Penn-alized

Tuesday, 24 July 2012, 20:44 | Category : College, Football
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Penn-alized, Penn St football, NCAA penalties

Yesterday, the NCAA announced unprecedented penalties and sanctions against the Penn St. football program. Many people are satisfied with these penalties. Others feel the NCAA did not go far enough. I, on the other hand, think it’s a load of crap.

The crimes committed at State College, while heinous and loathsome, are not under the jurisdiction of the NCAA. These were crimes committed by men involved with the Penn St. football program, but they were not related to the program itself. Those involved are receiving their punishments, but their actions did not benefit the football program.

Now I have no problem if the school had chosen to self-inflict penalties, or even if the state had since it is a public school. But the NCAA is unilaterally expanding its power and control over universities into realms that no longer directly influence athletic programs. If they can get involved in this case, where will they draw the line?

The crimes committed at Penn St. were reprehensible, but since when do two wrongs make a right?

(Check out an opposing view by my intern Ethan.)

Bowl Picks and Picks Winners

Monday, 9 January 2012, 22:49 | Category : College, Football
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The college football season has come to an end.  It’s weird how anti-climactic it was for me.  There were a lot of great games I really enjoyed, but there was nothing on the line other than my picks.  I liked watching but just didn’t care who won.  There were a couple games I cared about (and both were very exciting), but there were no greater implications.  Yes it’s great to have a bowl win, especially classics like the Sugar Bowl, but it really doesn’t mean anything.

The only game that truly had anything on the line was the championship game, and I don’t like either of those teams.  And even though Bama thoroughly thumped LSU, even my wife (who doesn’t care much for sports) asked why does this game mean more than the one LSU won.  Why don’t they have a third game to decide the winner between the two?  But I already went into great detail on my thoughts on a college football playoff.

On to the winners.  We’ve been making picks (10 per week and bowls) all year long.  Out of a total of 175 games, we have our final scores: Jimmy-111, me-104, Lindsey-99, Spencer-96, and Karl-93.  Jimmy owned us.  Everyone else was really close, except for Jimmy who ran away with it.  (Note: Karl missed an entire week, which could have taken him up to third.)

In our Bowl Mania group, my buddy Jayson won for the second year in the 94.3% on ESPN.com.  I’ll have to get him to write a guest post on here.  For the record, Jayson guessed 25 out of 35 correct.  That ties Karl, but Jay won by 14 points.  I like the confidence picks for Bowl Mania because it adds another element to the picks.  Nice job, Jayson!

Finally, here are our bowl picks.  This was also very close, but Karl redeemed himself with a nice victory.

Jimmy Trevor Spencer Karl Lindsey
Record 24/35 23/35 24/35 25/35 18/35
Temple vs. Wyoming Wyoming Wyoming Wyoming Wyoming Wyoming
Ohio vs. Utah State Ohio Utah St Ohio Ohio Utah St
SDSU vs. LA Lafayette SDSU SDSU SDSU SDSU SDSU
Fla Int’l vs Marshall Fla Int’l Fla Int’l Fla Int’l Fla Int’l Fla Int’l
18 TCU vs. LA Tech TCU TCU TCU TCU TCU
ASU vs. 7 Boise St. BSU BSU BSU BSU BSU
Nevada vs. 21 So Miss So Miss So Miss So Miss So Miss So Miss
Missouri vs. UNC UNC Mizzou Mizzou Mizzou Mizzou
W. Michigan vs. Purdue Purdue Purdue Purdue WMU WMU
Louisville vs. NC State NC State Louisville NC State NC State Louisville
Toldeo vs. Air Force Toledo Air Force Air Force Toledo Air Force
Cal vs. 24 Texas Texas Texas Texas Texas Cal
Notre Dame vs. Florida St FSU FSU FSU ND FSU
Washington vs. 12 Baylor Baylor Baylor Baylor Baylor Baylor
BYU vs. Tulsa BYU BYU BYU BYU BYU
Rutgers vs. Iowa St Rutgers Iowa St Iowa St Rutgers Rutgers
Miss St vs. Wake Forest Miss St Miss St Miss St Wake Wake
Iowa vs. 14 Oklahoma Okla Okla Okla Okla Okla
Texas A&M vs. N’western A&M A&M A&M A&M A&M
GA Tech vs. Utah Utah Utah GA Tech GA Tech Utah
Cincy vs. Vanderbilt Cincy Cincy Cincy Cincy Cincy
Illinois vs. UCLA Illinois UCLA Illinois Illinois UCLA
Virginia vs. 25 Auburn Auburn Auburn Auburn UVA Auburn
19 Houston vs. 22 Penn St Penn St Houston Houston Houston Penn St
17 Michigan St vs. 16 Georgia Georgia MSU Georgia MSU Georgia
20 Nebraska vs. 9 So Carolina Nebr. Nebr. So Car So Car So Car
Ohio St vs. Florida Ohio St Florida Florida Flordia Florida
10 Wisconsin vs. 5 Oregon Oregon Wisc. Oregon Oregon Oregon
4 Stanford vs. 3 Oklahoma St OSU OSU OSU OSU Stanford
13 Michigan vs. 11 VA Tech VA Tech Michigan VA Tech Michigan Michigan
23 West Virginia vs. 15 Clemson Clemson Clemson Clemson Clemson Clemson
8 Kansas St vs. 6 Arkansas Arkansas Arkansas Arkansas Arkansas Arkansas
SMU vs. Pitt Pitt SMU Pitt SMU Pitt
Arkansas St vs. No Illinois NIU NIU NIU Ark St Ark St
2 Alabama vs. 1 LSU Bama LSU LSU Bama LSU

College Football Playoff

Monday, 2 January 2012, 10:34 | Category : College, Football
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When I was in college, bowls season was my favorite.  I was at home between the break and got to watch college football nearly everyday to help me decompress from the finals of the previous semester.  Now that I’m out of school, I still love bowl season, but it doesn’t have the same effect on me.  I don’t have time to get caught up in the excitement of each game like I used to.  Now I’m really just concerned about are how my teams do and any meaningful games (not many).

What would really catch my interest would be a playoff.  Last year I read Death to the BCS, which made a strong case against the BCS and for a playoff (who hasn’t?).  This is what a 16 team playoff would look like this year.  (SFW means Semi-Final Winner.)

1. LSU 2. Bama*
16.LATech 15. NIU
 1/16  2/15
 8/9  7/10
8. Wisc. 7. K-St.*
9. VATech*  1/8/9/16   2/7/10/15 10. Clem.
  Champion
 SFW  SFW
5. Oregon  4/5/12/13  3/6/11/14 6. BSU*
12. So Miss 11. TCU
 5/12  6/11
 4/13  3/14
4. Stan.* 3. OKST
13. WVU 14. Ark St

This playoff format would include the champions from all 12 FBS conferences and four at-large teams (the schools with the *).  Same as the BCS, only two teams from any given conference are given a spot (so Arkansas is still out of luck, but they had their chances).  The biggest issue with this system is it’s based off the BCS rankings, but a new system could be put in place easily enough.

No matter what there will be a team that feels it got burned.  For example, VA Tech was overrated and gets a higher seed than Clemson (who twice beat them thoroughly).  This leaves Michigan out, but there’s a fair argument they are overrated too.  But we’ll have a chance to see who is better on Tuesday.  Stanford is also ranked above Oregon, the conference champ that demolished them in the regular season.

But look at the intriguing match-ups this system provides!  Sure TCU gets burned by having to replay a team it defeated in the regular season (that is still for some reason ranked much higher than TCU) in the first round, but it has a chance to prove it wasn’t a fluke and play for a championship.  So would they rather that or play in the Poinsettia Bowl against the would be 16 seed?

K-State-Clemson would be a fun game to watch.  There’s the in-state rivalry of LSU-LA Tech.  Oregon’s potential rematches with Stanford and LSU will give us plenty to talk about.  If Michigan had gotten in over VA Tech, we’d have another in-conference battle in the first round.  The Badgers could be a thorn in LSU’s side in the second round.  OKST will have a great match-up  in the second round regardless of the winner of TCU-BSU.  And if after all is said an done LSU and Alabama play in the championship, they will have earned it.

It may not be a perfect system, but it is definitely better than what we currently have.  I can live with these imperfections in a system that provides playoffs, because it is decided on the field.  You think you were underrated?  Prove it on the field.  You didn’t make the playoffs?  Win in the regular season.  The little guys can’t whine about not having a shot anymore.  Schools can complain about their seeding, but in the end, if they want to be crowned champs they have to win four games.

A playoff doesn’t mean that we have to do away with the bowls.  They should probably cut several of them (GoDaddy.com Bowl anyone?), but most can stay.  Even the four BCS bowls.  The loser of BSU-TCU can still go play in the Las Vegas Bowl.  If Stanford sees an early exit, maybe the Rose Bowl will take them.  So what if Oregon misses out on the “Grand Daddy of Them All” if it has a chance to play for all the marbles.

What would you prefer, the current system or a playoff?  How would you improve the system?  Do you think this playoff system could work?

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