College football is broken. Everyone knows it and almost everyone wants to fix it. Unfortunately, because the bowl games are so profitable, we continue to live with the BCS instead of having a playoff system in place to settle the score on the field. Everyone knows that playoffs are the solution, and yet it won’t happen because there’s very little incentive to change the system. Advertisers, bowl sponsors and fans continue to spend billions of dollars every year to keep the NCAA rich and fat. So, how do you give the NCAA incentive to change their system? You need to cheat it!
What we need to fix Division I College Football is an old-fashioned, dirty conspiracy that calls the entire BCS system into question. By taking the legs out from under the BCS, the system will topple and the NCAA will have to enact serious, widespread change to keep from losing the big-time money maker of all time where they make billions of dollars off of athletes who aren’t allowed to be compensated in monetary form.
What kind of conspiracy would cause the NCAA to do away with the BCS?
I thought of this as I was watching Illinois upset Ohio State when the Illini were unranked and the Buckeyes were number 1 in the country. It is a great win for Illinois and their program, but it was just bad for the Big 10. In fact the entire season was difficult for the Big 10. They had Michigan embarrass themselves horribly despite having some of the gaudiest on-field talent in the country. They had Wisconsin, who played inconsistently all year despite being touted as one of the possible national contenders during the pre-season. They had Penn State, who might have been good enough to beat a top contender from any other conference on a given day. They had Illinois, who had one of the most dangerously talented quarterbacks. Finally they had Ohio State who rose from the lower part of the polls to reach the top, only to get knocked down by the Illini.
My point is that all these teams were pretty good. The Big Ten could have been well served in the BCS by more than one of them. Because they ended up beating the snot out of each other all season long, only to see none of them really in contention for the National Championship game. The solution? The Big Ten would have been better served to serve up an undefeated team from their ranks. The Big Ten stood to make a ton of money off of Ohio State had they not lost to Illinois and been in the National Championship game. Now, they just get the Rose Bowl, when before they would have had that AND the National Championship game. As a league, the Big Ten has incentive under this current system to cheat, make sure one team each year is undefeated and is hopefully among only one other team in the top two in the BCS rankings.
So that’s what I want the Big 10 to do. I want them to cheat. If we could go back in time, I would have Illinois lay down in that game in Columbus. In 2005, instead of having Penn State go 11-1 with a loss to Michigan, Michigan lays down and lets Penn State go 12-0. Michigan was 7-5 that year and had little to gain, while Penn State and the Big 10 had everything to lose. On down the line. The Big Ten should just fix their seasons over and over again.
Then, on someone’s death bed, they have to out the whole league to the country. The media will be in a frenzy that the world hasn’t seen since Barry Bonds was indicted for perjury and obstruction. The congressional hearings on steroids in baseball will seem like a complete joke. The Tim Donaghy scandal in the NBA won’t even register on the same Richter scale. And you know what? The NCAA will be forced to look at the system they created based on subjective rankings of people who don’t watch all the college football games and the computer statistics that run some teams up and some teams out in a ridiculous fashion every week.
And hopefully the only conclusion that they can possibly come up with is a playoff system. Although, who knows, maybe they wouldn’t get it right. I think it is worth the risk anyway.