Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Farewell to the BCS: A Symptom of Bigger NCAA problems

Props to Jameis Winston becoming the second freshman QB (and 1st redshirt) to win a national title. Props to Florida State's defense coming alive in the second half and special teams changing the game. Props to Tre "Lil Maseo" Mason for balling out once again for Auburn in defeat.

Now that Florida State can celebrate a national title after one of the best national title games I've seen, it calls for us to throw the BCS into a coffin and quickly bury that monster. Yet not before we take one more look at why it resembles the best of college football (and the NCAA's) and its hypocrisy.

I vented my personal beef with the BCS earlier this season and this week, I helped bid farewell looking at the highs and lows of the era. As we lower it into the grave, let me provide some last words.

The BCS started out with good intentions. Yes, it got a few games right here and there and for the most part, the national champion was deserving. However, let's not forget what it revealed as it devolved into a mess.

*It favored the power conferences and was stacked against the mid-majors like Boise State and Utah, despite their BCS success. Notre Dame, due to legacy, was gifted several BCS bowl games and promptly crapped the bed in all of them. **

*It showcased the purest form of greed and corruption. From bowl directors making oodles of money to the bowl games serving their staff more than the good of the NCAA, the BCS bowl games were ripe for a select few (notice a trend?) to get paid handsomely at the expense of others.

*It destroyed conference rivalries. Over the last 15 years, conference realignment and expansion has invaded college sports and why? Because football is king and schools needed to position themselves for better BCS favor. So bye bye, Big East and the WAC. Sacrificial lambs for the "greater good".

*It showed why players deserve to be paid. All the money changing hands, all the TV rights, all the handwringing over the need for a playoff and all the players get is prestige and trinkets. That might have been fine in the earlier days but with the money explosion due to the BCS, it's time that money trickled down to the labor.

So while we come to bury the BCS, let's remember what it caused. Let's also remember it's a symptom of a bigger problem in college sports and whatever changes may come, we can't forget that somebody will benefit greater than the folks who made it all possible - the players.

**Chances are the new playoff will do the same thing but we'll see how it plays out.

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