Sunday, November 30, 2008

National writers let reason take a backseat

I don't have an entire article to rip. Instead, I bring you a hodgepodge of reasoning that hurts my brain from the nation's sportswriters.

Gregg Doyel
: Not again, certainly not with Vick, who is the most vile professional athlete since Rae Carruth. Vick didn't conspire to kill a person, "just" dogs, but considering I prefer the typical dog to the typical person, that's an unforgivable crime in my opinion.

Rae Carruth conspired to kill his girlfriend, who, at the time was eight months pregnant with twins. One of the babies died a week after being born. Rae Carruth was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder and shooting into an occupied vehicle. He's now serving 18 years 11 months in prison. Vick did some pretty horrible things. But, there's a reason he might be out of jail in less than two years. Conspiracy to commit murder is ever so slightly less forgivable than teaching dogs to kill and then killing the ones who don't.

Ivan Maisel:
That's because, in the end, the blame for this mess lies at the feet not of the BCS but of the Big 12. The Big 12 tiebreaker states that in the event of a three-way tie in which all other tiebreakers have been exhausted, the team rated highest in the BCS will be the division champion.

The Southeastern Conference tiebreaker says that in the event of a three-way tie, the team that is rated the highest will be the division champion unless the second-highest team is within five places in the BCS standings. Then it reverts to head-to-head competition. You can bet emphasis is added. And you can bet that the Big 12 will revisit this rule after the season.

I can't imagine there's anyone who writes for or reads this blog who thinks that the BCS is a perfect system, or would vehemently defend its implementation and workings. Everyone gets that it sucks. This year, if you're a Texas fan, you feel jobbed and you hate the BCS. If you're an Oklahoma fan, well, you feel the exact opposite.

Oklahoma lost to Texas by 10. Texas lost to Texas Tech by six on a last second touchdown. Texas Tech then lost to Oklahoma by 44. And thus, we have a problem.

Larry and I have had plenty of conversations about how a three-way tie should be broken. And you know what? There's really no one way that is without its deficiencies.

As for the SEC's system, let's use it here in this instance. Oklahoma is #2 in the BCS, Texas is #3, Tech is #7. I assume, since it's not specifically mentioned, that the third team, of the three way tie, gets booted from the discussion. So it's down to Oklahoma and Texas. Under the SEC rules, Texas goes to the Big XII championship game. They're happy; Oklahoma's not. This is no different from the quandary we find ourselves in now.

All the arguments I've heard for Texas pretty much start by discarding Texas Tech from the three-way tie argument. Then, it comes down to the Oklahoma-Texas head to head matchup. Texas, of course, gets the edge with the win over Oklahoma seven weeks ago. But, why toss Texas Tech out of the argument? Because they had two bad wins at home, sure, but primarily because they got crushed by 44 two weeks ago. Texas Tech gets discounted because of the whoopin' that Oklahoma put on them, and because of that whoopin' Oklahoma is inferior to Texas. Ivan Maisel, and everyone else, SEC included, welcome to geometry class. I give you the circle.

Brad Edwards: That raises the question: Is it still certain that Florida reaches the BCS National Championship Game by simply beating No. 1 Alabama on Saturday?

Just guessing, but, yes.

While there's obvious reason for Gators fans to be concerned, it remains highly unlikely that No. 3 Texas will stay ahead of Florida with many voters if UF wins the SEC title.

This might be too picky, but an "obvious reason" to be concerned should yield something slightly more likely than "highly unlikely." I could die tomorrow, but, that's highly unlikely. So, I'm not concerned.

If Oklahoma goes on to win the Big 12 championship, chances are good that some (if not most) of this week's Longhorns supporters will move the conference champion back ahead of UT on next week's ballots.

No argument here. This would cement Oklahoma as either #1 or #2 in the final BCS standings.

Also, with Alabama-Florida being a 1 versus 2 matchup in the Harris poll, and the Gators trailing No. 2 Oklahoma by only 12 points in this week's coaches' poll, it's probable that Florida will move to No. 1 in both polls if it wins the SEC title. That would pretty much ensure the Gators reach the top 2 of next week's BCS standings.

Again, no argument here. This pretty much cements Florida as either #1 or #2, right?

But if Florida wins the SEC and somehow doesn't climb higher than second in one of the polls, there's a chance Oklahoma and Texas could have a rematch for the BCS title.

Sure, delineate the reasons that this won't happen, and then, tell us that in the event that the .00001% chance this scenario plays itself out, we're fucked into having a rematch of two great teams for the national championship. Sound the alarm Brad Edwards. The British are most definitely coming.

Stewart Mandel: For the first time in the 11-year history of the BCS, I find myself thankful for the computers...I myself...conclud[ed] that the Longhorns deserved to stay ahead of the Sooners.


The computers made the decision for us. They decided the exact opposite of what you personally felt. You're happy for the computers?

Andrew Perloff: If ever a personal foul was worth the 15 yards, it was Steelers safety Ryan Clark's "unnecessary hit on a defenseless receiver" against New England. Clark laid out Wes Welker, taking the Patriots' talented receiver out of the game. Welker and his fellow receivers have been torturing defenses, running for yards after the catch all season. Lots of safeties around the league have probably dreamt the hit Clark put on Welker. Hopefully the talented Welker will be just fine. While I understand the emphasis on player safety, as a fan I'd miss bone-crunching hits on receivers over the middle if they completely disappeared.

Go here. :43-:47 is the only way to aptly describe my thoughts on this.

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