Welcome to another episode of Musings. Nothing much profound this week, just some tidbits that caught my attention. Grab some joe, and let’s go.
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Dr. John Byrd, a nationally renowned leukemia specialist and researcher at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute, received the Emil J Freireich Award for clinical cancer research earlier this month.
Congratulations to Dr. Byrd and his team at The James. Well done.
On Friday, tBBC turns 5. Or, as Jeff says “we’re old enough to be in kindergarten!” which will come as no surprise to all eight of our regular readers. You’ll also be happy to know that we’ve officially stopped eating paste.
So, to celebrate we “veterans” are taking a look back and re-posting our favorite articles from our time on the intertrons. Since I’m going first, I’m going to reach deep into the archives to pull up something from our time at SBN- my suggestions for “fixing” the BCS via conference realignment/expansion. Building on some of the “Bowl Crap” series that I did, I was working with Rob Harley’s ideas and those of a faithful reader, but it’s interesting how close to this is to what might be happening over the next week or so.
Granted, my idea included 6 conferences and not 4; but it did forsee a situation where the conference championship games were the first round of the tournament. Looking back… I think I like where we’re headed better.
Oh, and this was originally a two part post, so if you print it for “reading” at “work”, be warned that it may be a longer trip to the lounge than usual. Enjoy!
For the record, I’m not a proponent of playoffs. I actually liked the way things used to be with conference bowl tie-ins and such; arguing about who was #1 back in the day was a part of the enjoyment of the game, in my opinion.
But, since you asked me, if we were going to have a playoff this is what it should look like. Unlike some people, I’m not going to tell you what won’t work- I’m taking a flier on what would ooze awesomeness. Caution is advised; some items may shift during the duration of this posting. Read More
Make certain to join us on Monday Night at 8:00 PM for our National Championship Game LiveBlog!
The one you’ve all been waiting for…well, outside of the Sugar Bowl, of course…
The history of the BCS National Championship game is rife with conflict. The game’s true origins start with the Bowl Coalition – a grouping of the SEC, Big 8, SWC, ACC and Big East, along with Notre Dame. Six bowl games were included in the agreement: the Orange, Sugar, Cotton, Fiesta, Gator and John Hancock. The premise was to attempt to get the top teams in each conference to face off with one another, generating a “true” champion. Unfortunately for the Coalition, without the inclusion of the Big Ten or Pac-10 who remained tied to the Rose Bowl, the system was unable to crown a champion unless the top two teams resulted from its member conferences.
Weaknesses in the South Western Conference, along with poor play from Notre Dame, helped lead to the end of the Coalition and the creation of the Bowl Alliance. Functionally, it was the same group of conferences, except the SWC and Big 8 were replaced with the newly formed Big 12 conference. The Big Ten still remained outside of the Alliance due to their ties with the Rose Bowl, but at-large Big Ten teams were allowed to participate in the Alliance Bowl games. Both Penn State (Won 1997 Fiesta against Texas) and Ohio State (Lost 1998 Sugar to Florida State) participated.
There’s no way that we can start this week’s post without wishing Happy Birthday to Coach Jim Tressel. Ironically, it’s also the day of the ninja; although I can’t imagine the silent assassins being as polite or methodical as Senior Sweatervest- how would you write “Dave” in kanji?
While there were several significant games on the old telly this week, there were also off field doin’s that should not be left undiscussed. First, in this year’s addition of the River City Rivalry/Snow Bowl, Pittsburgh easily handled Ohio’s BCS team. That didn’t, however, keep the Bearcat mascot from getting arrested and escorted out of the stadium. Video and such, for those of you who are into that kind of thing, can be found here.
The Big lEast ended as it started, with a three way tie at the top of the conference. Pitt’s victory, along with West Virginia’s win over Rutgers that seemed to make their fans filled with glee, meant that UConn was still in the driver’s seat should they hold off South Florida. A late, long field goal meant that the 8-4 Huskies have earned themselves a bid to a BCS game.
As we mentioned earlier, this means that a team that only managed 10 points against the Wolverines will get to face off against, most likely, the Oklahoma Sooners. While we’ve given the Big lEast grief here in the past, it should be noted that the conference only has two teams that don’t have the requisite 6 wins necessary to go to a bowl game, a much better experience than our west coast stalwarts in the Pac-10. At this juncture, only four teams from that conference will be headed to the post season, since Southern Cal is on probation (sorry, that’s still awesome to write) and Arizona State’s 6-6 record includes too many victories over FCS schools. So, with two teams going to the BCS, this means that there’ll be four bowls looking for help with the automatic tie ins.
Each of us knows “That Guy”- the person who, for reasons known only to their psyche, is overzealous at the wrong time and screws things up for everyone else.
So- What does this have to do with college sports? Well, as shocking as this may be to realize, the Pac-10 (specifically Larry Scott) is “That Guy”.
Let’s take a look at this, shall we? Back in December, the Big T1e1n announces that they are going to start exploring conference expansion, and we discover that there’s an 18 month-2 year timeline.
This spring/summer, word comes out that the conference has begun talks with specific institutions, and we start hearing about Notre Dame, Texas, Missouri, Rutgers, Nebraska, and others.
And then, on the west coast, someone gets antsy and decides that it’s time to get involved. Perhaps it was due to the need to renegotiate the conference’s TV ratings, perhaps it was due to the need to distract media attention from the all the news about certain NCAA sanctions, perhaps it was due to just wanting to be invited to the cool “expansion” party that everyone was going to… The next thing we hear is that the Pac-10 is making moves to add Texas, Oklahoma, aTm, OkSU, Colorado/Baylor/TTU.
It felt a little like the “You’re thinking about buying a new Lexus? Well, I’m going to buy three Veyrons, and drive my Lambo Limo on the weekends!!” moments we’ve all had with the “That Guy” in our life.
The bad news is that “That Guy” in this case ended up helping Texas get a sweetheart deal at the expense of everyone else in the conversation. Nebraska and the Big T1e2n ended up happy with what happened, but there’s a wistfulness for what might also have been.
To continue the theme suggested by the picture above, the Pac-10′s antics pushed the one person everyone was interested in to stay at home, made a match between the primary suitor and the person that everyone liked but never saw in that way before, and ended up making sure that all of the friends that came with the one everyone was pursuing ended up in the same situation they were at the beginning of the party, but with less money and no self esteem.
And for “That Guy”? Well, he can look forward to a future where his conference’s marquee program is on probation, and where he’s added the one program who jumped into his arms as soon as they were asked (never a good sign), and another that wasn’t even at the party and has only been relevant for a couple of years.
Kind of makes you believe in karma.
It appears that the dust has settled (for the time being) on the crazy expansion frenzy that has gripped the college football world over the past two weeks.
In the end, what actually happened seems a bit mild when compared with the expectations just a few short days ago.
The Pac-10 added Colorado to bump its membership up to 11. They will almost certainly be looking to add a 12th, possibly in the next few days, with Utah being the most likely candidate.
The Big-12 lost two members and ended up with a conference that is so totally dominated by Texas that its future is cloudy already. The problems that tore apart the Big-12 in the first place (primarily revenue sharing and television rights) will most likely be magnified ten fold in the new incarnation and will almost certainly rip apart the new conference sooner or later.
Additionally, without 12 teams, will the new Big-12 even be able to have a championship game?
Without a conference title game and outside of Oklahoma-Texas, what games are people even going to watch? Good luck making money in that set-up.
The Big-12 could add two teams to make up for the losses and get a conference title game back, but who would they go to? I don’t think TCU or anyone else is going to be a national draw. On top of national exposure considerations (or a lack thereof), no matter who they add, it does nothing to improve their problems, so it will be a mess regardless. Read More
Looks like Mike Gundy will get to “be a man!!!” on the beaches of the west coast, as rumors are now swirling regarding T. Boone Pickens University (Oklahoma State, if you’re new to tBBC) will be making the move to the Pac-10 along with Colorado.
OSU spokesman Kevin Klintworth wouldn’t confirm the report. “Nothing to announce,” he said in an e-mail. “We will have a statement from the president later today, but not a confirmation.”
If true, the two largest boosters in college sports will be in the Pac-10, with the aforementioned T. Boone joining Phil Knight in a “let’s see who can buy our school out of obscurity” contest.
The landscape of college football is changing by the minute- although, I’m pretty certain that the Pac-10 is working to ensure that their news takes attention off of things at Southern Cal.
UPDATE: Things are getting interesting in the Lone Star state. Just sayin’.