"ELITE 8"

THAT’S RIGHT, I’m talking about PLAYOFFS!!

Every football fanatic friend (try saying that 5 times, real fast) that I have seems to love NCAA College football much more than NFL football. It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about a weekend matchup or a popular video game, they all appreciate the game of football better at the Collegiate level. One of the most understandable reasons I’ve heard for this preference is that college athletes “play with a ‘pure’ LOVE and RESPECT for the game”. (no pay, and more effort) This argument is very true, but also makes logical sense, given the circumstances. An athlete’s college career is basically one big interview. (Not to diminish the importance of education) What are they interviewing for? A job in the PROFESSIONAL arena. So, of course, they are going to give 110% every time they step on the field. But let’s be honest about the interview process. We have ALL taken part in a bogus interview once or twice in life. The individual being interviewed walks in the office and promises everything the interviewer wants to hear. “I’ll be your hardest worker”. “I can work anytime, even holidays”. “Given my experience, and professional attitude, I think I can help your company grow”. All of that sounds great, right? And then, 2 weeks on the job, that same person is constantly late for work, can’t work weekends, and gives you about 55% effort at best. Some players become that in the professional ranks. I’ve been in the business world long enough to know that sort of thing just happens, so I can’t pick favorites due to that factor. I personally enjoy NFL football much more than College for one major reason: PLAYOFFS. I know it’s been argued over a million times, but NCAA Football is the only sport on the planet that does not offer a tournament-style bracket to determine its Champion. And each year, the league becomes more of a popularity contest, and I wonder even more if a true Champion will be crowned at the end. Think about it, college football throws out their rankings before one single game is played. These rankings are based off what? The previous year’s production,  return players, and an “educated guess”. We basically place two teams at the top and tell them that as long as they don’t lose more than 1 game, they are guaranteed a spot in the “big game”, which is a “one and done” opportunity. IT MAKES NO SENSE! If every sport used this logic, this year’s Championship games would have been as follows……

NBA: CHICAGO BULLS vs SAN ANTONIO SPURS

NFL: NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS vs ATLANTA FALCONS

MLB: PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES vs TAMPA BAY RAYS

NHL: WASHINGTON CAPITALS vs VANCOUVER CANUCKS

NCAA MEN’S BASKETBALL: OHIO ST. BUCKEYES vs KANSAS JAYHAWKS 

I think you get my point, but just in case you don’t follow each of these sports, take notice that the Vancouver Canucks were the only “Top Seed” that even made it to their respective sport’s Championship Series. (and they lost) All the others lost because with tournament-style play you have to bring your “A-game” every night, and SURVIVE. You face different STYLES, different STRENGTHS, and different OPPOSITION…but a true Champion SURVIVES. In college football, you basically have to prepare for ONE OPPONENT, and you are considered the best.

Just as we criticize the Pros for being all about money, the college ranks are no different. It’s all about money. The BOWL argument is for another day, but there are 2.3 MILLION BOWL GAMES, and counting. I don’t know if the NCAA realizes it or not, but when you have unranked teams playing in the Tilex Toilet Bowl and Lucky Charms Cereal Bowl, NO ONE CARES! Is anyone checking the viewer-ship and attendance on some of these games?

So let me end, by giving my COUCH EXPERT OPINION on what the end of the year Bracket should look like. “8” is always a nice, clean number for any tournament. If you are ranked one of  the top 8 teams in the country, you’re in. Of course there will still be teams who barely miss the cut that will argue on why they should have been “in”, but with 8 teams you can guarantee that at least the top 6 teams in the country are fighting for the gold, instead of just 2 teams that are selected by human emotion and a computer.

My Bracket:

 

I think the bracket makes perfect sense. The Rose and Fiesta Bowls are always played on the same day, so you place those tags on the two games that should be the most competitive; #4 vs. #5 and #3 vs. #6. The other First Round games can have Bowl tags attached to them as well, but I’m just focusing on the Bowl Championship Series. You would have the surviving  four teams in the Semi-Finals Round, which would represent the Orange and Sugar Bowls. And, of course, a true Championship game at the end. The only flaw would be the fact that one team would win multiple Bowl games, but again, you would increase the attendance, viewers, and REVENUE of each game. NO ONE LOSES.

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Comments
  1. […] into the details of exactly how a playoff system would work, because in Part 1 of my argument (“PLAYOFFS? PLAYOFFS? ARE WE REALLY TALKING ABOUT PLAYOFFS?”) I already addressed how they could have a playoff between the top 8 teams in the country, and […]

  2. Kyle Benton says:

    I agree that we need a playoff system in the BCS. The only objection I have to your proposed format is that the confrence champions should get an AQ birth (Just as the division winners of the NFL no matter how bad the division is). The AQ confrences should get a ticket to the dance with 1 at-large (wild card) teams rounding out the field. The division winners with the best record get a bye. This would allow all 4 BCS Bowls to be used in the new playoff system. That being said I propose a 6 team playoff that would look like this (I’m using the BCS rankings as of today to set up the teams and leaving out the Big East, since they will no longer be relevent after this season):

    Wild card Round National Semis National Championship

    #6 Alabama (at large – SEC)
    ROSE BOWL #2 Oklahoma St. (Big-12 Champ)
    #3 Stanford (Pac-12 Cahmpion) ORANGE BOWL
    #3 Stanford (Pac-12 Champ)
    #2 Oklahoma St.
    (Rotational Location)
    #4 Wisconson (Big Ten Champion) #1 Louisiana St.
    FIESTA BOWL #4 Wisconsin (Big Ten Champ)
    #5 Clemson (ACC Champion) SUGAR BOWL
    #1 Louisiana St. (SEC Champion)

    You could even have a play-in Alabama vs.Boise St. to have 2 at larges playing for a spot for the dance (how exciting would that be!)

    Thoughts?

    • Kyle Benton says:

      Man, that’s hard to read. Short & sweet version:

      Bama v Boise St.(play-in) – Capital One Bowl

      Wild Card Round:

      Play in winner v #3 (Stanford) – Rose Bowl

      #4 (Wisconson) v #5 (Clemson) – Fiesta Bowl

      National Semis:

      #3 (Stanford) v #2 (OK St.) – Orange Bowl

      #4 (Wisconsin) v #1 (LSU) – Sugar Bowl

      National Championship

      #2 (OK St.) v #1 (LSU) – Rotational Bowl

  3. […] It’s great to see teams having to EARN the coveted “ONE” Ring these days. As I stated in “CHA CHING, BUT NO BLING BLING“, long gone are the days where a deep check book and popular names will be the path to victory. St. Louis showed the grit and determination of a true Champion. They showed that no matter how broken or beaten a team may look at the end of the season….the post season is a new beginning. NCAA Football should look at last night’s outcome and realize what they are missing. (“PLAYOFFS?! PLAYOFFS?! ARE WE REALLY TALKING ABOUT PLAYOFFS?!”) […]

  4. D says:

    i completely agree that a playoff system is needed!

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