FanDuel - WFBC

November 30, 2013

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle:

A place to discuss the sports stories that aren't making news, share links that aren't quite front-page material, and diagram plays on your hand. Remember to count to five Mississippi before commenting in anger.

posted by huddle to general at 06:00 AM - 56 comments

Michigan and Ohio State just played a hell of a football game. One of the best games I've been to. Although it didn't work I think Michigan made the right choice going for two at the end.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 04:20 PM on November 30

I'm not sure whether I'd rather lose by one than go to OT against that team, but either way, Ohio has much less of a claim to the BCS title game squeaking that win against a 7-4 Michigan team, so I'm happy, overall.

posted by Etrigan at 05:30 PM on November 30

Oh. My. God. I picked OSU and Auburn this weekend. WOOHOO!! PUT OHIO STATE IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME!!

posted by phaedon at 07:26 PM on November 30

Wow. Just an incredible day for football.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 07:35 PM on November 30

.

posted by phaedon at 07:39 PM on November 30

posted by phaedon at 07:40 PM on November 30

My first thought on the missed field goal:
"Why the hell is that idiot Auburn player running the ball out of the end zone? Just say thanks for ANOTHER miss, take the knee, and get ready for OT."

My next ten thoughts:
"OH MY GOD WHAT THE HELL JUST HAPPENED?!"

I know that Stanford/Cal ("The Play") is considered the greatest finish to a football game, but I'm going to say that this Iron Bowl had the greatest 4th quarter I've ever seen.

posted by grum@work at 08:06 PM on November 30

Ohio has much less of a claim to the BCS title game squeaking that win against a 7-4 Michigan team

Less of a claim than whom? A team that hasn't won every football game it has played for two straight years? Is squeaking by Michigan worse than losing to them? I'm not counting the Michigan State game as a victory, but if Ohio State wins next week, making them 13-0 and riding a 25 game win streak, there is no way to deny them the chance to prove themselves (for better or worse) against FSU.

On edit--maybe you wrote that before Alabama lost. Tht would make much more sense.

posted by tahoemoj at 08:58 PM on November 30

If the officials can review a targeting penalty they should be able to pick the flag up if the video evidence clearly shows a hit was not a personal foul.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 09:24 PM on November 30

On edit--maybe you wrote that before Alabama lost. Tht would make much more sense.

Yes. Hence the time stamp.

And win streaks shouldn't be a factor. The championship isn't for 2012-2013.

posted by Etrigan at 09:30 PM on November 30

... there is no way to deny them the chance to prove themselves (for better or worse) against FSU.

If Auburn wins the SEC, I think it will squeak past Ohio State in the rankings because the computers like it better.

posted by rcade at 09:32 PM on November 30

If Auburn wins the SEC, I think it will squeak past Ohio State in the rankings because the computers like it better.

Watch how many SEC coaches vote Auburn - Florida State - Alabama - Clemson - OSU.

posted by Etrigan at 09:37 PM on November 30

Doesn't Ohio State need to get past Michigan State's defense next week before we talk about whether or not the Buckeyes deserve a shot at the national title game?

posted by NoMich at 10:44 PM on November 30

Doesn't Ohio State need to get past Michigan State's defense next week before we talk about whether or not the Buckeyes deserve a shot at the national title game?

They do, but frankly because this game against the Wolverines wasn't a blow-out, there's actually a better chance the Buckeyes won't underestimate MSU and phone it in like they did today. It's a good thing the ejections won't impact the last game of the season.

posted by phaedon at 11:32 PM on November 30

Saban out-Sabaned himself. Which was nice. And that sort of works against Ohio State, as there's a chance to pick two teams without insufferable coaches.

But Auburn's home fans have had enough crazy finishes to cover the next decade.

posted by etagloh at 11:52 PM on November 30

Doesn't Ohio State need to get past Michigan State's defense next week before we talk about whether or not the Buckeyes deserve a shot at the national title game?

The unspoken assumption in all college football championship arguments is "If Team X wins its remaining games."

posted by Etrigan at 07:00 AM on December 01

Not even including the 57-yarder at the end of the Alabama game (which is low percentage for practically any level of kicker), it continues to confuse me why a powerhouse monster of a team like the Tide don't have a dominating kicker. Their other field goal attempts, which could have made this ending non-existent, were absolutely horrible.

I have been looking at Michigan State being the team that finally puts Ohio State out of our misery once and for all. The Spartans win next week, and we will have a Florida State vs. SEC champ title game. If we're forced to sit through another Buckeye national title game debacle, it will ruin a tremendous college football season.

posted by dyams at 09:27 AM on December 01

As much as I would like to see Sparty win next week (just to continue the theme of chaos), has anyone here seen Michigan State's offense?

posted by holden at 10:41 AM on December 01

It has improved from the start of the season. Plus Ohio State just gave up 600 yards to a Michigan offense that had been anemic for the past month.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 11:38 AM on December 01

Without a horse in this race, I want the last non-playoff season to end in controversy.

posted by rcade at 11:41 AM on December 01

Without a horse in this race, I want the last non-playoff season to end in controversy.

We do have a playoff. We're just expanding it from two teams to four next year. And if you don't think that won't be just as full of controversy, take a look at the distinct possibility that Missouri beats Auburn. How is cutting those down to the top four any less controversial than the top two has been in most of the BCS years?

posted by Etrigan at 01:53 PM on December 01

I'm confused by all the Ohio State hate and/or attempts to bend over backwards to find a way to exclude them from the national title game. They are currently undefeated in a BCS conference, a claim that only one other team can make. There's no getting around the fact that the Big 10 isn't as strong as other conferences this year, but is that the fault of Ohio State? They have won every game they've played this year. As a supporter, I'd like to see what they can do against Florida State or Auburn or Mizzou. And I'd think all the OSU haters would just be champing at the bit for a chance to get all self righteous if and when they lose to one of those teams. That way you could be all smug and condescending over something less trivial than, say, metadata on a sports blog.

posted by tahoemoj at 02:38 PM on December 01

it continues to confuse me why a powerhouse monster of a team like the Tide don't have a dominating kicker

As you alluded to, this has been an Achilles heel for many great teams in the past. Such as several editions of Coach Bowden's Seminoles.

One has to assume that those teams just don't recruit for and coach the PK position as though it were a priority of any sort.

Conversely, it has always intrigued me how many truly bad NFL teams over the years have had fabulous punters.

posted by beaverboard at 03:06 PM on December 01

I have a degree from Michigan. That's why I hate them, and I admit it freely.

However, this thing: There's no getting around the fact that the Big 10 isn't as strong as other conferences this year, but is that the fault of Ohio State?

No, but it's not to their credit either. Remember that BYU has a national title solely because they went undefeated in a year where no one else did. Does anyone believe that the 1984 Cougars could have beat any of the top power-conference teams?

We're less than a year from Notre Dame getting a collective "Well, they're undefeated, I guess..." shrug and then taking the worst pantsing in official BCS title history.

Undefeated shouldn't be a free pass into the title game -- if a team does well in a weak conference (and yes, the Big Ten is weak this year) and beats three crappy non-conference teams (and no, I don't care whether Cal "should" have been good -- they sucked, and beating them in 2013 meant nothing), they absolutely should not automatically jump over a 12-1 team that beat good opponents.

That way you could be all smug and condescending...

Really? You're taking it that personally?

posted by Etrigan at 03:06 PM on December 01

Remember that BYU has a national title solely because they went undefeated in a year where no one else did.

Sure, but BYU didn't have the chance to validate their season in a national title game. Notre Dame last year is a good example, but for the fact that they don't play in an automatic qualifying conference. The BCS is a junk show, but you don't get to disregard how it was set up simply to exclude a team that has the misfortune of playing in a weak conference. Notre Dame cherry picks its schedule and literally plays whoever it wants to every year. OSU has to play in the Big 10, weak or not. As a fan, I will gladly concede that they didn't do themselves any favors with their non-conference schedule. I wish they would arrange more home-and-homes with top-tier programs. Nonetheless, if they go undefeated in an automatic BCS conference, and there are no other undefeated automatic-qualifying conferences, it would be more controversial to exclude them in favor of a 1-loss team than not.

Really? You're taking it that personally?

Really? You're going to take a smug potshot and then act surprised when you get called out on it? C'mon.

posted by tahoemoj at 03:24 PM on December 01

OSU has to play in the Big 10, weak or not.

This is the same kind of hidebound thinking as "undefeated trumps all" that I was talking about. If the Big 10 is weak, then it's weak. It doesn't matter that it should be better; it is unquestionably in a down cycle, and running the table in it doesn't mean you're necessarily as good as a team that beat teams that are better right now.

posted by Etrigan at 04:07 PM on December 01

It's all about the "The" thing for me. The Ohio State University, come on, give it a rest. That, and the surprisingly thin skin of the fans. You root for a perennial winner. There are other people out there rooting for other perennial winners. There are still more people out there who root for teams that don't win so often.

There is a rich strain in American life of rooting for the underdog. It has a corollary in rooting against the top dog. So even if we don't bleed blue and yellow, many of us would be happy to see the Buckeyes take a fall. It isn't hate. It isn't spite. It's part of our national psyche.

So when an OSU fan moans about pot-shots, as if there were anything wrong with making snide comments about any team we don't root for, as if it were so unfair that this juggernaut football program with major cheating scandals in its recent past should have detractors anywhere, as if there were some universal pact of mutual respect between fans of different teams that is violated whenever anyone wishes defeat on the undefeated, I think said OSU fan isn't merely being a crybaby. He's being downright unamerican.

And the "The" thing is incredibly pretentious.

posted by Hugh Janus at 04:55 PM on December 01

How is cutting those down to the top four any less controversial than the top two has been in most of the BCS years?

It moves the pain. An excluded third- or fourth-ranked team has more to be upset about than an excluded fifth- or sixth-place team. If the biggest injustice in the current system is when an undefeated team from a major conference doesn't get to play for the championship, the four-team playoff reduces the odds of that happening.

Also, if the SEC, PAC, ACC, Big 12 and Big 10 all end up playing conference championship games, that will result in no more than five undefeated teams a season -- and most often less. Any team that loses its conference championship has a pretty weak beef about being excluded from a four-team playoff.

I think the four-team playoff is likely to grow pretty quickly, because of the money and ratings it will generate.

posted by rcade at 05:56 PM on December 01

How is cutting those down to the top four any less controversial than the top two has been in most of the BCS years?

It moves the pain. An excluded third- or fourth-ranked team has more to be upset about than an excluded fifth- or sixth-place team.

I think people will quickly adjust to the new format and start getting all verklempt when it's three conference champions and a good 11-1 team. The cries of "Why punish someone who lost a conference championship game when Team X stayed at home?!?" and "What about the champion of this other conference?!?" will ring even louder than the occasional hosing of a third undefeated team.

I think the four-team playoff is likely to grow pretty quickly, because of the money and ratings it will generate.

Agreed. It'll be at least six as soon as the current contract expires.

posted by Etrigan at 06:30 PM on December 01

There's no getting around the fact that the Big 10 isn't as strong as other conferences this year, but is that the fault of Ohio State?

Did that argument ever work on you in past years when an undefeated team was in a conference weaker than the Big 10?

If Ohio State is kept out because of how strength of schedule affected computer rankings, that's a situation it helped create by scheduling Buffalo, San Diego State and Florida A&M as OOC opponents.

posted by rcade at 06:47 PM on December 01

Watch how many SEC coaches vote Auburn - Florida State - Alabama - Clemson - OSU

And watch the SEC teams get smoked yet again by underdogs in bowl games.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:34 AM on December 02

Also, if the SEC, PAC, ACC, Big 12 and Big 10 all end up playing conference championship games

Point of clarification #1: Since the Big XII reduced to 10 teams, it no longer has a championship game. Of course, with only 10 teams, they can (and do) all play each other, so a championship game is unnecessary.

If Ohio State is kept out because of how strength of schedule affected computer rankings, that's a situation it helped create by scheduling Buffalo, San Diego State and Florida A&M as OOC opponents.

Point of clarification #2: The game against Florida A&M was a reschedule, as Ohio State previously had scheduled a series with Vanderbilt that was subsequently cancelled by SEC schedule changes (I believe associated with their adding of 2 teams). A separate series with Tennessee has also been similarly cancelled. All of that doesn't change the fact that OSU did play the teams listed above this season, but it's a little reductive to say that they helped create this situation by their own scheduling. We can all agree that we would have a better impression of how good Ohio State is this season if there had been stiffer competition on their schedule. At least we get to see a B1G championship game with Michigan State.

Of course, Florida State's non-conference schedule (Nevada, Bethune-Cookman, Idaho, Florida) isn't terribly exciting, either. They did beat Clemson in-conference, who is legitimately solid, but the rest of the ACC isn't any better than the rest of the Big Ten.

posted by bender at 09:26 AM on December 02

When I think of the Big 10 and the SEC, I think about Bret Bielema. If I'm a Big 10 guy, highly regarded and successful at UW and am able to withstand the winters in the upper Midwest, I'm taking all factors into consideration in making any career decisions, and there is no way I'm leaving Madison to go to Fayetteville (where zealots are already calling for Bielema's head). Bigger money and higher level of competitive challenge be damned.

I loved Gus Malzahn's responses to the press after the Iron Bowl. When asked if beating Bama was the biggest win of his career, he hedged and pondered the question and eventually gave a semi-enthusiastic answer. There was no knee jerk/ heat of the moment "Hell Yeah - War Eagle!" You could almost feel and hear the anguish and disappointment crushing the sternums of the Auburn faithful when they realized that the man who had scripted one of the program's most glorious moments had not yet fully embraced their One True Religion. That helped balance the subsequent homie-o-pathic blather of the Auburn AD when asked if his school belonged in the title game.

I don't like or dislike any one conference or school indefinitely. I've liked and disliked both OSU and UM at different times. My fleeting allegiances are framed by my regard for the folks at the top of the pyramid: coaches, AD's, and college presidents. When Urban Meyer became a Buckeye alongside the likes of E. Gordon Gee, that slammed the book shut in Columbus.

posted by beaverboard at 10:31 AM on December 02

So when an OSU fan moans about pot-shots, as if there were anything wrong with making snide comments about any team we don't root for, as if it were so unfair that this juggernaut football program with major cheating scandals in its recent past should have detractors anywhere, as if there were some universal pact of mutual respect between fans of different teams that is violated whenever anyone wishes defeat on the undefeated, I think said OSU fan isn't merely being a crybaby.

Actually, Hugh, the potshot I was referring to (and etrigan knew it) was the one about there being a time stamp on the post. It had nothing to do with the content of the post itself. I've been around here long enough to get the benefit of the doubt on that one, I think. You can talk shit about whatever team you'd like, including all of those I cheer for, and I'll generally not take any offense. As for being a "crybaby," I would invite you to take this opportunity to make sweet, sweet love to yourself.


Did that argument ever work on you in past years when an undefeated team was in a conference weaker than the Big 10?

I can't think of a year when there was an undefeated team in an automatic-bid conference that went undefeated and didn't play for the title. Even in a weak year, the Big 10 isn't the WAC or the Mountain West.

If Ohio State is kept out because of how strength of schedule affected computer rankings, that's a situation it helped create by scheduling Buffalo, San Diego State and Florida A&M as OOC opponent

I completely agree. But refer to bender's post for context.

posted by tahoemoj at 11:27 AM on December 02

Point of clarification #1: Since the Big XII reduced to 10 teams, it no longer has a championship game.

I know. That's why I said "if." I assume the Big 12 won't be without a championship game for long. When all the major conferences have a title game, that's a quasi-playoff round.

... it's a little reductive to say that they helped create this situation by their own scheduling.

How is it reductive? It's a simple fact. Ohio State doesn't control how strong its conference will be in any given year, but it does control who it plays in OOC games.

I wasn't aware Ohio State had scheduled Vanderbilt, so it's a bad break to get Florida A&M as a late replacement. I know from experience with UNT that getting a good game after a cancellation is extremely tough.

Florida State's Florida game was exciting when they scheduled it. They just caught Florida on its worst year in decades.

If Ohio State edges the SEC champ, I don't think it will be an outrage. But I think that if Auburn beats No. 5 Missouri after beating No. 1 Alabama, I don't see how the Buckeyes top them in the rankings.

posted by rcade at 11:32 AM on December 02

I can't think of a year when there was an undefeated team in an automatic-bid conference that went undefeated and didn't play for the title. Even in a weak year, the Big 10 isn't the WAC or the Mountain West.

Auburn 2004. The BCS put USC and Oklahoma (also undefeated) in the title game, and USC annihilated Oklahoma. Auburn fans have insisted ever since that they would have done better.

posted by Etrigan at 01:05 PM on December 02

How is it reductive? It's a simple fact. Ohio State doesn't control how strong its conference will be in any given year, but it does control who it plays in OOC games.

That's true, but it's also easier said than done considering conference schedules and how far in advance the big OOC matchups are set. Ohio State can't control how good the teams they choose will be several years later any more than they can predict what year will mark Iowa's return to dominance. The statement implies that Ohio State had the opportunity to schedule better OOC opponents and chose not to, which I don't believe is a fair assessment. When OSU scheduled Cal for this year, that also looked like a better opponent than they turned out to be. Of course, that can work out the other way as well--when OSU and Texas played in 2005 and 2006, I doubt the guys who inked that deal figured both teams would be in the top 5 for both games, but it worked out that way. The best you can do is take a look at your conference and look at the teams available and extend an offer. Eight years later, everyone you based that decision on is going to be selling used cars and signing autographs at the Holiday Inn, or maybe playing on Sunday.

The only reason we're not talking about Auburn's non-con murderer's row of Wazzu, Arkansas St., Western Carolina, and Florida Atlantic is because the SEC isn't down as far as the Big Ten is this year. At least we get a playoff next year to add 2 more teams to the mix.

posted by bender at 01:07 PM on December 02

Auburn 2004. The BCS put USC and Oklahoma (also undefeated) in the title game, and USC annihilated Oklahoma. Auburn fans have insisted ever since that they would have done better.

Fair enough, and I had forgotten all about that. So the next question is has there ever been an undefeated team from an automatic-bid conference not play for the championship when a team with a loss did? I'm pretty sure that the answer to that one is no. Auburn, Alabama, and/or Mizzou might all be better teams than the Buckeyes, but the fact that they all have a "1" in the loss column shouldn't be ignored.

And I feel like every time I argue on behalf of OSU as "an undefeated team," I further seal their fate against Sparty. But if they do beat them, they will have beaten a top 10 team, which should add some credibility to the resume, right?

posted by tahoemoj at 01:21 PM on December 02

So the next question is has there ever been an undefeated team from an automatic-bid conference not play for the championship when a team with a loss did?

No, but in 2007, a two-loss LSU jumped a one-loss Kansas.

posted by Etrigan at 01:46 PM on December 02

I would also point out that Florida State's non-con schedule included Nevada, Bethune-Cookman, a bad Florida team, and Idaho. Just like it's not FSU's fault that Florida sucked, it's not OSU's fault that Cal sucked. Why are they such a consensus #1 when the strongest win on their schedule came against the #13 Clemson Tigers? If OSU beats the #10 team in Michigan State, why is the debate only whether OSU should be leapfrogged? What about FSU? The ACC isn't exactly a football powerhouse, and a win over Northwestern or Nebraska shouldn't count for less than one over Wake Forest or Syracuse.

posted by tahoemoj at 02:05 PM on December 02

Why are they such a consensus #1 when the strongest win on their schedule came against the #13 Clemson Tigers?

Because of the way they beat Clemson and Miami, plus the way they've steamrolled every opponent on their schedule except for Boston College.

The Seminoles have won by 28, 55, 48, 14, 63, 37, 32, 27, 56, 56, 66 and 30 points, an average of 42.7 points. That's the highest average margin of victory in college football.

The Buckeyes have won by 20, 35, 18, 76, 7, 10, 10, 49, 56, 25, 28 and 1 points, an average of 27.9 points.

P.s. When FSU played Clemson, the Tigers were ranked No. 3.

posted by rcade at 02:22 PM on December 02

P.s. When FSU played Clemson, the Tigers were ranked No. 3.

I don't think that the fact that Clemson was overrated at that time should factor into it, do you? I still see their biggest win coming over a team that sits at #13. By comparison, Ohio State's top ranked victory is over #21 Wisconsin. Not sure what they were ranked at the time. I'm also not sure where Northwestern peaked before they dropped, but it doesn't matter. If OSU wins this week, they will have beaten the #10 team, although Sparty may drop a few notches with the loss. Teams rise and fall in the rankings, and certain teams reach certain levels before they are exposed as unworthy.

And my point isn't that FSU is unworthy of a championship game--far from it. I'm just trying to get to the heart of why so many people are engaging in statistical gymnastics to try to make a case for leaving an undefeated (to date) team out of the championship game. I get the sense that it is for such concrete reasons as "Ohio State fatigue" and "I hate the 'The' in their name."

If they really are a fraud, I expect MSU to beat them. End of debate, let the SEC have another chance. But if they beat MSU, they should be in, plain and simple. And if Florida State kicks the living shit out of them in the championship, you can all give us OSU fans a nice big "I told you so" and go to sleep happy with the knowledge that you were right.

posted by tahoemoj at 03:07 PM on December 02

By comparison, Ohio State's top ranked victory is over #21 Wisconsin. Not sure what they were ranked at the time.

Wisconsin was #23 at the time. Northwestern were #16 when they lost to Ohio State.

Those are the only two teams Ohio State have beaten that were ranked at the time.

In comparison, FSU beat #25 Maryland, #3 Clemson, and #7 Miami. And by beat, I mean obliterated.

posted by grum@work at 03:17 PM on December 02

I don't think that the fact that Clemson was overrated at that time should factor into it, do you?

A big reason Clemson appears overrated today is because Florida State crushed them. There's a catch-22 situation when a team that loses to the Noles isn't as impressive because they lost to the Noles. That's one reason I look at where teams were ranked when they played, not just where they ended up.

I'm just trying to get to the heart of why so many people are engaging in statistical gymnastics to try to make a case for leaving an undefeated (to date) team out of the championship game. I get the sense that it is for such concrete reasons as "Ohio State fatigue" and "I hate the 'The' in their name."

So when we give you facts, we're engaging in "statistical gymnastics" and the real reason is because we we're haters who don't care about facts. Nice.

The heart of the argument is that Ohio State doesn't have an unassailable invitation to the national championship game yet. We've spelled out the reasons why pretty clearly, but you don't want to hear it.

posted by rcade at 03:34 PM on December 02

I'm just trying to get to the heart of why so many people are engaging in statistical gymnastics to try to make a case for leaving an undefeated (to date) team out of the championship game.

Good question. Let's ask Northern Illinois.

Northern Illinois beat Iowa.
Iowa beat Iowa State.
Iowa State beat West Virginia.
West Virginia beat Oklahoma State.
Oklahoma State beat Mississippi State.
Mississippi State beat Ole Miss.
Ole Miss beat Vanderbilt.
Vanderbilt beat Georgia.
Georgia beat LSU. (Alternate: Georgia beat South Carolina)
LSU beat Auburn. (Alternate: South Carolina beat Missouri)

Why should a one-loss Auburn/Missouri team go to the BCS title game, when it's patently obvious that and undefeated Northern Illinois is better!?

NORTHERN ILLINOIS FOR THE BCS TITLE GAME!

posted by grum@work at 03:39 PM on December 02

So when we give you facts, we're engaging in "statistical gymnastics" and the real reason is because we we're haters who don't care about facts. Nice.

That's bullshit. I hear and understand all of the facts that you're throwing down. Ohio State's margin of victory pales in comparison to Florida State's. Does that mean that another 1-loss team should play Florida State in the championship? When FSU played Clemson, the Tigers were ranked No. 3. Does that mean that a 1-loss team should play Florida State in the championship? Ohio State squeaked by a mediocre Michigan team. Mizzou and Auburn both lost a game. Auburn to LSU and Mizzou to South Carolina. Does that mean that one of them should play Florida State in the championship? I don't dispute your facts, in fact, I used the term "wholeheartedly agree" when referring to your most damning argument, which is that OSU's out of conference schedule was weak as hell. But neither you nor anyone else has made a persuasive argument for why the BCS committee should turn precedent on its head and place a 1-loss team in the championship game over an undefeated team, have you? The closest precedent anyone gave was etrigan's 2-loss team leapfrogging a 1-loss team to get in. But I honestly believe that there is a difference in that, and once there is a number in the loss column, the right to play in the title game becomes more discretionary to the committee. Yoi might disagree, and that's fine.

I believe you're stretching to find reasons to exclude OSU. And I think comparing them to Florida State is the very definition of stretching. So is this:

NORTHERN ILLINOIS FOR THE BCS TITLE GAME!

If they were in an automatic bid BCS conference, they would have a legitimate case, and your argument wouldn't be completely irrelevant. But they are not. And I have made that distinction multiple times. So it is irrelevant.

posted by tahoemoj at 04:16 PM on December 02

I don't think anyone here is seriously advocating Ohio getting dumped if they beat Michigan State. I'm certainly not. But "undefeated trumps all" is a bad rule.

posted by Etrigan at 05:04 PM on December 02

I believe you're stretching to find reasons to exclude OSU. And I think comparing them to Florida State is the very definition of stretching.

I believe you're reacting to things I never said.

I predicted that if Auburn wins the SEC, it will squeak by Ohio State because the computers like it better. I never said the humans who control the other two-thirds of the BCS formula should pass over an undefeated Ohio State.

As for Florida State, I didn't bring them into this. But why shouldn't Ohio State be compared to them? Both are undefeated teams trying to establish their right to be in the title game.

posted by rcade at 07:54 PM on December 02

If they were in an automatic bid BCS conference, they would have a legitimate case, and your argument wouldn't be completely irrelevant. But they are not. And I have made that distinction multiple times. So it is irrelevant.

I think my joking demonstration was taken a bit too seriously...

But neither you nor anyone else has made a persuasive argument for why the BCS committee should turn precedent on its head and place a 1-loss team in the championship game over an undefeated team, have you? The closest precedent anyone gave was etrigan's 2-loss team leapfrogging a 1-loss team to get in.

Boise State was undefeated in 2006-07, and was passed over for the national title game so that Florida could play Ohio State (also undefeated). In fact, the decision was between Florida and Michigan (who had already lost to Ohio State), and Boise wasn't even considered.

You might remember how Boise State did in their bowl game against #8 ranked (and Big 12 champions) Oklahoma...

They were one of four mid-major conference teams to beat a BCS conference team in a bowl game that year.

posted by grum@work at 09:20 PM on December 02

I've been around here long enough to get the benefit of the doubt on that one, I think. You can talk shit about whatever team you'd like, including all of those I cheer for, and I'll generally not take any offense.

I stand corrected, and I apologize for my unnecessary and insulting screed.

As for being a "crybaby," I would invite you to take this opportunity to make sweet, sweet love to yourself.

How do you know I haven't been doing that all along? This is the internet, after all.

posted by Hugh Janus at 11:31 AM on December 03

I think my joking demonstration was taken a bit too seriously...

No, I took it for the intended demonstration of the logical limit becoming absurd. I just thought it was irrelevant to the discussion at hand. It was a fun demonstration for sure, but I couldn't tell if it was just a joke or intended to mock my position. The neutral reaction was just to point out that it was irrelevant.

Boise State was undefeated in 2006-07, and was passed over for the national title game so that Florida could play Ohio State (also undefeated).

Again, there is a difference between automatic-bid BCS conferences and the mid-majors. Without endorsing the BCS system, the example of an undefeated mid-major being passed over in favor of a 1 or 2 loss team from an automatic bid conference does not equate to the possibility of Ohio State being bypassed this year. There is still no precedent for omitting an undefeated team from an automatic bid conference. In my opinion, in the best year of the WAC or the MAC, they still are not comparable to the Big 10 in its worst year (which this year may have been). That is not to say that the best team from the mid-major is not better than the AQ conference's best team, but top to bottom there is no comparison.

But why shouldn't Ohio State be compared to them? Both are undefeated teams trying to establish their right to be in the title game.

Fair enough, but nobody (including myself) is really trying to make the case that FSU doesn't belong. That is not the case with OSU. The discussion of whether the SEC champion should leapfrog OSU isn't constrained to SpoFi. In reaction to that discussion, this OSU fan wants to argue the counterpoint.

This is the internet, after all.

Also fair enough. Y'all have fun, I'm headed over to chat roulette.

posted by tahoemoj at 11:41 AM on December 03

Again, there is a difference between automatic-bid BCS conferences and the mid-majors.

The difference is an artificial one that denied the non-BCS conference teams a chance at a national championship no matter how well they did, a state of affairs created by the BCS conferences.

The mad on you'll have if an undefeated Ohio State is left out this year is nothing compared to the exclusion the mid-majors have been forced to live with for years. The deck is stacked against Ohio State being excluded if it wins all its games, no matter how much the Big 10 stinks. The deck is against the mid-majors from being included, no matter how good its conference plays.

So glad the playoff is coming. I hope it expands to eight so the entire FBS can start the season with an actual chance of winning it all.

That is not to say that the best team from the mid-major is not better than the AQ conference's best team, but top to bottom there is no comparison.

Top to bottom, there's no comparison between the Big 10 and the SEC this year. But you're not accepting that argument against Ohio State, so you shouldn't make it against Boise State in 2006-07.

posted by rcade at 03:41 PM on December 03

I completely agree with almost everything you said in that post, rcade. And for the record, I am not an advocate of the status quo that favors AQ conferences, but I am trying to argue from the state of college football as it is, rather than as it should be or as it will be.

there's no comparison between the Big 10 and the SEC this year. But you're not accepting that argument against Ohio State

I accept the fact that the SEC is stronger than the Big 10 top-to bottom. What I keep repeating (ad nauseum, I know) is that there is a difference, no matter how artificial and arbitrary, between AQ and non-AQ conferences. And I believe that an undefeated team from an AQ conference, as the system exists now, has always gotten an invitation to the national title game. I also believe that the current system, as it was both designed and accepted by the AD's of the AQ conference schools, including the SEC, should not change to exclude an undefeated team this year. Is it because that undefeated team happens to be one that I cheer for? Probably.

So then the disconnect in our positions amounts to a comparison of all conferences to determine each's relative strength of schedule. I only distinguish between AQ and non-AQ conferences, while you advocate further distinguishing between the AQ conferences, or even eliminating them and just placing the conferences on a top-to-bottom continuum to evaluate the strength. I agree that the system should be redesigned in that manner. Hopefully, that will be how it is done in the future, but it is not the current state of affairs. That is why I keep saying over and over that an undefeated AQ school should get the nod over one with a loss.

posted by tahoemoj at 05:11 PM on December 03

Did that include Notre Dame last season? Because they played more AQ teams than Alabama (10 vs. 9), fewer FCS teams than Alabama (0 vs. 1), and in an odd scheduling quirk, played the team with the most national championships from each of the AQ conferences.

And yet, they make one of the more compelling reasons that the voters should not exalt undefeatedness over all else.

posted by Etrigan at 06:26 PM on December 03

Did that include Notre Dame last season?

Yes! By virtue of their unblemished record, I think it is clear that they are a worthy adversary, and will give Alabama all that they can handle.

posted by tahoemoj at 06:33 PM on December 03

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