Monday, November 24, 2008

Will BCS history repeat itself? Sure doesn't look like it.....

It's happening.

As a Georgia fan, about 359 days ago you were more than likely screaming your head off at the travesty and injustice taking place as the Dawgs were "manipulated" out of a spot in the BCS Championship game, which eventually featured LSU and Ohio State.

To recap the events of what occured on what some people think might have been the craziest day in college football history - December 1st, 2007:

-Georgia opened the day as the #4 team in both the Harris and Coaches' polls, behind Missouri, West Virginia and Ohio State.

-The Dawgs were sitting at home that day, shut out of the SEC Championship by a series of events that can only be explained as an injustice toward all of humanity.

-LSU (#6 Harris, #7 Coaches that morning) would beat Tennessee later that day in Atlanta to win the SEC Title.

-Pittsburgh upset West Virginia
(#2 Harris, #1 Coaches) in Morgantown to eliminate the Mountaineers from BCS Title Game consideration.

-Oklahoma pounded Missouri (#1 Coaches, #2 Harris) in the Big 12 Championship game to remove Missouri from consideration.

-So if the #1 and #2 team lose, naturally the #3 and #4 teams move up to #1 and #2, right? Uhhh, not exactly. The next day, the Harris Poll voters jumped both LSU and Oklahoma over UGA, leaving the Dawgs at #4 in favor of the SEC and Big 12 Conference champions. Ohio State moved to #1, and the BCS Standings resulted in Ohio State and LSU meeting for the National Championship in New Orleans, which LSU won. Georgia was left to play in the Sugar Bowl against WAC Champion Hawaii.

As is the case with every release of the BCS standings, the controversy picked up. UGA fans were incensed. But the majority (if not all) of the national media was resigned to the idea that Georgia was treated fairly, the primary excuse being that "Georgia didn't even play in its own conference championship."

Disclaimer #1: I was among the few UGA fans that questioned whether the Dawgs really deserved to play in the Title Game last year. The fact that UGA blew it at home against South Carolina, and didn't bother to show up in Knoxville was still fresh in my mind. It was hard for me to get past that. But I'll admit that I'm strange. At the end of the day, it would have been hard for me to argue with anybody that UGA did not deserve to play in that game. There was certainly nobody in the country that had a better team than UGA at the end of last season.

What I could not handle, was the fact that pretty much everybody employed in Bristol, CT was all of a sudden speaking out adamantly against UGA's right to a National Title shot. For a long time I've felt like ESPN had a strong bias against UGA. Now everybody was starting to see it first hand. (The Moreno hurdle incident earlier this season just confirmed it further.) I remember listening to Kirk Herbstreit in an interview on 680 the Fan the following week saying something to the effect of "Georgia fans should just be happy with the Sugar Bowl, and look toward a great season next year." I remember that I almost couldn't think straight I was so pissed off listening to this guy spew this crap. I thought about how I couldn't wait to hear if he'd feel the same way if this scenario repeated itself one day with somebody else.

Well, it is now happening. (Although alot sooner than I thought.)

I'm watching the Oklahoma-Texas Tech game Saturday night. The score was about 150-10, so I'm not certain there were a whole lot of folks outside of Big 12 country that actually heard this conversation between Herbstreit himself and Brent Musberger. Again, I can't recall the exact conversation, but the insinuation was something to the effect that if the Big 12 South Champion loses in the Big 12 title game, the team that doesn't make it to that game (Oklahoma or Texas) will have a claim to a spot in the BCS Title Game. Brent (who's idiocy never ceases to amaze me, even back when he wasn't borderline senile) even chimed in that perhaps an Oklahoma-Texas rematch might be in the cards (I'm guessing that this was based on the assumption that the SEC might somehow screw up their end of the deal, although perhaps that is a bad assumption when dealing with Musberger.)

Disclamer #2: I'd like all readers to understand that I dislike Kirk Herbstreit. I always have. I've professed my dislike for him for years, and people would tell me how crazy I was because "he always talked up UGA." I couldn't ever care less how he felt about UGA. He (and the entire Gameday set for that matter) represent everything that has become wrong with college football. The commercialism, the media bias, the fact that his alma mater is the most overrated and overblown program in America, all of it...wrapped up in one nice neat ball of hair gel and a mop bucket full of makeup. I won't even mention how he lobbied for a Ohio State - Michigan BCS Championship in 2006, then turned around and lobbied against UGA's inclusion in the same game on the basis that they didn't play in their conference championship. So by his reasoning, because the Big 10 doesn't play a Championship game, they are exempt from the same rule that keeps Big 12 and SEC teams out of it? The guy is a joke of monumental proportions.

Would you let this guy decide your National Champion?

Two other media outlets have suggested the possibility, at College Football News and in Monday's USA Today. (Although Pete Fiutak at CFN does not mention the notion that UGA was omitted last season for the same reason, he at least acknowledges the idea that letting the Big 12 South runner-up into the game would not be acceptable.)

I can see the sentiment building. Bob Stoops and Mack Brown are already starting to stump for where they should be ranked. I can guarantee you that if they both finish with one loss heading to the Big 12 Championship, which ever one's team is left out of the mix will be loud as hell (a lot louder than Mark Richt was a year ago.)

Tell me this guy couldn't sell salt to a slug.....

The chatter is going to get louder about this. Not even a year ago these people were saying UGA couldn't go to the BCS title game because they didn't play in the SEC Championship. Now, that idea seems to be forgotten. If this picks up steam (and trust me, it will), no longer should anybody out there be discounting that a bias that exists with the majority of the media toward UGA. It is real (although it remains unexplainable), and I don't see it going anywhere anytime soon. Try not to act surprised.

Incidentally, what do I think should happen should a doomsday scenario occur where Alabama or Florida lose this weekend and then win the SEC, or where the Big 12 North champion wins the Big 12 Championship Game? Well first of all, if Alabama happens to be the SEC Champion with one loss, they should get consideration. If Oregon State loses this weekend and gives USC the Pac 10 title, then the Trojans should be considered. After that, Utah and Penn State should be next in line (in that order, I might add.) Let's just make it clear that if you aren't in your conference championship game (and in all reality you must win that game to avoid being a loser in your last game before the postseason), you are disqualified. That precedent has clearly been set by those "in power" in college football, and UGA was the victim last season. There had better be more victims to follow this year.


Bop said...

This post is DEAD ON.

Watch at your own risk JJ:

Worm said...

This BCS thing is a joke as usual. They never get it right. And probably wont this year. Forget about the coaches of the teams starting to lobby, the media lobbies more than they do. Great post JJ.

william said...

It is the middle of November, and Alabama is undefeated, ranked No. 1 in all the polls, and headed to the SEC Championship Game in Atlanta. I should be happy, but instead I am frustrated. Why? Alabama has done everything humanly possible to reach the top of the polls, and yet some say they just don't belong there. On Saturday in Baton Rouge, Alabama defeated the highly motivated defending National Championship LSU Tiger team in Death Valley, where just about everything that could go wrong, did go wrong.
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BulldawgJosh said...

Last year, UGA didn't need to be in the nat'l championship game. As much as I wanted to be, and how there were no rules saying we couldn't, we didn't win the conference, period. I thought CMR did a perfect job of standing up for his team, but nto being obnoxious about it.

I thought it was absurd in 2001 when Nebraska got in, and I wasn't going to let my red and black blinders prevent me from admitting that UGA really shouldn't be there because we didn't win our conference. I called BS on it before, and I will this year if it happens.

The thing that really irked me last year was 1)exactly how you pointed out that there was this unison opinion in the media that we didn't need to be there, when just the year before so many (including Herbdouche) wanted a non-conference champion to play for an MNC, and 2)how we didn't get skipped over and bumped to #3, but to 5! All of the sudden Virginia Tech was better than us!?!

But as I said earlier in my post, there's two weeks left, and I have a feeling the scenario after next week will be different than it is currently, which is why I don't see the point in fretting over the doom and gloom.

Let's see if Oregon State holds on, if Oklahoma can beat Oklahoma State, etc. I think it'd be hilarious for Oklahoma to be touting themselves and then lose to Oklahoma State. Stranger things have happened.