December 7, 2014…a day in college football that will live in infamy! For, it was on this date that a 12-member panel (sound like a jury?) decided the four teams that would comprise the first-ever college football playoff. When all was said and done, the matchups are pretty interesting: SEC champion Alabama will meet PAC 12 champion Oregon in the Rose Bowl and ACC winner Florida State faces BIG 10 winner Ohio State in the Sugar Bowl. The winners of these two bowls will clash in the first annual “true” college football championship game on January 12 in Dallas.
Of course, it was know that there would be crying and wailing and gnashing of teeth from the conference that would be left on the outside looking in. This year, it was the BIG 12 with Baylor and Texas Christian…each finishing with only one loss. All of the complaining came from the Baylor fans because their team was ranked behind TCU, a team that the Bears defeated during the regular season. It was as if the CFP committee said, to the BIG 12, “If you both are going to bicker, neither of you are going to get selected!”
The outcry was common: there should have been an eight-team playoff. Okay, if that would have happened, whoever finished ninth would cry foul. When the BCS was in effect, and only two teams were selected, the third-ranked team would have been upset. You just can’t please everyone! I knew, as soon as they announced a four-team playoff, that the team that would finish fifth would be upset…that is what happened!
So, the BIG 12 (which, by the way, has only 10 teams!) received a nice consolation gift…both Baylor and TCU will participate in the New Year’s Six bowls. I don’t know the significance of that, other than the schools will receive more money from these bowls. Isn’t that the bottom line? Mo money, mo money! Perhaps next season will be different.
Is it a coincidence that the only conference not having a championship game was the one left out? I THINK NOT!!! There is only one solution for the BIG 12…it needs to add two more teams and have a conference championship game. The conference had a championship game…it needs to come back.
The other solution would be to take the Big Five conference champions, have the #4 and #5 seeds have a “play-in” game and then rank the winner of that game as the number four seed and, again, have the four-team playoff. Of course, if they did that, these teams would wind up playing 16 times in a season. If that happens, then the NCAA needs to pay these players something. If college players are going to play the same amount of games as the NFL teams, they need to be paid like NFL teams.