Monday, December 14, 2009

NCAA Playoffs

As Bowl Picks are made, talk again moves to creating a playoff for big time college football, which in the best of all possible worlds would be abolished, with the last two years of high school merged with the first two years of college for some and four year votech schools for the same age cohort all fielding teams. You might have regional playoffs, although I suspect the state level would be as high as you would go with this. Students who go on past sophomore year in college should be funded by their future employers to finish their majors and do masters level work and would have no time for big time sports. Any football draft would happen after sophomore year.

Of course, we aren't quite to that point, so let's talk playoff possibilities.

There are two options. The first is to split Division I in two, exiling the Big East, the MAC, Conference USA, the WAC, the Sun Belt and the Mountain West to a separate division and leaving the PAC 10, the Big 10, the SEC, the Big 12 and the ACC to a playoff system. Under such a scenario the Rose Bowl between the PAC 10 and the Big Ten would move to the first week of December with the winner playing the Big 12 winner January first, which would also feature a contest between the ACC and SEC winners. The winner of the January 1 games would meet on the second Monday of January for the national title.

This would, of course, kill off most interest in the other Bowl games (which would become meaningless).

The other playoff scenario would include the other conferences, although again it would kill most bowl games and the associated advertising revenue. In a purer regional playoff, you would split the two division conferences up and pair BCS divisions/conferences with non-BCS divisions/conferences. Here is how such a lineup would look:

Western Region:
PAC 10 vs. Western Athletic Conference
Big 12 North vs. Mountain West

Central Region:
Big 10 vs. Mid-America West
Big 12 South vs. Conference USA West

Eastern Region:
ACC Atlantic vs. Big East
ACC Coastal vs. Conference USA East

Southern Region:
SEC East vs. Sun Belt
SEC West vs. MAC East

Western Region v. Central Region
Southern Region v. Eastern Region

A final option could keep conference integrity:

Eastern Region:
ACC Playoff
Big East vs. Sun Belt

Southern Region:
SEC Playoff
Conference USA Playoff

Western Region:
Big 12 Playoff
PAC 10 vs. WAC

Central Region:
MAC Playoff
Big 10 vs. Mountain West

Semifinals under this scenario are the same as above.

Of course, under either scenario, the national championship you would get this year would likely yield the same result as the BCS system, with Texas playing Alabama in the National Championship (but with less likelihood of injury to the players - who you must remember are playing for scholarships rather than a share of the TV rights. I like the mix and match scenario. It would have been interesting to see Ohio State play Central Michigan in a playoff. Central just might have pulled that one out. In the end, however, Texas beats OSU and Bama beats everyone (including, I am sorry to say as a native Texan, the Longhorns).

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Happy Birthday Sages!

This is my annual birthday greeting to all of you who are also Sagittarians who follow this blog.

I think we need to open this up for more writers. Please comment if you would like posting access and I will consider adding you to the list of authorized bloggers.