Bowl Championship Series

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The Page Maker (LMAO) ENGL 1010 Argument Essay 7/8/2010 Bowl Championship Series: “Selection System” NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) basketball, baseball, softball, soccer, hockey, tennis, lacrosse, golf, and even fencing divisions use a playoff style tournament to determine their champions. Out of the 4 NCAA football divisions, 3 use the same method. The only NCAA division that does not use a playoff is the Division 1 FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision). This division uses the Bow
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  The Page Maker (LMAO)ENGL 1010Argument Essay7/8/2010 Bowl Championship Series:“Selection System”    NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) basketball, baseball, softball,soccer, hockey, tennis, lacrosse, golf, and even fencing divisions use a playoff styletournament to determine their champions. Out of the 4 NCAA football divisions, 3 usethe same method. The only NCAA division that does not use a playoff is the Division 1FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision). This division uses the Bowl Championship Series(BCS) “selection system”. The BCS is not part of the NCAA and it is not an entity.Instead, it is an event managed by the 11 NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision conferences-- all of them BCS Conferences -- and the University of Notre Dame(www.bcsfootball.org). The BCS selects entrants for its five bowl   games using analgorithm that weighs two expert polls and six intricate computer rankings (Altman 16).This system was put into place in 1998 to ensure the number 1 & 2 teams play in thechampionship game.Many fans, coaches, and political figures have mixed feelings about the BCS.Supporters of the BCS believe that this is the most clear cut way to pair up the best teamsin the most talented division in college football. A playoff tournament would push theseason out a few more games; therefore BCS supporters believe there would be moreinjuries. More games could also interfere with academic progress.There are also many that believe the BCS has an unfair selection process when itcomes to choosing the top 2 teams out of 120. In recent years, teams with a loss on their regular season record have gone onto play in BCS title games, while undefeated teams,with better records, were not “selected”. The BCS system needs to be replaced by a  The Page Maker (LMAO)ENGL 1010Argument Essay7/8/2010  NCAA championship playoff tournament like all the other divisions. This would replace bias human polls, do away with algorithms, and give each of the 120 schools a fair shakeat a title. Prize money could also be more evenly spread throughout the division with a playoff bracket. Not to mention true champions win on the field, not on paper.Two thirds of the BCS formula is made up of the USA Today Coaches Poll andThe Harris Interactive Poll. The other third is an average of 6 computer polls(www.uponfurtherreview.kansascity.com). These polls are updated weekly and teams areranked accordingly. The USA Today Coaches Poll is made up of 59 Division 1 FBScoaches. It has been alleged that coaches vote along conference lines to keep money intheir respective conferences. The BCS has no set rationale for how or why a schoolshould be ranked – is it record, strength of schedule, whom it beat, whom it lost to, how itwon, how it lost. The decision is up to each voter (Wetzel). Then there is the fact thatcoaches…don’t have the time to research their ballots and often hand over the duties toadministrative staffers, who also have no time (Wetzel).The Harris Interactive Poll is also made up of voters with busy schedules. TheHarris voters are selected by conference offices. Most are media, former players or administrators. They are well-meaning but hold regular jobs and have their own busyschedules. This is a secondary (at best) thing and watching all the games is a challenge(Wetzel). With more than half of the BCS formula made up of coaches and former  players, how could one not be bias of their team or alma matter? Perhaps the “B” in BCSshould stand for “Biased”.In the 12 years the BCS system has been in place, only 12 teams out of 120 have played in the championship game. Out of theses 12 teams, 8 have played in the  The Page Maker (LMAO)ENGL 1010Argument Essay7/8/2010 championship game multiple times. Out of the 12 conferences (counting Notre Dame)that make up the Division 1 FBS, only 6 conferences have been represented in thechampionship game to date (wikipedia.org). How can this system be fair when in the last12 years only a dozen of teams have had a shot at the title? There have been teams in the past with perfect regular season records and have watched 2, one-loss teams play for atitle. Case in point, the 2008 Utah Utes. The Utes go 13-0, beat six bowl teams, dominateAlabama in the Sugar Bowl and still don’t receive enough votes to play in thechampionship game. Alabama was no slouch in 2008 was ranked #1 for 5 weeks.The Utes felt similar pain in 2004 when they went undefeated. In 2004, therewere 5 undefeated teams in all; Utah, Boise State, Auburn, Oklahoma and USC(wikipedia.org). USC went on to beat Oklahoma in the championship game. A playoff situation in 2004 would have chosen the best 2 undefeated teams, with less controversy.With Utah, Boise State, and Auburn being smaller, less popular schools in the division itwas no surprise when the votes came in they had no chance at a title. Perhaps the “C” inBCS should stand for “Chanceless”.Like the old saying goes, money talks and…. Well you know what walks. Theridiculous BCS selection system is in place for nothing more than money. Out of the 12conferences that make up Division 1 FBS, 6 of them will send their conferencechampions to a guaranteed BCS berth and 18 million dollars to share within their conferences. If a second team makes the BCS in their conference an additional 4.5million will be granted to share (Bakalar). Let’s call them “The Big 6”.Rules for the remaining conferences are different. They must be ranked 12 th or higher in the standings or 16 th or better and ranked higher than a BCS conference  The Page Maker (LMAO)ENGL 1010Argument Essay7/8/2010 champion (one of The Big 6) to be considered for the BCS. They only get 18 million to be distributed amongst all of the remaining conferences if they make it into the BCS. Notre Dame is the only independent conference and they must be ranked 8 th or higher for a chance at the BCS. They get 1.3 million if they make it or not. If they make it into theBCS, they keep 4.5 million to themselves! (Bakalar). Sounds fair, right? Money, isevidence of the bias decisions that comes into the coaches’ poll. What coach from TheBig 6 wants to share money with the other conferences?Mainstream media also plays a role in why this corrupt BCS system is still in place. In 2008, ESPN signed a deal with the BCS to have the media rights to 4 of the 5 bowl games. ESPN’s contract will expire after the 2014 season. This deal was negotiatedwith the current BCS format. Therefore, the BCS will not consider a playoff system untilthe contract ends. In the meantime, the BCS will collect 125 million dollars per year fromESPN (www.espn.com). Perhaps the “S” in BCS could stand for “Sector”.Supporters of a BSC selection system have their points. One being a longer season makes for the possibility of more injuries. This is true; however, in a playoff system the regular season could be shortened to make room for more meaningful playoff games. With this method, a season, including the playoffs, would only need to go anextra few weeks. Adding extra weeks would interfere with academics; this is another  popular view. This is also true, but it’s overlooked in all of the other divisions. NCAA basketball dedicates the whole month of March to its playoff tournaments! The other divisions in college football use playoffs also. Does the NCAA care more about Division1 FBS athletes’ academics than other college athletes? More than likely no, but they likethe revenues it generates. It’s hard to believe that these reasons hold any judgement on a
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