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Tuberville Says Playoffs only way SEC is in NC

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Postby Free Bagel » Thu Oct 05, 2006 11:34 am

Oh man, put on your flamesuits ladies and gents because we all know how stirred up I get when playoff talk comes along.

For starters I don't think the Michigan/OSU example really applies here. Being the national champion means you're supposed to be better than everyone else. Only one of Michigan/OSU can be better than everyone else since each team is a part of "everyone else". Them playing in the last week is like a playoff in and of itself. I dunno, maybe I'm just used to it because I watch UF play FSU in the season finale for a dozen years where more than half the time the winner of the game was headed to the national championship game and the loser was headed home to watch a team that sometimes wasn't as good as them play for the title (and UF had to do it twice all those years because UT was always top 5 as well).

I think this applies less to a situation like that, and more to a situation like Tuberville mentioned where you have to play a top ten team every other week (seriously....look at UF's schedule). When you play five or six games against top 10 teams we're talking one bad game, one bad half, one bad quarter, one bad PLAY at any given time can wreck your entire season whereas a team like West Virginia (or a few other teams that I won't mention to hopefully dodge some flames ;))could probably start their backups 10 weeks of the year and go undefeated. It's easy to have one huge game every year and go out there and get the job done, it's very difficult to have five or six of them.

Hskerpwer your point about the law of averages is taken, but I think you need to look at it not as SEC vs. weaker conferences but rather as dominant conference vs. other conferences. Sure, 10 years ago an SEC team didn't have a tougher time going undefeated than everyone else and who knows, maybe 10 years from now the SEC will be the patsy conference and the Big East will be the guys getting screwed over, but the point is that either way if there's a conference that has more top teams than the rest it puts the entire conference at a huge disadvantage. Not only do they have a tougher time going undefeated (and I don't think that right now, this year anyone could argue that if you took a top SEC team and a top team from another conference and traded spots that the former SEC team would have a better chance of going undefeated than they do now, and that the former other conference team would have a worse chance of going undefeated than they do now in the SEC), but they also look worse doing it as better teams and defenses only make you look worse when you play against them.

I mean, I look back to Florida in the 90's and it was a time where you could blindfold me for the season, and if you told me we beat Tennessee then I could pretty much tell you we were SEC champs. Tell me we beat Tennessee and FSU and I could pretty much tell you there was an 80-90% chance we were playing for a national championship. Sure, Auburn had some good years, LSU was ok as was Alabama, but after Tenn and FSU everyone else was a team we were expected to beat. You look at even a team like OSU who by all accounts has a tougher schedule than some of the undefeateds right now and you tell an OSU fan they beat Michigan at the start of the year and they can pretty much tell you they won the Big10. Tell them they beat Michigan and Texas and they can tell you they are probably playing for the National Championship. Sure, Iowa's ok, so is PSU, Minn can sneak up on you but really OSU doesn't have to play their best football to beat any of them handily. Compare that to some of the other undefeateds whose games are even EASIER and you start to get the point. WVU beats Louisville and everyone knows that's pretty much it.

But, take two games off Auburn's schedule, or two games off Florida's schedule, and you really are no closer to a NC than you were beforehand. Take 5 off and then maybe we're talking. OSU has to really play their best twice, West Virginia once, USC probably none (they only played a half against their toughest opponents last year and still cakewalked through most of the games), but with Auburn or Florida they have to play their best, mistake free, damn near perfect football they can possibly play four or five times just to GET to those games that they "should win".

CBL...we're not talking about 3+ teams in the top 20 here, we're talking 4 or 5+ in the top 10. Big difference.

Oh, and before we all go giving the Pac-10 reacharounds for scheduling an extra conference game let's keep in mind that they still don't have a championship game so in terms of how tough it is for the top teams they're still way behind. I'll take an extra game over Washington State over having to play Auburn or lsu (or whoever the top team from the other side is) AGAIN any day of the week. The other BCS conferences really need to get with the program on this one, and the conferences with that extra game need to be rewarded more for it.

So where am I going with all this? Hell if I know. Everyone here knows I've been anti-playoff for years because it cheapens the regular season (which is college football's greatest asset...the shear importance of every...single...game), but by the same token it's not really fair for the season to ride on every...single...game when some team's every...single (or near to it)...game are gimmie's and other team's are not. Also when the BCS nerfed SoS it really betrayed me. Why, why the hell would they do that? That was the whole POINT in the system.

More than anything I think they need to punish teams with weaker schedules. Hell for all I care make SoS the tiebreaker. It was ridiculous to me that people were all up in arms over USC in 2004 or whatever year it was. You have three teams, two of them played tough schedules (something like 6-8 ranked teams each) and one of them played a cakewalk schedule (1 or 2 ranked teams if I recall). If all three finish with the same record it should be easy to pick out the two teams that go to the championship regardless of how they looked along the way. One team was given a severe handicap and still couldn't get the job done...if someone giftwraps it for you and you still choke it away then that's too damned bad, see ya next year.

And I know this is going to come off as being biased because I'm an SEC guy and right now the SEC is "that conference" but I assure you all I would think this just as ludicrous if it were any other conference. Tuberville is right...right now any SEC school just has a huge, huge handicap going against them before the teams run out onto the field for week 1 whereas certain other conferences' best teams have a huge, huge handicap in their favor before they even run out onto the field for week 1, and even when the SEC returns to the mean (which it will) another conference will likely emerge with the same handicap in time.

Hell, we even use this in fantasy football in that one way we compare how two players will do down the stretch is what their schedules look like rather than strictly who is a better FF player. Same thing here, it's easy to say that USC or WVU have a better chance of playing for the national championship right now than Michigan, Auburn, or Florida whether or not we feel they're actually the better team.
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Postby 1crzydmnd » Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:10 pm

Playoffs will never happen...although I would really like for it to be a reality. It would take merging conferences into 8 total conferences. Independents would still need to be addressed. Conference champs go into a 8 team playoff for undisputed national champ.

My question is...why do teams like Boise State even play if they know they have no shot at the national title? I know conference championships and bowl wins are nice...but at some point you have to want to go to the next level.
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Postby knapplc » Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:47 pm

Bagel, you are obviously very passionate about the BCS/Playoffs controversy and you are probably WAY more informed than anyone else taking part in this conversation. However, uniformed and factless as I am, I’m still going to offer my two cents:

The BCS is flawed. It is flawed because it CAN NOT consistently offer the best teams the opportunity at winning the national championship. A playoff is the only way to do that year in and year out. The SEC is this year’s example of why it can’t, maybe next year it’ll be the Big Ten, the year after that it’ll be the Big XII. Any conference with four or more solid, contending teams gets the shaft in this system. There should be a way for every one of those teams to get their shot.

As for BCS Plus One, how is that fair? So you have three teams that are undefeated – USC, Ohio State and West Virginia, ranked in that order, let’s say. So who plays who in the bowl games? Do we put USC and Ohio State together, then West Virginia against whatever team is slotted to whatever bowl from whatever conference? How is that fair to the loser of the USC/OSU game? Or do you put #1 vs #3 in the game and let #2 play whomever shows up? Still unfair, because the point of the BCS is to pit the top teams against each other.

A playoff is the best way to go. And I disagree that a playoff cheapens the regular season. I contend that the regular season is just as important with a playoff system for seeding, if for nothing else. Beating Michigan in the regular season may be the only way OSU can guarantee they won’t face the Wolverines again in the playoffs. That’s a mighty fine bit of motivation if I’m a Buckeye.

I have further concerns with the entire structure of the Conference System as a whole, but that’s another discussion entirely. Suffice it to say that even though we are stuck with the BCS because of the Old Money that directs the Bowl System, it is a flawed system and it will always be a flawed system.
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Postby Free Bagel » Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:14 pm

knapplc wrote:The BCS is flawed. It is flawed because it CAN NOT consistently offer the best teams the opportunity at winning the national championship. A playoff is the only way to do that year in and year out. The SEC is this year’s example of why it can’t, maybe next year it’ll be the Big Ten, the year after that it’ll be the Big XII. Any conference with four or more solid, contending teams gets the shaft in this system. There should be a way for every one of those teams to get their shot.


Agree, which is why I'm so torn whereas I used to be bigtime anti-playoff.

knapplc wrote:A playoff is the best way to go. And I disagree that a playoff cheapens the regular season. I contend that the regular season is just as important with a playoff system for seeding, if for nothing else. Beating Michigan in the regular season may be the only way OSU can guarantee they won’t face the Wolverines again in the playoffs. That’s a mighty fine bit of motivation if I’m a Buckeye.


Well, "if we win we get a slightly easier run in the playoffs" isn't exactly the same as "if we lose here our national title hopes are dead".

The regular season is so much more entertaining in college football than any other sport. When the Dolphins lost to the Steelers week 1 I wasn't happy, but really it was no big deal. Gators lose to Kentucky in bball? Doesn't really matter. But each and every college football game is absolutely crucial. In a roundabout way you could almost say that college football is a 12 week playoff system in and of itself.

I also agree with you about the "plus one" system in that I'm not sure why everyone thinks it's some magical game that will fix everything. What happens when we have three undefeated teams and four one loss teams? Then we're just going to have three of the one-loss teams complaining they got left out. What happens when we have a year like last year where we had a clear-cut #1 and #2 (USC and Texas)? Why ruin what looks to be the correct matchup by adding in a couple 1 or 2 loss teams to the mix?

Really I think an 8-team playoff would be the only way to do it. Four teams doesn't fix the controversy and 16 teams is way, way too many. With 8-teams we're far enough down that the teams getting "left out" can't really argue that they're legit NC contenders anyway, but not COMPLETELY (although still greatly) diluting the regular season's importance.
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Postby HskrPwr13 » Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:20 pm

When does your thread come out in hard cover, Bagel? Heres my hard cover response :-b :-b

You and I can go into battle together all day regarding the BCS. Its been absolutely neutered since they took out the SOS. Youre right, the whole reason behind that was to take into account scedules so that perhaps a 1-loss powerhouse team that played tougher sched could move ahead of a no loss powerhouse in the rankings because voters didnt seem to take that into consideration as much as they should. Now all of the power is back in the hands of the voters, which is exactly what college football fans and administrators supposedly didnt want.

I disagree with your assessment that teams outside of the SEC have a "huge, huge, handicapp" in scheduling. Yes they have a handicapp, but not to that degree. IMO, theres AU and LSU in one tier. If you want to throw FLA in that tier, fine. Then you have UT and UGA as another tier. Then you have ALA, maybe ARK in another tier. Last is everyone else. The difference to me is UT, UGA, with maybe FLA tier. If this tier steps up then I can buy the "huge, huge handicapp" arguement better. Also, since I belive that you feel like I do in regards to the polls being mostly a joke, I dont rely on them to determine SOS. I could be wrong, but I thought we agreed in another thread that UGA was overrated. The one team that I'll buy your arguement for is WVU. A wise man once said, "Being the national champion means you're supposed to be better than everyone else." I take that to mean that if, for example, your Gators are one of the two best teams in the country, that they'll handle their business regardless of who they play.

Bottom line, Bagel, it seems your posting out of both sides of your...hands(?). Anyway, you claim that you dont want a playoff because the regular season is a playoff unto itself, yet in the same post, you claim that the way the NC participants are determined isnt fair due to unbalanced schedules. I dont think throwing in the SOS back into the BCS cleans up this conundrum. The voters still hold too much power. I agree that a playoff, depending how its done, could cheapen the regular season (I agree that this would be so for at least for the big rivaly games.). But if you truly want a more fair way to determine the champ, it has to go the way of a playoff. I think, and you'll correct me if I'm wrong :-b , that you believe that the easier path to the NC for FLA might be a small playoff, but you dont want to let go of the importance of FLA's rivalry games. :-? Not saying I would feel differently. I just dont believe we fans are going to be able to have our cake and eat it too.
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Postby HskrPwr13 » Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:27 pm

Looks like you covered one of my points in this thread. My thread took so damned long to write it looks moot now. :-b

It'll never happen, but I would like fluid type of playoff structure. Use it when its needed. In years where theres a clear cut top2, no need for it. In a situation like last year, have no2 and 3 play an elimination game. etc.etc.etc......

I wouldnt buy the fact that they couldnt do this because of logistics. Right now there's a month between the final game and the NC game.
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Postby ShoelessJoe » Thu Oct 05, 2006 3:09 pm

HskrPwr13 wrote:I wouldnt buy the fact that they couldnt do this because of logistics. Right now there's a month between the final game and the NC game.


The main argument with having a playoff in this time period is the problem with final exams. Final Exams happen at EVERY University sometime in December, whether that school is on the quarter system or semester system. Keeping in mind that the players are student-athletes (and technically they're students first and athletes second... technically that's what they are) they have to be able to attend and keep their finals in the front of their mind.

knapplc wrote:I also agree with you about the "plus one" system in that I'm not sure why everyone thinks it's some magical game that will fix everything. What happens when we have three undefeated teams and four one loss teams? Then we're just going to have three of the one-loss teams complaining they got left out. What happens when we have a year like last year where we had a clear-cut #1 and #2 (USC and Texas)? Why ruin what looks to be the correct matchup by adding in a couple 1 or 2 loss teams to the mix?


This is a tough argument but I do like the plus-one. I think those three other one-loss teams don't have as much to argue about because well they had the ability to control their own destiny yet they couldn't perform. The problem with having a 1v2 is that #3 could go undefeated and complete every task put on their table... IE winning the games however they could still be left out of the NC game.

I would propose that the #1 undefeated team play the #4 team in the BCS... which would be a team with one loss. Then the #2 and 3 teams would play for the right to play the winner of the 1v4 game.
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Postby HskrPwr13 » Thu Oct 05, 2006 7:48 pm

ShoelessJoe wrote:
HskrPwr13 wrote:I wouldnt buy the fact that they couldnt do this because of logistics. Right now there's a month between the final game and the NC game.


The main argument with having a playoff in this time period is the problem with final exams. Final Exams happen at EVERY University sometime in December, whether that school is on the quarter system or semester system. Keeping in mind that the players are student-athletes (and technically they're students first and athletes second... technically that's what they are) they have to be able to attend and keep their finals in the front of their mind.



How would playing one extra game in early December or early January be any different than current system?
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Postby mikus » Sat Oct 07, 2006 2:21 pm

Tuberville might not have to worry about his team playing for a National Championship now.
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