Leave Barack Aloooone . . . About A College Football Playoff
President-Elect Barack Obama is still 2 months from being inaugurated and some NYTimes op ed writers can not leave him alone. At least wait till he actually does something. Geezus Christ on a cracker! Look at Bryan Curtis:
Obama’s First Fumble
BARACK OBAMA went on “60 Minutes” this week and unveiled his first policy proposal as president-elect — a college football playoff. After detailing his preferred system, in which eight teams would meet in a three-week-long tournament at the end of the season, Mr. Obama said, “I don’t know any serious fan of college football who has disagreed with me on this.” Well, here’s one. To borrow Mr. Obama’s infelicitous phrase, I cling to college football in its current form.
All joking aside, I disagree with Mr. Curtis, as I will explain on the flip.
Mr. Curtis writes:
Unfortunately, [a playoff] would also ruin what is great about college football. The part of the sport to savor is not the finale but the regular season. In college football, every game has the fierce urgency of now. The uncertainty of what lies at the end makes the 12-game gantlet all the more nerve-wracking. Lose once, and your team finds itself at the mercy of the voters and the dreaded computers.
Mr. Obama’s playoff would render the regular season far less dramatic. Last year, a humbling by Stanford, a 41-point underdog, helped derail the University of Southern California’s title bid. Or to relocate things to the site of Mr. Obama’s first major electoral triumph: Two weeks ago, the Iowa Hawkeyes beat Penn State with a last-second field goal and all but knocked the Nittany Lions out of the hunt. With a playoff, those games would have been meaningless, because both U.S.C. and Penn State would probably be invited to compete for the championship even with a loss.
Actually, Mr. Curtis is wrong on both counts in his specific discussion of the USC and Penn State losses. But the bigger point is also wrong. He has it exactly backwards and, I think, reveals himself to be one of those Northeast college football fans that do not understand (and let's face it, nor really care) how important winning a conference championship is, well at least in the SEC. Perhaps other conferences do not think so much about that.
Let me tell you, that the Obama college football playoff plan would HEIGHTEN the excitement of the regular season and make each and every game that much more important. Why? Because winning the conference is the sure ticket to the playoffs. Every single conference game in every major conference becomes a huge event - except it becomes that for ALL the teams, not just the chosen few at the top.
In the end, we know that Curtis wrote this piece not because he actually cares about college football, but to make a joke:
Mr. Obama will find that, of all sports, college football is most in tune with his mind: the slow deliberation over many months; the technocratic appeal of the computer rankings; and the B.C.S.’s common-sense solution for a seemingly intractable problem that plagued the country for decades. That’s the status quo we can believe in.
Some of us are real college football fans and think more about this than whether we can submit a (to them) clever column to the NYTimes Op-Ed page. I am happy to see that President-Elect Obama is one of us, a REAL college football fan, not one of those dilettante college football fans like Mr. Curtis.
By Big Tent Democrat, speaking for me only
|< One Murder Charge Dismissed Against 8 Year Old | Saturday Open Thread >|