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Anti-BCS: College Football Playoff Payoff

Ask any sports fan what the month of March means, and they’ll answer with two words: March Madness (if they’re a fan of Dick Vitale, they may add the word  “Ba-BY!”)

The NCAA college basketball tournament is the most exciting playoff tournament in all of sports. 68 teams battle it out to determine the best team in college basketball. Which #1 seeds will make it to the Final Four? Which David will upset the Goliaths? Will your office bracket hold up? So many things go hand in hand to keep NCAA basketball on everybody’s mind for an entire month!

Why won’t college football follow suit?

Look around in March and notice how many people are filling out brackets, talking about upsets, and immersing themselves in the tournament (a controversial study estimates that over 8.4 million work hours will be lost during the three weeks of the NCAA Basketball Tournament). Listen as a co-worker talks about how his team advanced on a buzzer beater. Laugh when you see a girl make fun of her boyfriend for having a better bracket though she picked teams solely on uniform colors (this has actually happened to me).  A tournament in football could surely garner the same kind of energy and buzz.

The business of college athletics (no matter what schools try to tell you, college athletics IS a business) is to keep fans interested. That’s where they get their revenue (more interest in the school means more TV time, means more ad revenue, means $$). How many fans lose interest in college football in the month between the season ending and the Bowl games beginning? This guy sure does.

But what about the players in all this?

The BCS makes every game the equivalent of a playoff game. If a team loses a single one, their chances of going to the National Championship Game are all but washed away. Football is a hard-hitting game. People get hurt. Should potentially the best team in college football lose their chance at a national title because a player may have gotten hurt, costing their team a game?

"Participation award"

Well, at least they won something...right?

Some BCS supporters argue that a bowl game can be a moral victory of sorts. They didn’t win it all, but at least they won something. These are adults, and they’re athletes who have been competing their entire lives. They know how it feels to lose, and that’s what makes winning so sweet. A victory in the Little Caesar’s Pizza Bowl is the equivalent of a “Participation Award” ribbon. Boise State (ranked #7 in the country) isn’t going to feel good about beating 6-6 Arizona State when they would have been in the national championship discussion had a single field goal not been wide right.

The BCS is a broken system. It keeps championship caliber teams from even having a chance to play for it. There’s no discernible reason that Oklahoma State doesn’t get a shot at the title this year (other than they finished .008 points behind Alabama in some computer algorithm). The BCS is a dream crusher, and it needs to be stopped.

Go Tarheels!



Alex Brodsky

Alex is a video specialist and blogger at Quality Logo Products, putting his media background and screenwriting training to good use. When he's not working, he enjoys tinkering with his fantasy sports lineups, engaging in cheeky shenanigans, and cuddling. He must also get all of his caffeine from pop as he can't stand coffee. You can also connect with Alex on Google+.

Comments

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  2. Mandy Kilinskis

    Even though my knowledge of sports is very limited and my interest even more so, after reading both of these blogs, I’d have to say that I’m going to side with you, Alex.

    While Jeff’s argument of a football team winning with zero losses is incredible, I agree that there are too many tiny factors that can throw off a game or two and keep good teams out of the playoffs.

    In conclusion: YAY SPORTS. (And go Huskers.)

    • Alex Brodsky

      Yay sports! Sports Newbie or not, I will ALWAYS take you on my side!

  3. Jenna Markowski

    This may come as a surprise, but my knowledge of sports has not increased much over the past couple of hours. While I think it’s nice that the bowl games allow teams to earn some sort of “Thanks for Playing” award, you are completely right — this is not park district football, it is supposedly preparing these dudes for the Pro-level. That being said, a consolation prize probably doesn’t mean much, and it sucks that otherwise championship-worthy teams get booted due to one missed field goal or an injured player. SPORTS.

  4. Brian

    Well Alex I told Jeff that I agree and understand where he is coming from. In terms of college basketball, how many people truly care about the regular season? Most people that I know simply wait until March Madness begins and then they pretend to know about the schools lol. On the other hand, college football, which one would argue is siginificantly more popular than basketball, is structured totally differently with only a 12-13 game regular season compared to a 38 game bball season. Each game is significantly more important than a single game of college basketball. It’s this reason alone that the top 2 most dominant teams deserve to play in the BCS title game.

    • Alex Brodsky

      I see your side, but after Oklahoma State’s 44-10 thumping of Oklahoma, how can you not say they’re dominant? Yet they have no shot at a title.

  5. Doc

    As much as I love March Madness and the excitement it brings every year, the tournament is flawed for the same reasons you downgrade college football’s system. Similar to college football, one fluke shot or bad pass can eliminate a high caliber team because of the one and done format. Take a team like Kansas from last year that ran through it’s schedule with an astounding 31-2 record playing top competition from around the country. They played a small school (Virginia Commonwealth University) in the tournament who shot the lights out of the gym and ended Kansas’ season instantly. It makes the Jayhawks’ season as much of a disappointment as Boise State…the only difference is the Blue Turf Broncos get a free trip to Vegas for the holiday and will at least end Kellen Moore’s career with a victory. All Kansas got was a crushing defeat and a flight back to the middle of nowhere. I’ll take Boise’s result any day.

    The bottom line is exactly what you stated, Alex. College sports is a BUSINESS!!! It’s all about making money and filling up the deep pockets of the university officials and the NCAA. Both sports have managed to develop systems that make tons of cash. That’s all that the decision makers care about. They’re not bothered by a “fair” way of determining a champion. This is why I always prefer pro sports to college athletics. Not only is it the best level of competition, but their playoff systems are fair and just as entertaining. If I’m looking for the best steak, I’m going to Morton’s or Gibson’s. I wouldn’t go to Outback. If I want the best of the best, I watch the Pros.

    • Alex Brodsky

      At least with the Pros, they KNOW and ADMIT that it’s a business. The fact that the NCAA still hides under the guise of being “pure” and “for the students” is a traveshamockery (travesty, sham, mockery) to true sports fans everywhere, as well as to the athletes themselves.

      And if you want the best steak, Ruth’s Chris is phenomenal.

      White Mamba 4-Eva!

  6. Alex Brodsky

    Yay sports! Sports Newbie or not, I will ALWAYS take you on my side

  7. Jen

    I’m so confused? Are you talking about football or basketball? I thought March Madness was a basketball thing?!? My head hurts…

    Great post Alex, I’m sure you made a valid argument :)

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