Are you ready for some football? The Insight Bowl at Tempe, Ariz., Dec. 31 will match 6-6 Iowa State versus 6-6 Minnesota. Sure, the flight south is a great escape from Old Man Winter’s icy clutches for fans of those two schools. But is anyone else not totally bored out of their skulls going to watch this meaningless game on TV?
Sure, there are bowls to look forward to. Tonight, Oregon State University meets Brigham Young University in the Las Vegas Bowl. And on Jan. 1 the University of Oregon meets The Ohio State University in the Rose Bowl. Fans throughout Oregon, whether they are Beaver or Duck boosters, will be on the edge of their EZ chairs for both games.
But how much better would it be if Oregon State, ranked No. 16, played at No. 1 Alabama in the first round of a national playoff? How much more excitement would there be if the Beavers could advance to the Elite Eight? The Final Four? Or maybe even a national championship? How much better would it be if No. 10 Iowa played at No. 7 Oregon in the first round of the playoffs. Just think how much excitement such a game would generate in Duck Nation.
Hey, the Beaver baseball team won national championships twice. It is not out of the question for an Oregon team to win the football title. But, then again, with the Bowl Championship Series in place, it just might be.
This year two unbeatens, Boise State and Texas Christian, are playing in the Fiesta Bowl, for pride. Two other unbeaten teams, Alabama and Texas, are playing for the BCS mythical national championship.
Some people argue that college football players are also students and need to spend more time on book learning and less on the field of play. Why, then, do many teams already play 13 games in a season, counting the bowl? If the classroom is so important, why not have the bowl games two weeks after the end of the regular season? Why not cut the regular season to 10 games and have a 32-team playoff, or 11 games and have a 16-team playoff? Then most student-athletes would get more time to study, and we could also determine a legitimate national champion. It’s a win-win situation.
Some people also argue that the only reason Boise State defeated Oklahoma in the 2007 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl was that the Sooners were apathetic because the national championship was not at stake. Isn’t this even more of an argument for a sudden-death playoff? Then every game is important. If a team wants to advance to the Sweet 16, the Elite Eight or the Final Four, they have to earn it, step by step. Anyone hear of the success of college basketball’s March Madness? The 64-team tournament rivets the attention of sports fans everywhere.
The playoffs will end up making college football and its sponsors more money thana the BCS does today. That’s the bottom line. Money will be the deciding factor. The BCS needs to be sacked.