The Electric Commentary

Monday, October 25, 2004

What a bunch of B(C)S

And yes, I am writing this just because Wisconsin is ranked 7th. The BCS is such a joke. Remember last year when everyone complained about USC getting "snubbed" from the national championship game because they lost to Cal early in the season, while OK lost to Kansas State in the Big 12 championship game? Even though Kansas State had a very good team (ranked 12th in the country at the time if memory serves) and Cal was a mediocre team in an absolutely awful PAC-10? (Sure USC lost in triple overtime, but a triple overtime loss is still a loss.) Well, the genius squad that runs the BCS has changed the formula so that the two major polls account for 2/3 of the total ranking, and some computer polls account for the rest. So, just to sum up:

The Coach's poll and the Writer's poll used to determine the National Champion, but some smart football fans thought that it was unfair, because teams like Miami and Florida would get a lot of press by beating the snot out of "The University of Mary's Little Sisters of the Poor." They were right. Coaches can't watch other teams play, and writers are, well, writers.

Enter the BCS. A nice computer model that figured in things like "strength of schedule" and "margin of victory" together so that beating UMLP didn't look as impressive. Unfortunately, the two polls were still there for all to read, and frequently they would disagree with the BCS. "The BCS is terrible!" the pundits would say in 2002. "For even though USC lost twice, surely they are better than Ohio State (I'm sorry, THE Ohio State University)." So they tweaked the BCS. First they took out "margin of victory." Then, because of last year's "debacle" in which the proper teams did in fact meet in the title game, strength of schedule was this year's casualty. So now the BCS is almost completely reliant on the Writer's Poll and the Coach's Poll.

Pundit rates teams.
Pundit says, "People are upset, I must be bad at this."
Pundit says "I will use a formula."
Pundit says "The formula disagrees with me."
Pundit says "It is the formula that must be stupid."

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