FanDuel - WFBC

May 04, 2011

Justice Department Asks NCAA About BCS: The Justice Department has sent a letter to the NCAA asking why there isn't a playoff system for college football. "Serious questions continue to arise suggesting that the current BCS system may not be conducted consistent with the competition principles expressed in federal antitrust laws," assistant attorney general Christine Varney wrote to NCAA president Mark Emmert.

posted by rcade to football at 05:04 PM - 11 comments

I can only conclude from this that the Lance Armstrong investigation must not be going well, and the justice department is looking for something to keep its fingers in the sports world after the Bonds fiasco.

posted by graymatters at 06:10 PM on May 04

Is this really something the government needs to stick its nose into?

posted by insomnyuk at 07:01 PM on May 04

Yes. An exclusive club of public universities has set up a system to enrich themselves to the multi-million dollar detriment of other universities. There are clearly antitrust implications.

posted by rcade at 07:24 PM on May 04

hey, the Senators from Utah and Idaho have to earn their keep somehow.

posted by dviking at 08:22 PM on May 04

An exclusive club of public universities has set up a system to enrich themselves to the multi-million dollar detriment of other universities.

I agree with public universities has set up a system to enrich themselves but I do question the multi-million dollar detriment of other universities. Is there really a requirement that they let others join their club?

posted by graymatters at 08:55 PM on May 04

This is going to be like AYSO soccer where everyone who participates gets a trophy or makes the playoffs. I am not convinced that the BCS is the best format, in fact I am more inclined to say it is seriously flawed, but I do not see where the Justice Department comes into this. The letter quotes the New York Times? C'mon.

posted by JohnnyGunn at 12:35 AM on May 05

Is there really a requirement that they let others join their club?

It's anti-competitiveness at its finest. The system is designed such that a team outside the BCS (e.g., Utah) with the exact same record as a BCS team (e.g., Florida) makes millions and millions less. And, as you travel away from elite teams like Utah, the anti-competitiveness continues. The sixth best team in the SEC will get a bowl game, and the same cannot be said of teams outside of the BCS.

posted by bperk at 08:54 AM on May 05

The sixth best team in the SEC will get a bowl game, and the same cannot be said of teams outside of the BCS.

But is that a BCS issue? I thought the BCS only controlled its five games (Rose, Sugar, Orange, Fiesta, and Championship). All the other bowl games are outside the BCS, so the SEC's third through sixth place teams getting a bowl game ahead of non-BCS conference teams is really outside BCS control, isn't it?

posted by graymatters at 10:43 AM on May 05

Yeah, I guess so, since they only control the top 5 games. I guess I should have used an example of an undefeated team getting frozen out of the championship game. Another example is when two non-BCS teams are undefeated, but only one is allowed to play in a BCS game.

posted by bperk at 12:02 PM on May 05

In the BCS versus playoff dispute, has anyone ever thought of how much money it might cost lower tier teams in revenue? With the current bowl system (BCS and non-BCS), you have maybe 60 to 70 teams playing in various bowl games. With a playoff system, you would have maybe 8 to 16 teams competing in multiple games as they advance to the championship game. Is there some idea that all the minor bowls that allow the non-BCS champions or the third through sixth place SEC teams to play would still exist as tag-alongs outside the playoff system?

posted by graymatters at 02:13 PM on May 05

I think that's the plan, graymatters. The bowl games would still maintain their contracts with the various conferences.

posted by bperk at 06:36 PM on May 06

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