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    Default This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    The ever-changing horizon of college football is more confusing and tangled than ever. With the recent changes in the various conferences, television deals, and the ever-present BCS, there is much to consider when thinking about "today's" college football. It has long since stopped being the "simple system" that your father knew, or even that I knew several years ago. It used to be simple, and was nothing more than the comparison of two different human polls at the end of all play for the year. As we embark on the 2010 season, here are a few of the items that have clouded the issues for me since the years of simple enjoyment.

    Let's start with the most recent...

    [HIGH-LIGHT]The Conference Reallignments[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    The Big-12 now has ten teams, and the Big-10 now has twelve teams. The Pac-10 is growing as well, and other conferences seem to be stuck in neutral while the rest of Div 1-A ... Errr... Excuse me... FBS teams (FBS stands for Football Bowl Subdivision, formerly called Division I-A. This is in contrast to the FCS, or Football Championship Subdivision, formerly known as Division I-AA) position themselves for the best and most lucrative situations... See?... It's getting confusing already. And all of this reallignment could also play a determining factor down the road for an eventual playoff system. But I'll talk about that later.

    [IMGR]http://i30.tinypic.com/2hol8a8.jpg[/IMGR]Now with me being a USC fan, as well as Pitt, Clemson, Florida, and a host of other schools, I have no problem rooting for almost any situation. That is one of the good things about not having a football team at the college I attended, as well as a positive outcome of frequent moving all around the country over the past 20 years. But many others have been centrally located to one geographic area, or have ties to only one specific college. For those folks, the reallignment process could either create an unbelievably fantastic environment for many years to come, or shatter the way they perceive college ball for the rest of their lives.

    But this can be a double-edged sword. While it can, and most probably will, create some very strong conferences, it will also increase the "difficulty" factor. When teams such as Pitt may be able to cruise through the conference play with little difficulty and a mediocre schedule, teams such as Penn St will have to battle a much stronger schedule to make it to the Championship game. Now, some would say that this is going to be unfair to teams in conferences such as the Big-10 (or twelve, or whatever you wish to call it now). But believe it or not, there is actually a system of "checks & balances" instilled within all of the mayhem.

    The champions of the Atlantic Coast, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-10 and SEC have annual automatic qualifications for BCS games through the 2013 regular season, based on mathematical standards of performance during the 2004-2007 regular seasons. The 2008-2011 regular seasons will be evaluated under the same standards to determine if other conferences will have annual automatic qualification for the games after the 2012 and 2013 regular seasons. If the BCS continues under the same or similar format (hopefully not, but more on this later), conferences will be evaluated on their performances during the 2010-2013 regular seasons to determine which conferences will have automatic qualification for the bowls that will conclude the 2014-2017 regular seasons.

    Clear as mud... Right?...

    Basically, it means that the weaker conferences such as the Big East may not continue to receive an automatic bid after the 2013 season if they can't live-up to expectations.

    While this sounds pretty fair, the key phrase is "if the BCS continues under the same format". Unfortunately, there is also a statement in the BCS by-laws that states "no more than two teams from a conference may be selected, regardless of whether they are automatic qualifiers or at-large selections". So, say if Michigan, Ohio St, and Nebraska all have stellar seasons, one is still going home without participating in a BCS game. In my opinion, this flat-out sucks, but is what we will be seeing in the not-too-distant future. It's a big gamble if you look at it this way for some universities, but then again, it's all about the money.

    [HIGH-LIGHT] The Television Deals[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    The 11 BCS conferences have a contract with ESPN to televise the games through the 2013-14 season. In addition to the conferences I mentioned above, it also includes the Conference USA, the Mid-American Conference, the Mountain West Conference, the Sun Belt Conference, and the Western Athletic Conference. Each conference who has a team qualifying automatically for the BCS receives approximately $18 million in net revenue. A second team qualifying brings an additional $4.5 million to its respective conference. Notre Dame receives approximately $1.3 million if they make an appearance... That's alot of money... And it really sorta explains how we got to this confusing point to begin with... Greed. It promotes change to the extent that we are seeing today with the conference reallignments. But the question still remains (and was actually pointed-out quite well by vandelay industries in a different thread), "is the risk/reward worth it"? The money they are chasing by changing conferences may inevitably prevent them from receiving it due to increased competition within the conference.

    [IMGL]http://i26.tinypic.com/25gt5js.jpg[/IMGL]In addition to the actual revenue from the game, the estimated economic impact in the cities that hosted the BCS games was somewhere around $1.2 billion. With that in mind, the schools may be creating a downhill snowball that the rest of the economy will continue to roll, and may not be able to stop it in the future if ever desired.

    Yes, I also believe that collegiate football players should be paid for "services rendered". The individual universities are collecting money and making decisions based on performances by the players that are making their institutions popular to the networks. The networks are rewarding the institutions for performances on the field. These players are being tempted at an increasing rate paralleled to their value on the next level. If the schools, the various television networks, and agents (eventually) are turning a profit from all of this upheval of college football, then it only stands to reason that the players reap some of the benefit. Afterall, it is becoming increasingly evident that the "all mighty dollar" is driving many decisions within this sport.

    Will greed and money always win out? Is the BCS flawed enough to eventually force a change?

    [HIGH-LIGHT]The BCS Standings[/HIGH-LIGHT]

    As it stands now, I personally don't have issue with the conceptual design and structure of the BCS standings by definition of it's concept. It's computed with three different components... The Harris Interactive Poll (it replaces the AP poll), the Coaches' Poll (otherwise known as the USA Today Poll), and the computer rankings (the computer rankings percentage is calculated by dropping the highest and lowest ranking for each team and then dividing the remaining total by 100, the maximum possible points). While the first two are "human" polls, the third is all statistical-based. Sure, one can argue the "luck of the draw" and so forth, but it's all pretty straight forward.

    [IMGR]http://i26.tinypic.com/a11phd.jpg[/IMGR]In my opinion, where it becomes extremely conveluted is the selection of teams for the games. Sure, we currently have six conferences receiving automatic bids, but where do the "at large" schools come from? They start with the six conference teams, and pick four that have done well. Basically, they need nine wins and ranked in the top 14 in BCS standings. If this can't be done, they start expanding the group by four teams, and increase the lower ranking by four (i.e. 14 teams within the top 18 in rankings). Now yes, there are exceptions to any rule, and the BCS has exceptions built into their by-laws. But these exceptions are extremely limited and will eventually lead to more universities being excluded, and at a higher rate now that there some pretty well-established schools changing conferences... By the way, Notre Dame will have an automatic berth if it is in the top eight of the final BCS Standings. This is somewhat irritating to me since they have voluntarily chosen to not be alliliated with any conference.

    With all of the conference reallignments, I can see serious issues in the future with the "two team per conference" rule. Can you imagine the uproar in Happy Valley if Penn St finishes with, say, a 10-2 record and are excluded from BCS play because Michigan and Nebraska are chosen? What if they have similar records? Unfortunately, nothing will be done until the current contracts expire. Hopefully by then, there have been enough teams eliminated over the years from BCS play so as to create an uproar so strong that a playoff system will be instituted. I personally believe that a playoff system can be configured in such a way so as to keep the money rolling. I believe a playoff system would enhance the overall environment of college football.

    Div 1-A football... Errr... FBS (see?... There I go again...) is completely unique to other sports because it doesn't have a true playoff system to determine it's champion, even though Div 2-A (FCS) does. Some folks claim this is done to preserve the "student athlete", where I would counter that most of the players at FCS schools better define the description, and are able to manage the responsibilities. There are many arguments made for both sides in this conflict.

    While many people will argue that the current system doesn't determine a "true" champion, others argue that the "tradition" of college football would fall by the wayside with any proposed playoff system. The bottom line is that there is "more than one way to skin a cat", and a viable system using the current bowls could and should be developed. With the on-going changes to the college football landscape it will become increasingly more important to find a true measure of the season champion. As more money floods the collegiate environment, and more is proportioned to the successful programs, the true champion should be better defined so as to remove the doubt and conflict.

    The first BCS Rankings for 2010 will be released October 17th.... I imagine that at this point there will be plenty of screaming about the process, and claims that their team is being unfairly judged. I undoubtably will be one of those people making alot of noise. Sure, my boys in SoCal are not elligible this year (or next), but I still have several "horses" in this "race".

    ... All of this just goes to show you that this is not "your father's" college football anymore.
    Last edited by Palmetto Steel; Jul-26-2010 at 02:24 PM.
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Thank you so much for the Paterno picture. It is wonderful and warms a Penn Stater's heart!


    Last edited by Skeeter; Jul-26-2010 at 07:23 PM.

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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Quote Originally Posted by WYsteel View Post
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    Thank you so much for the Paterno picture. It is wonderful and warms a Penn Stater's heart!
    ........... ..............

    .
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    .

    .... How 'bout this one?.......


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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Meh, can we compromise and agree on this?


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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Agreed....

    ... BTW, I took my dad to the Pitt/Louisville game last season... While we were waiting for the game to begin in the hours leading up to kickoff, the Pitt cheerleaders were running around that section (we were with all the Pitt fans) stirring-up the "spirit".... Man, they looked young enough to be my daughter, or even younger.... Ugh!....
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    That was a really good Article and there's so much in there that I think we'd hit the post count limit doing a usual quote and reply to every paragraph

    I'm personally not a big fan of how college Football is controlled by the bigger schools and to be honest I sort of like how College Basketball is run because it feels more equal. Maybe it's my disgruntled feeling and hostility towards MLB's economic slant towards what is larger and then the hyping by the media where the $$$$ scratch backs. I also understand that it's difficult without a playoff of some form to determine with accuracy overall winners and such as well.. So while I know and follow all iof the changes it ****es me off seeing how much the mighty dollar controls everything now and like you said it's at the expense of kids that are getting no money from it...

    ...but you can't have kids making a dime from it because then you just create this whole ugly scenerio now where you are going to eliminate more schools from competing as College Football would turn more into MLB and the largest and richest of schools buy up all of the top Highschool talent.

    I think money wise there's nothing that can be done. It would be nice for a ****ing change to see all of this television and bowl money go towards lowering tuition if it's going to do something positive instead of watching tuition go up every eyar especially with the so-called "state" schools
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Quote Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
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    ...but you can't have kids making a dime from it because then you just create this whole ugly scenerio now where you are going to eliminate more schools from competing as College Football would turn more into MLB and the largest and richest of schools buy up all of the top Highschool talent.
    I think you could have set peramiters for various levels, so payment could be somewhat uniform. Would the boosters further derail the process? Probably... But hell, we have money being exchanged, and suggestions of agent inpropriety already occurring. Personally, I don't things could get much more "corrupt" than they already are, due to the actions of trying to circumnavigate the current rules.

    ... But as to whether you'd reduce the competitive level of Div 1-A schools (FBS schools... ****!...), I don't think that would really be an issue... First off, if it is a standard set across the board with uniform levels of payment, it really wouldn't be different from what we see today... Except that the kids are actually getting a deserved cut of the pie... The major schools will continue to draw the best talent as they are now... How many quality athletes does SW Louisiana St produce? Or Fordam University?... The "pecking order" and "food chain" would basically remain intact.

    But that's just me....
    "You only have one life, and you will not get out alive. Make the most of your time and have no regrets." - Me.

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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Quote Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
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    It would be nice for a ****ing change to see all of this television and bowl money go towards lowering tuition if it's going to do something positive instead of watching tuition go up every eyar especially with the so-called "state" schools
    ... Speaking as a parent saving for my daughter's "higher education"....... AMEN!.....
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    "B.U.M.P".....

    sweetchuck, here's some fodder for 'ya....

    .... Now that the 2010 season is all but completed, please re-read it from 2 paragraphs above "the television deals" section and see if it doesn't make even more sense now....
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Good article........did you write that NKy??????
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Quote Originally Posted by ranrod7 View Post
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    Good article........did you write that NKy??????
    Yea, I did.... Before the season started.... I think it is even more prevalent now as things are working out.... But that's just me.....
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Good article NKy. Well written. I have a couple points to discuss but first I thought you, and others, should read this article here. This is superb and a must read:

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vau...92/1/index.htm

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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Quote Originally Posted by vandelay industries View Post
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    Good article NKy. Well written. I have a couple points to discuss but first I thought you, and others, should read this article here. This is superb and a must read:

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vau...92/1/index.htm
    Yes, it is a very good article, and thanx for posting it and the link....

    Big-time college football is a world-class beauty with a wart on her forehead. That blemish is the sport's method for determining a national champion. The NCAA crowns 88 champions in 23 sports. The only champion it does not crown is in Division I-A football, which, in its wisdom, has delegated the task of determining which two teams will contend for its title to a series of mathematically unsound computer formulas and often confused and ill-informed poll voters.
    Very good description....

    The success of non-BCS programs such as Boise State, TCU and Utah has brought attention to the inequities in the system, and some authorities have taken notice. Utah attorney general Mark Shurtleff is investigating the BCS for possible antitrust violations. Last week he traveled to Washington to persuade Justice Department officials to join him in an antitrust action. He also met with Alan Fishel, a partner at the law firm Arent Fox, which has been retained by Boise State and the Mountain West Conference.
    Unfortunately, I believe things like this will go nowhere, and we will have to wait till the current contracts expire before a new line of thinking could possibly be implemented.
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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Quote Originally Posted by NKySteeler View Post
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    Yes, it is a very good article, and thanx for posting it and the link....

    I thought it was most illuminating in that article that teams that make bowl games, even BCS bowls, typpically end up losing money when all things are factored in with tickets, travel, etc etc.

    It's not this huge influx of money that the straight up payout amount makes it seem like.

    The Michigan AD was quoted in that article saying that on one hand they were happy to not go to bowls the last couple years because they didn't lose money.

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    Default Re: This Is Not "Your Father's" College Football Anymore

    Yea... UC lost money after the last 2 berths from winning the Big East.... I think the article said 24mil or something?...

    None of this is right IMO... Hell, there are times that I wish they'd just blow the whole **** system up and go back to 2 different polls like the good 'ole days.... The current system skews alot of favors to those in control... Moreso than money, but also recruiting possibilities, etc... I dunno.
    "You only have one life, and you will not get out alive. Make the most of your time and have no regrets." - Me.

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