Congress and The BCS – A Simple Plan
The people all want playoffs. The schools in power want big payday bowls. And then congress comes into play.
There has been all this talk of lobbying congress to get them to change the system. But perhaps what congress should do is work within the current guidelines of the bowl system and give it a little push. Here’s a simple plan:
* Ask the BCS to expand by 1 more game
This would be a total of 6 games and 12 teams…new bowl could be in Dallas, Cotton Bowl.
* Provide “automatic bids” to the Conference Championship Game winners from the top 7 conferences and 5 at-large bids
* 5 at-large teams are those rated the highest in BCS standings regardless of conference
That’s it. Plain and simple.
But you have to read between the lines.
In order to have a championship game, conferences need to have 12 members. This would force a number of conferences to expand, bringing in teams not currently in BCS conferences. This could mean…
Big Ten: Expands by (1) with Rutgers
Pac 10: Expands by (2) with Utah and BYU (perhaps Colorado and then the Big 12 adds BYU which they originalyl wanted until Baylor was forced on them)
Big East: Expands by (4) with Memphis along with football-only members Army, Navy and Temple. Replaces Rutgers with Notre Dame.
And then there is the #7 Conference. Yes, if there are 7 conferences included, that means there is one more automatic berth added to the BCS:
Mountain West: Expands by (3) with Boise St., Houston and Fresno St; Replaces Utah ans BYU with UTEP and Nevada
With all that shuffling, you’d now have the non-BCS conferences looking for replacements as well. Because they would need to be at 12 teams in order to ever be eligible for a BCS spot. And since the 7 automatic berths are simply the top 7 conferences, a good year could mean a WAC or CUSA school leapfrogs into the #7 spot for conference ratings.
Potential changes could be:
CUSA: replaces Memphis, UTEP, Houston with Florida Atlantic, Florida International and Troy
MAC: Replaces Temple with Middle Tennessee St. and expands to (14) for scheduling with WKU
Sunbelt: folds as they would have zero teams
WAC: Absorbs the sunbelt schools and grows to (13); Replaces Boise St, Nevada, Fresno St with (7) schools – North Texas, Arkansas St, LA- Monroe, LA-Lafayette, South Alabama and FCS upgrades Texas St, UTSA
If you’re keeping track of all the schools mentioned, you’ll come to a conclusion: EVERY SCHOOL IS INCLUDED.
Yes, it would be difficult for the new look CUSA, WAC or MAC to sneak into the top 7, but it could happen. And if it didn’t, those schools would still have a chance to finish in the top 12 individually, and grad an at-large bid on their own.
The only loss would come to the Sunbelt, which would have zero schools left as they all fill slots in the WAC and CUSA.
But it’s a chance for every school to have an opportunity if they perform. And right now, the decisions aren’t based on performance.
Stick to this plan and you get 6 things:
1) Number of current schools with BCS autobids rise from 65 to 84
2) Remaining 3 conferences (47 total schools) all get chance for automatic bid if their conference finishes in the Top 7
3) Mountain West likely falls into the #7 conference spot
4) Force Notre Dame to align with a conference
5) 6th BCS game added (likely Cotton Bowl in Dallas)
6) Performance based system for BCS bowl rewards
If you want to get a feel for what the new conferences would look like, here they are:
ACC (12 schools)
Big 12 (12 schools)
Big East (12 schools)
* NOTRE DAME
Big Ten (12 schools)
Conference USA (12 schools)
* FLORIDA ATLANTIC
* FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL
Mid-American (14 schools)
* Middle Tennessee St
Mountain West (12 schools)
San Diego State
* FRESNO ST
* BOISE ST
Pacific-12 (12 schools)
SEC (12 schools)
WAC (13 schools)
* South Alabama
* UTSA ~
* Texas St ~
* ARKANSAS ST
New Mexico State
San Jose State
* NORTH TEXAS