Tuesday, January 10, 2012

BCS... Busted?

If you had the gall to sit through last night's SEC ego-stroking fest that was the BCS National Championship game, you probably were drowsy, sick, or a combo of the 2 at one point during the night. All of the hype for a rematch of "The Game of the Century", ended up unfounded, like many guessed. Before the ego-stroking began, the leaders of the conferences and the BCS met to decide what course of action to take next. This only happened because of this specific national title game instance. Not the issues from 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, or the rest, it was because of this season. Why? Because for the first time since the system came into place in 1998, the BCS legitimately failed.

During the Bowl Coalition and Bowl Alliance, rematches for the National Title were common, and even worse, the likelihood of a split vote was pretty high. The BCS has only had one instance of a split vote, and even then, it didn't really matter in the end, except for the addition of a 5th game to the series and a change to the formula for the computers. But finally, the system as a whole failed. This was designed to prevent a split vote for the national championship, which it did, but it was also designed to prevent rematches. It was also designed to prevent non-conference champions from getting into the title game, but that was disproven in 2001. An all one conference title game? That has never happened before, but once it did, that was the straw that broke the camels back.

"Every Game Matters" is the BCS mantra. In this season, every game did matter. Except the first time LSU and Alabama played, and the SEC Title Game. Imagine if LSU lost the title game, then we'd have had a serious controversy on our hands. Thankfully, that didn't happen. If in fact there was a rematch of a game that happened during the year in the BCS Title Game, it may have been more forgiven if it wasn't a bloated up SEC on CBS game that wasn't on CBS. Would LSU or Alabama have beaten Oklahoma State? No one will ever find out.

Thanks to the Tide essentially rolling over LSU, the AP vote was decisive. If it had been another 9-6 game, we would have had a split national title, most likely. When you look at the other BCS bowls as well, their attendances were all down and so were the TV ratings, meaning that this season hurt the BCS more than any other. Whether it was automatic qualification, or whether it was teams 6, 7, 8, and 9 in the BCS missing out on BCS bowl games, the big numbers for the games themselves were down, including the numbers for the title game.  The BCS could no longer hide behind the fact that they could get it right "4 out of 5 times", because the 1 time they don't get it right happened way too often.

What comes out of this is uncertain, but a 4 team playoff seems likely. There will still be controversy, as with teams on the bubble in the NCAA tournament, as to who gets in and who doesn't, but at least the teams will sort it out themselves, and not by a computer and pollsters. Finally, all of the controversies and issues collapsed in on the BCS, sparking the talks for change. But this season in particular, and its ending, was finally the cause of the result many wanted to see come. Congress didn't cause this. Fans didn't cause this.

The BCS itself caused this, and they have no one but themselves to blame.

No comments:

Post a Comment