If the BCS is teaching us one thing, you don’t have to win your conference championship to be No.1. For what I believe is the third time in BCS history, a team that did not win their conference will play for the right to be called No.1.
Here is my plan, eliminate conference championship games, what purpose do they really serve? Instead, the top four teams in the country are given a bye the first week of December; however, you must have won your conference to be eligible for bye. Seeded teams 5 thru 12 meet each other, with the higher seed the home team.
The field is again reseeded for positions 5 thru 8 and those winners play at the top seeds in the second Saturday of December, which is a dead zone for college sports. We can get four games in a 12-hour window, since college football is more a regional sports anyways (except for sports bettors) and a little TV overlap isn’t going to hurt anyone.
Next are the semi-finals, which are the last two games on New Year’s Day. We can have the Capital One, Gator and whatever else bowls as appetizers, before we play the nationals semis. Then, whatever the Monday or Thursday that works best after the first of the New Year is the championship game.
The amount of money generated at local facilities the first two rounds will more than make-up for lost revenue of a conference championship game when divided among the universities. And if an Atlanta, Charlotte or Indianapolis wants to complain about losing the revenue without such a game, deal with it.
In terms of interest and dollars to schools, off the charts. Big boy advertisers will want in on the action and that revenue stream could be added to further with advertisers that couldn’t afford a semifinal or championship game rate, but might comfortably step in for the first two weeks of the playoff system, especially with Christmas shopping in full swing for sales events.
This year it was a foregone conclusion eight days before the bowl assignments were doled out, who the two teams were to play in the BCS championship. How much broader would the interest be if 20 teams went into their final regular season game with a playoff bid on the line?
College presidents, save all the talk about the student athletes missing classes. You have made your point about what football means to your school by chasing the money to get the best deal for your school at a different conference.
This system will not hurt the other bowl games. If somebody wants to go see the Military Bowl between the Air Force and Toledo, they are going to go. The only potential bowls that could feel any pain are those early matchups on New Year’s Day and even that isn’t a certainty.
The time is now, let’s put this charade behind us, take the money and get college football out of this Mickey Mouse method of sports.
Here is how it would look this season.
Top 4 seeds in order: LSU, Oklahoma State, Oregon and Wisconsin
The first round matchups would look this way –
(12) West Virginia at (5) Alabama
(11) Clemson at (6) Stanford
(10) TCU at (7) Arkansas
(9) Virginia Tech at (8) Boise State
Winning your conference counts for something, this is why TCU, West Virginia and Clemson deserve invitations. Oh sure you could argue Michigan or Michigan State deserves to be ahead of Virginia Tech, but at least they got to their conference champion and the Hokies do have a better record than the Spartans, though I would not have real argument about Michigan State being seeded.