(Warning - content is rife with personal opinion. Which should come as no surprise to all three of my readers.)
And that verdict is: THHPPPPTTTTTTTTT!!!!
I'm fuming worse than Newt Gingrich being told to cut his caloric intake to under 7000, and not just because I find myself agreeing with Rick Reilly in principle (1). The BCS results are a joke, though I have to admit through no fault of the BCS formula itself. What they are trying to do is simple - identify the two best teams in college football.
Did they do this? Yes.
Is it time to tinker again? Absolutely.
First off, there are a couple of silly reasons being thrown out there as reason to oppose the rematch. Let's get rid of those right away:
1) No one outside of the Gulf Coast is going to give a rip.
I don't disagree with the fact that this could cause some very "regional" ratings. This could be one of the most media-hyped yet horribly rated big sporting events ever, right on a par with the Mets-Yankees Subway Series which the Northeastern sports media trumpeted would draw in viewers in Super Bowl numbers. As it turned out, very few people outside of NYC gave a shit and its rating bottomed only 1996 Florida/Cleveland as the worst ever for a World Series at the time. This could be BCS Title Game ratings disaster.
However, potential ratings is not a consideration for putting together a title game. This is college football, not American Idol.
2) 9-6. 9-6??? I drooled on my pillow as I snored through the 1st one. Isn't there some rule that outlaws a game with high potential of being a crapfest?
Sadly, no. Teams can't be punished for the potential boredom of the matchup. If they come up #1 and #2, the Romanian and Ugandan judges can't give them low marks for presentation and award the national title to Russia. (2) That's a good thing, right?
Now that being said, there are some damn good reasons why this rematch should not happen:
1) In college football, can you really not even win your division, let alone your conference, and still play for the national title?
Potentially, but not this year, brother.
First off, why potentially? Well, the only exception I can see to this would be if you were in a conference that a) doesn't have a championship and b) teams don't play every other teameach season. In that case, it would be possible to be undefeated and not win the conference due to tiebreakers. Currently. this situation doesn't exist in BCS conference, but I figured I'd cover my ass.
That being said, I don't find it unreasonable to make a conference championship a requirement of playing in the BCS title game. If you want to play to be the best in college football, you should be the best in your conference. This is coming from a Nebraska fan, by the way, and one who attended the Rose Bowl at that. In a three way argument with Colorado and Oregon in 2001, were we number 2? Yes. (3)
That being said, we shouldn't have been there. Like Alabama, we not only didn't win our division, we controlled our own destiny against one of the teams in the argument and didn't get it done. If memory serves, this was the primary argument for booting the Huskers from the 2002 Rose Bowl. Where are those folks now??
2) Let's say Alabama wins. Are they really the National Champions?
Qualifications assuming an Alabama win in the rematch:
Team 1 - Won Division with Team 2 in it, won conference title game, defeated six ranked teams, split series with Team 2, defeated Team 2 in night game on Team 2's home field.
Team 2 - Defeated four ranked teams, split series with Team 1, defeated Team 1 on neutral field in Team 1's home state
I'd be in favor of throwing this one back to the voters instead of handing Team 2 a trophy, wouldn't you?
3) Didn't they already play this game?
Yes they did and as stated above, when it comes to college football, I'm a believer in taking care of business when you control your own destiny, not losing that game and calling for a mulligan from the hot tub, while the team that beat you goes out and plays one more tough one in a conference title game.
Alabama had them in their house at night in a wild SEC venue and didn't get it done. And no whining about kickers not deciding important games. What an ungodly weak excuse. Kickers have been doing exactly that since the field goal was invented.
4) Nobody else is even close to #2 Alabama. Don't we want the top two teams in there even if it is a rematch?
As our goodbuddyLeeCorso would say, not so fast my friend.
It's time for me to suck it up and take back everything I've said about Okie State (4). Or to put things in the same perspective as above:
Team 1 - Defeated three ranked teams (5), didn't win conference, lost once the current #1 team.
Team 2 - Defeated four ranked teams, won conference, lost once to Iowa St. (5)
Myself, it doesn't appear to me that Alabama emerges as the clear #2. It may be a broken record, but I can't see the logic of giving Alabama the chance to do something that they already failed to do under optimal conditions. Okie State appears to have posted the same record against similar if not slightly better competition. Alabama blew their chance. The Cowboys deserve theirs, right? (6)
(1) - Thank God he did somewhat re-cement his ignorance of college football (like a typical Buffalo fan, he just dabbles occasionally in the sport) by deciding to include a Boise St. as a serious contender as one of the one-loss teams to replace Alabama. He contends that Alabama has a major advanatge of an extra week to rest up while LSU slugged it out with Georgia while conveniently ignoring the fact that Boise's schedule is one big rest after their single serious game each year. Put it this way - if you're Nick Saban, whom would you consider a tougher match-up in practice? New Mexico or your own 2nd team? Thought so.
(2) - Complete tangent, in the never-ending argument to determine what is and isn't a sport, I have submitted the following requirement - If the sole determining factor for the winner of your contest is solely a judge(s)'s decision, then it is NOT a sport. Boxing/MMA - you are both safe since you can knock someone the f*** out or have a ref stop the fight - although you had better start putting those judges scores up on a scoreboard round by round.. Figure skating/gymnastics/equestrain and the like? It may be athletic, but it's not a sport. What does this have to do with the BCS? Nothing at all.
(3) - Sure Colorado beat us head-to-head, but they had two losses to one each for NU & Oregon. Colorado, you're out. Of Oregon vs. NU, they had identical records, but two things throw it in NU's favor: 1) NU had a higher strength of schedule. 2) NU's lone loss was to #2 Colorado, Oregon's to #19 Stanford. Chip in with NU's 24-point loss vs. the Ducks' 7-point loss if you like, but I stand by my argument.
(4) - Not going to make it easy by popping all the links, but go ahead and look back at any of the BCS weekly reviews. I called them imposters, I guaranteed a loss to Oklahoma, I made fun of their lousy defense, etc.. Well, their D only gave up 16 points total to OU & Texas Tech, they kept putting up Playstation numbers and although there's no accounting for it in the process, that Iowa St. loss is forgivable on two fronts - 1) they're tougher than people think and 2) the Cowboys may have had other things on their mind. Remember, the Bears lost the game they dedicated to Brian Piccolo. Fresh grief does not exactly get that adrenaline pumping.
(5) - Remember, previously, it was assumed they would win the title game making LSU the 4th ranked team.
(6) - Quiet down about Stanford. They defeated one ranked team (USC would have been ranked if they were eligible. On a separate note - Matt Barkley, STFU. Are you seriously whining about being at a school on probation?? Don't take the accolades for not transferring, then piss and moan on Twitter when you can't play in the Pac 12 title game.