Posted on: January 9, 2009 12:54 am
Edited on: January 9, 2009 12:59 am

CFB: Split? Maybe. Unanimous? Definitely not.

A while ago, Florida and Oklahoma played one of the better college football games I've watched this year. The outcome was not a certainty until the last five minutes of the game. It looked like the Sooners wore down, and the Gators jumped all over the momentum and ended up with a 24-14 victory and the BCS national title. Both teams looked good, but Florida was the better team of the two tonight. As far as the questions of "Could Utah beat Florida?" and "Could Texas beat Florida?" and "Could USC beat Florida?" and any variation of the aforementioned teams plus a few other teams, we will never know.

But,  understand, the BCS national title is not the only "title" in town. There are many who believe Utah should be declared the winner of the final AP Poll of the year. And we have already heard how a couple of coaches are planning to vote in the Coaches' Poll, and it won't be for Florida. So, even though we have a winner and a runner up in the BCS "national championship" game, opinions obviously vary as to whether the two best teams in the country played in this game. Other coaches are saying they have the number one team in the country.

We know who the BCS tells us should be the "national champion," but that definitely won't be the end of the discussion, because, even if Florida finishes first in the AP and the Coaches' polls, you can bet those won't be unanimous. Oklahoma still may get some #1 votes in these polls. Texas will get some #1 votes in both polls. USC may get some #1 votes in both polls. As stated earlier, there are many -- writers, coaches, fans -- who believe Utah deserves part or all of the AP "championship."

These arguments will not stop, perhaps ever. A playoff may come along, but it won't be for a while yet, at least until someone figures out how to break the stranglehold the BCS and the "money men" backing it have on the bowls and how the championship is decided.

Congratulations to Florida and Oklahoma on a well-played game. But don't expect the world of college football in totality to buy into who the BCS "authorities" have named champion.

Posted on: December 8, 2008 1:12 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2008 3:28 pm

OFF-TOPIC: CFB chaos - no unified champ this year

Well, the wonderful BCS system is one step closer to setting us up for another year without a "unified" national champion in college football.

The writers (AP Poll) have Florida #1, with 50 first-place votes; Oklahoma #2, with nine first-place votes, and Texas #3, with six first-place votes.

The coaches (ESPN/USA Today Poll) have Oklahoma #1, with 31 first-place votes; Florida #2, with 26 first-place votes, and Texas #3 with four first-place votes.

The BCS rankings are as follows: Oklahoma, .976; Florida, .948, and Texas, .930.

Oklahoma plays Florida for the National Championship. Texas plays Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl. I've said this within the last few weeks -- I believe there is a very real chance that, among the BCS, the AP Poll, and the Coaches' Poll, we will not see a clear, undisputed champ. In both the AP and the Coaches' polls, I can see scenarios -- a narrow loss in the National Championship game either way and a Texas win, particularly a blowout -- potentially leading to a three-way split vote for first place. Who knows what the final BCS numbers would be.

While this is wonderful because it gives those who are apt to do so something to argue about, it does not satisfy the all-too-human urge for logical resolution. We have the illusion that Florida and Oklahoma are playing for the National Championship, but the reality is that two polls, some writers and some computers have a wildly varying opinion of what's what. Many, including loads and loads of fans, do not even agree that Florida and Oklahoma should be playing for the championship.

At the very least, I believe we will see a split between the AP and the Coaches, especially if Oklahoma and Florida play a close game. In this case, as well, if Texas wins, especially going away, they likely would get some first-place votes in both polls, too.

My kingdom for a championship football tournament!

Category: NCAAF
Posted on: November 23, 2008 6:02 pm
Edited on: November 23, 2008 8:34 pm

OFF-TOPIC: CFB -- Hooray for Utah! Penn St.?

First off, kudos to Utah for finishing their season undefeated at 12-0 and busting their way into a BCS bowl game. There will be much wailing and gnashing of teeth over this among supporters of other "stronger" conferences, but undefeated is undefeated, and Utah deserves all the consideration given any other undefeated team (an idealistic, though not realistic, and not in line with accepted thinking point of view, I know).

And why didn't Penn State go to 5 after beating #17 Michigan State (9-2 going into the game) yesterday 49-18? Sure, USC beat unranked Stanford 45-23, but I think PSU's victory over a ranked 9-2 Michigan team trumps a 45-23 USC victory over an unranked Stanford team.

Here are the polls as of today:

AP Poll

1. Alabama
2. Florida
3. Oklahoma
4. Texas
5. USC
6. Penn St.
7. Texas Tech
8. Utah
9. Boise State
10. Ohio State

Coaches' Poll

1. Alabama
2. Oklahoma
3. Florida
4. Texas
5. USC
6. Penn St.
7. Utah
8. Texas
9. Boise State
10. Ohio State

Judging by how the two "paper" polls have come out today, it will be interesting to see what the computers say when the BCS comes out. If it already has, my apologies. I haven't been able to find it. I think we are being set up for another split championship and quite possibly a three-way disagreement among the "paper" polls and the BCS. What a mess this is.

Ball State continues to roll, too, but there likely will be left out in the cold when BCS time comes. Undeservedly so, but, again, we are dealing with a biased, weighted system that isn't fair to everyone, if anyone. Keep it up, Cardinals!

And Boise State stayed undefeated, too, with one game left. Go, Broncos!

Posted on: November 17, 2008 12:36 pm
Edited on: November 17, 2008 12:37 pm

OFF-TOPIC: CFB -- polls fairly stable for now

I checked out the College Football polls yesterday, and I couldn't believe my eyes! The writers' and the coaches' polls actually are in agreement on the Top Six -- Alabama, Texas Tech, Florida, Texas, Oklahoma, and Southern California. The writers have Penn State at 7 and Utah at 8, while the coaches have those reversed. And the polls also agree on 9 and 10, Boise State and Ohio State.

It appears that, over the next few weeks, the "wrangling" is going to happen in the slots from 10 to 20, with maybe a little action in the 7 through 10 slots. I think, though, the Top Six are set for now. I'm impressed by the cross section of conferences represented in the Top 10. Pretty amazing!

Ball State continues to creep toward the Top Ten at 14 in the writers' poll and 16 in the coaches' poll. Cincinnati is now at 19 in the writers' poll, 20 in the coaches' poll. My hope is for Ball State to finish undefeated so they can stick a big red Cardinal thumb in the BCS' eye when it's all said and done.

Here's the Top Ten in the BCS right now -- Alabama, Texas Tech, Texas, Florida, Oklahoma, USC, Utah, Penn State, Boise State, and Ohio State. (Ball State currently is at 17 in the BCS.) Georgia and Oklahoma State are 11 and 12.

The next few weeks should be interesting. There is still a lot of good football to be played!

Category: NCAAF
Tags: BCS, CFB, NCAAF, polls, rankings
Posted on: November 9, 2008 9:04 am
Edited on: November 9, 2008 8:13 pm

UPDATE: OFF-TOPIC -- CFB: More chaos in the ranks

So, with a loss by Penn State, a more-than-convincing win by Texas Tech, and a veritable squeaker by Alabama, the burning question now is, who is the best one-loss team in the ranks? This despite the fact that there are still a few unbeaten, but, yes, much-less-valued teams out there, which is a crock, but perhaps a topic for another time.

It was sad to see Penn State pushed to the wall by an unranked, in fact, fairly unheralded Iowa team. But, if there ever was a trap game, this was it, and Penn State played like it was. So, with one loss, are they now completely out of the national championship picture? Will they get a BCS bowl game? I venture to say with the general lack of respect for the Big Ten, and the lovefest for the Big 12 and the SEC, Penn State will get lost in the mix.

I was close to on-the-money with last week's prediction. I"m as curious as anyone else this week, so I'll think I'll just keep a low profile and see where the chips fall. If things work this week like they did last week, Alabama should stay at 1. Though they narrowly escaped with a victory over LSU, the Tigers were ranked in the Top 20 and are a good team. However, Texas Tech could make a case for jumping from 2 to 1 as they ran roughshod over an Oklahoma State ranked in the Top 10.

There will be a dogfight for all the spots between 3 and 10. It's gonna be interesting!


ADDED 3:08 p.m. 11/9/08

So tell me why Alabama plays a team in the bottom quarter of the Top 20 and barely wins, yet still stays at 1, and Texas Tech absolutely annihilates a team in the Top 10, and doesn't move up to 1? And Penn State, idle last week, gets hopped over by Texas Tech last week when Texas Tech BARELY beat Texas? None of this makes any sense.

The AP and ESPN/USA Today agree with Florida at 3, a justifiable move up. AP has Texas at 4 and Oklahoma at 5, the two being reversed in the Coaches' Poll. Both agree with USC at 6. AP has Penn State at 7 and Utah at 8, the two being reversed in the Coaches' Poll. Both have Boise State at 9 and Ohio State at 10.

Other than my issues with Alabama clinging to 1 by their cuticles, this list fairly well reflects yesterday's action.

What I Like To See -- Cincinnati jumps into the Top 25 at 22 in both polls after beating #25 West Virginia in OT yesterday. And Ball State is 14 in the AP and 16 in the Coaches' Poll. I'd really like to see Boise State, Utah and Ball State remain undefeated and throw a serious monkey wrench into everyone's plans for the BCS. If these three unlikely candidates remain undefeated, any decisions the BCS committee makes would likely show them up as the fools they are. All this talk about "the best one-loss team" will look ridiculous when there are still three other unheralded undefeated teams to account for.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com