Sporting Fools
Sporting Fools
Sporting Fools

Sporting Fools

The frequent and occasional humorous musings behind two of the World's greatest underappreciated sports minds.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

How to Save College Football...Again

First we have to understand that Division 1-A college football is a different entity, different than basketball or baseball and needs a simpler model to survive.

We currently have 66 BCS conference teams (including Notre Dame) and two independent service academies we have to consider.

There are 55, 56...programs that are "non-BCS".

We have to reduce the overall number of teams, not significantly, but enough for us to get eight conferences at 12-teams per. That leaves us 96 teams. A fair number.

Here's where it gets fun.

Some of the conference names might change on adjust. The SEC, Big XII, Big East and ACC should be fine. The Pac-10 might become the Pac-12, the Big 10+1 might become the Big 10+2, The Mountain West and Conference USA should be the other two conference names adopted since those are the ones I like the most.

Now we're doing full-scale realignments. First with the 66 teams + Army and Navy. Everyone can now figure out where they want to be.

Remember because we've distinguished college football as a different entity, schools can leave their CFB conference and not ruin their positioning with that conference in other sports (i.e. Temple is in the MAC conference in football but the Atlantic 10 in basketball, etc.) some programs might move conferences in football to go from being a 6-6 team to a 10-2 team. Like Kentucky, who could probably win 9-10 games in the ACC or Big East, might want to leave SEC football but they wouldn't ruin their SEC certification in basketball, baseball or another any other sport. They just want to get a competitive advantage in football.

Does Colorado leave the Big XII for the Pac-12 or the new-look Mountain West? Does Boston College go back to the Big East. Does Penn State go to the Big East where they can play Pitt again? Where does Notre Dame go? Does Arkansas leave the SEC to replace Colorado in the Big XII and renew their old SWC rivalries with the Texas schools. How many conferences want to leave a few slots open for...

The Draft.

After the BCS teams realign themselves the old conferences may need to fill a few slots and the new ones will need to draft some programs to fill out their 12 slots.

Basically I believe the old BCS conferences could look like such pre draft

Big East

Syracuse
Boston College
West Virginia
Pittsburgh
Penn State (wanting to renew annual rivalries with Pitt, Rutgers and Boston College)
Army
Navy
Rutgers
Notre Dame (using their clout as a Big East school in other sports)
Connecticut
2 open slots

ACC

Virginia Tech
Maryland
North Carolina
Wake Forest
N.C. State
Duke
Florida State
Georgia Tech
Clemson
Virginia
South Carolina (citing competitive advantage and natural rivalry with North Carolina)
1 open slot (hmm no Miami?)

SEC

Florida
Georgia
Tennessee
Alabama
Kentucky
Auburn
LSU
Ole Miss
Mississippi State
Miami (After Miami all but begs to join conference when Vanderbilt, South Carolina and Arkansas defect. The SEC went after Georgia Tech but the Yellow Jackets declined)
2 open slots


Big XII

Oklahoma
Nebraska
Texas
Texas A&M
Texas Tech
Kansas
Kansas State
Nebraska
Oklahoma State
Arkansas (citing SWC rivalry history and desire to be aligned with Texas recruiting base).
2 open slots

Big 10+2

Iowa
Iowa State (cites natural rivalry with Iowa and desire to be aligned with midwestern recruiting base)
Ohio State
Michigan
Michigan State
Wisconsin
Minnesota
Northwestern
Indiana
Purdue
Illinois
1 open slot (Cincinnati declines offer to be powerhouse in new Conference USA)

Pac-12

USC
UCLA
Cal
Stanford
Arizona
Arizona State
Washington
Washington State
Oregon
Oregon State
Colorado (cites location and California recruiting base)
1 open slot (common thinking here is Utah or Colorado State or...Hawaii if they want a vacation)

That leaves five BCS schools unaccounted for: Vanderbilt, South Florida, Baylor, Louisville, Cincinnati. Baylor opts for the new Mountain West and the other four open the new Conference USA.

Now the draft begins. The old BCS conferences fill their slots first.

The Big East sticks with geographic regional sense and takes MAC schools Buffalo and Temple to basically control most Division 1-A in New England and the mid-Atlantic State. For Temple it's full circle as they were kicked out of the Big East a decade ago.

The ACC quickly snatches up East Carolina to fill their group.

The SEC is in sort of a quandary as every school is playing politics to keep other state schools from being involved. In the end Florida successfully keeps UCF out of the conference and they choose C-USA schools Southern Mississippi and Memphis (as a shot at Vandy, who was banking on an annual game with Memphis)

The Big XII takes TCU to really piss off the Mountain West people and adds Houston to keep the SWC love going.

The Big 10+2's Michigan and Ohio schools successfully freezes out the other schools in their state and eventually force the conference to reluctantly take on Northern Illinois.

The Pac 12 tries for Utah, but with the MWC losing TCU they push hard for Utah as a spotlight program leaving Boise in the wake. Hawaii, in effect, will be most likely frozen out of Division 1-A football now.

So now here's what we have.

Big East

Syracuse
Boston College
West Virginia
Pittsburgh
Penn State
Army
Navy
Rutgers
Notre Dame
Connecticut
Buffalo
Temple

ACC

Virginia Tech
Maryland
North Carolina
Wake Forest
N.C. State
Duke
Florida State
Georgia Tech
Clemson
Virginia
South Carolina
East Carolina

SEC

Florida
Georgia
Tennessee
Alabama
Kentucky
Auburn
LSU
Ole Miss
Mississippi State
Miami
Memphis
Southern Mississippi

Big XII

Oklahoma
Nebraska
Texas
Texas A&M
Texas Tech
Kansas
Kansas State
Nebraska
Oklahoma State
Arkansas
TCU
Houston

Big 10+2

Iowa
Iowa State
Ohio State
Michigan
Michigan State
Wisconsin
Minnesota
Northwestern
Indiana
Purdue
Illinois
Northern Illinois

Pac-12

USC
UCLA
Cal
Stanford
Arizona
Arizona State
Washington
Washington State
Oregon
Oregon State
Colorado
Boise State

MVC

Utah
Baylor

Conference USA

Cincinnati
Louisville
Vanderbilt
South Florida

Now the draft begins.

The MVC snaps up Fresno State and Nevada from the defunct WAC and grabs BYU, Air Force, New Mexico, UNLV and Wyoming from the original MWC and SMU, UTEP and Tulsa from C-USA

C-USA goes after UCF and Marshall from the old conference and cleans out the MAC with Central and Western Michigan along with Toledo and Ohio to have a Kentucky-Michigan-Ohio group to offset a distinctly Southern half of the conference. Add in FIU and FAU to dominate the secondary Florida market and we have 12. It's a very budget friendly conference.

New MVC

Utah
Baylor
Fresno State
Nevada
BYU
Air Force
Tulsa
New Mexico
UTEP
SMU
UNLV
Wyoming

New C-USA

Louisville
South Florida
Cincinnati
Vanderbilt
UCF
Marshall
Central Michigan
Western Michigan
Ohio
Toledo
Florida Atlantic
Florida International

Now we've got 96 teams. The remaining 27 or so are off to the FCS where they should do fine and be near the top of the Division. Sorry things didn't work out but it happens.

With eight conference we just need the four "BCS" Bowls. Each conference has a conference title game and the winner of the conference gets to the big bowls. It's that simple. Win the conference and you're in the big-money bowls. You want an eight-team playoff instead? Same thing. Win the conference, you're in the playoff.

We'll scale the other bowls down to 22 or so and increase the payouts from the money taken away from the fifth BCS bowl game.

So 96 teams and 52 are available for some sort of postseason play. That's fair.

As for scheduling if we go with an eight-team playoff lets scale the schedule back two games. So a ten-game regular season with eight conference games and a potential conference championship. Two bye weeks.

Oh yeah, no more scheduling of Division 1-AA teams. PERIOD.

WHAT?!?!?!

Yep, no more Chattanooga, Wofford or Charleston Southern for you SEC'ers to munch on. No more Delaware or Appy State either. Do the Indianapolis Colts get to schedule the Hamilton Tiger-Cats? I didn't think so.

So we have 96 teams, eight conferences, 12 teams per, eight "BCS" Bowl or playoff slots for the eight conference champions. Everyone's on an equal playing field in terms of championship opportunities.

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Posted by TPrincess 3:57 PM ||
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