ANYONE ELSE AGAINST A PLAYOFF?

By mark rogers
October 28, 2009

This article was originally posted on May 3, 2009. Thought it would be good to bring up again mid-season. I'd like to hear your thoughts...


I'm beginning to think I'm the only college football fan left on the planet that is against implementing a playoff to end the season.

I'm not necessarily saying the BCS is perfect or that I'm even a fan of the BCS. What I'm saying is I'm all for the bowl system and keeping things the way they are for the time being...if there are changes, they just need to be small ones.

I think I have an interesting and unique perspective on college football - I went to a Division II school, have no true Division I (or FBS) allegiance, and would be just as happy watching Texas/OU, Florida/Georgia or Ball State/Toledo.

Last season I averaged watching 30 games every Saturday...not to mention the games on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday.

I say all that just to say that I feel like I have a broad perspective on all things college football. For goodness sakes I can name every Heisman Trophy winner in two minutes with my eyes closed and hands tied behind my back hanging upside down.

The current system is interesting. It's dramatic. It makes the regular season the best of any sport in the country. And it's a tradition. Bowls have been around since the early part of last century...since the dawn of college football.

I do believe that there are certain things in life that need to be amended or revamped every now and then. Things like balding men just going ahead and shaving it off instead of trying to hide it or fixing my sprinkler heads to actually spray my lawn instead of the street in front of my house. 

But taking college football and jamming a playoff down its throat would be like making Navy SEALS eat marshmallows, sing Barney songs and wear Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle pajamas...it just wouldn't seem right.

Another thing that irks me is hearing our President (who's pro-playoff) say he hasn't talked to a single college football fan who isn't in favor of a playoff...he clearly hasn't spoken to me. And I clearly should be the Secretary of Sports in his Cabinet. He hasn't asked me yet. Still waiting for the call.

The scary thing to me is that President Obama is the type of person and leader whose opinion and encouragement could actually change the system. Of course that's only scary to me because I don't want that to happen.

There are probably millions of people out there who hope that the change is made.

Many of those who want a playoff are fans or supporters of small conference schools like Utah, Boise State, TCU and BYU.

One of those schools is usually in the BCS picture and whining that they should have a shot at the title. Well, they shouldn't.

You can't tell me and will never be able to tell me that a 12-0 Utah team (even one that beat Alabama) is on the same level as Texas, Florida or USC. They don't have the money, the talent or the schedules to match up.

And the wins by Boise State and Utah over major powers OU and Alabama lately don't hold any water for me. Last year Utah went undefeated playing in a pedestrian conference and had everything to gain by beating Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.

On the other hand, Alabama didn't lose a regular season game in the toughest, most brutal, viscous and hard-hitting conference in the country...battling week after week after week. And were coming off an emotionally destructive loss to Florida in the SEC Championship game that ruined their chances to win a national title. They weren't themselves.

Same scenario for Boise State and OU in the Broncos win in the Fiesta Bowl a few years ago. But that's a whole separate issue for a whole separate article.

What I'm trying to say in this post is that every week during the regular season means something in college football. Ohio State/USC this year will have national title implications. If a playoff were the case, a loss in that game wouldn't be nearly as detrimental.

Making the Rose, Sugar, Fiesta and Orange Bowls the first games in an eight game playoff would ruin the tradition and prestige of those bowls and diminish the usually glorious end of the season.

A playoff wouldn't end the whining or "unfairness" of the bowl system...in an eight team playoff, the ninth, tenth and eleventh ranked teams would all be picketing outside the Playoff Selection Committee's headquarters.

In a 12 team playoff it would be the thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth...and on and on and on.

So let's not just make the change for the sake of giving everybody a Charlie Brown fair chance.

The other type of "Pro-Playoffer" is the person who likes college football, but isn't IN LOVE with college football.

Men, it's like you would have no problem watching one of your friends get his head shaved against his will as a prank...you'd probably think that was pretty funny. You'd laugh and point and go on about your business when the show was over.

But if it was your WIFE...someone you LOVED...you would do everything in your power to keep her head from being shaved for a silly prank. You would risk your neck because you know your life would be miserable for a long time (and her's would, too of course).

That's how it is with me and college football...I love the season the way it is and know that changing to a playoff system (aka "shaving her head for no good reason") would be terrible and not fun for anyone.

So let's keep a unique, intense and exceptional season the way it works best...the way it's always been done. A true recipe for legends, glory, fame, heroes and drama...college football in it's natural form - the bowl system.

And let's keep the playoffs working where they work best...everywhere else.

Comments

This site does not necessarily agree with comments posted below.

Troy Oliver on October 28, 2009 9:55 PM

I basically agree with you. (Although, I would probably laugh if your wife had to shave her head)

I like the fact that one loss can be so devistating. I like the month that teams spend preparing for one opponent. And I like the Rose Bowl.

However, while the decision to exclude teams will have to be made either way ... I think it's better made between the 8th and 9th best teams, than the 2nd and 3rd best teams.

Tyrrell on November 3, 2009 9:34 AM

Ok so Troy is the ONLY person in America who likes going one month without major college football. We have to go basically all of January until September without college football out of season and you enjoy the fact that we go a month without it during the season?!?! You probably like the NBA playoff structure too.

HRob on November 4, 2009 10:49 PM

I'm right there with ya, brother.

Steve E on November 6, 2009 10:21 AM

Not sure if I agree. In essence, we are leaving power to the press to decide who is/is not the best football team in America. I understand it has always been this way, but does that make it the best way? The only true way to see who the best team is is to line them up and let them go at each other. Everything else is just paper championships. Look at Texas. Should have been in that title game for the BIG12 last year and probably the national championship. But, because OU ran up the score on weak teams and clobbered Tech, they were given the chance? What? Head to head they lost, plain and simple. Should have never been there. I don't trust a reporter to make that call, nor a computer, nor anyone else for that matter. That is why the play the actual game, not talk about it. I'm not sure the playoff system IS the answer, but we do have to find a better way to get it done. Maybe a longer college football season? I'm down that that!

John B on November 7, 2009 8:27 AM

Entertaining read, but I completely disagree with you. 8 team playoff is the way to go. Keep the original 4 BCS bowls. The winners go to a final 4 playoff over the next 2 weeks. Only 4 teams play an extra game or two and you guarantee a consensus national champion. Not to mention 2 more weekends of relentless college football hype to keep the spirits alive through the doldrums of January.

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