Sunday, December 4, 2011

#1 vs. #2 on Jan. 9, no matter what you think

So let's recap Saturday's college football action ...

LSU won by 32. Oklahoma State won by 34. Alabama won by not playing.

And thus, we get a BCS National Championship Game that nobody outside of central Alabama wants to see.

That's not my opinion. It's fact. As I write this, it's 10:15 p.m. on Sunday, the night that all the bowl game bids were announced. On a poll at CBS Sports.com, the question, "Do you agree with Alabama facing LSU in the BCS title game?" is being answered with "No" by 65% of over 22,000 voters.


First of all, we don't even need a national championship game this year. LSU is the best. Hands down. No argument, discussion or dissension. They have nothing more to prove.

But, if they're going to play a game to decide their ultimate fate this year ... it should be against Oklahoma State.

Are they the second best team in the country, ahead of Alabama? Who knows -- without playing each other (pipe down all you "Plus One" people, I hear you). But, an LSU matchup with them would settle a hell of a lot more arguments around the country, outside of the close-mindedness of the SEC cartel. (By the way, who are you Florida and Georgia and South Carolina and Tennessee and Arkansas fans rooting for in this one? Does it matter?)

What does playing another SEC game, and Alabama twice, prove to LSU? It's another game against a team with speed on defense with a propensity to run the ball. What if Alabama wins on Jan. 9 by three points? Will LSU fans call for a rubber match to break the tie? Playing Oklahoma State, with speed on offense and a propensity to throw the ball, and beating them would show that they can beat anybody, at their game.

The BCS was never created to make sense. It was created to bring together #1 and #2 in a football game at the end of the year based on a set of criteria. Just like every other year since its inception in 1998, it did that.

But it didn't resolve the argument between who is #2 and #3. By the way, it's the same argument we'd have about #4 and #5 in a "plus-one" system, or #8 and #9 in the 8-team playoff that some people want. No matter how "perfect" the system, there will always be that argument, unless we have a "perfect" season where two teams separate themselves as title-game worthy.

But when that doesn't happen ... oh, what a perfect mess we get.

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