The Times West Virginian

Bob Herzel

October 22, 2009

HERTZEL COLUMN: BCS not solving problems

MORGANTOWN — This is a conversation that isn’t really supposed to take place.

College football, we were told, had taken care of it. See, they set up a system to decide a national championship, a thing called the BCS, which stands for Bowl Championship Series.

Six conferences were made members of it, their champions being automatically qualified to play in BCS bowl games. One game would be designated for the national championship and, as “equals,” it stood to reason that BCS teams would have the same chance to get into the game, which was determined by standings that were more intricate than anything NASA ever undertook.

Non-BCS teams, quite naturally, have taken affront to such a plan and have done all they can to get into the BCS, but the fact of the matter that there is an elite in college football and it turns out it was easier to overturn Jim Crow laws in the South than to get the Boise States and Utahs of the world on equal footing with the BCS schools.

Fine.

But now, it appears, there is something of a class system within the BCS schools themselves, and guess which conference seems to be sitting on the bottom rung of the ladder.

We will give you only one guess, but if you guess the Big East that is all you need.

See, six or seven weeks into the college football season there are rumblings already that the University of Cincinnati should not be able to play in the BCS championship game.

True, the Bearcats are undefeated. True they now are ranked No. 5 in the country and will be favored from here on out.

True, they are a member of the Big East, which is a member of the BCS, which should mean that they could easily qualify if they go unbeaten.

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Bob Herzel
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