Columns & Blogs

Another season of BCS hypocrisy coming to a close

In a perfect college football world, unbeaten TCU would get a chance to play the winner of Monday night's so-called BCS championship game between Auburn and Oregon.

But like the real world, college football is far from perfect.

Thus, Texas Christian University, despite a 13-0 season and a 21-19 Rose Bowl victory over Wisconsin -- arguably the hottest team in college football going into the bowls -- will not get a deserved shot at the national title.

Instead, the champion, by decree of those who govern the BCS, will once again be determined by ratings of humans and computers. This marks the eighth time in the BCS era that an undefeated team didn't get a chance to play for the title.

I call that a flawed system.

The BCS hypocrites claim that "every game counts" throughout the regular season and say that a playoff system is not feasible because it would take too much time away from school.

Yet it works nicely for small colleges like Eastern Washington and Delaware, who, after a series of playoff games, met for the Football Championship Sub-division title Friday night. Guess small college players don't go to class in December.

Of course everyone knows that the BCS is in a money bed with 35 bowl committees who fear playoffs would make their games meaningless. Hate to break the news, but looking at the empty seats on TV, I get the feeling that many of those 35 games are not exactly must-see events.

This entire bowl season drove home the fact that college football is populated by hypocrites -- the NCAA, coaches and conference commissioners included.

Let's start with the NCAA, which has some petty rules and often stubs its toe in enforcing them.

First, after an investigation, the eligibility committee decided that Cam Newton didn't know that his father tried to sell his son to Mississippi State and ruled the Auburn quarterback eligible to play in the BCS title game.

This decision could come back to haunt them if, down the road, it is discovered that the quarterback did have prior knowledge of his father's efforts to hit up Mississippi State for $180,000.

Next case. When it was revealed that five Ohio State players sold memorabilia to a Columbus tattoo artist for cash and services rendered, the NCAA came up with a curious punishment. It suspended the five players for the first five games of the 2011 season, but, in a decision that elated the Sugar Bowl, said they were eligible for the Jan. 4 game.

All five played in the game and Ohio State wouldn't have beaten Arkansas without at least three of them. The MVP in the game was quarterback Terrelle Pryor, wide receiver Devier Posey caught a touchdown pass and defensive end Solomon Thomas intercepted a pass in the waning moments to preserve the 31-26 victory.

There was a school of thought that Ohio State would punish itself and leave the five players at home. This was advocated by a number of Buckeye fans, who boast of a moral superiority over Southeastern Conference teams.

Good for them, but coach Jim Tressel didn't agree. He wasn't about to pass up a chance for Ohio State to get its first-ever victory over an SEC opponent.

So much for morals.

That brings us to Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany -- like Tressel, a holier-than-thou hypocrite -- who was one of the top whiners about the NCAA's ruling on Newton. Now he knows that the Big Ten's most highly rated athletic department can be just an unethical as those in the SEC.

Delany wants no part of a playoff system, and after watching Wisconsin, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State and Northwestern lose New Year's Day bowl games you can understand why.

Tough year for the commissioner of a league whose only significant bowl victory required the use of players who probably should not have been allowed to play.