Much of the country is in the midst of the first real cold snap of the season. But you would never know that from the hot air coming out of Michigan. Lots of annoying people who vent over nothing.
The final computer and human rankings were thrown into the cauldron of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) and a live Gator was drawn. By the way, it was the human voters who saved the day because the BCS computers had the Gators and Wolverines dead even.
I don’t know what the computers were thinking, but anyone who has seen Florida come from behind to beat Arkansas 38-28 on Saturday night to win the SEC Championship knows what I’m talking about. What an exciting game? Florida displayed their enormous speed, talent and team ability to make big plays when needed. Talk about going for it? How about that fake punt on fourth and 10, from his own 15-yard line while trailing in the third quarter? That takes guts! That was the play that earned the Gators a trip to the National Championship game to face the Buckeyes on Jan. 8 in Glendale, Arizona.
Florida is a conference champion with a 12-1 record. Michigan is the runner-up in its conference with an 11-1 record. It’s hard to understand how anyone could think that a second-place team (with one win less) should go to the National Championship game over all the other conference champions.
And we’re not talking about a dominant Big-10 conference. I mean, nothing against the big 10, it’s a good conference. But it’s clearly not SEC. Just take a look at the final BCS top 20. 5 SEC teams; 3 of the Big-10. What about the bowl deals? SEC: 9 bowl bids (most of any conference). Big-10: 7-bowl deals.
What about the non-lecture schedule? The SEC went an astounding 41-7 against non-conference opponents in 2006. This .854 winning percentage surpasses any other conference. (See http://www.secsportsfan.com/sec-football.html for more information on SEC football.) So Florida is the toughest conference champion in the nation.
Florida had the toughest schedule in the nation (.643 opponents winning percentage). The Alligators had 4 quality wins over Tennessee, LSU, Georgia, and Arkansas. Michigan only had 2 quality wins: Notre Dame and Wisconsin.
How boring it would have been to watch Ohio State and Michigan for the second time this season (104th time overall). Instead, we have two great conference champions from different regions of the country. Florida and Ohio State will play against each other for the first time in history. I can hardly wait.
Certainly, the BCS system is flawed. College football needs a playoff. No doubt. With the current system, there are always more than two teams at the end of the year that can make a strong case that they should be in the National Championship game. Someone always feels abandoned.
But, if you have to pick just two teams to play for the National Championship, this year those teams have to be Ohio State and Florida. The only thing I don’t understand is why there is even a controversy. It would have been a shame to choose Michigan over Florida. So, at least for this year, the BCS did well. It was an easy choice.