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More credibility issues for Bowl Championship Series

Boycott watching the Bowl Championship Series games.By viewing them, you support one of sports’ most flawed postseason formats.

Disgust is a mild reaction to several of the BCS bowl selections on Sunday.

The most qualified college football teams aren’t in the five-best bowl games, and the championship game smells of a bias toward traditional powers being chosen because of what they have done in the past, not the present.

Who really believes Ohio State and LSU would become finalists if college football went to an eight- or 16-team tournament this winter?

The Buckeyes, a finalist last year, backed into the title game because it emerged from one of the weakest conferences with one defeat. Making them less appealing was their feeble nonconference schedule: Youngstown State, Akron, Washington and Kent State.

Their championship opponent LSU, on the other hand, obviously made the finals because the Tigers are the best in the Southeastern Conference – the league most experts perceive as No. 1 in the land.

A solid argument, though, could be made for Oklahoma to be in the championship game. After all, the Sooners defeated former No. 1 Missouri twice, and the Big 12 Conference had three teams in the top 5 going into the final two weeks of the season. LSU leaped over Oklahoma and Virginia Tech after an unimpressive conference championship win, while the Sooners thumped Missouri 38-17 in the Big 12 title game.

That Missouri wasn’t included in a BCS game reveals one of the many flaws in the postseason selection system. Rules allow for a maximum of two teams per conference, so after taking Oklahoma and Kansas, Missouri was left with a Cotton Bowl berth. But how can Missouri go from No. 1 in the country one week to not being selected for a BCS game the next?

Bogus.

Only Hawaii, another suspect BCS choice, had a worse nonconference schedule than Ohio State: Northern Colorado, Charleston Southern, UNLV and Washington should have been their basketball team’s nonconference schedule. Even though Hawaii was the only school to go unscathed (12-0), the Rainbow Warriors shouldn’t have been granted a BCS game.

Teams should be held accountables for their schedules. The NCAA basketball tournament selection committee penalizes teams for a weak schedule and schools understand this so they try to play some tougher teams out of conference. The BCS basically encourages teams to play weak schedules.

If strength of schedules mattered, Arizona State would have gone to a BCS game over either Illinois or Hawaii. At least the 10-2 Sun Devils beat Colorado (which handed Oklahoma one of its two losses) between one-sided wins over San Jose State and San Diego State.

I’d rather watch reruns of Miami Dolphins’ games than tune in the BCS title game on Jan. 7. College football players and their followers are long overdue to receive a more precise postseason system.

– Tribune Sports Editor Steve Yingling can be reached at (530) 542-8010 or syingling@tahoedailytribune.com.


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