Aug 25, 2008

The BCS?

I was doing a little research and came across a few gems. These are quotes from players, coaches, administrators, and media types about the BCS on their official website. After last year, I am willing to bet that a lot of these guys are not so happy with the BCS and that they have probably changed their mind.

Why the BCS Works

"I've answered the playoff question on numerous occasions. First of all, there's been no directive from college presidents and chancellors to ask us to research creating a playoff structure. We haven't spent any time looking at playoff models or adding games to the postseason in a way to make it look like a playoff structure. College football comprises nearly 120 teams. It's not a 32-team, NFL-type structure. We have problems and challenges associated if we were to create a playoff with where playoff games would occur. Would we shorten the regular season in order to play games leading into final exams, take a break and then come back and finish it afterward. It's a sport where there are 85 scholarship players. The NFL has numerous replacement (free agent) players who can fill out a roster.

"There are issues relative to the number of games you can play. College presidents in the Big 12 have been consistent in saying if we get to a 15- or 16-game structure, we're beyond where we should be with college football. A 12-game regular season with the opportunity for a conference championship game and a single postseason bowl game is where most presidents and chancellors have been at this point. The bowl system rewards 56 of those approximately 120 teams. A playoff structure would erode the base of the bowls. There's a tremendous difference between a playoff structure and a bowl structure."

Kevin Weiberg, Big 12 commissioner, BCS press conference, (July 11, 2005)

"I like [the BCS system] the way it is-I really do. They've tweaked the BCS every year. That's all right, so long as we know what the rules are when the season begins. I think there's enough integrity in those human polls that I think everybody's gonna vote what they think is most fair."

Georgia Coach Mark Richton the BCS standings,Gwinnett (Ga.) Daily Post

"I think people are looking for a perfect system and there isn't a perfect system. We've never had that in college football. I've always been in favor of the polls being the most important factor. You usually don't see too much out of line week to week with the polls. It's rare that you get a situation like we had last year, and when you do get those circumstances somebody's going to have a good argument. It still goes back to human opinions more than a computation. I think the idea that they are making the BCS system simpler is good."

Florida State Coach Bobby Bowden, St. Petersburg Times

"The system, even though it has things that people question, is better than it was the old way, before the BCS. I think itÒs set and stable now, where thereÒll be less and less controversy every year."

West Virginia Coach Rich Rodriguez,Beckley (W.Va.) Register-Herald(May 27, 2006)

"I feel very strongly about the BCS format. It allows for great interest and fan following and allows for the great tradition of the bowls to continue."

Nebraska Coach Bill Callahan,

"I'm not for a playoff. You have to go undefeated. A playoff would be interesting, but I think it would be too many games."

Matt Leinart, quarterback, national champion USC Trojans (Athlon Sports Football Annual 2005)

"I'm a BCS guy. It has done so many good things for college football all the way around. Once in awhile, if there are dual national champions, so what? I don't know how that is harmful. In some ways, it leaves more people feeling good. Everyone wants the so-called 'perfect system.' But it's awfully hard to come up with it."

Nebraska Athletic Director Steve Pederson,Omaha World-Herald

"I think college football has the most exciting regular season of any sport because there is not a playoff system. The whole season is a playoff system. I don't want a playoff system."
Georgia Coach Mark Richt on why the BCS is better than a national playoff,Gwinnett (Ga.) Daily Post

"It is my opinion that these changes will help ensure that the two best teams are playing for the national championship."

Florida Athletic Director Jeremy Foleyon the changes to the BCS formula,St. Petersburg Times

"The BCS is college football's equivalent of prayer in school. There's always got to be a debate about it."

ESPN commentator Beano Cook,

"I'm pleased the BCS has revised its selection procedures. A lot of the superfluous has been taken out and the computers have been reduced to six. I think this is a superior system to what we've had. And what happened to Oregon three years ago and USC last year would not have occurred under this new system. Instead, they were taken out of the national championship game."

Pac-10 Commissioner Tom Hansen,

Why the Regular Season is so Important

"In Division I(-A) football, every game is a playoff. Once you lose one game, you're mostly out. If you lose two, you're definitely out. We got 12 playoff games. Teams take that approach. That's probably why there's so much interest. You stub your toe, you can never get back in."

West Virginia Coach Rich Rodriguez,on why college football doesn't need a playoff system
(August 15, 2006 from

"I've given it a thought, and I think it's an awful thought [of an NFL-style playoff]. I've coached in the National Football League, and college football's not the National Football League, it's entirely different. This is just one person's opinion, but to even think it's workable, it's feasible, and good for anybody involved is ludicrous."

Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz, on why college football does not need a playoff (Dec. 29, 2005 from Iowa City Press-Citizen article)

"In basketball there is far less interest in the regular season than there is in the tournament. Everyone gets March Madness for the tournament. You don't want everyone to get January madness for football and forget about everything else that's happening in the regular season. I think basically we are in a playoff the last half of the year in the regular season. ... People from coast to coast are watching each other because if anyone slips, you're going to be out."

Oklahoma Coach Bob Stoops on why he opposes a playoff(January 2, 2005 from the Los Angeles Times)

"The season is really long. It puts a tremendous amount of stress and fatigue on our players. Everybody needs to relax a little bit and understand the players are here to get an education. Let's make the conference championships a big deal and make the bowl games a reward. I hope that we never do see a playoff."

Louisville Coach Bobby Petrino, Associated Press

"There's a lot of football (left). When we get toward the end and we're healthy and still rolling along pretty good, and I'm sitting down to my Thanksgiving turkey and we're undefeated, I'll be concerned about it then."

Miami Coach Larry Cokeron why he doesn't worry about the BCS standings in mid-October(October 18, 2004 from the Miami Herald)

"If those teams (non-BCS) have equal access to the BCS, strength of schedule must be comparable. It's a little different stepping up once or twice a year when we do it 10 or 11 times a year."

Tommy Bowden, Clemson football coach(September 17, 2004 from Denver Post article)

"You're not going to see a playoff in the next decade. In the BCS, every game really does matter. College football probably has the most vibrant regular season in sports. The conference races shape national landscape, culminating in a holiday football smorgasbord."

Jim Delany, Big Ten Commissioner(August 10, 2004 from a CBS article)

"Bowl games bring a measure of importance to the regular season not seen in other sports. If teams are simply playing for seeding for a playoff, the outcomes would not mean as much and the interest and excitement, likewise, would not be as feverish. No other intercollegiate sport plays as few regular season games as football and every game means something, conference championships mean something.

"You tell me what other sport, three months before the conclusion of the season, has a game that captures the fancy of the country? There are a lot of things that take place week to week. It's like an ongoing drama. Now, if people want a playoff, let's talk about what it does to the regular season. Anybody who says it has no effect has their head in the sand."

Mike Tranghese, Big East Commissioner(Fall 2002, from USA Today article)

"Big-time college football depends on a meaningful regular season. It can't become college basketball, which, for the largest segment of the sports public, begins the first week of March."

Tim Cowlishaw, Dallas Morning News(November 27, 2001)

"I've told college football coaches if they ever go to a national playoff system, they're ridiculous. The NCAA tournament has gotten to the point where nothing else counts any more other than to win the whole thing."

Basketball Coach Lute Olson, Arizona(speaking to reporters on the eve of the2001 national basketball championship game)

"I've followed college football ever since the late '30s, and it's always been decided by a vote. The best team over the course of the season wins, and I'm satisfied with that."

Bobby Bowden, FSU Head Coach(August 1, 2002)

"The Division I-A college playoffs begins in August and ends in January. In a 16 team tournament schools would spend four months playing for seeds."

Tim Cowlishaw, Dallas Morning News(November 6, 2003)

"Our system has worked beautifully. We have the best regular season of all the sports. I don't know if a tournament really produces the best team. Our champion is determined from August through December."

David Cutliff, Mississippi Football Coach(August 2003)

"We ask so much of these guys it's just unbelievable. We ask an awful lot of them as far as the football part, yet we want them to be exemplary students, we want them to be exemplary citizens, and that's all right, but how much more blood do we want to take out? At some point you have to put the welfare of the players (first). That should be our guiding light on all of our thinking. If we go down the playoff road, then we're not thinking that way. We're appeasing someone else, not the players."

Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz, on the demands a playoff would place on student-athlete welfare(Dec. 29, 2005 from Iowa City Press-Citizen article)

"A playoff would destroy the game's most romantic feature: College football is the last sport in which a season, that period in which leaves turn and air grows cold, really matters."
Sally Jenkins, The Washington Post(January 1, 2002)

"College football is built on the regular season. Tennessee-Alabama, Georgia-Florida, Florida-FSU, USC-Notre Dame, Michigan-Ohio State ? that's the guts of college football, the backbone. If you put your eggs in the playoff basket, we deflate this."

Roy Kramer, former Commissioner of the Southeastern Conference(June 21, 1999)

Football Bowl Association