 1 LSU vs. No. 4 Stanford.

    Coach Les Miles and No. 1 LSU would face off against No. 4 Stanford if a “plus-one” was in place.

    (Getty Images)
    Is that a day of football you might be interested in?

    On Jan. 9, the winners of the Orange and Fiesta then would meet in the Sugar Bowl for the national title.

    Next season, it would rotate. Since the Rose would be involved only once every four seasons, over a 12-year period the other three games would be left out of the Football Final Four just once each.

    That season, they would have to go out and find two non-tournament teams to play in their game. It’s a small price to pay for having a meaningful (and hugely profitable) game 11 of the other 12 seasons. That’s an exponentially better setup than the current one, where in off years, they struggle to sell tickets and generate interest.

    http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/football/news;_ylt=AkL88iqljrwAr31tDt19j3McvrYF?slug=dw-wetzel_football_final_four_gains_steam_120811

    Like

    • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

      I like it!

      Like

    • bullet says:

      If tradition was so important, the Cotton would be one of the 4 and the Fiesta would be out. It doesn’t make sense from a geographic or tradition standpoint. But in 1996 it made sense from a $ standpoint.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        The Fiesta became more prestigious than the Cotton by the late 80s. The demise of the SWC just sealed the deal. I could easily see the Cotton regaining its status with the new stadium.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          The Fiesta was very spotty. It prospered because it didn’t have tie-ins and could arrange some #1-#2 matchups and independents were at their peak-FSU, Miami FL, ND, PSU. It also had to invite Louisville one year (1991?) because of an MLK boycott.

          Like

          • frug says:

            Still don’t see what that has to do with tradition. Setting aside the fact that by ’96 the Fiesta Bowl clearly the more prestigious, there was no good tie in for the Cotton Bowl. There was no way the Big XII would have picked the Cotton even if it could have offered comparable money since

            A) The Big 8 schools wouldn’t have gone for it

            and

            B) The Big XII was hellbent demonstrating it was a new conference which meant severing ties with the SWC tie in.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            The Cotton had lousy weather, a decrepit facility and a tie with a weakened conference and it resulted in less money. The Fiesta had surpassed the Sugar in $ as well by 1996. But the Cotton still had from 1990-1993, #3 vs. #4, #5 vs. #9, #5 vs. #4, and #4 vs. #7. The Fiesta had lower ranked teams each of those years. But the Cotton was dependent on a highly ranked SWC team to get a good matchup. When A&M was on probation in 1994 a 6-5 Texas Tech went to the Cotton.

            The Fiesta didn’t get in because of the Big 12. It got in solely because of $. Texas won the last SWC title and went to the Sugar as the Cotton had already been kicked out of the rotation. There was a bidding process and the Cotton came out 5th. The Fiesta was, as I recall, 2nd, with the Orange 3rd and Sugar 4th.

            Like

          • A few points:

            (1) If I personally had a choice, I’d want the “BCS Final Four” setup with the 2 semifinals simply being separate games (but still run by the BCS bowls) like the national championship game now. This removes a large issue that I don’t think many people are acknowledging: the Rose Bowl doesn’t just want the Big Ten vs. Pac-12, but to be clearly the top bowl outside of the national title game. That’s why it still has allure in the BCS era in a way that the Sugar and the others don’t have. If the semifinals are rotated through the other BCS bowls, the Rose becomes no better than the #3 bowl after the national championship game (after the 2 semifinal hosts). Some might say, “Who cares?” However, it’s a major stumbling block in practicality.

            (2) If that can’t be implemented, an unseeded plus-one is still better than the current system if only to provide more information (conferences can be compared better because they face each other, whether a non-AQ is able to compete with an AQ champ, etc.).

            (3) I’ve never bought the “scope creep” argument (that a plus-one would turn into an 8-team playoff which will turn into a 16-team playoff). This is another point I agree on with Wetzel. If the worry is that something will become TOO successful, then that’s an asinine worry. That premise coming from commissioners and presidents lost complete credibility with realignment and TV contracts.

            Like

          • @bullet – The weather is something a lot of people ignore but is very relevant. Phoenix is a place that the average person would want to go to on a vacation in January. It’s why so many Midwesterners (AKA Big Ten and old Big 8 alums) end up retiring there. Florida, California and New Orleans are in the same vein as legit tourist destinations. Dallas, in contrast, is a place most people visit for business but not pleasure. The weather is better there in January compared to Chicago, but not so much better that it’s an enticing place for a Northerner to spend the holidays. It’s a very practical reason for the rise of the Fiesta versus the Cotton over the years (especially as more Northern transplants have ended up in the Paradise Valley region in the past 25 years).

            Like

          • That isn’t a knock on Dallas, by the way. You’ll find no bigger fan of Chicago than me, but I’d tell anyone that it’s a whole lot nicer place to be in the summer compared to January and February.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Frank,

            Many playoff proponents fully believe in bracket creep, and some count on it as a way to grow the playoff to their desired size. See Andy Staples as one who 100% believes creep will happen.

            Like

          • @Brian – True, but there’s a direct structural roadblock to bracket creep. The NCAA has said that it’s perfectly fine with not having control over a plus-one, but would need to intervene if it got larger than that. The power conferences won’t give up control of the college football postseason under any circumstances, so unless those leagues split off from the NCAA entirely, bracket creep is extremely unlikely.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            San Antonio, being a tourist destination, or Houston, being warmer than Dallas (and even San Antonio), are better places for a January bowl than Dallas.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            @Frank
            This wasn’t included in your 4 alternatives, but have you heard of any BCS discussions of taking over the “Playoff” games instead of letting the bowls do it?

            The more I think about it, the more I like the KSU AD’s thoughts about cutting out the middleman. You could have the semi-finals the 2nd week of December before the teams get stale (rustiness often shows in January) at a home site. That would be away from the time of the bowls and so wouldn’t overshadow them with 3 + 1 games and wouldn’t require a lot of travel by players, students and fans. The final would be shortly after January 1 so the Presidents could get the season over earlier than now. It wouldn’t be on January 1 so it wouldn’t conflict with the bowls. The Rose would still normally take the best available Pac 12 and B1G teams. Maybe if there were 2 or 3 teams from one of those conferences in the final 4 they would opt out, but that wouldn’t be very often. Maybe you throw the bowls a bone by letting them host the game the 1st 4 years, but after that you would rotate it around with no favoritism to the bowls. As Brian suggested, you could occassionally have the game in domed northern stadiums like Detroit, Minneapolis, Indianapolis and St. Louis.

            Like

          • @bullet – For better or for worse, whatever system comes out of this will be run by the bowls. Even Dan Wetzel, the biggest bowl opponent out there, acknowledges that this is the only way a plus-one will get implemented.

            The bowls are middlemen, but they’re middlemen that the power conferences can control. The power conferences are much more concerned about the NCAA becoming the middleman for college football.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            I don’t believe that extra information you get on an unseeded +1 is worth much. As I showed from 1991-1997, with one exception, you got either the same matchup or a worse matchup than the current BCS and the teams had significantly different opponent strengths. The one exception was where the two unbeatens both lost, one in a rematch against a team they beat in the regular season. In that year you essentially had a seeded +1 with #1 playing #3 and #2 playing #4. If not for that fluke, it would have been a very controversial result and may have resulted in a rubber match with FSU and Florida playing a 3rd time.

            Like

          • Jim in Florida says:

            Frank. The fear of creep is not neccesarly that the playoffs are too successful its that playoffs kill the bowls and have to expand in order to just keep the same money. For the playoffs the only place to find any real money is TV rights. So as Bowls die off there payouts have to come from the playoff TV money. If the New Orleans Bowl dies its not a big deal but if the Cap One dies that is 9 million that just the SEC and Big Ten need to extract from the playoffs which in effect makes it 60 or so million due to the other leagues getting their cut of playoff money. Sure some of this money is going to be offset because the Big 12 and ACC lose a bowl here and there. In the end though a loss of a bowl cost the system more than its actual payout do to the restructing of the system itself from a conference to the AQ as a whole contract.

            I am at a loss to see how just a 4 team playoff can absorb the lost revenue of lost bowls. This is going to force the expansion of the playoffs which will put more pressure on the bowls that survived and another expansion might be neccesary to keep the same revenue.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            There are no more than 10 bowls that provide revenue. The rest are pretty much money losers for the schools. They spend it all on ticket guarantees, travel, hotels and meals.

            Like

  33. metatron5369 says:

    Personally, I’d rather we had a straight-up sixteen team tournament with the final game in Pasadena.

    For me, the Rose Bowl is the only post-season game that matters. If we’re going to switch to a real tournament (which I prefer), why not make it the tournament of roses?

    Like

    • Robber Baron says:

      If the College World Series can be in Omaha every year, the college football tournament can culminate in Pasadena every year. And you’re right, it already has a kick-ass name in the Tournament of Roses.

      Now, how can we possibly convince any of the conferences to go along with this awesome idea?

      Like

  34. Brian says:

    UCLA is getting Jim Mora Jr. He has almost no college experience and wasn’t great in the NFL. He also has no UCLA ties. That should work well.

    Meanwhile, TAMU supposedly has Sumlin. That makes a lot more sense to me.

    Frank, what’s the feeling about Beckman for the Illini?

    Like

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      Poor Sumlin.

      Like

      • duffman says:

        I am betting TAMU has just insured 4 dismal years in the SEC. At which time they will follow the South Carolina model and hire a top coach to work their way up the SEC ladder. 10 – 20 years from now they will be Florida.

        Like

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          I think Kevin is a very good coach. I just also believe that College Station is where good coaches to watch their careers end.

          Like

          • bullet says:

            I don’t think Nebraska or Texas (Dana Bible) or Alabama (Bear Bryant, Gene Stallings) would agree with that.

            Like

          • duffman says:

            bullet,

            I agree some really good coaches have passed through College Station. If you remember when I did that in depth analysis on schools that have underperformed their assets, I had TAMU in the Top 5. I understand them trying to pick the hot coach from the lesser conference, but how many of these coaches actually make it at the next level. Sherman proved he could build an offense, and his team put up some points this season, but that will not win games when they go to the SEC. TAMU will wind up paying to much, have to fire him in 3-4 years, and start again with a proven winner at the next level.

            The problem is Sherman got them back from the dead, and this hire should have been more bankable with a better resume. I am not sure why they fired Sherman first, if this was the first pick to replace him. I do not understand why they did not have the replacement signed, sealed, and delivered before they let Sherman go.

            Like

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            “I don’t think Nebraska or Texas (Dana Bible) or Alabama (Bear Bryant, Gene Stallings) would agree with that.”

            —And Army is still a competitive football team because of 1945.

            Like

          • joe4psu says:

            More on what McQuery said about incident:

            http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2011/12/another_version_of_mike_mcquea.html

            “Since charges were filed Nov. 4, several variations of McQueary’s story have come out publicly.

            His grand jury testimony says he heard slapping noises and saw a boy being sodomized by Sandusky.

            His hand-written statement to police says, “I did not see insertion. I am certain that sexual acts/the young boy being sodomized was occurring.” He says the whole incident lasted about a minute.

            In an email he sent to friends following the firing of Joe Paterno, he says “I made sure it stopped,” something not mentioned in the grand jury testimony or police statement.

            And now Dranov’s testimony describes a new scenario. “

            Like

          • joe4psu says:

            Post above in wrong spot obviously…

            Like

      • glenn says:

        thing that really bothers me here is that sumlin is a very good coach, but i think he is being set up to fail.  not intentionally, of course.  but he is an offensive-minded coach who traditionally has less-than-stellar defenses and is going into a very difficult, defense-dominant conference and doesn’t have first-rate material to work with.

        already, aggie posters are holding this up as the good old boy network flexing its collective muscle and stiffing them with another in a series of born failures (for that place).  the first sign of inadequacy, and i think they will get ugly, which, of course, will further harm his ability to recruit.

        i’d like to see this be a reasonably successful experience, both for sumlin’s sake and for the ags.  they really need to move heart and hand-basket into that new world and leave their old existence behind.  a clean break here could do them a world of good, but a bad experience there could further fracture a deeply divided community.  where i am, we need them gone, and where they are, they need a whole new identity, and this is a great opportunity if they don’t let it get away from them.

        Like

        • duffman says:

          glenn,

          Eventually they will have to learn from the last schools that joined the SEC. Arkansas learned the lesson, and now have Petrino. South Carolina failed at first, then they hired back to back HoF coaches in Holtz and Spurrier. Now the gamecocks are competitive in the SEC East.

          Like

          • glenn says:

            duffman, i think the hiring of coaches is way down the list of things to do at a&m.  i occasionally test the waters on aggie boards, and i see discussions among them from time to time regarding their institutionalized weirdness and how that hurts them.  they speak of coaches in terms of ‘getting’ them, and they fear bringing in someone who will not respond favorably to their quirky mannerisms.  that really hampers a coaching search.  note, if you will, that the new hire had been an assistant there some years ago.  no doubt that was a factor in the decision.

            for them to move beyond that sort of self-limiting behavior, they really need to strike out anew, and find ways of being and doing that don’t require – shall we say – orientation.  this is one reason i am so extremely pleased that texas and a&m are going different paths to such an extreme.  i really think they need to use this experience to find new traditions and hang onto a lot of the old stuff in pretty much ceremonial and symbolic ways only.  and i think they need to forge an identity that doesn’t depend on disliking someone.  i believe a clean break with texas and a fresh environment will engender that, at least to some extent.

            years ago, when i worked with troubled youths, i always had the mindset that the twists of fate that had disfigured some of those kids emotionally might never be undone.  the damage might be visible in later years in some way, but that the many years of good growth in the interim would render the damage pretty insignificant.  like a tree twisted in its youth might show some evidence of that many years later, but all the years of straight growth would make it pretty hard to spot.

            i’m hoping on an institutional level that sort of thing happens in c-station, and the experiences of arkansas and south carolina will become germane.  i don’t think they are now.

            Like

          • glenn says:

            another thing i might say.

            i’ve commented before on my hope and desire that texas and a&m not meet on the field again – hopefully, in my lifetime.  my comments above maybe make that desire make a bit more sense to the bored reader wandering by this little corner of al gore’s brainchild.

            their wishing to continue the series reminds me of the kid who wants to run away from home . . .
             
             
             

            . . . but not too far.

            Like

  35. zeek says:

    Quick aside about the NBA. When are they going to realize that superstars being underpaid is the main problem that the small market teams face?

    Yes, you don’t want to have an unlimited supply of big contracts, but why not allow a player who gets an MVP award in the past 3 years or multiple All-NBA Teams/All-Star teams to get paid up to 60-70% of the team cap or something like that.

    Until they resolve the fact that players like LeBron, Kobe, Wade, Rose, Howard, Durant, CP3, etc. are worth significantly more than they’re being paid, they’re not going to get to competitive balance.

    If you tell LeBron that he has to choose between $125M over 6 from Cleveland and $110M over 6 from Miami; he’s going to bolt to be with his friends for a slight haircut.

    If Cleveland could have offered LeBron something like $220M over 6, then he probably would have had a much tougher choice because the money differences would be substantial. I’m not saying that you enable this kind of option for all players, but there should be some way to incentivize the very best players to stay on their teams.

    Obviously, you don’t want this option available to the Joe Johnson, Rashard Lewis, and Gilbert Arenas types (and you know there are a dozen owners that would throw that kind of money at players that clearly aren’t superstars), but there has to be a way to identify the superstars and give them enough money to stay.

    The current NBA pay system is basically made for the creation of superteams in places like LA, Boston, New York, Chicago, Dallas, and Miami where you have mega-rich owners and great locales for attracting the superstar free agents. Until you make the superstar’s choice about hard money and not about lifestyle/teammates which is what it becomes when the money differences are so minor (1 year less and 2-3% lower raises if no S&T which is a farce because there’s always a S&T), then you’re going to keep seeing the superstars go to those places.

    Like

    • @zeek – You’re completely right and I Tweeted about this yesterday. The irony is that have maximum salaries means that you take money completely out of the equation for superstars. They’re getting paid the same amount (or very close) no matter where they go, so then they make decisions on other factors such as market size, where their friends play, who is best set up for a title immediately, etc. It’s effectively effectively like college recruiting, but only at the pro level. The best way for small markets to retain their superstars was effectively eliminated in the 1999 CBA – the “Larry Bird Rule” allowing a team to pay a player that it already has whatever he wants even if it puts the team over the salary cap.

      A way to spread superstars around more is to have a “star exemption” for each team. That is, each team has one roster spot to pay someone as much they want and it doesn’t count against the salary cap. This prevents superteams from forming, as every legit superstar is going to have a large financial incentive to be the one “star exemption” on his team. I can’t see that realistically ever happening, though.

      Like

      • zeek says:

        Agreed. Plus, we both know the only way a star exemption would work is if the TV deals were all spread.

        I mean you have LA taking in $150M per year for the next 20 years from their own TV deal. That’s probably more from just that TV money than 2 lower end franchises will take in combined from all revenue sources.

        Until they even that out, there can’t be a star exemption. And the owners of those teams probably aren’t even willing to consider that since they get the best of both worlds. Massive TV deals + marquee underpaid players; it’s just hard to see how the small market teams will ever be able to compete with that.

        I know some owners want a franchise tag, but I don’t see that ever flying with the players association. Maybe a 1 year franchise tag option could come along, but that just means that you’ve driven the problem to the next year. There really is no fix for this…

        Like

  36. duffman says:

    Big day for B1G basketball

    Indiana vs Kentucky
    Ohio State vs Kansas

    Like

    • Brian says:

      Congrats to IU. It’s about time that beat UK and returned to the big stage. I hope they can build off of this and win 20+ games, and not just have it be a fluke win.

      OSU did OK for not having Sullinger. Eventually Matta will have to develop and use a bench if he ever wants real tournament success.

      Like

  37. zeek says:

    I don’t understand why people want to make the BCS Bowls into early playoff rounds. Just keep the BCS NC rotating through the 4 BCS Bowls and then make 2 semifinals games at home for the 1,2,3,4. That way you don’t depress ticket sales for those games, since you don’t end up sending those teams to Arizona one week and then Florida the next.

    The only solution that I think will be able to placate all sides would be to have 2 semifinals games on the home fields of the #1 and #2 seeds (hosting the #4 and #3 seeds respectively). Then just leave the rest of the bowl system alone. Heck, you could remove the BCS and AQ labels if that’s what’s causing so much angst (although I don’t think Fiesta and Orange will want that).

    Like

    • bullet says:

      With 8 teams, making the BCS bowls into early rounds works very well from a lot of perspectives. You could have a higher seed get a home game in the semi-finals to reduce the travel. And people would travel to the championship the following week. In the SEC championship game only 32,000 of the tickets went to the teams. You’re going to have a lot sold in the host city.

      Like

    • schwarm says:

      Seems reasonable, zeek, but it could be seen as a threat to the bowl TV ratings to have two huge non-bowl games, so the bowl royalty would probably fight it.

      Like

      • zeek says:

        Oh definitely. I’m just saying, if you want to preserve the value of the big bowls (Rose etc.), while separating the TV $$$ from the first two games of the +1, that’s really the way to go.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          If Frank is right, we won’t have the semis where they belong in the 2nd week of December. A week after the championship games is not going to generate a lot of travel for the bowls. They wouldn’t be interested even if it was a dual hosting game (where they would also host a January 1 game). And the presidents wouldn’t be too interested in a game encouraging a lot of travel for the students that week which is awfully close to finals. If it was a home game, that would be more acceptable.

          But if the bowls host them January 1, that conflicts with the presidents stated goal to move the end of the season forward as the earliest the championship game could be held would be January 8 and even later if they try to maintain exclusive time slots.

          Like

  38. duffman says:

    Battle of the no shows

    With Sumlin going to TAMU, the PSU vs UH game will now be the interim coach bowl!

    I think if you get hired away, the least you should have to do is stay and finish the season. Totally irritates me when you get to a bowl with a new coach and lose. As a fan I would say boycott tickets, but it would never catch on in large enough to force the issue.

    PS, PSU folks on here, sorry about the loss to UCLA. I was pulling for you guys in that game.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      duffman,

      It’s often not the coach’s choice. Many schools don’t want a guy who takes another job to stay and coach their team because he won’t be 100% focused on his current team. He has to start spending time on his new job, and that hurts the current team. I think the team often benefits from that coach leaving and letting assistants focused on the bowl game take over.

      I also believe in what Bo said. You want a Michigan man to coach Michigan, not an Arizona State man.

      Like

      • duffman says:

        Brian,

        I guess I think coaches should see the kids they coach through the end of the season. Last year I think there were 7 interim coaches in the bowl games, and all of them lost their bowl. I was really thinking of a moratorium on hiring coaches till after the last bowl game was played. Sort of a hiring “dead period” between say middle of November till the middle of January. At least from say December 1st to January 1st. That is only 1 total month out of the entire year, and it would make some more bowls games worth watching. I find myself not watching interim coaches in bowl games because the W – L records are so slanted it takes away the surprise factor of who might win.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Ideally, I’d agree with you. One problem is the calendar. Signing day is in early February, so you are basically telling every school that hires a new coach that they can’t recruit that season.

          Should a team not going to a bowl have to wait? Should an unemployed coach have to wait to get hired? Should a school in an early bowl game have to wait until all the bowls are done? What about a coach who coached in an early game?

          I think a large part of the problem for some interim coaches is that the players know their season was so bad it got the head coach fired. It’s hard to get fired up for a bad bowl game after that.

          If a coach gets a better job, then all the assistants have to start thinking about their futures and they get distracted. They try to focus, but I can’t blame them for thinking about their future.

          I don’t think there is any good solution to this problem. They could push back signing day until March, but that starts to run into the spring practice schedule. Without that, though, you can’t justify a hiring freeze during the heart of recruiting season.

          Like

  39. duffman says:

    My solution from last year on FtT was 2 current bowls feed the MNC game

    Two top teams determine which of 4 bowls get picked

    Rose = B1G vs PAC
    Sugar = SEC vs ??
    Orange = ACC vs ??
    Cotton / Fiesta = B12 vs ??

    It only means 1 more game – which means less student time off school, and better economics for fans. Using this year as an example :

    Rose = Oregon vs Wisconsin (tho I believe Oregon should go over Stanford)
    Sugar = LSU vs Stanford
    Cotton / Fiesta = Oklahoma State vs Alabama
    Orange = Clemson vs West Virginia

    Winner of Sugar plays winner of Cotton / Fiesta for MNC at least 2 weeks later. If Stanford had not lost to Oregon, as a undefeated team, the Rose would be the second bowl used.

    if LSU and Stanford had been undefeated :

    LSU plays Oklahoma State in Sugar
    Stanford plays Alabama in Rose

    winners play in MNC

    Like

    • schwarm says:

      Duffman – in your solution would it be the case that the Rose Bowl would be a semifinal only if a PAC team AND a Big 10 team were in the top 4?

      Like

      • duffman says:

        schwarm,

        If either / or were in the top 4. If both were in the top 4 you could do the same but if they want to keep it a B1G vs PAC thing only, then they would have to allow that possibility and play accordingly.

        say end of the season looked like this :
        #1 = B1G
        #2 = PAC
        #3 = SEC
        #4 = B12

        normal matchup might be #1 vs #4 and #2 vs #3, but to preserve the Rose Bowl, it would have to be #1 vs #2 and #3 vs #4 with the winners meeting in the MNC. If only 1 team qualified out of the 2 conferences, that team would be shifted out of the Rose Bowl where a matchup can be done easier.

        1 out of 4, means playing in another bowl, so 2 other bowls are the qualifying bowls
        2 out of 4, means playing the Rose Bowl, and another qualifying bowl (Sugar?)

        If you wanted to make the Rose Bowl (and probably Sugar) as the fixed bowl, then the Rose Bowl would have to go back to its roots and become an open bowl. The PAC + B1G deal did not occur till after World War II. Alabama has more Rose Bowl wins than Indiana, Purdue, Northwestern, Minnesota, Nebraska, Penn State, Michigan State, Iowa, Illinois, and Wisconsin. Alabama last appeared in the Rose Bowl in 1946, and even now only Michigan and Ohio State have more Rose Bowl wins of the current B1G schools. Alabama did this in about 2 decades, and 5 of those were the WW II years where cross country travel was rationed.

        Alabama in the Rose Bowl :

        Date played Winning team Losing team Notes

        January 1, 1926 Alabama 20 Washington 19
        January 1, 1927 Alabama 7 Stanford 7
        January 1, 1931 Alabama 24 Washington State 0
        January 1, 1935 Alabama 29 Stanford 13
        January 1, 1938 California 13 Alabama 0
        January 1, 1946 Alabama 34 Southern California 14

        Other SEC schools in the Rose Bowl

        Date played Winning team Losing team Notes

        January 1, 1925 Tulane was to play, but declined for academics
        January 1, 1929 Georgia Tech 8 California 7
        January 1, 1932 Southern California 21 Tulane 12
        January 1, 1940 Southern California 14 Tennessee 0
        January 1, 1943 Georgia 9 UCLA 0
        January 1, 1945 Southern California 25 Tennessee 0

        Like

  40. zeek says:

    WOW. That Kentucky@Indiana game was amazing. That was an incredible finish.

    Safe to say Indiana is back to big time?

    Like

    • zeek says:

      Ohio State lost, but Indiana is really the team that Big Ten depth has been missing; first win over a #1 team since 2002. It’s been a while for Indiana…

      Like

      • Ross says:

        I’m pretty furious over the whole thing. Our 89% FT shooter missed like 4 FTs on the game, including the critical FT at the end to help put us up three. Of course, the bigger issue was his (Lamb’s) decision to pass the ball to Davis on the previous possession when Davis is arguably our worst FT, while Lamb is the best on the floor.

        The critical errors, in a game that was really in our grasp at the end, plus the failure to foul at the end were just killer. Glad we got our loss out of the way, though I would rather it was to a team like Florida on the road. I hate IU.

        Like

        • Ross says:

          I should note, the loss was in now way on Lamb. The guy really came to play when half of our team seemed miles away. It’s just a same to miss such a critical play, and he’ll remember that one forever.

          Like

          • duffman says:

            zeek,

            jj can attest that I picked IU to upset UK weeks ago!

            The nice thing is the Tan One is putting together teams that will stay and play, and not go the 1 and done route (at least it is my hope) now we will hopefully get some good game with Izzo.

            Like

          • zeek says:

            duffman, that was definitely a program re-defining victory for Indiana (re- because of where Indiana was before the past decade of course). If Crean can carry this forward, the future is very bright for Indiana basketball.

            And this game is a reminder that the Kentucky-Indiana series really does need to be kept. It’s nice to have regional non-conference rivalries like this that really mean something given the histories of the programs.

            Like

          • duffman says:

            zeek,

            All roads lead back to Indiana, and kids today need to remember their history.

            Indiana boy named Everette Case goes to the ACC to coach basketball, and now they have tobacco road

            Indiana boy named John Wooden goes west and makes history at UCLA

            If UK is serious about dropping rivals, then IU should be the last to go. The history is just too great between the schools and the fans of these two schools are the best in the country. Folks across the country have no idea how intertwined these 2 states are when it comes to basketball. Not just MBB at the college level but womens college ball as well. The current UK team has an Indiana woman on their team, and Noter Dame has a Kentucky native on their Runner Up team from last year. The cross state rivalry at the high school for both boys and girls is intense and feeds the fans of both states.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            UK’s achilles heel has been free throw shooting since Calipari arrived.

            Obviously a lot of people wanted the underdog to win (or Calipari to lose?). I was having dinner with the family and couldn’t watch the game, but it was playing in the bar of the restaurant. When that shot went in there was a huge cheer from the bar that practically made me jump out of my seat.

            Like

          • jj says:

            Duff,

            Great win. Jud-Izzo tree lives!

            Can’t wait to see iu msu.

            Iu is a team we need back.

            Like

          • jerry Prall says:

            Duffer–Obviously a great win by the good guys. Now that we’re competitive again, the hilljacks want to cancel the series. They’ve been whining constantly since Saturday. I know where you’re coming from, but I’m sick of those whining cheaters—-they’re more trouble than thet’re worth.

            Like

        • indydoug says:

          As to Lamb giving up the ball, he may have lost a bit of confidence in his FT shooting with prior misses

          Like

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      “Safe to say Indiana is back to big time?”

      -Right up there with UCF.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      One game is never enough to say that, especially an upset in a rivalry game. I hope they are back, but they need to prove it over the whole season.

      Like

  41. bullet says:

    Another ESPN loss tonight. Congrats to RGIII and his teammates on his Heisman victory. ESPN for weeks, in contrast to other media, has been saying it was a 2 way race with Luck and Richardson.

    Like

    • zeek says:

      Yeah, I’m glad for RGIII. I disliked from the start how ESPN anointed Luck before the season and then gave Stanford a full ESPN blog equivalent to the full conferences just to throw in a lot of articles about Luck and the NFL to try to drive NFL fans to the college football blogs. The whole thing smacked of an attempt to really drive the narrative along with how they had the MNF crew at the Orange Bowl last year spend the entire game talking about how amazing an NFL qb Luck will be.

      And plus, it’s an individual player trophy, the idea that team records should be the primary consideration has really ruined that in a lot of respects.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      Of particular interest to me will be their complete lack of self-coverage on the issue. None of the articles or blogs will mention that they incorrectly predicted the winner and try to examine why. Such introspection might force them to admit the in-house SEC bias.

      Like

    • frug says:

      To be fair to NBC, the last few days their scrolling ticker at the bottom of the screen had noted that their projection system was predicting that RGIII would win the award.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      http://www.cbssports.com/mcc/blogs/entry/24156338/33791137

      Not only did the ESPiN machine fail, it wasn’t close:

      Here’s the final national vote ranking:

      1. Robert Griffin III, Baylor QB: 405 first-place votes, 1,687 total points
      2. Andrew Luck, Stanford QB: 247 first-place votes, 1,407 total points
      3. Trent Richardson, Alabama RB: 138 first-place votes, 978 total points

      Griffin won 3:1 over Richardson, and even Luck was a distant second.

      By Region:
      FAR WEST (Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming)

      Luck: 315 points
      Griffin: 220 points
      Richardson: 137 points

      MID-ATLANTIC (Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia)

      Griffin: 254 points
      Luck: 248 points
      Richardson: 168 points

      MIDWEST (Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin)

      Griffin: 272 points
      Luck: 220 points
      Richardson: 125 points

      NORTHEAST (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont)

      Griffin: 257 points
      Luck: 254 points
      Richardson: 160 points

      SOUTH (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee)

      Griffin: 303 points
      Richardson: 256 points
      Luck: 182 points

      SOUTHWEST (Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas)

      Griffin: 381 points
      Luck: 188 points
      Richardson: 132 points

      Griffin won everywhere but the West, where Luck won handily. Richardson could only manage second to Griffin in SEC country and third everywhere else, so even the most homer of fans didn’t buy what ESPN was selling.

      Like

  42. Terry says:

    Frank,

    I don’t understand how #1 would work. IIUC, the BCS currently is the “owner” of 5 games per year, in that it is the entity to sell the Broadcast rights to ESPN. It subcontracts 4 of them as the traditional bowls, and then rotates a subcontract to “produce” the BCS game.

    In the past few weeks, everyone is reporting that the BCS wants to cut down “ownership” to only one game per year, some suggest due to Department of Justice pressure/vulnerability on the AQ games.

    How can the +1 in Option #1 use the Rose/Orange/Fiesta/Sugar bowls, for the two semi-final games, while mitigating the AT risk with the DoJ? And exactly what games would the BCS sell to ESPN?

    I can’t understand how Option #1 would work from a contracts/”ownership” POV.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      The BCS would have to be 5, or possibly 6 (if they add the Cotton to keep 10 slots), games like now. But it would be like the old system in that the bowls make whatever arrangements for teams that they want outside of when they have the semi-finals. There would be no more AQs, no more having to take a BE champ or a non-AQ they don’t want, no more limits on teams from a conference, no top 14 limit, etc. All the major bowls and conferences (plus ND) would have to be on board because the bowls have agreements to take the top teams from each of the big 5 conferences. By having all the games controlled by one group for scheduling and TV contract purposes, they can maximize the ratings and payouts.

      Like

  43. Terry says:

    To simplify my question above. Currently there are 5 games. 4 traditional bowls and 1 BCS game.

    In Option #1, how many games, including the traditional bowls, will there be? 5 or 7?

    And if the BCS signs a contract with ESPN, for how many games a year will they be selling?

    3? 5? 7?

    Like

  44. joe4psu says:

    More on what McQuery said about incident:

    http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2011/12/another_version_of_mike_mcquea.html

    “Since charges were filed Nov. 4, several variations of McQueary’s story have come out publicly.

    His grand jury testimony says he heard slapping noises and saw a boy being sodomized by Sandusky.

    His hand-written statement to police says, “I did not see insertion. I am certain that sexual acts/the young boy being sodomized was occurring.” He says the whole incident lasted about a minute.

    In an email he sent to friends following the firing of Joe Paterno, he says “I made sure it stopped,” something not mentioned in the grand jury testimony or police statement.

    And now Dranov’s testimony describes a new scenario. “

    Like

  45. hey diddle diddle says:

    without reading all of the comments, one thing I noticed about the Cotton Bowl was that it was the ONLY Bowl shown on Fox.

    all the other bowls are ABC\ESPN at least as far as I can tell

    Like

    • Brian says:

      CBS has the Sun Bowl.

      Distribution:
      Fox – 1 (Cotton 1/6 @ 8)
      CBS – 1 (Sun 12/31 @ 2)
      ABC – 1 (Outback 1/2 @ 1)
      ESPNU – 1 (TicketCity 1/2 @ 12)
      ESPN2 – 2 (Independence 12/26 @ 5, Gator 1/2 @ 1)
      ESPN – 29

      Like

      • Brian says:

        CBS has the Sun Bowl.

        Distribution:
        Fox – 1 (Cotton 1/6 @ 8 )
        CBS – 1 (Sun 12/31 @ 2)
        ABC – 1 (Outback 1/2 @ 1)
        ESPNU – 1 (TicketCity 1/2 @ 12)
        ESPN2 – 2 (Independence 12/26 @ 5, Gator 1/2 @ 1)
        ESPN – 29

        I hate that stupid auto-smiley.

        Like

      • SideshowBob says:

        Liberty Bowl is also on ABC (in addition to the Outback).

        Like

  46. Carl says:

    Sandusky < 0

    Like

  47. Penn State Danny says:

    I like the Wetzel article. It seems doable. I love the Big Ten and its traditions but Delaney does need to progress into the 21st century.

    I would have one of the semis on New Year’s Eve though and the other on New Year’s night.

    That way, all of the other bowls could still exist on New Year’s Day leading up to the Rose Bowl at 4:30 and the other semi at 8:00.

    IF things ever progress to a 4 by 16, then only the 4 conference winners would make the semis and the Rose Bowl could always have their precious Big Ten-Pac 12 matchup at 4:30 as the first semi.

    Since, it doesn’t look plausible, I agree with the Wetzel plan. (Well THIS Wetzel plan anyways)

    Like

  48. OT says:

    The PAC wants to dump its digital content (read: “basketball raw sewage”) onto cable TV systems in the People’s Republic of China:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/12/sports/pac-12-hopes-to-establish-presence-in-china.html?_r=2

    There is also a proposal on the table to shift the Stanford-Notre Dame football game in 2013 from Stanford to China.

    PAC 12 men’s basketball stinks to high heaven. The quality of play is worse than the Mountain West and the Atlantic 10. Heck, the WCC probably has a better men’s basketball league than the PAC this season.

    (Currently, U.S. college sports are available live during weekday mornings on ESPN China to fill dead time when there are no live sports events available from Asia or Europe. ESPN China is operated by ESPN STAR Sports Limited of Singapore, which is managed by STAR TV, which is managed by News Corporation Limited. In other words, ESPN China is actually a corporate sister of FOX despite the “ESPN” branding. The PAC wants to put the PAC 12 Network onto cable TV systems in the Asia-Pacific region with China being the highest priority so that the PAC, not NewsCorp, will be in control of its content in that part of the world.)

    Like

  49. duffman says:

    (Insert Navin Johnson picture here)

    The polls are in! The polls are in!

    ….. yes IU is ranked again :)

    ps, Brian I hoped you guys would win, but with the injury I think it was too much. I agree with your point about the Ohio State bench. In modern basketball you have to be able to go to it. See you guys on New Years eve. ;)

    Like

    • Michael in Raleigh says:

      I’m showing my ignorance here, duffman, but who is the “Tan One?” Crean? Or one of the players?

      Like

      • duffman says:

        google a pic of Crean, he has a tan unusual for folks living in Indiana. Especially for a basketball guy who is indoors for his job. You can see a tan football coach because it is the summer and they are outdoors. Historically I think of IU basketball as the pale ones. :)

        Like

    • Brian says:

      The lack of bench is a chronic issue with Matta. He never develops them, so they can’t contribute when needed in the tournament.

      As for the KU loss, it’s meaningless. OSU didn’t even drop in the polls. I’m glad they lost so there’s no undefeated hype to deal with. As is, they’ll lose before the final four anyway so I’ll pay next to no attention to the whole season as usual.

      Like

      • Eric says:

        I’m the opposite in some ways. The preseason stuff now doesn’t interest me a lot, but conference play does. Getting to the Final Four is as much luck as anything. Competing for a conference crown is how I define a season.

        (Which puts me in the super, super rare minority that values an outright conference crown more than a Final Four appearance).

        Like

  50. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7346774/mountain-west-conference-request-bcs-automatic-bid-2012-13

    MWC requests AQ status for the next 2 years. I’m guessing they get turned down based publicly on their membership flux, but really on the BE taking a bid they shouldn’t have and the BCS conferences not wanting to lose an at large spot.

    Like

  51. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/chicago/ncf/story/_/id/7347065/tommy-schutt-changed-commitment-penn-state-nittany-lions-ohio-state-buckeyes

    Urban Meyer has landed his first recruit at OSU, getting Tommy Schutt from the Chicago area to decommit from PSU and switch to OSU. Schutt was likely to decommit anyway due to the scandal, but it is always big to take a top recruit from a division rival. Schutt was PSU’s only ESPNU150 recruit. The slow coaching search at PSU is hurting them in recruiting, too.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      He also got his second recruit, Se’Von Pittman from Canton, OH. Pittman was an OSU lean before the scandal, then committed to MSU. His girlfriend signed to play hoops at OSU so it wasn’t a surprise that he switched once Meyer was hired. It’s always good to beat a conference team for an in state payer, though. This sort of success is why schools have to hire coaches ASAP, and PSU is going to suffer the consequences if they don’t find the right coach soon.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        To be clear, I’m pointing this out as relevant to duffman’s earlier point about coaching hires and a potential dead period in December.

        Like

        • duffman says:

          Brian,

          Meyer was a free agent, as his hire did not leave a hole in another schools coaching staff

          I thought about moving back to march on signing which would make it easier. Maybe make the deals but not announce them till after the dead period.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            But look what waiting might do to PSU. They need a coach now to save their class.

            Like

          • duffman says:

            a) they needed a coach before december

            b) Ohio State knew they would need a new coach long before Meyer was hired

            I guess at times I am surprised as the biggest job of an AD is hiring the football coach, you would think every AD has a daily report of at least 3 coaches to replace a current coach at any given moment. At PSU it is not like they did not know JoPa had a limited time left on the sideline even before the scandal broke.

            I would think PSU more than any school should have had names in place just on probability. His health had been slipping in the past year or two.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            I agree PSU needed a coach already, but the scandal broke in November. Presumably most of their top candidates were coaching other teams. Did you expect them to try to steal a coach during the season, or were they restricted to out of work coaches? How would they know in advance they needed an unemployed coach? How do they know who is a good fit with zero PSU ties?

            OSU wanted to give Fickell every chance to win the job, so they didn’t know they needed a new coach until November. Again, most of their top candidates had other jobs so they couldn’t talk to them until the season ended. OSU was lucky there was a future hall of fame coach with Ohio ties that was not coaching but wanted to get back into it. You can’t assume most schools will be that fortuitous.

            Like

    • cutter says:

      Tommy Schutt is on his fourth school now. He originally tried to go to Notre Dame, but they didn’t have a spot for him. The next stop was Michigan, but he was told the same thing–UM had all their NG/DT recruits in hand. Penn State did have a spot open for him and he committed. Now, obviously, with the problems at PSU and with Meyer in Columbus, he’s moved onto to Ohio State.

      Pittman didn’t have as many stops, but he did have an academic issue. The state of Ohio has a standardized test that students have to pass in order to graduate and he was having troubles with it. Michigan State was willing to take the risk (which is also why they have the WR Burbridge, but for different academic problems) and Pittman went there. Now that he’s (apparently) worked out the academic question, Pittman’s back with what would have been his first choice in the first place.

      Like

  52. OT says:

    Virginia Tech is about to lose $1 million because it has to eat 8000 unsold Sugar Bowl tickets:

    http://www.businessinsider.com/god-save-the-bowls-virginia-tech-could-lose-up-to-1-million-for-playing-in-sugar-bowl-2011-12

    Why?

    Because Alabama and LSU fans were required to buy Sugar Bowl tickets and BCS Championship tickets as a package.

    Naturally, those Alabama and LSU fans have dumped 35000 tickets into the secondary market (i.e. Craigslist, StubHub, etc.) where they are selling at below face value.

    Same thing happened to UCONN last season, when Auburn and Oregon fans flooded the secondary market with 35000 Fiesta Bowl tickets. UCONN fans who wanted to go to the Fiesta Bowl were able to buy cheaper tickets in the secondary market than from the school.

    The Sugar Bowl doesn’t care, as it will get its money.

    The taxpayers in the Commonwealth of Virginia will get screwed, as usual.

    Like

    • Mack says:

      Most or all unsold tickets are counted as valid bowl expenses by PAC, B1G, and B12. The ACC requires schools to sell or eat 8000 tickets, so VT has made its minimum sales target. The $1M will come off of the $6M the ACC gets for the second BCS bid. That is about $4M net to the conferencve vs. the bowl it would have passed on if every ACC team was pushed down. The Big East makes schools eat all unsold tickets. The SEC will take up to 3000 tickets for the Capital One and lesser bowls, but zero on BCS bowls.

      Like

      • duffman says:

        Had the Hokies jumped to the SEC instead of the Tigers, would Va Tech be in the same spot?

        Like

        • Mack says:

          As a SEC member, VT would have eaten the entire 8000 unsold tickets if the SEC label did not increase ticket sales. Auburn had to eat about 2K tickets for the NCS. KY had about 4.5K unsold to the Compass bowl. with the SEC picking up 3K of those. In general the SEC schools do a good job of selling their allotments. All the tie-in bowls being within driving distance helps. I am sure Auburn would have sold out if the NCG was in Miami or New Orleans rather than Phoenix, or if the opponent was a bigger name than Oregon which would leave less tickets on the secondary market.

          Like

        • Gopher86 says:

          They should have nabbed K-State. It’s a small market, but it’s a school that hasn’t been to a bowl in a while. They have a history of traveling well.

          Like

  53. acaffrey says:

    Bernie Fine accusers are suing S.U. Looks like Boeheim was right all along. Still should not have said what he said, but he was right. I am apologizing.

    http://atlanticcoastconfidential.wordpress.com/2011/12/13/boeheim-was-right-its-always-about-the-money/

    Like

    • Brian says:

      After being told they had no criminal case, what do you expect? Civil court is their only recourse. Were the Goldman’s only out for money when they wanted OJ prosecuted? They sued when he was found not guilty because that was all they had left. If Fine did what the accusers claim, then they have a decent case since SU allowed him to take underage ball boys on the road (nobody does that). It is not inherently wrong to seek financial compensation for wrongs done to you, nor does it invalidate your claims.

      Like

      • acaffrey says:

        #1. Their only recourse for what? Fine had been fired. Wouldn’t that be the next most important thing on the agenda–getting Fine out of position to abuse? Conviction or no conviction… nobody is letting Bernie Fine babysit their kids in the foreseeable future. He will never abuse anyone again (assuming he did in the first place, of course).

        #2. They do not have a decent case against SU because of statute of limitation issues. This kid was more of a foster child anyway. Not an actual foster child… but someone who lived with the Fines. Regardless, the suit is not about the abuse anyway. They try to make it all about the abuse, but it’s not. The only arguable cause of action is about defamation–Boeheim saying that they were in it for the money. Ultimately, they are. Because they all of what they could have wanted–Fine fired, JB looks bad and has to apology, media in their court, etc. All that was left was money and, at the end of the day, that’s what they are going to pursue.

        #3. Where do I say that it is inherently wrong to seek damages? It’s not inherently wrong to seek financial compensation, but it is hypocritical to first make your plea on ESPN that you are not seeking $$$ and then file suit seeking $$$. Boeheim said it was all about the money and it apparently is. The other wins for the accusers weren’t good enough.

        #4. OJ Simpson was the perpetrator of a crime. Although he was validly found not guilty after a botched prosecution, the civil trial was directed at him. Here, these accusers are not suing Bernie Fine. They do not care about proving that Bernie Fine abused them. They are bypassing that and going straight for the $$$ angle.

        #5. If you want it to be about the money, fine. That’s your choice. But it turns out that Boeheim was right in saying that it was about the money. Going to be hard to establish the falsity of his statements.

        #6 As for Boeheim’s statement that they are liars. That was incredibly stupid. Whether such a statement is actionable is an entirely different story. It may be characterized as opinion, rather than fact. It may be justified based on its context–responding to an allegation (later retracted by Davis) that Boeheim knew what was going on. So Davis already retracted the statement that Boeheim was responding to. That’s not exactly the strongest case. And then you have damages–what kind of damages are there when (a) Davis did not present the strongest evidence to Syracuse (the tape of Bernie Fine’s wife and Davis talking) when it investigated; and (b) Boeheim retracted his alleged defamatory statements. Boeheim’s apology restored Davis and Lang within the community.

        Unfortunately, this latest tactic is going to be two steps backward for them locally. Far more damaging than just making the accusations. So… they are going to inflict more harm on themselves than if they had just left the status quo from yesterday.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Is it weird walking around in a world where everything is orange? If so, you may want to take off the orange-colored glasses and see what other colors exist. Or maybe you can get some blue ones and join all the PSU fans.

          Like

          • acaffrey says:

            About what? For all I know, Boeheim will be fired. If so, it was because of his stupid comments.

            However, that does not make him wrong in WHAT he said. Rather, it makes him wrong in THAT he said.

            On the Syracuse boards, they dislike me too. Just call it as I see it.

            Like

        • Abe Froman says:

          Neither Fine nor Boeheim nor the University of Syracuse look the slightest bit better in this horrible mess due to the lawsuit.

          Like

    • Abe Froman says:

      I think America is excited about that.

      Like

    • frug says:

      Best joke I’ve heard about this,

      “Wonder what his opinion on the death penalty is”

      Like

      • frug says:

        Oh and I just checked the number 1 search suggestion on Google for Craig James is “killed 5 hookers”. I really hope that becomes a Santorum style running campaign theme.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Well, he’s never denied killing five hookers while at SMU.

          Like

          • Gopher86 says:

            I feel bad for him. Sure, he most likely killed five hookers while at SMU, but at least say ‘allegedly’ and give him the benefit of the doubt. It still hasn’t been proven in a court of law that Craig James killed five hookers while at SMU.

            (just doing my part to give Google some more connections on the phrase)

            Like

          • Brian says:

            I would, of course, have said Craig James allegedly killed five hookers while at SMU, but I wasn’t accusing him. I was just pointing out that he has never denied it.

            Like

          • frug says:

            Listen, I know it is an internet meme that Craig James killed five hookers at SMU. But there has never been any definitive proof that Craig James killed five hookers at SMU. And since murder is a serious allegation I think people should be careful when they joke that Craig James killed five hookers at SMU.

            Hopefully this will give the press the oppurtunity to investigate whether it is true that Craig James killed five hookers at SMU or if it is untrue that Craig James killed five hookers at SMU.

            Like

          • Of course, he could be like Trinity and we’re undercounting the number of (alleged) victims…

            Like

  54. Mike says:

    For those who like history. From the NYT Disunion series today.


    The condemned men were Privates Dennis Corcoran and Michael O’Brien of the Louisiana Tiger Rifles. Outfitted in colorful Zouave uniforms, the Tiger Rifles was one of five companies that made up Maj. Roberdeau Wheat’s 1st Special Battalion, Louisiana Infantry. The battalion had gained considerable fame in both the North and South for its almost reckless bravery at First Bull Run, but it was the men’s behavior off the battlefield that garnered the most attention. Since its arrival in Virginia, Wheat’s Battalion had engaged in several bloody brawls with other units, and many of the men had been arrested for robbery and other criminal activity.

    Soldiers and civilians alike viewed them as dangerous criminals, and the battalion had created so much mayhem that brigade commander Gen. Richard Taylor claimed “every commander desired to be rid of it.” In a letter home informing his sister of the men’s execution, a fellow Louisianian wrote, “They were of the notorious Tiger company, which you have no doubt heard of.” They were, one Maryland soldier claimed, “a rough set of men who had to be ruled with a strong hand.”

    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/13/a-tiger-execution/

    Like

  55. OT says:

    San Diego State’s contract with the BIG EAST:

    http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2011/dec/13/big-east-sdsu-outline-agreement/

    1. $2.5 million entry fee, payable in 5 installments starting June 2014. (Boise State got a better deal with a $2 million entry fee.)

    2. $264,400 reserve fund contribution, also payable in 5 installments

    3. $5 million exit fee, which drops to $1 million if the BIG EAST were to lose its AQ status prior to July 2013. Exit fee drops to $2.5 million if the new BIG EAST TV contract does not allocate 70% to football.

    4. Entire contract is void if the BIG EAST were not able to maintain a 2nd football member west of the Rocky Mountains.

    5. 4 men’s basketball games (2 home, 2 away) vs BIG EAST schools (UCONN is the first one to sign up.)

    ====

    The BIG EAST still has NOT upped its exit fee because neither Air Force nor Navy have joined.

    Navy isn’t available to join the BIG EAST until 2015 at the earliest.

    The BIG EAST needs 2 more football members for 2014. Candidates:

    1. Temple

    2. Villanova

    3. East Carolina (unlikely, due to small TV market)

    4. Hawaii (football-only membership agreement with the Mountain West will expire after the 2013 season)

    UMASS, Texas-San Antonio, Georgia State, etc. won’t be ready until around 2020.

    Like

  56. Brian says:

    Auburn has now lost both coordinators. Ted Roof moved to be DC at UCF instead, and now Malzahn takes the AR St job after turning down better jobs in the past. Is there a problem brewing at AU?

    AL lost their OC, too. Will these losses start to hurt the SEC West?

    Like

    • Brian says:

      I should also mention that Malzahn took a major pay cut to take this job (from $1.3M to $800k reportedly). Granted, he’ll probably only stay for a year or two before moving up, but the previous coach just took the Ole Miss job.

      Like

    • Abe Froman says:

      Curious move for Malzahn, to say the least. I think he still thinks of himself as a high school coach and going to Arkansas State is a way to get back in touch with all his Arkansas HS connections and get away from the insanity that goes with SEC fans. There are rumors about Auburn fans harassing his wife after games when the offense didn’t do well, etc.

      Huge hire for Arkansas State, meanwhile. If Conference USA is looking for new members, this could move ASU up the list.

      Like

      • Abe Froman says:

        And in defense of insane SEC fans, Gus Malzahn’s wife deserves most of what she got.

        It all pretty much started when this video was leaked:

        Like

  57. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7352624/todd-graham-takes-arizona-state-sun-devils-football-coaching-job-leaving-pittsburgh-panthers

    Todd Graham leaves Pitt after one year for ASU. He claims it’s because they have family in the area, but I have to think the death of the BE is a factor. I guess Pitt couldn’t join the ACC fast enough. Will Pitt go through another dumpster fire of a hiring process like last year? Will they have the guts to basically take most of the old PSU staff since they are already familiar with the state?

    Like

  58. mnfanstc says:

    Just finished an interesting take from Mandel’s Mailbag– “Bowls don’t hold same reverance for younger fans…”

    At 43, I consider myself young–however, in the real scheme of things I am somewhere near middle aged, considering average male life around 70 years, give or take…

    Anyway, my take on that read is that change is inevitable… and the old guard (read: guys like Delaney) aren’t going to be around forever. Intimated by some of Mandel’s mail was the fact that most of the the folks of the BCS “generation” have an interest in the title (however mythical) game primarily, with other games being “also-rans”. The “also-rans” yield lower viewership, and lack of ability to sell out bowl games (heck, sometimes filling half the stands)–and these are some of the “premier-tier” bowls… The bowl system has become way too watered-down with lame locations and un-deserving merit—when 70 of the 120 div 1A teams are eligible for post-season, there’s a problem… NO .500 team, or worse, deserves reward!! PERIOD!! In many cases (see UConn, the schools and/or taxpayers pay big money rather than make money—ALSO WRONG!) For many of the lower-tier bowls the school’s cost far exceeds any payout from the bowl. My 1A school down the road depends on public support in addition to the fees/endowments/etcetera that it collects to run… When the state cuts funding—the U has to look at it’s budget… If (when) money is being thrown out the window for some undeserved recognition—I have a beef as a taxpayer… So should you…

    Personally, I take a liking to the historic New Year’s Day bowls… but, even that has changed with the addition of these other lower tier games… Big picture… if the bowls are to remain… should be trimmed to at least half of current number. Otherwise, make them go away and set up and old-fashioned playoff like everyone else does and earn the title the way it’s supposed to be earned, on the field, not by votes or computers. Is easy as 1,2,3… Set up like FCS, then play semis and championship at destination locations… Fini… True national champion. All games have meaning… No questions asked… Thank you…

    Like

    • Brian says:

      mnfanstc,

      Just finished an interesting take from Mandel’s Mailbag– “Bowls don’t hold same reverance for younger fans…”

      At 43, I consider myself young–however, in the real scheme of things I am somewhere near middle aged, considering average male life around 70 years, give or take…

      Anyway, my take on that read is that change is inevitable… and the old guard (read: guys like Delaney) aren’t going to be around forever. Intimated by some of Mandel’s mail was the fact that most of the the folks of the BCS “generation” have an interest in the title (however mythical) game primarily, with other games being “also-rans”. The “also-rans” yield lower viewership, and lack of ability to sell out bowl games (heck, sometimes filling half the stands)–and these are some of the “premier-tier” bowls…

      The bowl system has been changing all along, and the postseason will never stop changing. The bowl system was much better in the 60s-80s, and that is what the middle aged to older fans remember. Televised football game were more rare, and all the bowls were on or near 1/1. Getting to a bowl was more difficult, so it was a bigger reward and fans were more excited to follow the team. When the boomers stop being in charge, a playoff will be implemented. Before then it is iffy in my opinion. Entropy slowly destroys everything, and the CFB postseason is no different.

      The bowl system has become way too watered-down with lame locations and un-deserving merit—when 70 of the 120 div 1A teams are eligible for post-season, there’s a problem… NO .500 team, or worse, deserves reward!! PERIOD!! In many cases (see UConn, the schools and/or taxpayers pay big money rather than make money—ALSO WRONG!)

      There are too many bowls and too many bad teams get to go, but they make money for TV and the cities, so they continue to proliferate. Those are some of the many problems with the current bowl system. That doesn’t mean the idea of the bowl system is bad, just the current greedy implementation of it.

      For many of the lower-tier bowls the school’s cost far exceeds any payout from the bowl. My 1A school down the road depends on public support in addition to the fees/endowments/etcetera that it collects to run… When the state cuts funding—the U has to look at it’s budget… If (when) money is being thrown out the window for some undeserved recognition—I have a beef as a taxpayer… So should you…

      Not every state is in the same position, so local opinions will vary. I also believe most schools cook the books on bowl costs. They bring lots of people they don’t need to bring and rack up every conceivable cost as a way to get leverage in future bowl negotiations. Schools also conveniently forget to mention all the cost and revenue sharing within their conference that reduces their losses, plus revenue made in the years they don’t go that also covers losses in the years they go bowling.

      If the presidents really didn’t think the bowls were a net benefit to the school in terms of advertising and the college experience, they wouldn’t go.

      Personally, I take a liking to the historic New Year’s Day bowls… but, even that has changed with the addition of these other lower tier games…

      Of course it has. 1/1 (or 1/2) used to be all the big games and it was the end of the season. Now crappy bowls start two weeks earlier and extend for several more days after 1/1, and the big bowls are spread out over a week. It makes sense for TV, but it’s bad for the experience of the viewer.

      Big picture… if the bowls are to remain… should be trimmed to at least half of current number.

      If the conferences stopped making deals with them, they would go away. Otherwise, they are businesses with the right to exist.

      People need to understand that those defending the bowl system aren’t defending all the details of the current system. Most bowl proponents would prefer fewer bowls with lower ticket guarantees and no games after 1/1. What they wouldn’t prefer is a playoff.

      The bowls also mean more to B10 fans than anyone else, with the P12 probably second. A big part of that is the long history and tradition of the Rose Bowl. It’s also the northerners wanting a reason to travel someplace warm.

      The B10’s unusual former bowl rules are also a big factor:
      1. After the first Rose Bowl in 1902 for MI, no bowls were allowed for B10 teams until the B10/P8 agreement with the Rose Bowl in 1946.

      2. From 1946-1971, the B10 champ went to the Rose but the same team couldn’t go twice in a row (1961 was the lone exception as MN went again because OSU declined the invitation). That means no B10 team, except MN in 1960-1961, ever went to bowls in back to
      back seasons before the early 1970s. This is why the B10 sent 8 different schools in 8 years to the Rose Bowl from 1961-1968 (all but NW and IA – IA went in 1958, NW in 1948). Starting in 1972 the same team could go to the Rose in consecutive seasons, led by OSU in the 1972-1975 seasons.

      3. Only starting in 1975 did the B10 allow other bowls besides the Rose.

      B10 fans were relatively bowl deprived for a long time, so bowl trips mean more to them. For younger fans who didn’t experience any of this (or even know about it), the bowls mean a lot less.

      Otherwise, make them go away and set up and old-fashioned playoff like everyone else does and earn the title the way it’s supposed to be earned, on the field, not by votes or computers.

      I don’t agree that a bracketed single elimination is how a title is “supposed” to be earned. I don’t believe wildcards/at-larges should ever have a chance to win the title. I don’t believe single elimination tournaments are good at determining which team is the best. I don’t believe being good in December should trump being good in September, October and November. I don’t believe determining a National Champion is the primary goal of collegiate sports.

      Like

      • cutter says:

        Brian-

        So you don’t believe determining a national champion is the primary goal of collegiate sports. Does that apply to all collegiate sports or just Division 1-A football? If yes, then do you propose eliminating all NCAA tournaments–single elimination or otherwise–for all men’s, women’s and co-ed collegiate sports? Because that would be the logical extension of your argument if you were thinking of applying it only to football. Should we also ban conference championship tournaments while we’re at it? Instead of awarding trophies, why don’t we just give them all participation medals like this was a t-ball league?

        If wildcards and at larges should never have a chance to win a title, would you have eliminated one loss Alabama or one loss Stanford from any playoff scenario you could conceive? Both teams went 11-1, but failed to win their conference, let alone their division. The would be “at-large” teams in any playoff scenario currently on the table, but in your opinion, they shouldn’t be included.

        In order for a team to be in a playoff of up to eight teams (which is the scenario I would propose), the teams involved would have to be good in September, October and November just to get there–and they’d have to be good in December to win the thing. You seem to completely overlook that simple fact in the final paragraph of your statement (unless you’re advocating a playoff system beyond eight teams).

        If, like the BCS, an eight-team playoff system demanded that a team be in the top 14 of the rating system used to evaluate the different programs, then that’d require them to have an exceptionally strong season. I have proposed the five major conferences have autobids as long as their teams are in the top 14 with the three remaining teams be the next three best at-large squads. If you have a problem with an at-large team getting into the playoff, then put out a rule that states the top four seeded teams must be conference champions (and thus would get home field advantage in the playoff system I’d advocate).

        That means instead of Alabama being the second rated team in the playoff and Stanford coming in at fourth, they would slip to #5 and #6. The first round of the playoff would then be something like this (since ACC Champion Clemson is outside the Top 14, they aren’t in the playoff):

        #8 Arkansas at #1 LSU (SEC Champion)
        #5 Alabama at #4 Wisconsin (B10 Champion)

        #7 Boise State at #2 Oklahoma State (Big XII Champion)
        #6 Stanford at #3 Oregon (Pac 12 Champion)

        Like

        • acaffrey says:

          I used to be pro-playoff, but no longer am. The post-season tournaments dictate who the champion is… but they detract from the urgency of the regular season. Allowing 8 teams to make the playoffs will do that. It just will.

          North Carolina lost to UNLV. Doesn’t matter at all. Lost to Kentucky. Who cares? Ohio State lost to Kansas. Yawn. None of it matters because all you need to do is get your 24 wins and see what happens in March.

          Wisconsin beats MSU and OSU… they play LSU. They didn’t and now they don’t. Everyone else lost too.

          It came down to Alabama and Oklahoma State. There are good arguments for OSU, but I am quite fine with Alabama getting the nod. Whomever wins… it will reflect a great season AND great conclusion.

          Like

          • cutter says:

            acafffrey – You’re comparing apples and oranges here if you think men’s basketball and football are in any way comparable regarding the regular season and how an eight-team playoff would shake out. The field for basketball is infinitely larger than football plus the number of games is roughly two and a half times as many.

            One aspect that is similar is seeding and that’s where the regular season in basketball counts. Not only does it effect which teams you play, but higher seeded teams generally don’t play far from their homes.

            An eight-team college football playoff would be working with the exact same concepts, but on a much more compact scale. A no loss or one loss team would be working not only to be higher-seeded, but to get home field advantage in the first- and perhaps the second round as well.

            The conference playoff games would also have more meaning. Instead of most of them deciding which team goes to what bowl, they would have much larger stakes. Teams that win go to the playoff and get a shot at the national championship while the ones that lose get a nice consolation prize with a bowl game. A victory might also mean being a higher seed or hosting a game on your home field in the first or second rounds.

            Of course, you don’t get into the playoffs if at the minimum you play well during the season and win your division. A conference playoff win also doesn’t guarantee a trip to the national championship playoffs if you aren’t in the top 14 of the rating system, so it rewards performance during the regular season as well.

            The maxim I’m operating under is that a national championship in college football–the second most popular sport in the country–should be decided on the field and not by coaches and other pollsters who either have an agenda or can’t possibly watch all the games coupled to six computer rating systems of which five are unpublished and none take into account strength of schedule or victory margin.

            No other professional or collegiate sport operates in this fashion for good reason–it’s a crazy way to do it. What we’re seeing now is an outgrowth of the bowl system coupled by the desire of the university presidents and the major conference commissioners to control the football post-season and keeping it out of the hands of the NCAA. It’s more valuable to the latter parties to keep it that way because these teams and the bowl games provide essentially free advertising to the schools and serve as vehicles to increase admissions applications, solicit money from alumni, entertain major donors, etc.

            Like

        • Brian says:

          cutter,

          So you don’t believe determining a national champion is the primary goal of collegiate sports.

          Correct.

          Does that apply to all collegiate sports or just Division 1-A football?

          I said collegiate sports, didn’t I?

          If yes, then do you propose eliminating all NCAA tournaments–single elimination or otherwise–for all men’s, women’s and co-ed collegiate sports?

          I don’t think “primary” means what you think it means. I never said it wasn’t a goal of collegiate sports, but I certainly don’t believe it is the primary goal. I’d be perfectly happy if the NCAA did cancel all of their tournaments, but I don’t think they need to. I would suggest they find cheaper ways to run many of them, since they spend a lot of money on non-revenue generating sports and that can teach the wrong lesson.

          Because that would be the logical extension of your argument if you were thinking of applying it only to football.

          No, it wouldn’t be. I don’t think you understand logic very well.

          Should we also ban conference championship tournaments while we’re at it?

          Again, I’d rather they just made them a lot cheaper, but I’m fine with banning them. Especially in hoops, where their only purpose is to send less qualified teams to the NCAA tournament.

          Instead of awarding trophies, why don’t we just give them all participation medals like this was a t-ball league?

          Why don’t we give them nothing, instead?

          If wildcards and at larges should never have a chance to win a title, would you have eliminated one loss Alabama or one loss Stanford from any playoff scenario you could conceive?

          Yes.

          Both teams went 11-1, but failed to win their conference, let alone their division. The would be “at-large” teams in any playoff scenario currently on the table, but in your opinion, they shouldn’t be included.

          Correct. Oregon should be in instead of Stanford. Otherwise you are penalizing them for scheduling LSU OOC which sends the wrong message. LSU should be in over AL and they are. AL has a paper thin resume if you strip the name of their conference from it. AL already lost to LSU, so they have no fair complaint to me.

          In order for a team to be in a playoff of up to eight teams (which is the scenario I would propose),

          Honestly, I don’t give a rat’s ass what you or anyone else would propose. It doesn’t change my opinion. But go on.

          the teams involved would have to be good in September, October and November just to get there–and they’d have to be good in December to win the thing. You seem to completely overlook that simple fact in the final paragraph of your statement (unless you’re advocating a playoff system beyond eight teams).

          I advocate no playoff whatsoever. As for having to be good all season, your 8 team playoff would have 2 loss teams. How good did they have to be, exactly?

          If, like the BCS, an eight-team playoff system demanded that a team be in the top 14 of the rating system used to evaluate the different programs, then that’d require them to have an exceptionally strong season.

          I don’t consider 10-2 exceptionally strong.

          I have proposed the five major conferences have autobids as long as their teams are in the top 14 with the three remaining teams be the next three best at-large squads. If you have a problem with an at-large team getting into the playoff, then put out a rule that states the top four seeded teams must be conference champions (and thus would get home field advantage in the playoff system I’d advocate).

          Autobids suck. Nobody should be promised anything. At large teams suck worse. They should never, ever, under any circumstances get a chance at the title.

          As with every playoff proposal I’ve ever seen, yours sucks from my perspective.

          Like

          • cutter says:

            Brian – I have to commend you for providing one of the more non-sensical replies I’ve ever read concerning not only the prospect of a college football playoff in Division 1-A, but on the entire nature and value of competitive sports.

            You want to cancel the national championships for the non-revenue sports because they (which I assume you mean the schools and the NCAA) spend too much money on them and that “teaches the wrong lesson”–is that correct? I would love to find out what the “wrong lesson” here is being taught. Is it that hard work and success on the collegiate athletic playing field shouldn’t be rewarded by having a post-season tournament–unless the sport you play in turns a profit?

            Exactly what sort of cost cutting measures would you employ for the non-revenue sports tournaments? Would you, for example, cut down the field for women’s basketball to maybe the top eight teams? I’m sure that’ll go over real well with a lot of people. Maybe men’s ice hockey should just be the Frozen Four and the heck with the other twelve teams? And hey, don’t worry about those big, expensive trophies–just give everyone certificates of participation (but don’t include the frames because they cost too much).

            I actually have some sympathy with you concerning conference tournaments, especially with men’s and women’s college basketball. But unless you can show me that these tournaments are profitable, then I don’t think you have a leg to stand on regarding their actual costs.

            I realize you don’t like playoffs, but since you don’t advocate autobids for conference champions or at large bids, who exactly would participate in a playoff that you would design?

            You said Oregon would go over Stanford, but by your logic, that’s based solely on head-to-head competition and not because the Ducks won the Pac 12 championship (although teams with two losses aren’t very good “exceptionally strong” in your world). The same goes for LSU and Alabama IRT the SEC. Would you add anyone else to your mythical playoff, like 11-1 Oklahoma State, for example? You’d probably want a fourth team unless you think letting the top seed have a bye while the #2 and #3 teams play one another is the better option. If anything, it’d certainly save the money to stage the game required to have Team #4 play LSU in a Plus One situation.

            But if you did have a number four seed, who would it be if it isn’t Alabama or Stanford? Since two loss teams are persona non grata in your post-season college football playoff world, I guess it would go to 11-1 Boise State by default. After all, conference champions in your setup don’t matter (and those conference championship games are just so damned expensive to run), so it’s not a problem that BSU didn’t win the Mountain West.

            I almost feel sorry for you, Brian. College football is trending towards a playoff of some kind with a Plus One on the horizon in a couple of years and it seems to me you just aren’t going to enjoy it one bit. And goodness gracious, if an eight-team playoff is ever set up and some two-loss team like a Wisconsin or Oregon from this season wins their conference and ends up playing in it, you’re going to end up muttering to yourself whenever sports radio or ESPN talks about or promotes those games and writing angry things on Frank the Tank’s message board.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            I don’t like the conference basketball tournaments. I think there are at least 20 too many teams in the NCAA tourney (and at least 5 too many conferences-maybe a dozen too many-but that’s a separate issue). There’s no doubt in my mind that they conference tourneys and expansion of the basketball tourney have devalued the regular season, turning it for the best programs, into merely an extended exhibition season.

            So I can sympathize with some of the arguments against a playoff. But I definitely believe in championships. And by their nature, the overwhelming majority of competitive athletes want the chance to prove they are the best or to compare themselves with the best. And while too many teams can devalue the regular season, I think an 8 team football playoff would enhance the regular season. I don’t believe a 16 team playoff would hurt it, but I can see the concerns that it might. I just don’t think many of those teams in a 16 team bracket have a reasonable chance of winning it all or deserve a shot at doing so.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            cutter,

            I have to commend youI’ve ever read concerning not only the prospect of a college football playoff in Division 1-A, but on the entire nature and value of competitive sports.

            I didn’t discuss the prospect of a playoff.

            You want to cancel the national championships for the non-revenue sports

            You have significant reading comprehension issues, since I never said that or anything remotely similar to it. You should perhaps seek some remedial education.

            I realize you don’t like playoffs, but since you don’t advocate autobids for conference champions or at large bids, who exactly would participate in a playoff that you would design?

            Nobody. I would design a zero team playoff. Apparently you forgot what you wrote at the start of that sentence, that I don’t like playoffs.

            Like

          • Purduemoe says:

            How is it that the pro-playoff people on this board can never seem to actually read? Brian provides about as well reasoned a support for his position as I have ever read, and it still gets called nonsensical because he doesn’t tow the “playoffs-now” party line. How long will it take before these people realize that a Playoff is not a Panacea for college football, and that it will do the same thing to college football it has done to college basketball- essentially erode all but alumni interest in the regular season in exchange for a couple of weeks of national exposure. Some of us don’t want that. Some of us feel that the current system actually has a better chance at providing a real champion than a playoff. Some of us even preferred the old bowl system to what we have now. Not everyone wants a playoff, and your arguments for one are not as strong as you believe.

            Like

        • m (Ag) says:

          “you don’t believe determining a national champion is the primary goal of collegiate sports”

          The winner of a national tournament is a national tournament champion, but that is different from the best team that year (especially when the tournament is single elimination).

          If you really like determining national champions, just abolish the regular season in basketball and run 4 tournaments a year with every school invited. You would have 4 national champions every year! Every now and then the same team might win more than one.

          Perhaps a more realistic goal would be basketball changing it’s season so it had 2 tournaments per year with every team invited. Every Tuesday (say) would be reserved for tournament games, with half the teams in the tournament getting knocked out every week. The first tournament could start mid-October, skip a few weeks around finals, and have the last few games at neutral sites at the end of December.

          You could have another tournament with every team in the country starting in the New Year and ending in the first few weeks of March.

          The first month or so wouldn’t be terribly exciting, but there would be at least one surprising upset every week, and more attention would be brought to each tournament as it progressed.

          You would have 2 national tournament champions each school year; in addition, this schedule would allow regular season conference and non-conference games could be scheduled every week. Maybe the conferences could end the year with their own tournaments after the 2nd national tournament ended.

          It would be rare (and noteworthy) when the same team won both national tournaments in a given year. Of course the AP (or bloggers, or whoever) could give their own ‘Best Team of the year’ award to a team that won neither tournament, taking into account both tournaments and the regular season.

          This, by the way, is similar to how European soccer operates. There are national tournaments operating at the same time as a long round-robin league schedule. It is not unusual for one team to win the league while a different team from the same league wins the single elimination tournament. Few people think winning the tournament automatically means that team is the ‘best team’ of the year.

          I’m not anti-tournaments for basketball; they’re exciting, but I don’t think they pick the best team of the year. I wouldn’t mind adding more. I am against a football tournament. If the athletes at the highest levels could really handle more games without impacting their long term health (which I am doubtful of), I would add more games for everyone and not run any kind of elimination tournament.

          Like

    • Mack says:

      Most of the bottom 15 bowls (pay <$1.7M per team) are owned by ESPN, so they will not go away unless the schools refuse to go. 80% of the schools in these bowls are from non-AQ conferences.

      A good first step would be for all the AQ conferences to quit making commitments to these bowls where at best the school and conference break even. The PAC has 3 ties to these bottom bowls; B1G and ACC have 2; SEC and BE 1; and B12 zero. That would leave PSU, Purdue, UCLA, ASU, Pittsburg, and Illinois at home this year if the B1G, PAC, and BE enforced this. Excluding PSU, these teams are 6-6 or worse.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Bowls can still be good for schools even if they don’t make money. It’s a lot of advertising for them to have their name in the national consciousness. It lets them promote more success to recruits. It also helps their team for next season with the extra practices.

        Like

        • redwood86 says:

          Spoken like a true member of a Bowl Committee.

          Like

          • zeek says:

            In fairness though, for most of the FBS schools outside of the national brands and a handful of other princes that can challenge for the BCS, what else is there? For those schools, the bowls are a good way to keep the alumni that care about football happy, etc.

            At schools where their ceiling is 7-8 wins as the typical “good” season along with a 9-10 win season every decade or two, the bowls are important for fundraising/brand value/alumni maintenance (getting them to give more etc.).

            Like

          • Mack says:

            There are 20 bowls that pay enough to ensure a profit. The B1G has 7 teams in these bowls for 2011. The SEC has 7 non-BCS tie-ins that pay $1.7M or more, the B12 has 6, the B1G and ACC have 5. The B1G should be able to get at least one more high paying tie-in and dump the rest. The Pizza bowl will still invite a B1G team if one is available as an at large selection. The B1G and other AQ conferences can allow schools to accept at large bids if they believe the school believes the exposure is worth paying for the losses. Now those losses are subsidized by the B1G.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            I wish. I’d take the paycheck for a non-job any day of the week.

            Like

        • bullet says:

          They get the extra practice and get to bring contributors and smooze with them.

          There is generally value to the school even when it loses money.

          I suspect there would be more schools decline bowls if they didn’t get extra practice time. Some of the 6-6 teams wouldn’t be interested.

          Like

  59. zeek says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-sports/story/_/id/7353566/petition-threatens-ncaa-2000-athlete-stipend

    “Ninety-seven schools have signed a petition asking the NCAA board to reconsider legislation passed in October to provide an additional $2,000 toward the full cost of attendance. If the number of schools reaches 125 by Dec. 26, the legislation will be suspended.

    There could be chaos for next year’s recruits.

    David Berst, the Division I vice president for governance, says roughly 1,000 players have already signed letters-of-intent and many expected to get the extra money. Berst says those promises will be honored. But depending on the board’s January actions, Berst says it is possible any new signees would not have access to the $2,000 stipend.”

    ——————————–

    Kind of crazy with how 1k recruits will get it regardless of what happens in January.

    This to me just shows that it might be time to split the BCS schools off. The NCAA model works great for the non-revenue sports, but for football and basketball, the one-size fits all model is at its breaking point. The divisions between the haves and have-nots has absolutely exploded due to the revenue ramp up from ticket sales in massive stadiums and huge TV deals over the past 25 years (best shown by Texas going from $2-4M to $130M over the past 3 decades or whatever the exact numbers are).

    Like

    • zeek says:

      I realize that the major decision makers don’t want to do it and will avoid it to the end.

      But we’re basically at the end game in terms of conference expansion. 5×12-14 may end up being a long term stability among the power conferences, since Texas is intent on running its own show for the medium-haul at least and outside of Notre Dame, the ACC and Big Ten are at long term stability.

      Like

    • bullet says:

      Texas has gone from mid-30s to the $140 million since 1996. And that doesn’t include the quadrupling of their tier II contract or the money from the Longhorn network.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      Those complaining are generally FCS or non-football schools, not the bottom of FBS according to the article.

      Like

    • frug says:

      I remember the Georgia State AD saying (or at least implying) that the $2,000 may be the straw that the breaks the camels back, and prompts the have nots to ultimately decide they can not compete and decide to split (even if its the AQs that ultimately are the ones who leave).

      Actually, if the big schools ever wanted to break away this could be the best way for them to avoid political fallout. They can just note that they are trying to do what is best for student athletes and it is the small schools who are unhappy with the status quo.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        It can eliminate the Butlers from being able to compete in basketball. It could break some programs if they tried to keep up.

        Of course the big boys think there are at least 100 too many schools in Division I. I’d agree that there are at least 30 or 40 who have no business being there.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          D-I
          I-A 120
          I-AA 118
          No FB 97
          Total = 335
          66% public
          34% private

          D-II
          Total = 302
          52% public
          48% private

          D-III
          Total = 442
          19% public
          81% private

          I think the big problem is that football should have many fewer schools per level than other sports. I-A should be more like 80 schools and so should I-AA. D-I total should cut off around 230 just to keep the balance. The lower schools can’t really compete and shouldn’t have to. Conferences that never get above a 14 seed in the tournament shouldn’t be on the same level as the big boys. There are probably 8-10 conferences that always get the bottom seedings, and if their champions are never better than the middle of the top conferences then they don’t belong on the same level.

          The NCAA needs more levels. Quit sending 15-15 major conference teams to the NIT and send the little guys there instead. Let them compete against equivalent teams instead of just being cannon fodder for #1 seeds.

          Like

          • bullet says:

            Its interesting that whenever the # of schools in the top division starts to get up in the 105-110 range they try to do a realignment and knock the number back down to the 80s and 90s. They switched from university/college to Divisions I, II, III back around 1970. From 1978-1982 they moved schools from I and II and actually moved about half the MAC down for a year. Later they upped the sports and funding requirements and setup the minimum 30k stadium rule with minimum attendance requirements and schools like Wichita State, Long Beach State, Lamar dropped. Then they setup up the 15,000 attendance requirement (while dropping the stadium 30k requirement) a few years back, but they never really enforced that, so the number keeps growing.

            Like

  60. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7353605/south-carolina-gamecocks-not-disputing-rules-violations-cut-scholarships

    SC is self-imposing the loss of 6 total scholarships over 3 seasons in football, plus reduced official visits and probation, due to over $55,000 in improper benefits.

    Like

  61. bullet says:

    Houston is looking for an architect for their new stadium. My guess is they need a drawing to get the name sponsor. UH AD says BE revenue is expected to be more than $10 million vs. $3 million in CUSA. That includes NCAA tourney revenue. He’s credible and has avoided constant talking through this whole process, so I suspect that is a realistic estimate. I saw an independent consultant say they expected $100-$120 million for the TV contract, down from the $130 million ESPN offered before Pitt and SU left. That $130 million was around $11 million for the football schools. That would be $8.5 to $10.2 million in TV money, in addition to NCAA tourney revenues and other income and so is consistent with the UH AD’s belief that it would be greater than $10 million.

    http://www.chron.com/sports/cougars/article/Amid-Big-East-celebration-UH-officials-talk-new-2393437.php

    Like

  62. Brian says:

    TAMU has now lost their DC and interim coach Tim DeRuyter since he has been hired to replace Pat Hill at Fresno State. Who will be the replacement interim coach before Sumlin arrives? Will TAMU end up with a player/coach by the time of the game?

    Like

  63. Brian says:

    Gary Crowton is out as OC at Maryland and Mike Locksley is replacing him. The MD fans seem excited based on Locksley’s reputation as a Dc area recruiter.

    Like

  64. Mike says:

    Must read Q&A from Mizzou’s Chancellor Brady Deaton and Athletic Director Mike Alden.

    http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/2011/dec/14/deaton-alden-discus-mus-move-sec/?sports

    Like

    • bullet says:

      Unlike a lot of these, there’s nothing really new, just confirmation of what we thought. OU’s Boren lost Missouri for the Big 12 with his last minute flirting with the Pac. And the Missouri to SEC and WVU to Big 12 in 2012 is still not 100% certain, but both are extremely likely. Missouri left for stability.

      Like

  65. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    Here’s the 2011 CFB attendance report.

    http://web1.ncaa.org/mfb/2011/Internet/attendance/FBS_AVGATTENDANCE.pdf

    Top 25 by conference:

    B1G – #1 Michigan, #2 Ohio St., #4 Penn St., #12 Nebraska, #15 Wisconsin, #20 Michigan St., and #21 Iowa.

    SEC – #3 Alabama, #6 Tennessee, #7 LSU, #8 Georgia, #9 Florida, #11 Auburn, #16 South Carolina, and #22 Arkansas.

    Big XII – #5 Texas, #10 Texas A&M, #13 Oklahoma, and #25 Mizzou.

    Independent – #14 Notre Dame

    ACC – #17 Clemson, #18 Florida St., and #23 Virginia Tech.

    Pac-12 – #19 USC and #24 Washington.

    Leaders from conferences not included in the top 25:

    Big East – #32 West Virginia
    CUSA – #40 East Carolina
    MWC – #61 San Diego St
    WAC – #77 Fresno St
    Sunbelt – #78 Louisiana Lafayette
    MAC – #81 Temple

    Conference movers:

    #10 Texas A&M
    #25 Mizzou
    #32 West VA
    #50 Pitt
    #60 Syracuse
    #61 San Diego St
    #64 TCU
    #68 UCF
    #69 Boise St
    #76 Houston
    #92 SMU

    Like

    • Eric says:

      Interesting to see Penn State below capacity. I guess this means they didn’t sell out some of the earlier games?

      Like

    • bullet says:

      The latest rounds of expansion have decreased the average attendance in every conference that changed other than the Big 10:
      4 year average 2015 lineup (2010 lineup), 4 year median (2010)

      SEC 75,502 (75,940)/ 80,044 (81,888)
      B1G 71,391 (70,111)/ 72,348 (70,388)
      Big 12 56,701 (62,882)/ 50,264 (53,294)
      Pac 12 53,063 (54,124)/ 53,122 (54,370)
      ACC 50,474 (51,510)/ 48,785 (48,785)
      BE 35,604 (44,015)/ 35,607 (44,095)
      MWC 26,681 (29,709)/ 23,311 (27,261)
      CUSA 26,695 (27,211)/ 23,699 (24,340)
      WAC 16,598 (22,675)/ 16,514 (17,974)
      SB 17,970/ 17,942-lineup didn’t change
      MAC 16,386/ 15,952-lineup didn’t change

      This shows the gap growing between the SEC/B1G and the Big 12 and the rest as well as the Big East falling out of touch with the top 5 and now being closer to the bottom 5. Similarly, the WAC is now similar to MAC and Sun Belt instead of midway between them and the MWC/CUSA. These figures demonstrate the earning capacity (other than TV) of the schools in the various conferences. It also shows part of the reason it is hard to expand as nearly everyone was taking schools with lower average attendance than their conference norm.

      All 27 of the WAC/MAC/SB schools are in the bottom 33 in 4 year average attendance. And other than ND and BYU, the top school outside the Big 5 conferences is East Carolina at #51.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        I’m not including any moveups-(UMASS, TX St, UTSA, USA). And the 2015 lineups are based on today! Much could change next week, let alone by 2015.

        Like

      • Mack says:

        I noticed the bottom of the B12 is above the bottom of other AQ conferences. The difference: It is future member TCU. I doubt long time members Northwestern, Vandy, Washington State, or Wake Forest / Duke would be getting invites to their conferences today. The Big East only had Cincinnati below TCU, but 4 of the 5 new members are lower including #92 SMU beating out #84 Duke for the new low from AQ conferences. The best the BE has left is Louisville averaging 48,500.

        Like

        • Jake says:

          I’m under no illusions about the size/intensity of TCU’s fan base, but in our defense, we were playing this season in a half-built stadium with a capacity of around 35,000. And hey, we did have 112% capacity, which might be partly due to this list including the BYU game (at Cowboys Stadium) as a TCU home game, but that’s still nothing to go shaking stick-like objects at. And we’re still ahead of BC, who is certainly no long-time member of the ACC. Last year we averaged around 42,000. Next year we’ll be back at 45,000 seating capacity (although estimates are updated regularly), plus around 5,000 SRO. And with Big 12 opponents to draw fans, shouldn’t be quite as much of a struggle to fill it up. Hard to get people interested in a Thanksgiving weekend game against New Mexico.

          Also, Eastern Michigan averaged just over 4,000 fans? Totaling 25,000 for the season? Wow.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            EMU didn’t win 6 games from 1996-2010. Ron English won 2 games total in his first two seasons. I can understand a less than enthusiastic fan base.

            Hopefully they do better next year with a 6-6 season to build on.

            Like

          • Mack says:

            No knock intended on TCU. This is a comment on how hard it will be for the B12 to get back to 12 without significant dilution, and how low the Big East had to go to get to 10.

            Like

          • Jake says:

            Well, BYU is out there, if anyone can find a way to work with them. After that there’s Louisville. Boise has some pretty big stadium expansion plans lined up, and they might be able to get themselves to around a 50,000 average eventually.

            If the Big 12 is serious about surviving long-term, it should start talking to some ACC schools, see if there’s any unease to exploit. Sure, it’s an understatement to call that a long shot, but you’d be crazy to think the Big 12 is stable as it is, and what have you got to lose?

            Like

  66. m (Ag) says:

    The new NFL TV package looks like it will damage ratings for Thursday night college games. The current NFL Network package doesn’t compete much with college because many people don’t have the Network and because many of the games are after the college season ends.

    However, the new contract moves the Thanksgiving night game to NBC, which is certainly going to hurt any college game that goes up against it (rumors have been the Longhorns will replace the Aggies on that night with another Texas school). They are also supposedly adding more Thursday night games which may then be sold to a new network. If they go to a commonly available network like TNT that will reduce any college game on at the same time to second class status.

    Like

    • Michael in Raleigh says:

      I think there won’t be any more Thanksgiving Day college football games. Going head-to-head against the NFL is a no-win situation.

      I hope the NFL doesn’t start having too many Thursday night games prior to the end of the college football season. I’ve always liked it that the NFL, with few exceptions, has steered clear of airing games at the same time as college games, which is where the NFL gets its players. Then again, college football is who set the precedent for this when it started playing games on Friday nights, the traditional time for high school games.

      Like

      • I would be very surprised if the NFL doesn’t have an early season Thursday night package in place for 2013. It’s unbelievably low hanging revenue fruit for the NFL owners to the point where I’m amazed that they haven’t sold the package already. This is something that media-types seem to think is a foregone conclusion, especially since the NFL decided to not extend the regular season. That would definitely hurt the ESPN Thursday night college football package.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          I don’t think this is anything new. The Cowboys and Lions have been playing on Thanksgiving TH for years. The Longhorns and Aggies generally played on Thanksgiving (although there were a lot of Friday games during the Big 12 years). And that has happened despite the Cowboys game which is huge competition.

          Typically, the HS, colleges and pros have had an understanding. TH/Sat was college during college season, Sun/M was pro and F was HS. If the pros get greedy and start infringing too much on college time, they may severely damage the free farm system they have. They may also tick off some alumni who have taxpayers fund stadiums for the pros.

          Like

          • m (Ag) says:

            I didn’t follow the A&M-UT game until I enrolled; it was a night game that was then switched to Fridays. Was it previously held at the same time as the NFL games?

            Like

          • bullet says:

            It varied year to year. Sometimes there was overlap. From a fan’s standpoint, you couldn’t attend one and watch the other.

            Like

  67. Michael in Raleigh says:

    Okay, I’d like to recap where the expansion issues currently stand. Correct me where I’m wrong.

    – The 2014 Big East football lineup will officially consist of at least ten schools from New England, Greater New York, the Ohio Valley, Florida, Texas, southern California, and the Pacific Northwest.

    – 2014 “Mount USA” football will consist of 17 schools spanning from Hawaii to rural eastern North Carolina. UTEP would presumably shift to a division with the MWC schools, meaning there would be nine schools in the Hawaii/Pacific/Mountain Time division and 8 schools in the Central/Eastern Time division.

    – Within the realm of reason, Big East football could lose up to 4 more schools to any of three conferences. Cincinnati and Louisville would only have the Big 12 as options. Rutgers and UConn could also possibly join the Big 12, but it’s entirely possible they could join either the Big Ten or ACC. Those conferences, though, would probably require one of them to be paired with Notre Dame.

    – Barring further defections, though, Big East football intends to add only two more schools. Options may include Navy, Temple, Villanova, Memphis, ECU… anyone else? Air Force and Notre Dame are not options.

    – One interesting side effect of the possible MWC-C-USA merger is that the WAC may have been spared from another large scale raid. Even if “Mount USA” is raided even further by the Big East, there will still be more than enough schools remaining to have a very sizable league. The merger means that C-USA’s won’t have to replenish itself with multiple Sun Belt teams, nor will the MWC have to replenish its losses with more WAC teams. The worst they will do is add one more school out of those leagues for the sake of getting to even numbers. (In other words, this is bad news for Utah State and Louisiana Tech.)

    Like

    • bullet says:

      I’ve read CUSA is supposed to discuss the merger in January. To me that sounds like they are leaning that way, but its still a long ways away. In any event, if the BE takes more schools that changes the equation.

      Like

    • OT says:

      Hawaii’s football-only affiliation contract with the Mountain West Conference only covers the 2012 and 2013 seasons.

      That means Hawaii can apply to join the BIG EAST as a football-only member in 2014.

      Hawaii is a much better fit with the BIG EAST than with the Mountain West if Hawaii decides that it couldn’t function as an independent in football.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        OT,

        Hawaii is a much better fit with the BIG EAST than with the Mountain West if Hawaii decides that it couldn’t function as an independent in football.

        How does Hawaii fit in with the BE at all, except for being bad at football? They aren’t good at hoops. They don’t spend much on FB or athletics in general. They are forever away from the home of the BE. HI isn’t a major media market, either.

        Like

        • Michael in Raleigh says:

          @Brian,

          I think OT meant that Hawaii would be a football-only member of the Big East, just as it will be a football-only member of the MWC. It’s will be a Big West member for all other sports.

          Keep in mind that one of the appealing things Hawaii offers is the option of a 13th game for teams who play them on the road.

          This isn’t to say that Hawaii is a no-brainer or anything like that. It’s just that its drawbacks aren’t necessarily as bad as they seem, and that it does have some merits as a candidate.

          Personally, I think Memphis as a full-member or Temple or ECU as football-only members would make way more sense.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            Yes, I know he meant FB only, but I was examining the whole culture of HI in terms of fit with the BE. BE schools are MBB focused and in big markets. HI is neither. How is HI a better fit with the BE than the MWC?

            Like

          • Richard says:

            Anyone still care about culture? I don’t think the BE (taking in the bball-centric big markets of Boise, Annapolis, probably Colorado Springs, and even Orlando), or MWC (merging with CUSA) do.

            Really, the MWC-CUSA agglomeration isn’t going to be much different from the BE, except smaller-market.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Well, OT is the one that claimed HI is better fit for the BE than the MWC. That isn’t true by geography or performance, so culture was the only other reason I could think of.

            Like

          • Richard says:

            He’s probably thinking of money, and the BE would pay more, so if Hawaii gets the chance, I’d urge them to join the BE as well. Heck, I’d urge them to go my route (independent with a playing arrangement with the BE) even if they can’t get membership with the BE.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            I agree that independence is best, followed by the BE. But OT said HI was a better fit for the BE, not that the BE was a better choice for HI.

            Like

      • Richard says:

        BTW, my own opinion is that, if the BE gets the 12 teams it wants, it would make sense simply for Hawaii to become independent but come to an agreement with the BE to play 6 football games against BE teams late in the year (half the conference every year). That way, everybody gets what they want. Hawaii gets to keep all the money from its local PPV deal (about $5M, which is more than the MWC TV payout) and gets security of scheduling even as an independent. BE doesn’t dilute it’s TV package and doesn’t have to pay to travel to Hawaii too frequently but they still get to visit Hawaii and get an extra game every 4th year. They also get a slot in the Hawaii Bowl. The military academies would love to visit Hawaii every 4th year, Boise and SDSU probably would like it as well, and the other schools wouldn’t mind this deal.

        Plus, Hawaii could still play BYU (or ND or a B12 team) during championship week.

        Like

  68. duffman says:

    SEC schedule for 2012?

    http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports_college_uf/2011/12/signs-point-to-sec-football-schedules-coming-out-next-week.html

    from the Orlando Sentinel

    The solution is one that might only work for the 2012 season. McGarity said Thursday that a new model would be used for 2013 and beyond. It’s not known what that model will be, but it will not be a nine-game schedule, Bloom said. The SEC has repeatedly asserted it is not adding another conference game since expanding to include Missouri and Texas A&M.

    .

    1) Looks like they are staying with 8 conference games
    2) Repeated no plans to play 9 conference games in the future 2012, 2013, ????

    Here is how they break down the Gators for next season :

    Home : UK, USC, LSU (permanent west)
    Away : UT, VU, UGA (Jacksonville)

    Home : Missouri (new)
    Away : ???? (old west rotating)

    OOC :
    Home – BGSU from MAC, La La from Sun Belt, Jacksonville St from OVC
    Away – FSU

    Like

    • m (Ag) says:

      That article matches up with the leaked schedules I’ve seen. Missouri travels to East division teams that only had 2 home division games scheduled, while hosting those who already had 3 home games. The same for A&M and West division teams.

      The rumored A&M schedule has Florida traveling to College Station, giving the dream home schedule of LSU, Alabama, Florida, and Arkansas (though that game will probably continue to be at Dallas).

      Hopefully the SEC will rebalance the division schedules after the first year, because it’s a big bounce from LSU, Bama, and Arkie to Auburn, Ole Miss, and MSU.

      Missouri’s leaked schedule has them supposedly traveling to Ole Miss. That means that Ole Miss will travel to Vanderbilt instead of hosting them as they would have. It appears that all of the East teams will be hosting their permanent rivals next year and traveling to their rotating opponent.

      When you work out how an 8 game schedule would work (1 home game, 1 away game against the other division) you find that synchronizing the permanent rivals is necessary in order to permit all of the teams to appear as rotating opponents on the schedule. The SEC could have waited a few years to do this; if they were going to a 9 game schedule they wouldn’t need to do it at all. It does seem that they plan to stay at 8 games for awhile.

      Like

  69. Brian says:

    http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/head-of-the-pac-12152011.html

    An interesting interview with Larry Scott.

    Highlights:
    1. He thinks the long term future is one league of up to 72 teams that would negotiate as one instead of 5 or 6 separate entities.

    2. Short term he thinks UT’s plan might work but it will fail long term.

    3. He thinks the NCFL could rival the NFL for TV value.

    Like

    • joe4psu says:

      I’d love to see that. I don’t have a definite number of schools in mind but 72 sounds like a good place to start the conversation. My only regret would be if no schools could ever improve their programs and be included with the big boys.

      Like

      • Jake says:

        That picture of Larry Scott is begging for some captioning.

        Like

      • Brian says:

        It would be great for business and terrible for everything else.

        The non-AQs and I-AAs
        It would be really hard for anyone to join that club I would assume. NFL teams only play each other, and the NCFL would presumably reduce or eliminate games against non-NCFL schools to maximize their contract. That means very little media coverage for everybody else, even compared to now, and almost no chance to earn the right to move up. It also means fewer, if any, paycheck games.

        The other problem is that the NCFL will mean those teams have left the NCAA or formed a new division. Why not keep MBB separate, too, and keep all the march madness money for themselves? Combined with fewer paycheck games, how will those schools finance athletics?

        The low AQs
        Somebody has to take the losses in the NCFL, and if there are fewer or no bodybag games, that means the schools like IN, Duke, Vandy, ISU, WSU, etc assuming they get grandfathered in to the NCFL due to tradition. How are a bunch of 1-11 seasons going to go over? How long will a coach last at any of those schools?

        The mid AQs
        What were 8-4 type of seasons will become more like 5-7. Will these schools be willing to accept this new paradigm? Many fewer bowls for them, if any, I’d think. Can you really televise two 3-9 teams and call it a reward for a good season?

        The big boys
        Everybody’s record will take a hit compared to historical numbers. Presumably a playoff will be in place, so I doubt bowls even exist, but if they do they won’t be numerous and they won’t mean much. How much will missing the postseason hurt these programs? The lower winning percentage? Will donors still drive the programs or will they expect the TV money to pay for everything in the future? How many fans will be lost to the commercialization of the game?

        In order to maximize the revenues, a lot of decision will have to be made that will ruin the feel of CFB. It will just become NFL lite, and I’m not sure that can ever compete financially with the NFL. I think college baseball outperforms AAA on TV. I think MBB outdoes the NBDL. Why would a pseudo-NFL do better?

        Like

    • Richard says:

      “1. He thinks the long term future is one league of up to 72 teams that would negotiate as one instead of 5 or 6 separate entities.”

      We had that. It was called the CFA (well, OK, the B10 and Pac didn’t join, but it doesn’t help his point that the CFA eventually fell apart as ND and then the SEC broke away).

      Like

  70. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/ncfnation/post/_/id/55853/3-point-stance-bcs-exasperation

    Apparently Ivan Maisel was on Jack Swarbrick’s radio show yesterday:

    1. Swarbrick isn’t convinced about a plus one.

    “I’m not sure that the plus-one is inevitable. Change is inevitable,” Swarbrick said. “It may be a plus-one. I sense an exasperation. Why get all this grief?”

    2. Maisel suggested replacing the BCS rankings with a committee like the NCAA uses for every other sport. Swarbrick points out the obvious potential problem with that.

    Committees select the postseason in every playoff that the NCAA runs. Swarbrick agreed with the concept. The challenge, he said, is that “You’ve got be prepared for whatever the result is. If that committee thinks five SEC teams should be in an eight-team playoff, you’ve got to be OK with that. I am.”

    I think there would be riots if anybody got 5 spots in an 8 team playoff.

    Like

    • Jake says:

      Well, the SEC just got both spots in a two-team playoff. No riots yet.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Many people actually believe those are the two best teams. Nobody outside of the footprint will ever believe SEC #5 is in the top 8. There have been rare occasions when you could sell 3 teams from 1 conference in the top 8. I don’t know that 4 has ever been justifiable, and 5 certainly hasn’t been.

        This year it would be LSU, AL, AR, SC and UGA. Does anybody believe UGA and SC are top 8 teams? How would people react to a committee selecting LSU, AL, AR, SC, UGA, OkSU, Stanford and OR this year? Do you think Boise and WI fans might complain a little? How about the ACC, B10 and MWC in general since their champs are above UGA along with at least one other team?

        My point being, 2 of 2 isn’t 5 of 8, and 2011 response to one isn’t the same as it would be to the other.

        Like

        • Jake says:

          Oh, well if you’re talking specifically about this season, no, I don’t think five of the top eight teams are from the SEC. But if you meant more generally, as I understood your statement, that if five of the eight teams in a playoff field in any given year came from any one conference there would be riots, well, we’d just have to see. I’m not going to deny that the SEC might at some point have five of the eight best teams in the country.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            I narrowed it to this year because you brought up the lack of riots over LSU/AL. I think comparing the response to 2 of 2 to the potential response to 5 of 8 is making huge, unjustified assumptions.

            I will categorically state that under no circumstances will I ever believe that 5 of the top 8 teams come from one conference of 12-14 teams. The top 8 teams are the top 6.67% of the teams. The top 5 of 12 teams is the top 42% of the conference (top 36% of 14 teams). The number 5 team from a conference is never going to be in the true top 8. Even with rampant SEC cheating and oversigning, it isn’t going to happen.

            Like

  71. duffman says:

    The problem I think folks are having with the BCS, is this year the BCS game is not needed.

    .

    LSU is the only undefeated school in FBS football.

    They have already beaten their next best in their division
    They have already beaten the winner of the East division
    They have already beaten the PAC 12 winner
    They have already beaten the Big East winner

    My personal choice would be to see what the Badgers could do, but they picked up 2 losses before winning the B1G
    The Cardinal had their chance, but lost to the Ducks
    The Cowboys had their chance, but lost to unranked Iowa State. They also did not have to play a 13th game against a BCS ranked team
    The Hokies lost twice to the same team
    Houston could not win its CCG
    Boise State got beat by a 2 loss TCU

    .

    I picked Alan’s Tigers at the beginning of the season, and here they are still undefeated. While I am unsure if Alabama is the best game for the MNC this is one year where the MNC game is not necessary, but the money and media will not allow us to not have the BCS MNC game. I think if there is only 1 undefeated AQ school at the end of the season, they are declared the MNC, and they skip the BCS MNC game.

    Like

    • Michael in Raleigh says:

      I think that a championship game is always appropriate. Conference championships are one thing, but I think an overall (i.e., national) championship should be determined in a POST-season, not the regular season. No matter how great a team’s regular season is, it should still have to earn it with everything on the line after that season is over. Does that mean the best team sometimes will not win the championship some seasons? Of course!

      But the best team in the nation sometimes does not have the best regular season, either. Take 1998, for example. Ohio State was probably the best, most talented team in the country that year, while Tennessee struggled greatly to beat several opponents, most memorably Arkansas. But because Ohio State lost a close game late in the year to Michigan State, Tennessee, the only unbeaten team that year, was who won the national title.

      Anyway, I disagree strongly with the notion that a championship can ever be wrapped up prior to the post-season. Sure, LSU will finish with the nation’s best resume no matter what the result is against Alabama, but LSU still has to win it. LSU and every other team in the country knows that the only way to win a national title is to win the BCS NCG. Period.

      I’m not saying LSU’s season hasn’t been spectacular. It absolutely has, and it would be a shame if it lost because it was the best team this year, by far, but if it does lose, well, that’s life. LSU would have to accept it. I learned that lesson when I was 16. That year I was on a cross country team that won every race all season by a comfortable margin. We had 4 of the 15 fastest 5K runners in the state. But we fell short where it counted most. The team that beat us (in a tie-breaker) in the state championship meet wore non-school color jerseys, very different from their normal ones, to confuse our strategy in the race. We also had our #3 runner injured a week prior, but he still ran an incredible race that day considering his condition. But that team won the race that counted more than any other. They were state champions that year, and we were not. It was a harsh lesson, especially knowing we were, by a wide margin, the better team. Regardless of our great season, one of the most dominant in state history, we did not win the state championship because we did not win the state championship meet. It should work no different for LSU.

      Like

      • Eric says:

        I feel that LSU was the only one to earn their way into the championship, but think we should still have it. A post-season should be very limited to preserve the importance of the regular season (especially in college football where every game matters so much), but LSU should still have to win their bowl game against the 2nd most worthy conference champ (even if that team is in dispute and in this case, unfortunately not a conference champ). Alabama didn’t earn their way in, but if only 1 team earns its way in, then another team gets in with some luck (part of the game too).

        Like

        • cutter says:

          I think it’s a myth to say that “every game matters” in college football given its current post-season arrangement.

          FIrst off, of the 120 or so teams in Division 1-A, you can essentially cross off the teams from the WAC, MAC, Sun Belt, MWC and C-USA as having any realistic chance at getting to the BCS national championship game, regardless of their final records. I’d say the same for two of the four independents in Army and Navy. That’s a total of 52 teams, leaving 68 programs in the six remaining conferences plus independent Notre Dame and Brigham Young.

          Once a team in that pool of 68 gets to the two-loss threshold, it can pretty much eliminate itself from national championship contention–this is certainly true when you get to three losses. That doesn’t mean the games these programs against teams that are in the NC running aren’t important to the overall scheme of things, but it does mean that only one of the two teams in such a game are really in the running for the NC.

          In a playoff system where the major conference champions get autobids, a two-loss team is still in contention with an eight-team post-season setup. For example, two-loss conference champions Oregon and Wisconsin would almost invariably be in such a playoff scenario. The larger implication behind this is that the pool of teams with playoff possibilities would remain bigger and would be relevant thru the conference championships over what we now see with the BCS.

          I’ve written about an eight-team playoff before with the premise that the five major conference winners would get autobids and the next three highest teams in the ranking system used would get autobids. However, if a conference winner isn’t in the top 14 of the rating system (which is the current cutoff line for being eligibile for a BCS bowls), then that conference loses the autobid and another at large team would be put in place. The games during the first two rounds (quarter-final and sem-final) would be played at the home stadium of the higher seeded teams

          If that was done this year and we used the BCS rankings, then the eight teams would be LSU, Alabama and Arkansas from the SEC, Oregon and Stanford from the Pac 12, Oklahoma State (B12 Champ), Wisconsin (B10 Champ) and Boise State.

          If I were to put a premium on winning a conference championship over being an at large, then those five (or in this season, four teams because the ACC champ didn’t get the autobid), would get the higher seeding over an at large team-call it a conference championship premium. That would mean the first round would look like this:

          #8 Boise State (11-1, MWC At Large) at #1 LSU (13-0, SEC Champ)
          #5 Alabama (11-1, SEC At Large) at #4 Wisconsin (11-2, B10 Champ)

          #7 Arkansas (10-2, SEC At Large) at #2 Oklahoma State (11-1, B12 Champ)
          #6 Stanford (11-1, Pac 12 At Large) at #3 Oregon (11-2, Pac 12 Champ)

          If you just wanted to go with the best teams in the BCS ratings get the higher seeds, then this would be the first round setup:

          #8 Wisconsin (11-2) at #1 LSU (13-0)
          #5 Oregon (11-2) at #4 Stanford (11-1)

          #7 Boise State (11-1) at #2 Alabama (11-1)
          #6 Arkansas (10-2) at #3 Oklahoma State (11-1)

          In this setup, Alabama and Stanford would get the benefit of a home game in the opening round even though they didn’t win their conference, let alone their division. If you want to make alll the games really count during the season, including the conference championship games, then I’d go with the first option, i.e., the top 4 conference champions get seeded 1 thru 4 with the fifth conference champion and the at larges being seeded 5 thru 8.

          For example, if Virginia Tech had won the ACC Conference Championship game and gone 12-1, the Hokies may have been rated above Wisconsin in the polls and in the first option, they could have gotten the #4 seed while the Badgers may have gone back to #8 overall because the at larges were rated higher than them. Then the setup would have looked like this:

          #8 Wisconsin (11-2, Big Ten Champ) at #1 LSU (13-0, SEC Champ)
          #5 Alabama (11-1, SEC At Large) at #4 Virginia Tech (12-1, ACC Champ)

          #7 Arkansas (10-2, SEC At Large) at #2 Oklahoma State (11-1, B12 Champ)
          #6 Stanford (11-1, Pac 12 At Large) at #3 Oregon (11-2, Pac 12 Champ)

          This sort of example again illustrates how important the regular season games translate into a post-season playoff. If Wisconsin had only lost one of the two games where it came up short (Ohio State, Michigan State), then the Badgers could very well have been a higher seed–perhaps even #2.

          Like

          • joe4psu says:

            I prefer playoff spots going to conference champs with the remaining teams selected by a committee. I would do seeding through the committee as well. By doing this the beauty pageant effect is neutralized and schools should be willing to schedule better OOC games. Having better OOC games and the importance of seeding, even after a school loses a game or two will keep the popularity of regular season games at a premium. The beauty pageant effect is the thing I like least about the current system.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            cutter,

            I think it’s a myth to say that “every game matters” in college football given its current post-season arrangement.

            You have it wrong. Every game matters, but not every game matters the same amount.

            FIrst off, of the 120 or so teams in Division 1-A, you can essentially cross off the teams from the WAC, MAC, Sun Belt, MWC and C-USA as having any realistic chance at getting to the BCS national championship game, regardless of their final records. I’d say the same for two of the four independents in Army and Navy. That’s a total of 52 teams, leaving 68 programs in the six remaining conferences plus independent Notre Dame and Brigham Young.

            You are wrong here, too. The reason these teams can get skipped over despite undefeated records is because every game matters, and most of their games are against weak opponents. They could schedule 3 or 4 tough OOC games, but the top non-AQs don’t. They want 1 tough game and 11 easy ones to be treated the same as 6 tough games and 6 easy ones. Instead, the opponent and the result of every game matters, so an AQ with 1 or 2 losses can move past them.

            Like

          • m (Ag) says:

            “I think it’s a myth to say that “every game matters” in college football given its current post-season arrangement”

            Of course ‘every game matters.’ Once you lose a game, that game always matters. All the wins count too. When the season is over you can weigh every game and decide who you believe the best team (and the 2nd best, etc) of the year is using all those games as information. A tournament after the season is the one that throws out massive amounts of data to judge a ‘best team’.

            Like

          • cutter says:

            For Brian and m(Ag): I disagree with your opinions regarding “every game matters”. In the context of playing for a national championship utilizing the current BCS poll system, that mantra only applies to a little over half the teams in college football at the season’s beginning. That pool of teams rapidly shinks through the season until we get to the tail end, when there’s this collective discussion about which two teams are best based on whatever criteria works for a particular argument–stronger schedule, point differential, best win, best loss, conference played, etc.

            The thing a playoff does is puts all that to the test by playing it out on the field–the purest form of competition. Instead, we’re left with a system that involves questionable computer programs that don’t take in all the factors to really rate a team plus a group of two pollsters who either don’t watch all the games or have their own biases (regional, coaching, etc.) in play.

            Every game matters, but not to the same amount is a cute phrase, but not really relevant to any discussion about the BCS system v. a playoff. I also think this idea that non-AQ teams have to schedule tougher comes from the Bill Hancock school of thinking. College football isn’t structurally set up so that non-AQ teams can compete on a level playing field with the AQ teams (which is one of the reasons why we’re seeing all this conference realignment as non-AQ teams strive to get into AQ conferences). Would you have a non-AQ team start the season with three or four major AQ teams back-to-back-to-back in order to prove themselves worthy of a berth in a national championship? Because what you’re endorsing is a practice that not even the AQ teams put themselves through.

            I have an idea though. If a non-AQ team like Boise State this year or last year’s TCU or Utah from a few years back, let’s see them in a playoff setting against AQ teams and let them decide it on the field. In an eight-game playoff format, we’d probably see the one best team from those conferences partgicipating against the best from the AQ conferences. In the setups I have above, Boise State would either play at Alabama or LSU–a win against either one of those teams in their home stadium would be proof enough to me (along with their body of work during the season, including a win over Georgia) that BSU belongs in the semi-final game againsts another major team playing in their own venue.

            What a tournament does do is take the “information” from the regular season and the conference playoff games and helps seed the teams. That seeding rewards the better performing programs and/or conference winners by giving them home games in the playoffs–a great way to ensure that the regular season games do count.

            I find it odd that people put a demarcation line in terms of a team’s entire body of work between the end of the regular season and a playoff. I would think that a college football fan would prefer seeing a national champion be able to prove itself not only during the 12-game regular season, but also in a conference championship game and in the crucible of a playoff setup.

            The history of the BCS and the history of past controversies have shown that the regulars season does not always provide enough “information” to successfully pick out which teams are #1 and #2. That’s the whole reason FTT put together this post and why college football is considering a Plus One (which is simply a way to rebrand a four-team playoff). The powers that be in college football know the current arrangement is not only inadequate, but entirely dissatisfying to the majority of college football fans–from the most hardcore to the most casual.

            So no, guys, sorry, but the opinions you’re expressing are decidely in the minority. In a couple years’ time, we’ll see some sort of four-team playoff which will or won’t integrate the bowl setup. After that, perhaps when Delany leaves his job as B10 commissioner, there’ll be an opportunity for expanding the playoff. I hope it gets capped at eight teams so that the bowl system remains vibrant and viable for the teams that don’t get in the playoff. I also feel that it’d be the best of both worlds and that college football will remain as exciting in late December and early January with a combination of playoffs and bowls as it is in early September.

            Like

          • cutter says:

            For joe4psu: When I started putting together an eight-team playoff format and looking at how the rankings would seed the eight teams, it didn’t seem fair to me that Alabama and Stanford would benefit in terms of seeding by losing the right game. If we’re going to put a premium on winning a conference championship and playing an additional game, then it should translate into how the playoff is set up for those squads that win their conferences.

            If we were to look at the 2010 BCS standings, this is how the eight teams would have been seeded:

            1. Auburn (13-0, SEC Champion)
            2. Oregon (12-0, P12 Champion)
            3. Wisconsin (11-1, B10 Champion)
            4. Oklahoma (11-2, B12 Champsion)
            5. TCU (12-0, MWC Champion/At Large)
            6. Stanford (11-1, Pac 12/At Large)
            7. Ohio State (11-1, B10/At Large)
            8. Virginia Tech (11-2, ACC Champion)

            The opening round games would have gone like this:

            #8 Virginia Tech (11-2) at #1 Auburn (13-0)
            #5 TCU (12-0) at #4 Oklahoma (11-2)

            #7 Ohio State (11-1) at #2 Oregon (12-0)
            #6 Stanford (11-1) at #3 Wisconsin (11-1)

            I think most people would have looked at that line up of games starting at noon eastern time and ending after midnight in the same light that old guys like me think of what January 1st used to be in terms of how the bowl games would shhowcase the very best teams in the country (long, long before ESPN or Saturdays full of college football games). This time, however, instead of doing it at bowl sites and on New Year’s Day, it’d could take place on the third or fourth Saturday of December at the home stadiums of the higher seeded teams.

            If we were go to back one more year and look at the 2009 BCS standings, then this is what we would have gotten in the first round of games:

            #8 Georgia Tech (11-2, ACC Champion) at #1 Alabama (13-0, SEC Champion)
            #5 TCU (13-0, MWC Champion/At Large) at #4 Ohio State (10-2, B10 Champion)

            #7 Boise State (12-0, WAC Champion) at #2 Texas (13-0, B12 Champion)
            #6 Florida (12-1, SEC/At Large) at #3 Oregon (10-2, P12 Champion)

            This certainly would have been an interesting scenario with two undefeated non-AQ teams in the post-season competition playing it out on the field against maor AQ competiton as the visiting teams in a playoff setting.

            We could go on, but this is the general jist of it. What will be interesting in the light of future and projected conference realignment is that all the major conferences except for the B12 will have a conference championship game that would further effect who got into the playoffs (and I don’t think anyone would be shocked in due course to see the B12 expand by two more members and adopt one as well–if the conference doesn’t fall apart). The teams that were non-AQ that have been in and won BCS bowls (Boise State, Utah, TCU) have now moved or will move to AQ conferences. I suspect we’ll see fewer non-AQ teams in the current BCS bowl system (or in a hypothetical playoff system) because of it.

            With the conferences expanding and/or adopting nine-game conference schedules, I would also expect that it’ll be more difficult for teams to go undefeated (or at least, that’s what many of the coaches are saying). I would suggest that these developments would put an even higher premium on the conference championship and that should be translated into how an eight-team playoff system is organized.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            cutter,

            So no, guys, sorry, but the opinions you’re expressing are decidely in the minority.

            We never said our opinions weren’t in the minority. Shockingly, you don’t seem to understand that that does not make us wrong and you right. The fly diet argument has never been a convincing one, nor will it ever be.

            Like

          • m (Ag) says:

            “The thing a playoff does is puts all that to the test by playing it out on the field–the purest form of competition”

            It doesn’t pick the best team of the year. It picks the team of the tournament. These are very different things. Look at the NCAA basketball tournaments last year. The 2 tournament champions were not the best teams of the year (and I say that as a former student of the school that won the Women’s tournament!). You can look at many sports that have playoffs and see the same thing happening more often than not.

            It’s marketing and lazy sports analysts who present the tournament champions as the best team of the year. It’s repeated often enough that most people internalize it, but it doesn’t make it true.

            “College football isn’t structurally set up so that non-AQ teams can compete on a level playing field with the AQ teams”

            College football isn’t set up as a closed system like most US professional sports, where teams are pushed towards the same level by league rules and the schedules don’t have immense differences in quality. There’s a huge variety of programs that are classed as division 1. There is nothing wrong with that, but you do a disservice to college football by then trying to ignore those differences.

            “Would you have a non-AQ team start the season with three or four major AQ teams back-to-back-to-back in order to prove themselves worthy of a berth in a national championship?”

            You’re not seriously suggesting playing a whole 4 AQ teams in a row would be too hard for a school that wants to be considered one of the top 25 teams in the country? (Never mind top 5!)

            “I find it odd that people put a demarcation line in terms of a team’s entire body of work between the end of the regular season and a playoff”

            Exactly! So you’re opposing a playoff which, once starts, ignores all the regular season! You’ve come around to my opinion?

            Oh, I guess not.

            “I would think that a college football fan would prefer seeing a national champion be able to prove itself not only during the 12-game regular season, but also in a conference championship game and in the crucible of a playoff setup. ”

            If we’re going to add weeks of college football, a true fan might want to see a full schedule of games each week instead of the small number a tournament would provide.

            “The history of the BCS and the history of past controversies have shown that the regulars season does not always provide enough “information” to successfully pick out which teams are #1 and #2. ”

            A tournament doesn’t provide information to pick the best team in the nation over the year either. It provides a tournament champion, which is something else.

            “So no, guys, sorry, but the opinions you’re expressing are decidely in the minority.”

            Being in the minority is not the same thing as being wrong.

            Like

    • Brian says:

      duffman,

      The problem I think folks are having with the BCS, is this year the BCS game is not needed.

      I really don’t think that is the main problem, since it’s not like every year has 2 or more equal teams. People get upset when they think the wrong team has been included, like NE in 2001-2.

      LSU is the only undefeated school in FBS football.

      They have already beaten their next best in their division
      They have already beaten the winner of the East division
      They have already beaten the PAC 12 winner
      They have already beaten the Big East winner

      That’s all true. However, every computer model says the B12 is the hardest conference, not the SEC. LSU didn’t beat the B12 champ.

      The Cowboys had their chance, but lost to unranked Iowa State. They also did not have to play a 13th game against a BCS ranked team

      Yes, they lost on the road in double OT on the same day they heard about a plane crash that killed two OkSU WBB coaches. OkSU didn’t play 13 games, but they did play 9 conference games and didn’t play a I-AA team. AL played Kent St, North TX and GA Southern while OkSU played AZ, Tulsa and LL. OkSU had a tougher schedule, even with 12 games instead of 13.

      While I am unsure if Alabama is the best game for the MNC this is one year where the MNC game is not necessary, but the money and media will not allow us to not have the BCS MNC game. I think if there is only 1 undefeated AQ school at the end of the season, they are declared the MNC, and they skip the BCS MNC game.

      The host site spends a lot of money to prep for the title game, and a lot of people invest a lot of time. If you don’t have that game, then there are 2 fewer BCS slots. It also means 2 fewer teams go to bowls. You can’t wait until early December to decide whether or not to have the game. You have to decide your postseason format in advance and then live with it (0, 2, 4, 8 or more teams). We wouldn’t have this problem if we went back to the old system and LSU won their bowl.

      Like

      • duffman says:

        Brian,

        I have said all season I have little faith in the computers, and do not believe the B12 is all that because their only OOC tests came from Arkansas beating TAMU and TCU losing to Baylor @ Baylor. I think the B1G has been under rated all season, even accounting for a homerism and bias that I have previously disclosed, but the B12 is playing the softest bowl schedule so we will continue to be told how great they are without concrete proof.

        I think it is unfair for LSU to have to beat a team they have already beaten at their home (vs Bama @ Bama) or play a team that did not have to play the extra CCG that every other major conference had to. oSu beat NOBODY OOC this year, struggled to beat KSU @ oSu, and had a defense that let 2-10 Kansas put 28 points on them. Yes ISU beat them, but KSU and TAMU should have beaten them as well. Instead of facing a B1G or SEC team, they will get to play Stanford who also had a most unimpressive schedule outside of U$C and Oregon.

        Alabama played Penn State! oSu played 4-8 Arizona! Please do not try and say oSu played the better OOC. I know you are an Ohio State guy, but give some credit to Penn State for playing defense even if their offense did not look stellar. I had PSU winning pre Sandusky, and not sure anybody could have predicted that as an outside observer. If you are cutting oSu slack for a plane crash, then why not reverse the 3 point loss to the Cornhuskers for the effect of the Sandusky bomb. Georgia Southern won their conference and got all the way to the semifinal of the FCS championship before falling to NDS @ NDS. The Southern conference has some teams, just ask the Michigan guy who lost to fellow Southern conference member Apalaichain State

        Like

        • Brian says:

          I didn’t say OkSU played the harder OOC schedule, but I will say it. They didn’t play a I-AA, end of discussion. Playing 1 good team doesn’t make up for NT, LL and I-AA. OkSU played 9 B12 teams. AL played 8 SEC teams but skipped the top 2 in the east and got LSU and AR at home.

          You can ignore the computers all you want. It doesn’t make them all wrong. Many B12 teams may be overrated, but so is at least half of the SEC.

          Like

          • duffman says:

            Brian, here is head to head from top to bottom, and clearly Alabama wins the top where the really tough games are. I will say that it took a B1G school to skew it in Alabama’s favor tho! ;) If Alabama had not scheduled Penn State @ Penn State I would agree with you. While Georgia Southern may be FCS, they are no pushover and won the Southern Conference. I would put them up against a bottom FBS school like Kansas and pick them head to head. Playing a top FCS school is probably better than playing a middle to bottom team in the Sun Belt or CUSA. Ohio State beat FBS school Akron 42 -0, but playing a 1 – 11 MAC team would qualify it as a powder puff game for the Buckeyes. Appalachain State was also from the Southern Conference and ask any fan of the Maize & Blue how that game turned out! I think the final score was App State 34 – Michigan 32 in the Big House. As a Ohio State guy I would think you would love the Southern Conference for that one.

            .

            Alabama vs Oklahoma State :

            LSU 13 – 0 vs Kansas State 10 – 2 => Winner Alabama
            Arkansas 10 – 2 vs Baylor 9 – 3 => Winner Alabama
            Penn State 9 – 3 vs Oklahoma 9 – 3 => Winner Alabama in Happy Valley
            Auburn 7 – 5 vs Missouri 7 – 5 => Winner Alabama in Iron Bowl
            Florida 6 – 6 vs Texas 7 – 5 => Winner Oklahoma State in Austin
            Vanderbilt 6 – 6 vs TAMU 6 – 6 => Toss up, or slight edge to Vanderbilt
            MSU 6 – 6 vs ISU 6 – 6 => Winner Alabama, Bama lost to LSU, ISU beat oSu
            Tennessee 5 – 7 vs Texas Tech 5 – 7 => Winner Alabama, UT beat UC and Montana
            Mississippi 2 – 10 vs Kansas 2 – 10 => Toss up
            Georgia Southern 11 – 3 vs Arizona 4 – 8 => Edge to oSu, but Ga So might beat AZ
            Kent State 5 – 7 vs Tulsa 8 – 4 => Winner Oklahoma State
            North Texas 5 – 7 vs La La 9 – 4 => Winner Oklahoma State

            Like

          • m (Ag) says:

            “I didn’t say OkSU played the harder OOC schedule, but I will say it. They didn’t play a I-AA, end of discussion. Playing 1 good team doesn’t make up for NT, LL and I-AA. OkSU played 9 B12 teams. AL played 8 SEC teams but skipped the top 2 in the east and got LSU and AR at home.”

            If all FBS teams were roughly equal in difficulty, then playing a FCS team would disqualify you from having a tough schedule. However, there is a wide disparity in FBS teams.

            If you are a college team, what would you think of this 3 game schedule?

            1) 2 high school teams, 1 NFL team
            2) 3 middle of the road college teams

            It’s easier to get to 2 wins against schedule 1, but it’s easier to go undefeated against schedule #2.

            Now the disparity between FBS teams isn’t nearly the difference between a high school team and a professional team, but it is quite large. It is not accurate to simply say team X played more easy teams and therefore had the easier schedule overall. The high degree of difficulty games count much more when judging the toughest schedules for the best teams.

            While imperfect, I do like the attempts by the 2 different college systems up at football outsiders to judge college football. The FEI system calculates strength of schedule based on the likelihood of an elite team going undefeated against its schedule according to their numbers. According to that system, the hardest schedules were 1) Auburn 2) Michigan State 3) Oklahoma 4) Kansas 5) Florida. LSU was 22, Oklahoma State was 46, and Alabama 51. Neither OSU or Alabama were remarkable for an AQ schedule (Boise was 96), although you should note that since elite teams can’t play themselves, they generally end up behind several other teams in their conference (there are many SEC and Big 12 teams in the top 20).

            Like

          • Brian says:

            In evaluating an OOC schedule, I look at least as much at who they scheduled as how good those teams turned out to be. AL scheduled a I-AA (again). It turned out to be a good one, but that wasn’t their intent. They wanted a guaranteed win and got it. I give them zero credit for that game. It’s essentially a forfeit. So are NT and LL. AL tried to produce a 9 game schedule, and then the SEC helped by having them avoid the top 2 from the east, too. OkSU didn’t get to avoid anybody in conference and scheduled more difficult OOC games.

            duffman,

            I don’t buy your list of games. For one thing, SOS isn’t linear. For another, record isn’t the sole measure of how good a team is. I see at least 7 of 12 that favor OkSU.

            m (Ag),

            I discount any schedule with a I-AA team on it because of the intent behind scheduling that game. It’s a team with fewer scholarships and the typical I-AA is much worse than the typical I-A. This is the same AL that scheduled Duke home and home. I don’t believe for a second that they scheduled a I-AA with the hope that it would be better than whatever I-A they could have played instead.

            Like

          • duffman says:

            Brian, I agree that the top is tougher than the bottom, but game for game oSu played a 9 game conference schedule, as did Alabama (adding Penn State as the 9th game) and neither scheduled after that. The last 3 for Alabama were not great, but I would say the same for the 3 oSu played. In short :

            SEC 8 + B1G 1 > B12 9
            If you think the first nine oSu played were tougher than the first 9 Alabama played then show me how you would have picked them head to head. I understand your SEC dislike, but you also seem to not want to give Penn State any credit for knowing how to play football. They beat your Buckeyes @ Ohio State. The Nebraska loss was only 3 points, and the Alabama game was respectable. The only team they got smashed by was B1G winner Wisconsin @ Wisconsin. These same Badgers lost on the road to Sparty and Brutus, so they did have advantage at home this season. Sure PSU had a bad offense, but had a very good defense. At the end of the season defense wins championships.

            Pretty much every school in the country schedules 2 – 3 bottom end FBS schools which may actually be worse that the top FCS schools. I personally think no FBS school should have an FCS school on their schedule, but that is not the rule. Alabama beat up on Duke, but at least they have a history of playing Penn State. Stanford did the same with Duke this year, and nobody said boo about their schedule (except me) until after they got taken down by Oregon. Your fixation on the last few schools in quality seems to lose focus on the bigger games against better opponents. I think m (Ag) makes a very valid point in his 3 game example. Your Buckeyes went 3-1 OOC against Akron (1-11), Toledo (8-4), Miami FL (6-6), and Colorado (3-10) so I could easily say Ohio State played a totally weak OOC. Ohio State did not play a single top team OOC from a power conference. Buckeyes did not play a B12 / BE / SEC team at all, and playing a below average ACC team and a cellar dweller from the PAC is nothing to crow about.

            Like

          • m (Ag) says:

            “I discount any schedule with a I-AA team on it because of the intent behind scheduling that game.”

            If you want to discount that game, fine (although there certainly are FCS teams that are better than many FBS teams). If you’re discounting the entire schedule based on 1 game, then you’re not honestly judging the entire schedule.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            duffman,

            but game for game oSu played a 9 game conference schedule, as did Alabama (adding Penn State as the 9th game) and neither scheduled after that. The last 3 for Alabama were not great, but I would say the same for the 3 oSu played.

            OkSU’s 3 were better than AL’s 3 by far, and OkSU played 10 AQs instead of 9. AZ was better than Ole Miss and maybe AU and/or TN, too.

            From Sagarin’s preferred rankings:
            OkSU: Tulsa – 37, AZ – 54, LL – 86
            AL: GA So – 83, N TX – 119, Kent St – 124

            OkSU’s worst OOC opponent was about the same as AL’s best (skipping PSU), and AL lucked into a I-AA being that highly ranked.

            In short :

            SEC 8 + B1G 1 > B12 9

            Prove it. Your anti-B12 bias isn’t a measuring stick. I think it clearly is the opposite.

            If you think the first nine oSu played were tougher than the first 9 Alabama played then show me how you would have picked them head to head.

            AL – LSU (1), AR (14), PSU (26), VU (38), FL (40), MSU (41), TN (55), AU (66), MS (115)
            OkSU – OU (4), TAMU (11), MO (13), BU (15), TX (17), KSU (24), ISU (47), TT (61), KS (108)

            That’s just sorting by order of Sagarin ranking, but I’d roughly agree with what the rankings say. Combined with the OOC games, AL had a tougher top (1-1 vs 1-0), an easier and smaller middle (6-0 vs 8-1) and both had an easy bottom but AL’s was bigger (4-0 vs 2-0). Overall I’d say OkSU played a harder schedule and Sagarin agrees (6 vs 22), but OkSU also had the worse loss. I’d say the plane crash qualifies as an extenuating circumstance that lessens the blow, though.

            I understand your SEC dislike,

            I dislike the SEC, but I generally respect their performance. I think the results showed that they were way down overall this year, though. In addition, AL missed SC and GA while TN and FL were still down.

            but you also seem to not want to give Penn State any credit for knowing how to play football. They beat your Buckeyes @ Ohio State. The Nebraska loss was only 3 points, and the Alabama game was respectable. The only team they got smashed by was B1G winner Wisconsin @ Wisconsin. These same Badgers lost on the road to Sparty and Brutus, so they did have advantage at home this season. Sure PSU had a bad offense, but had a very good defense. At the end of the season defense wins championships.

            What is your obsession with PSU? My opinion of AL’s schedule has nothing to do with PSU. PSU wasn’t enough to redeem their OOC schedule in my eyes, but that doesn’t make PSU bad. That makes the rest of AL’s OOC slate horrible. You act like PSU could win the Super Bowl this year. PSU was a very good defense and a very bad offense. They barely beat several lesser teams (Temple by 4, IN by 6, PU by 5, IL by 3), lost a close game to NE (emotions impacted both teams), got thoroughly beaten by AL despite keeping the score close and got embarrassed by WI with the division title on the line. They were what they were, a 5th place B10 team (a little better than OSU, a little worse than NE). Why should I be impressed that AL played the 5th best B10 team OOC? It’s nice, but it doesn’t make up for the other 3 teams they played.

            Pretty much every school in the country schedules 2 – 3 bottom end FBS schools which may actually be worse that the top FCS schools.

            Yes, but this was solely about AL versus OkSU. The top I-AA schools are better than the worst I-A schools every year. But you don’t know exactly how good that I-AA will be when you schedule them. AL got 1 of 6 I-AA’s that ended up in Sagarin’s top 100. I doubt they are that good at predicting success. AL was expecting a team that ranks 101-150 probably. On top of that, they scheduled a perennial MAC doormat and a perennial Sun Belt doormat. Meanwhile, OkSU scheduled an average AQ, a CUSA power and a mediocre Sun Belt team. They don’t compare.

            I personally think no FBS school should have an FCS school on their schedule, but that is not the rule.

            It doesn’t have to be against the rules for me to give them zero credit for it. I give nobody credit for beating a lower division team.

            Alabama beat up on Duke, but at least they have a history of playing Penn State. Stanford did the same with Duke this year, and nobody said boo about their schedule (except me) until after they got taken down by Oregon.

            What does history have to do with this? I thought we were discussing this year’s schedule. And FYI, plenty of people said Stanford had played nobody before OR. Many media outlets said it in articles or discussions. It wasn’t a prominent discussion here that I recall, but in part that’s because nobody was supporting their schedule. Heck, almost nobody thought Stanford would beat OR, so why would they worry about Stanford’s SOS?

            Your fixation on the last few schools in quality seems to lose focus on the bigger games against better opponents.

            I can reverse the sentiment back at you. Playing LSU doesn’t magically make the bottom of AL’s schedule immaterial. Half of AL’s schedule was worse than ISU and 4 more games were outside the top 25 (by Sagarin). That means AL played 2 tough games and went 1-1. OkSU played more tough games, although I think Sagarin inflates the numbers some. Certainly OkSU played fewer patsies and more average to good teams than AL.

            I think m (Ag) makes a very valid point in his 3 game example. Your Buckeyes went 3-1 OOC against Akron (1-11), Toledo (8-4), Miami FL (6-6), and Colorado (3-10) so I could easily say Ohio State played a totally weak OOC. Ohio State did not play a single top team OOC from a power conference. Buckeyes did not play a B12 / BE / SEC team at all, and playing a below average ACC team and a cellar dweller from the PAC is nothing to crow about.

            I never said that OSU did play a tough OOC schedule this year. I give them credit for scheduling Miami, since Miami was elite back when they scheduled them, but 2011 Miami was not 2001 Miami by any means. I’m not sure how comparing AL to OSU helps your case, though.

            As for m (Ag)’s example, he only showed one side of it.

            EX: 2 different schedules
            1. 2 HS teams, 1 NFL team
            2. 3 average college teams

            I agree that #1 make 2 wins easier while #2 is more likely to lead to a 3-0 record. What he doesn’t mention is that #2 is also more likely to lead to 2 or 3 losses. That’s the part of the argument you ignore. OkSU played several more average college teams than AL did, so they had more realistic chances to lose a game. Say AL played SC and GA instead of Vandy and UF this year. That would be more comparable to what OkSU faced and I’d give AL the overall edge for the top being tougher.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            m (Ag),

            “I discount any schedule with a I-AA team on it because of the intent behind scheduling that game.”

            If you want to discount that game, fine (although there certainly are FCS teams that are better than many FBS teams). If you’re discounting the entire schedule based on 1 game, then you’re not honestly judging the entire schedule.

            I discount their schedule in any SOS comparison as soon as a I-AA shows up. That’s an automatic loss in a SOS comparison for me. But I can also look at all 12 games and say AL played a weaker schedule. They played 4 terrible teams and 2 below average AQs. OkSU didn’t.

            AL’s schedule:
            1 terrible
            2 @ PSU
            3 terrible
            4 AR
            5 average AQ
            6 average AQ
            7 terrible
            8 below average AQ (but a rival)
            9 BYE
            10 LSU
            11 average AQ
            12 terrible OOC
            13 below average AQ (but a rival)
            14 done

            They never played 4 decent teams in a row and had a gimme or bye week before every good opponent and rival.

            OkSU’s schedule:
            1 terrible
            2 below average AQ
            3 @ average AQ equivalent
            4 @ TAMU
            5 BYE
            6 terrible
            7 @ TX
            8 @ MO
            9 Baylor
            10 KSU
            11 below average AQ
            12 average to below average AQ
            13 BYE
            14 OU

            That’s 6 above average teams versus 3 for AL. OkSU played 6 decent teams in a row at one point and didn’t cram in a bad OOC game late in the season like AL. OkSU also played 4 losable road games versus 1 for AL. The only advantage for AL’s schedule are the LSU and (maybe) AR games being tougher than any for OkSU. Since AL got both at home after virtual bye weeks while OkSU played 4 above average AQs in a row, I’m not impressed.

            Like

          • duffman says:

            Brian,

            My “bias” may not be bias at all. I really believe had there been no off field distraction Penn State would have won the Nebraska game the same way you argue oSu would have won the ISU game. The difference is Nebraska was actually a ranked team in the final BCS poll and the polls would indicate that ISU < Nebraska. I do not think Penn State should have won the Super Bowl, but I did pick them to win their division. They were well on their way prior to the Sandusky thing. Wisconsin lost 2 conference games, which would have meant Penn State would have won the Leaders division if the Wisconsin game was their only loss.

            Not to compare loss but losing a women's basketball coach, who the players may not have even known is probably more distant than players on the team losing the coach that recruited them and coached them. To make matters worse they had to face the media going to and from practice and games in the wake of all this. I am not discounting the tragedy of death, but with death, the media actually backs off folks, while scandal they are like hungry wolves. Tragic tho is was, and my prayers go out for the family, it was the oSu football team that played the game and not the women's basketball team that faced Iowa State.

            While the death may have affected some, I think a part is the stress of most any team to stay focused when undefeated late in the season. What nobody wants to talk about is what everybody would be talking about if the crash had not occurred. ISU was a trap game with oSu focused on the OU game and all the build up they were getting for Bedlam. These are the games that great teams win, and good teams fail. No plane crash, and the same loss, and you know every sportswriter in the US would have pointed this out.

            .

            As for SoS, when the best the B12 could do OOC was TAMU vs Arkansas and Baylor vs TCU I must confess doubt for the strength of the conference as a whole. Sure they all can score points in the B12, but none of them seem to have a defense. The B12 scheduling 1 B1G team and 1 SEC team seems like a great effort to play a weak OOC. At least Oklahoma is known for scheduling good OOC games, the same can not be said for the majority of the B12. The computers seem to forget this in their calculations, but it can be seen by folks who actually watch the games when they are played. Look how weak the B12 bowl schedule is :

            #3 oSu 11-1 vs #4 Stanford 11-1 : Oklahoma State favored
            Matching up 2 teams that thrive on offense only (Oregon and U$C showed that good teams could score at will on the Cardinal) with the PAC school having a weak schedule means oSu should win this game and are favored to do so.

            #8 Kansas State 10-2 vs #6 Arkansas 10-2 : Arkansas favored
            This is actually a bowl game I want to watch to see just how good the B12 and SEC really are head to head. The #2 team in the B12 facing the #4 team in the SEC should be a good game and I think they actually got this bowl game matchup correct.

            #12 Baylor 9-3 vs NR Washington 7-5 : Baylor favored by 10
            The #3 team in the B12 playing an unranked PAC team with 2 more losses? Baylor should win this game because the deck is already stacked in their favor. Baylor is not playing another BCS ranked school, nor are they playing another 9-3 team. How can we judge the B12 fairly when they are not playing an equal team?

            #14 Oklahoma 9-3 vs NR Iowa 7-5 : Oklahoma favored by 16
            The #4 team in the B12 playing an unranked B1G team with 2 more losses? Like last year when a highly ranked BCS OU team faced a Uconn team that did not even make the final BCS top 25, again the Sooners will face a team they will have a decided advantage over. Like Baylor, OU will not play a BCS ranked team or another 9-3 team. I guess OU did not want to play Boise State and have a repeat from before. OU vs TCU would have been a more interesting matchup than TCU vs La Tech.

            #24 Texas 7-5 vs NR Cal 7-5 : Texas favored
            #6 in the B12 vs #5 in the PAC seems pretty balanced, but a 7-5 Iowa or a 7-5 Auburn might have given us a better idea of a balanced B12 vs B1G / SEC game for bragging rights where college football is more passionate.

            NR Missouri 7-5 vs NR UNC 7-5 : Missouri favored
            #5 in the B12 vs #7 in the ACC seems to favor the B12. Again, the B12 has gained advantage to having to play a 7-5 Iowa or a 7-5 Auburn. B12 vs ACC seems a bit more hollow than B12 vs B1G or SEC.

            NR TAMU 6-6 vs NR Northwestern 6-6 : TAMU favored by 10
            #7 in the B12 vs # 8 in the B1G playing a bowl game in Texas. I would guess the maroon in the stadium will far outnumber the purple to make it a home game for TAMU.

            NR Iowa State 6-6 vs NR Rutgers 8-4 : Rutgers favored
            #8 in the B12 vs # 4 in the Big East played in NYC. Probably the only bowl that gives the non B12 the advantage out of all the 8 bowls B12 teams will play in.

            .

            It is not that the B12 is favored in 75% of their games, it is that the games appear to be stacked in the B12's favor in the first place. Iowa vs Texas seems a more even match than Iowa vs Oklahoma. Folks say how bad the B1G is yet their bowl games actually have 3 SEC opponents out of 10 bowls, including #17 Michigan State 10-3 vs #16 Georgia 10-3 and Ohio State 6-6 vs Florida 6-6. In the other bowls you have 11-2 Wisconsin meeting 11-2 Oregon, 10-2 Michigan meeting 11-2 Virginia Tech, 9-3 Nebraska vs 10-2 South Carolina, #22 Penn State vs # 19 Houston, and 6-6 Illinois vs 6-7 UCLA. I would say that the vast majority of the B1G bowl games are evenly matched based on records, rankings, and overall scheduling.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            duffman,

            My “bias” may not be bias at all.

            Of course it is. You are convinced PSU is great and the B12 sucks and that colors your opinion about everything in this discussion.

            I really believe had there been no off field distraction Penn State would have won the Nebraska game the same way you argue oSu would have won the ISU game.

            They might have, or they might have lost anyway. If OSU didn’t have off field distractions, they might have beaten PSU among others. Unfortunately, that’s not how it turned out. Did this change at some point to an OkSU versus PSU debate? I don’t understand why you keep bringing PSU into this all the time. It was one OOC game for AL against a good team. That’s it. Why do you keep making PSU the focus?

            The difference is Nebraska was actually a ranked team in the final BCS poll and the polls would indicate that ISU < Nebraska.

            NE is better than ISU. I don’t think anyone would argue that. So what?

            I do not think Penn State should have won the Super Bowl, but I did pick them to win their division.

            So you admit you are biased in favor of PSU this year.

            They were well on their way prior to the Sandusky thing.

            Bull. They had a lead because they played all their easy games first and missed several top teams. Before the scandal, they were 5-0 because they played @IN, IA, PU, @NW and IL.
            The won 2 of those by 10 points and the others by 3, 5 and 6. Their remaining 3 games were NE, @OSU, @WI. There was no reason to think they would easily win 2 of 3.

            Wisconsin lost 2 conference games, which would have meant Penn State would have won the Leaders division if the Wisconsin game was their only loss.

            True, but OSU and PU can play that game too. Any team can say if only we hadn’t lost those games we would have won. So what? PSU’s three toughest B10 games came after the scandal. They don’t get to ignore the losses as if only the scandal caused them.

            Not to compare loss but losing a women’s basketball coach, who the players may not have even known is probably more distant than players on the team losing the coach that recruited them and coached them.

            This was the second OkSU crash in a decade to kill coaches and/or players. As players that travel to games regularly, you don’t think that enters their minds? You don’t think they faced media questions about it?

            Look how weak the B12 bowl schedule is :

            #3 oSu 11-1 vs #4 Stanford 11-1 : Oklahoma State favored
            #8 Kansas State 10-2 vs #6 Arkansas 10-2 : Arkansas favored
            #12 Baylor 9-3 vs NR Washington 7-5 : Baylor favored by 10
            #14 Oklahoma 9-3 vs NR Iowa 7-5 : Oklahoma favored by 16
            #24 Texas 7-5 vs NR Cal 7-5 : Texas favored
            NR Missouri 7-5 vs NR UNC 7-5 : Missouri favored
            NR TAMU 6-6 vs NR Northwestern 6-6 : TAMU favored by 10
            NR Iowa State 6-6 vs NR Rutgers 8-4 : Rutgers favored

            Yes, it’s a weak slate. How does that change anything? Good teams can get bad bowl match ups. It doesn’t change how good they are. The teams have no control over their bowl slate. With all the turmoil the B12 has had lately, they are lucky to have any bowl tie-ins.

            It is not that the B12 is favored in 75% of their games, it is that the games appear to be stacked in the B12’s favor in the first place. Iowa vs Texas seems a more even match than Iowa vs Oklahoma. Folks say how bad the B1G is yet their bowl games actually have 3 SEC opponents out of 10 bowls, including #17 Michigan State 10-3 vs #16 Georgia 10-3 and Ohio State 6-6 vs Florida 6-6. In the other bowls you have 11-2 Wisconsin meeting 11-2 Oregon, 10-2 Michigan meeting 11-2 Virginia Tech, 9-3 Nebraska vs 10-2 South Carolina, #22 Penn State vs # 19 Houston, and 6-6 Illinois vs 6-7 UCLA. I would say that the vast majority of the B1G bowl games are evenly matched based on records, rankings, and overall scheduling.

            Could you possibly try to stick to one topic? It’s hard to have a discussion when you keep changing the topic. What does the B10 bowl slate have to do with how OkSU’s schedule compares to AL’s? That is where this all started, I believe.

            Like

  72. Brian says:

    http://tracking.si.com/2011/12/17/report-penn-state-qb-matt-mcgloin-hospitalized-for-possible-seizure-following-fight/?sct=cf_t2_a4

    Matt McGloin is hospitalized after getting knocked out in a fight by a WR. It’s not a good sign when a WR is fighting the starting QB, or when nobody breaks it up before there is an injury.

    Could this actually help PSU if they are forced to play Bolden the whole game? Or will they play someone else if McGloin is hurt?

    Like

    • Brian says:

      He has since been released from the hospital. Apparently he had a seizure as a result of the fight, and also had a concussion.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      http://pennstate.scout.com/2/1139927.html

      As a kicker, Bolden is reported to have a “minor” legal issue stemming from an off field incident on Friday.

      To recap:
      QB #1 (McGloin) is injured
      QB #2 (Bolden) is in minor legal trouble, and may get punished
      QB #3 (McGregor) is a walk-on with one game of experience
      QB #4 (Jones) missed the season due to academics and is likely ineligible
      QB #5 (Drake) hurt the starter and is a WR that plays wildcat QB
      QB #6 (Belton) is another wildcat QB

      On the bright side, they have an interim coach for a disappointing bowl game and a prolonged coaching search going on after a scandal while their recruiting class falls apart.

      I sincerely feel sorry for the PSU fans and players who are suffering a lot for mistakes they had nothing to do with.

      Like

      • Thanks for the sympathy. The sad irony isn’t lost on us. We thought we had a “QB controversy” at the beginning of the season. What do we call it NOW?!?!

        Like

        • Richard says:

          “QB Survivor”?

          Didn’t someone transfer as well?

          Like

          • bullet says:

            Texas had a lot of QB attrition as well:
            #1 QB demoted to 3rd string, suffered season ending injury and transferred.
            #2 QB still there
            #3 QB still there
            #4 QB transferred to Colorado
            #5 Wildcat QB injured and lost for season in 1st quarter of game 9
            There is no #6.

            Texas also had its top 3 running backs (#3 was the wildcat QB mentioned above) out or significantly limited in the last 4 games.

            Georgia also had its top 3 running backs out for a while late in the season (1 discliplinary-others injuries) and was restricted to walk-ons in the NMSU and much of the UK game as two other scholarship running backs had transferred.

            It seems to me the depth issues that have been discussed aren’t as much about 85 scholarships as they are about good players being quicker to transfer and, at least it seems to me, an increase in injuries.

            Like

  73. Brian says:

    MAC power

    2-0

    Temple crushed Wyoming, and Ohio got a last minute TD to beat UT St. Those late scores almost always go against the MAC, so it’s great for them to finally win that way for once.

    Ohio won a bowl game for the first time (0-5 since 1962 before today, 3 losses by 7 pts or less), and got their first 10 win season since 1968. Temple got their first bowl win since 1979.

    It’s wonderful for the MAC to do well, and it helps the B10 too.

    Like

  74. Brian says:

    I was looking at my bowl picks for this year and realized one reason why I don’t enjoy bowl season as much as I used to.

    Of the 35 games, only 13 of my picks are the team I would prefer to win. Those 13 games are games I don’t care as much about, too. Of the top 11 games (BCS, 1/2 games, Chick-fil-A, Cotton), only 2 of my picks are my preferred winners. It used to be more balanced, and I preferred that. It will help if the B10 can step up and the SEC comes back to the pack after the reduction in oversigning.

    Like

  75. Brian says:

    Today may well have been the best day of the bowl season with 2 last minute wins in 3 games. Only 3 days have more games (12/30 – 4, 12/31 – 5, 1/2 – 6). 12/30 and 12/31 both have several weak AQs and at least one bad match-up. 1/2 depends on the B10 playing well.

    Like

  76. Brian says:

    http://blog.pennlive.com/patriotnewssports/2011/12/building_the_class.html

    This article is a great big picture look at recruiting in the B10, with a focus on PSU.

    PSU has gone from a class of 16, to a class of 13 with 5 of them “soft” verbals. A new coach can turn it around in a hurry, but there are only 6 weeks until signing day.

    Recruiting has also gotten more competitive with expansion and new coaches (RichRod, Hoke, Pelini, Meyer). That should help the next PSU coach as the old gentleman’s agreement no longer applies.

    Like

  77. greg says:

    Random question for people who receive comments via email…

    For about the past 5 days, every comment I receive via email no longer has paragraph breaks. Has anyone else had this problem? It has basically resulted in me no longer reading the comments.

    Like

    • joe4psu says:

      I have the same situation. I just started reading my email online again the other day and I guess that’s why the problem didn’t jump out at me.

      Like

  78. Brian says:

    http://www.cleveland.com/sports/index.ssf/2011/12/penn_state_saga_voted_ap_sport.html

    Wow. Thanks PSU. For once I am glad to lose to PSU.

    AP’s top 2011 sports stories:
    1. PENN STATE
    2. NFL/NBA LOCKOUTS
    3. PACKERS WIN
    4. CONFERENCE REALIGNMENT
    5. CARDINALS WIN
    6. OHIO STATE
    7. MAVERICKS WIN
    8. WHELDON DIES
    9. SYRACUSE
    10. WOMEN’S WORLD CUP

    That’s 4 positive stories, 1 neutral (realignment) and 5 negative stories. In October, who would have believed OSU would be second in CFB and only 6th overall?

    The voting wasn’t close [points (1st place votes)]:
    PSU 2044 (172)
    Lockouts 1345 (15)

    There were 214 ballots, and each listed the top 10 stories. PSU was also 6th on the US poll of all news stories.

    Like

    • duffman says:

      If I were voting, conference realignment would be #1. While the PSU thing has gained much ink, it was a single school, and dealt with an issue off the playing field. Conference realignment involves schools across the nation and will affect billions of dollars and decades of time in the size and scope of what is happening. The NBA could have stayed locked out all season, and it would have not bothered me at all. It would have meant more college basketball coverage, and IU is up this year! :)

      While the Wheldon story was the most personal with death involved, how many people on the street actually even recognize his name. The mainstream press has fed PSU but at some point the press will find a new topic to make sensational. Not that I agree with this because it means a core issue needs to be dealt with, but the press and public are ADD. I sorta wish the NFL had stayed out, as it might bring revenue down, and the actual fans might once again be able to afford going to the games. Ohio State, like U$C, was a flash in the pan and will be back in business in no time. U$C is already near the top of the pack, so it is not like the sanctions hurt them at all. Compared to SMU recovering, U$C felt only a bump in the road to the SMU folks having to start from scratch.

      Like

      • ccrider55 says:

        U$C appealed and lost. Their scolly sanctions begin this coming year. They have only suffered post season banishment so far. We’ll see how they are three years hence and down 30 scollys.

        Like

        • Richard says:

          Their depth will be hurt, but in terms of average recruit stars, no one in the country has a higher average than USC for the 2012 class. They won’t be competing for national titles any time soon, but it helps that they’re in the Pac12 South. I mean, who’s going to compete with them? Utah? Colorado? UCLA should be taking advantage right now if they were competent, but they and the AZ schools are going through a transition phase. SC has a clear path to the Rose Bowl once they can play in the postseason again. All they have to do is beat Oregon or whoever the P12 North winner is.

          Like

        • Eric says:

          Didn’t realize none of that had taken place yet. I understand appealing, but that that really sucks that the punishment will go on for so long now.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            They used the extra year to recruit a full class and try to build their numbers. USC was below the limit before and they didn’t want to amplify that by going straight into the restrictions.

            Like

        • duffman says:

          ccrider,

          It actually helps that they do not overlap. As the scholly hits, they will be off post season ban and should be able to go 6-6 and bowl games, which will give them added press and bowl money. I still say TV ban is probably the best deterrent to cheating, but they will not allow that to happen at the Bank of U$C.

          Like

          • Mack says:

            A TV ban of USC and Ohio State would hurt ESPN and FOX more than the schools. That is why it is not going to happen. The big conferences would have to make a complete break from the NCAA to keep their big TV $$$ if the NCAA started doing this (which is why they won’t). To punish a shcool, the NCAA should restrict the share of conference TV $$$ that can be distributed to that school. That way the networks, the conference, and the rest of the schools in the conference (benefiting from extra $$ due to the sanctions) are happy. The only loser would be the school being sanctioned. The way it works today, even if USC did not appear on TV they would still get a full share of the PAC12 TV $$$.

            Like

          • Phil says:

            Since we will never see another TV ban because of how large the $$ have gotten, and messing with the conference schedule affects competitive balance, a “next step” punishment I would like to see (when a bowl ban is not enough) is a ban on OOC home games.

            -It only hurts the offending school
            -It can hurt them a lot financially, but not have a major effect on competitiveness
            -Theoretically it hurts a team more the more successful they were at cheating
            -They would be forced to go on the road and play at the stadiums of some schools that might not normally get high profile home games.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Phil,

            The downside is that means fewer paycheck games for some little guys, so they suffer. It also impacts the conference’s TV deals since you leave them with fewer games to pick from and the lower tier distributor has one less game. If a conference has deals that cover all games they play, it could be an issue.

            Better for the little guys would be just a home OOC game TV ban. If you want real punishment, though, you have to attack the TV money rather than the TV appearances.

            Like

          • Richard says:

            It hurts the home conference a little, but other conferences would benefit, so net, there’s no drawback. Same with paychecks. Yes, less paycheck games (and you’re assuming it’s the big programs being hit), but tOSU, USC, and Miami would be a big draw on the road as well.

            Banning home games (or at least home OOC games), say within 500 miles of campus) is really the way to go if you really are serious about punishing offenders.

            Of course, you may see a bunch of high-profile neutral site games, but that’s a benefit, not a drawback.

            Like

          • Phil says:

            Brian, I disagree because schools on this (no OOC home game) probation are not all of a sudden going to play all BCS OOC opponents, on the road. I think you would have some of the teams normally playing on the road for paychecks, that would now be hosting the big time team.

            Let’s use Ohio State for example. If a Western Michigan was coming to OSU they get a paycheck for approximately $1mm. If OSU as part of probation had to play AT Western Michigan, WMU sells out their season tickets just with people that want to guarantee they get tickets to the OSU game, which probably makes WMU more than $1mm.

            The excitement of having a team visit their stadium that normally wouldn’t is just an added bonuis.

            Like

          • Richard says:

            Phil:

            If home OOC games are banned, the optimum financial decision is to play big-time neutral site games (or the away part of home-and-homes or 2-for-1’s). Still, I think it would be a big deterrent just because of the big cashflow hit, especially if you spread it out over multiple years in a row).

            Maybe USC, tOSU, Miami, and UNC could play each other.

            Like

      • Brian says:

        duffman,

        I agree realignment is a bigger sports issue, but the story isn’t as big as the scandals. Realignment doesn’t mean much to people that aren’t big fans of CFB and/or MBB/WBB. The scandals at big name schools impacted more casual fans.

        The things to remember with Wheldon’s death are:
        1. It was televised live
        2. It was a death

        Sure, the story probably got the least ink of any of the 10 by far, but an athlete dying in competition, and the possibility that it changes the future of the sport, is huge.

        I wish the NFL and NBA stayed locked out forever. I haven’t watched a game of either in years, and the college sports would benefit from the vacuum. On the plus side, it keeps the gambling addicts from getting too involved in college sports.

        Like

        • duffman says:

          Brian,

          I understand your points about Wheldon

          I still disagree on realignment vs sex scandal

          Look at it in terms of the year 2000

          Story A = Y2K bug
          Story B = Euro conversion

          As we neared the year 2000, the Y2K was all over the media, while the Euro got no press outside of business journals. You could argue Y2K was the bigger story because of all the press, but I would opt for the Euro. Y2K was quickly forgotten, but the Euro conversion united Europe under a single currency for the first time in 2,000 years without 1 gun or sword being drawn to do so. I think long term realignment will have the greatest impact even tho, like the Euro conversion, it will not be widely reported outside a specific sphere of influence.

          Nebraska joining the B1G after about 100 years of trying will affect sports and research alliances going forward. TAMU breaking from the old SWC and MU breaking from the old Big 8 will send ripples over time in what happens to each school far outside of what happens on the field of play. Much like how I view “brands” over much larger windows of time than your view of kings and princes, I can see true durability over just the flavor of the year, decade, or generation. Sure we may look at realignment from just the sports side, but I have a very sure feeling ripples will flow far beyond sports.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            Remember that a lot of realignment happened last year, too. You don’t get to lump it all in as a 2011 story.

            That said, Y2K was the bigger story while the Euro was the more important event. I’d say the same is true with OSU/PSU/Miami/UNC/SC/etc versus realignment.

            Like

  79. bullet says:

    http://www.sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/basketball/ncaa/12/19/todd.obrien/index.html

    Interesting article on a coach giving a transfer player the shaft. St. Joe’s coach is refusing to allow a backup center who has graduated (and according to the player threatened to get him kicked out of classes he needed to graduate) to transfer for his graduate degree and play at UAB. Martelli makes Les Miles look like a saint.

    Like

    • bullet says:

      I’m beginning to think the NCAA is beyond hope. They need to burn it down and start over.

      They back the St. Joseph’s coach giving the player the shaft and they give an admonition to Mark Richt for being a nice guy and paying his coaches $62,000 out of his own pocket.

      http://espn.go.com/colleges/georgia/football/story/_/id/7372776/georgia-bulldogs-mark-richt-paid-staff-own-pocket-report-says

      Like

      • Richard says:

        You can burn the whole thing down, but the sliminess would still remain. Why? Because the schools comprise the NCAA, and the schools (specifically the athletic departments) are the ones who want to keep treating players like serfs.

        Good Andy Staples article:

        http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/andy_staples/12/20/ncaa-student-athletes/index.html

        Like

      • Richard says:

        Oh, and if you read the story, many of those payouts occurred because UGa wasn’t willing to take care of the little people working for Richt (not paying out bowl bonuses and the like) so Richt paid them out of his own pocket. The system is a hypocritical sham and should be torn down, but if you really want to make things right, college football as we know it would be destroyed (professionalization, right to collective bargaining by the players, etc.)

        Like

        • bullet says:

          UGA is struggling with budget cuts, but I would bet they are one of the few athletic programs that turns a profit, so their rationale for refusing to do it seems a little strange.

          Like

      • Brian says:

        Of course they backed the coach. The rule says the former school has to sign off on it. The committee’s correct response is to follow the rule as written and recommend that the rule gets changed in the future. The only say the former school should have is in verifying the facts (the player enters a program that the former school doesn’t offer, the player has eligibility left, the player graduated, etc). Unfortunately, the rule doesn’t restrict the reasons the former school can say no.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          And my point is that the NCAA is hopelessly bureaucratic. Georgia Tech’s violations last year with 1 player getting $300 in clothing are major violations just the same as Miami’s decade long hooker and slush fund. And they have a rule that says a school can control a player even if they aren’t using them and the NCAA can’t apply any common sense in the issue.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            Perhaps they can form a Common Sense committee that oversees decisions from all the other committees and serves as the final appeal of any NCAA decision.

            Like

  80. OT says:

    Norm Chow is moving again…

    Next stop: Hawai’i

    http://www.staradvertiser.com/sports/breaking/NORM_CHOW_SELECTED_AS_NEXT_UH_FOOTBALL_COACH.html?id=135942508

    I would love to see Hawai’l make the jump to the BIG EAST when its football-only conference affiliation agreement with the Mountain West expires after the 2013 season.

    Hawai’i belongs in the BIG EAST, the only BCS conference where Hawai’i is a fit.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      You keep saying that, but I don’t get it. How is HI a fit for the BE at all? The BE might be the closest AQ fit for HI, but I don’t see the reverse.

      Like

      • Gopher86 says:

        One advantage would be the extra game you could schedule.

        1) Bring in Hawaii
        2) Use extra game
        3) ?
        4) Profit

        Like

        • greg says:

          I don’t know how profitable the 13th game would be for Big East schools. They don’t sell a lot of tickets against a likely mediocre opponent, and that needs to offset an expensive trip to Hawaii.

          Like

    • Richard says:

      Good for him. He’s setting history by being the first Asian-American head coach ever in college football, which he said he wanted to be (quite a few years ago, in fact).

      Like

      • ccrider55 says:

        Navy’s HC doesn’t count?

        Like

        • Brian says:

          It depends on whether or not you separate Pacific Islander/Polynesian from Asian, I suppose.

          Like

        • Richard says:

          Yeah. I can see Filipinos being classified as Asian, but Samoans, from way out in the middle of the Pacific, being considered Asian is a bit of a stretch. Granted, Polynesians, native Filipinos, and even aborigine Taiwanese all originally came out of Taiwan (and before that, south China). Then again, we all originally came out of Africa anyway.

          Like

  81. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    NCAA drops a one year bowl ban on the Buckeyes, in addition to a loss of 3 scholies for each of the next 3 years.

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7372757/ohio-state-buckeyes-football-penalties-include-bowl-ban

    Like

    • greg says:

      OSU is ridiculously stupid for not self-imposing a one year bowl ban this year. Enjoy the Gator Bowl. Gene Smith…. ugh.

      Like

      • OT says:

        Separated at birth:

        Ohio State AD Gene Smith

        Former Southern California AD Mike Garrett

        Like

      • Brian says:

        greg,

        Especially since OSU had a good shot at winning the division next year (IL and PSU have coaching changes, too, and WI loses a lot of players and has a huge question at QB while OSU returns a lot on O and D). Now OSU is ineligible for the CCG and any bowl instead of missing what turned out to be the Gator.

        Gene Smith was too obsessed with precedent to see that the NCAA has been upping their punishments and the FTM charge seemed like an obvious time to add a 1 year bowl ban.

        I will say it is mighty convenient that the NCAA kept delaying their ruling until well after bowl selection occurred. If they weren’t so lazy they could have made a decision in November.

        Like

    • bullet says:

      I have trouble saying there is institutional control when the head coach is keeping info from the NCAA.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Your definition is different from the NCAA’s. One of the clear differences is that OSU’s issues were in only one sport. It almost always requires multiple sports or several administrators and/or coaches to be involved to get LOIC.

        One guy lying would be a ridiculously low standard for LOIC.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          He is the head coach and there were problems with boosters. It would be different if it were an assistant. The AD is the only one in the athletic department above the head coach.

          Now its nothing even approaching the SMU situation in the 80s, but the head coach makes it different than most of the cases you get. And Gee’s comments about the coach being more likely to fire him was not a good signal of institutional control.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            One guy lying and another making an inappropriate joke would be a ridiculously low standard, too. OSU got an appropriate FTM charge for the booster stuff, but they would have to have been clairvoyant to know Tressel was lying.

            Like

        • Redwood86 says:

          Yep. We all know how clean Ohio St. basketball has been through the years.

          Like

    • Brian says:

      To be fair, OSU already imposed 5 of the 9 lost scholarships. The NCAA also added a third year of probation. Most fans foresaw those extra penalties, so I don’t know why Smith didn’t. He seemed obsessed with precedent, but the NCAA explicitly says they aren’t bound by precedent.

      As soon as the second group of violations came out and the FTM charge was added, OSU should have added a 1 year bowl ban. The players that caused many of the problems are seniors so they should have missed a bowl, not the innocent players next year.

      Like

      • acaffrey says:

        This was such an absurd decision by Smith that it really does not matter what he was thinking.
        If nothing else, the NCAA has gotten a tad bit more serious about things lately. Kudos to Miami for doing the right thing (after doing worse wrong things, admittedly).

        Is O’Brien still under a show cause? How many universities have two former coaches under a show cause?

        Like

  82. Brian says:

    Northern football continues to dominate in the first 4 bowls.

    MAC 2-0
    CUSA (former MAC) 1-0
    Sun Belt 1-1
    WAC 0-1
    MWC 0-2

    Upcoming:
    12/21 MWC/WAC (someone out west will get out of the cellar)
    12/22 MWC/P12 (first AQ to play, another battle of the west)
    12/24 CUSA/WAC (next chance for a western team to beat another region)

    After Christmas, the AQ games kick in.

    Like

    • Richard says:

      Ironically, those 2 teams playing on 12/21 from “out west” are both closer to the Atlantic coast than they are to the Pacific.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        True, the 2 teams are both southern more than western unlike their conferences. TCU is about equidistant from the two oceans if you don’t count the GoM.

        Like

  83. greg says:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204879004577110731460989536.html

    Iowa: The Harvard of Coaching
    How Hawkeye Great Hayden Fry Raised a Bumper Crop of Coaches; The ‘Bell Cow’ Theory

    Like

  84. bullet says:

    http://www.cbssports.com/collegefootball/story/16514925/texas-dodds-revamped-big-12-will-be-a-toptier-cash-generator

    Dennis Dodd discusses the Big 12’s revenue capabilities. Basically agrees with Deloss Dodds that Big 12 may be tops in revenue per school when their ESPN contract gets renewed. Then he mentions B1G renews 1 year later and comments that noone has been able to match BTN and it may generate half the B1G’s TV revenues. Also discusses SEC and Pac 12 later in the article.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      I agree with his general sentiment that the B10, B12, P12 and SEC will form a top tier of earners with the per school lead shifting based on who last negotiated a deal. The ACC might keep up or else be just behind them (partially depends on if their FB success improves) but well ahead of the BE. I think it is nearly impossible to do a true apples to apples comparison since every deal is different and every school does their accounting differently. The annual changes in payments also make it hard to track the leader from year to year.

      I disagree with the tone of the article making it sound like the loss of teams had no impact, though. Losing CO (big market), MO (big markets), NE (big brand), TAMU (good brand and big markets) and replacing them with TCU (recent success) and WV (decent brand) has to have some impact on the next deal. It didn’t hurt them so far because they were already massively underpaid, but I think it will lower the ceiling for their next deal. They will still get a big bump, but just not quite as much as they might have otherwise.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        I agree with you about Nebraska. There are only so many “brands” and they are irreplaceable. However, I think the value of Colorado, Missouri and A&M is overrated. They may all have potential, but its unrealized and unrealizable unless they start winning consistently. Colorado and Missouri are big markets that act like small markets. The residents care about skiiing, the Broncos, Chiefs, Rams and Cardinals and not so much the Buffalos and Tigers. Kansas(!) got selected over a Missouri team ranked #1 before the ccg for the Orange Bowl. While Colorado still carried some value in Big 12 hometowns, noone else cared they had been very good in the 90s and won several division titles in the early 00s. Unlike the others, A&M has a huge, fervent fan base. But they haven’t been relevant outside Texas in half a century and with their recent mediocrity, have lost a lot of relevance to non-alumni in Texas. The University of Houston (let alone UT) has dominated them in the Houston TV markets over the last few years.

        Like

  85. Brian says:

    http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports_bianchi/2011/12/bobby-bowden-says-he-would-have-called-police-and-told-jerry-sandusky-to-go-away-and-never-come-back.html

    Bobby Bowden dumps on JoePa again. That has to sting when your fellow coaching legend calls you out. You can’t say Bowden doesn’t understand that generation or what it’s like to be an iconic head coach.

    Like

  86. Brian says:

    Pitt’s coaching search seems to be down to:

    1. Mario Cristobal (FIU’s HC)

    or, if he says no

    2. Paul Chryst (WI’s OC)

    I think Cristobal would be the best choice for them since he has head coaching experience and this is a step up. He should be happy for several years at an AQ school. Chryst’s offense would be great for Pitt, but it’s always a risk to take someone that has never been a HC. After 4 coaches in a year, I think they need a proven coach. His ability to recruit some FL talent doesn’t hurt.

    I’d love to see Chryst gone from WI, but I think this is the wrong time for Pitt to take a chance if they can avoid it. Chryst should really look at taking a non-AQ job to build his resume. Imagine that running game against the smaller MAC defenses.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      http://post-gazette.com/pg/11355/1198533-100.stm

      And the reports now say it is Chryst. This may impact some players that were thinking about the NFL as well as Dane Crist.

      From an OSU perspective, this is a great hire. I’m curious to see who replaces him and if that changes their offense at all.

      Like

      • Kevin says:

        My guess is they stay in house and promote the O-line coach to coordinator. Then slide current TE coach and former UW O-linemen, Joe Rudolph, to coach the O-line.

        They will then most likely look outside to hire a QB coach. Bielema has certainly had a lot of time to think this move through as Chryst has been rumored for different jobs the last couple of years.

        Like

  87. Brian says:

    A look ahead to to the B10 division races next year:
    East

    0. OSU – new coach, can’t officially win the division, definite X factor in the race
    1. WI – lots of personnel losses but it won’t matter since everybody else is worse
    2. PSU – new coach, good D, still no QB
    3. IL – new coach has to get more from the players than Zook
    3. PU – I’ll go out on a limb and guess they don’t lose more than 2 starters to ACL tears
    5. IN – they’re still IN

    The schedules are a big factor:
    PU – @OSU, WI, PSU, @IL, IN, MI, @IA, @MN
    IL – @OSU, @WI, PSU, PU, IN, @MI, @NW, MN

    The PU @ IL game could decide third place.

    West
    1. MI – year 2 of Hoke and company, much harder schedule, lots of losses on D
    1. MSU – lose the QB and several others on O
    1. NE – year 2 in the B10 makes the games easier
    4. IA – the RB curse continues and Ferentz is still rebuilding them (typical year for them to overachieve)
    5. NW – lack the talent of other teams and Persa is gone
    6. MN – until they prove otherwise they are last

    Schedules:
    MI – MSU, @NE, IA, NW, @MN, @OSU, IL, PU
    MSU – @MI, NE, IA, NW, @MN, OSU, @WI, @IN
    NE – MI, @MSU, @IA, @NW, MN, @OSU, WI, PSU

    MI has the edge with no WI and MSU at home, but does play @OSU in OSU’s bowl game. NE has the hardest schedule of the three.

    I don’t think the B10 will have a NCG contender again in 2012, but 2013 looks better. OSU and PSU will be in year 2 of new coaches, MI in year 3, and NE will rotate to an easier schedule on top of having 2 years of experience in the B10. WI should be status quo like MSU and others.

    2013
    OSU – WI, @NW, bye, IA, PSU, @PU, bye, @IL, IN, @MI
    PSU – @IN, MI, bye, @OSU, IL, @MN, PU, NE, @WI
    WI – @OSU, bye, NW, @IL, PU, @IA, bye, IN, @MN, PSU

    MI – MN, @PSU, IN, bye, @MSU, NE, @NW, @IA, OSU
    MSU – @IA, IN, PU, @IL, MI, bye, @NE, @NW, MN
    NE – IL, @PU, bye, @MN, NW, @MI, MSU, @PSU, IA

    I’d favor OSU in the east and MSU in the west based solely on schedules. I expect MI and NE will be much better in 2013 than in 2011 though, so MSU will have to improve too.

    Like

  88. duffman says:

    From this Forbes link

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/chrissmith/2011/12/22/college-footballs-most-valuable-teams/

    Texas = 129 M up 8%
    Notre Dame = 112 M up 4%
    Penn State = 100 M up 1%

    LSU = 96 M up 12%
    Michigan = 94 M up 15%
    Alabama = 93 M up 1%
    Georgia = 90 M up 7%

    Arkansas = 89 M up 59%
    Auburn = 88 M up 27%
    Oklahoma = 87 M up 5%
    Florida = 86 M down 1%
    Tennessee = 82 M up 6%

    Ohio State = 78 M down 8%
    Nebraska = 77 M down 18%

    Wisconsin = 67 M up 40%
    South Carolina = 64 M down 20%
    Texas A&M = 63 M up 19%
    Southern Cal = 62 M down 9%

    Michigan State = 59 M up 3%
    Iowa = 48M new (took oSu spot)

    .

    a) Congrats to Sparty for making the list fro the first time
    b) Both Arkansas and TAMU benefitted from playing in JerryWorld
    c) Auburn jump was influenced by MNC
    d) Nebraska drop influenced by greater travel cost
    e) Any Gamecock fans care to explain the 20% drop when they are doing well?
    f) SEC = 45%, B1G = 35%, B12 = 10%, PAC = 5%, IND = 5%
    g) B12 lost 3 teams – oSu, TAMU, and UNL – or 15%, which is substantial
    h) B1G gained 2 teams – UNL and MSU – or 10%, which made them the biggest gainers
    i) With Sandusky issue, will UM displace PSU by next year?

    Like

    • duffman says:

      edit, flip MSU and Iowa – I hate slideshows – as Iowa is new to the list and displaced Oklahoma State. Here is the list from 2009 :

      Texas = 119
      Notre Dame = 108
      Penn State = 99
      Nebraska = 93
      Alabama = 92
      Florida = 88
      LSU = 86
      Ohio State = 85
      Georgia = 84
      Oklahoma = 83
      Michigan = 81
      South Carolina = 80
      Tennessee = 78
      Auburn = 70
      Southern Cal = 68
      Michigan State = 57 (Sparty was in previous list, my error)
      Arkansas = 56
      Texas A&M = 52
      Wisconsin = 48
      Oklahoma State = 47 (Iowa replaced oSu,