Monday, September 1, 2014

College football's new playoff system and what it brings

For the next three years, the NCAA FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) will be going to a new four-team playoff system that will determine the NCAA Division 1 national champions. Instead of taking teams that have the best records, the selection committee will select the four best teams based on many factors including: strength of schedule, head-to-head results, and performances against common opponents. Teams that don't make the playoff will be eligible to play in other bowls. Now that I've given a little background; I would like to discuss the pros and cons of the new playoff system. The obvious pro is the fact that we won't have to deal with anymore ridiculous coaches and computer polls that don't understand the real meaning each game has or doesn't have. These kinds of polls have led to bias among teams and these biases have kept some teams from playing in a bowl game or even a national championship. However, this is also a con for the playoff system. In essence teams cannot lose one game through the course of the season otherwise they are out of contention to play for the national championship. The BCS system rewarded teams that beat teams they were supposed to beat as well as the teams who beat teams they weren't supposed to beat. In the playoff system teams must win both. The teams that wormed their way into a big bowl (Hawaii, 2008 Sugar Bowl) won't be able to play a weak schedule and expect to make it to the big dance under the new playoff system. As much as I like seeing the underdog win, some of the teams that took advantage of the BCS system and made it in a bowl shouldn't have made it. I'm not saying that's always the case because some MAC and WAC teams have proven themselves like Boise State. On the business side, the playoff system will give each school in the 11 conferences and equal shot at earning some money. When in the BCS system, the automatic qualifying conferences got a lot of the money. Either way, sticking with the playoff system or going back to the BCS system, every team will be excited to get on that field and play football. I wish it was that easy. I was never around during the times when football was played for what it brought to athletes on a personal level instead of a wallet level. Hopefully, we will eventually find a system that puts more focus on what the sport brings to the athletes and the pride it brings to the school instead of giving more money to people who already have an overabundance of money. Especially in the United States where over 35% of the nations wealth belongs to only 1% of the population.

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