For years now, it seems as though the argument against the BCS has been the snubbing of the little guy. You know, the TCUs, Boise States and Utahs of the FBS division. These programs seem to win every single game on their schedule and in convincing fashion, but rarely get picked to play with the big boys.
The BCS was founded in 1998 in attempts to end the debate of who the true national champion should be year-to-year. The idea was to prevent co-champion debates like in 1997 when Michigan finished #1 in the AP poll, yet Nebraska was #1 in the coaches poll.
However, since its inception, the BCS has provided more cause for debate than clarity.
Take the 2004-2005 season, for instance. Auburn ran the gauntlet that is the SEC and came out undefeated, only to play the bridesmaid to undefeated Oklahoma and USC. What about the 2003-2004 season that saw LSU win the national title game, only to see USC finish ahead in the polls?
How about a one-loss Kansas team finding themselves on the outside looking in of a national championship game that saw two-loss LSU get the nod. (I will note that LSU played Oklahoma, who beat KU, but the argument is the same.)
But, national championship games aside, it wasn't until 2005 that a "mid-major" program finally got a shot, as Utah would play—and demolish—a non-deserving AQ team in Pitt.
And therein lies my problem with the BCS. Only this year instead of Pitt, it's UConn.
Don't get me wrong, I have no problem with the Huskies on a personal level. I like coach Randy Edsall, and it's nice to a see a team who made the jump to FBS football only ten years ago, have some large-scale success.
However, it would be better if it wasn't the result of a technicality, as UConn finished 8-4 and unranked in the top 25.
The idea of AQ conferences are ridiculous.
I understand the idea behind it. AQ conferences assure teams in the premier conferences that they will play in big bowl games. But, if these teams are so great, why does there need to be a process in place?
Does anyone honestly think that UConn, or any team from the Big East, is really deserving of a BCS game and all that it entails?
Since the BCS began its system of bowl determination, there have been six teams with three losses that won a spot at the big kids table. Only one team had gone to a BCS bowl with four losses: the 2005-2006 Florida State Seminoles.
To further the point, each one of those three-loss teams, and FSU, gained entry via the "Conference Champion" clause. What's more, each one of those teams was never ranked higher than 10th, and that was a Kansas State team who beat Oklahoma in the Big 12 Championship game, only to see OU play for the national title.
Talk about your muddied waters. Do teams outside of the top 10 really have any business playing in games that were meant for the "best of the best," as they [the BCS powers that be] say?
In a word: No.
Boise State will likely remain the same in the upcoming BCS rankings, but aren't they more deserving than unranked UConn? How about the Nevada squad that upset Boise? What about 10-2 Utah? 10-3 Hawaii? All schools that are ranked in the top 25, but will likely play in the Dyson Vacuum Cleaner's Bowl or the Your Ad Here Bowl.
And that's just the "small" schools.
Never mind Missouri, Alabama, Oklahoma State or Michigan State—who will likely be the Big Ten snub with Ohio State and Wisconsin claiming two BCS bids.
No, ladies and gents, you will see UConn—whose marquee win was against an average West Virginia team—play in January.
In an age where there are no winners and losers, only first place and second, isn't time that something as trivial as a bowl bid should be earned? After all, it's not like there aren't 35 to choose from.
I think Michigan State and friends would support that cause.
But since we are only allowed to play the cards we are dealt, we must wait until 2014 for a new deal, no FDR pun intended.
Let's hope for a playoff, or at the very least a pay-off, at the next go-round.
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