The BCS Guru started it. Asking the question “Can Florida jump Texas?”
Several others asked the question and the BCS Guru settled it. Florida and Oklahoma in Miami for the national championship. The question I have, why not Florida and Alabama again?
Ok, I realize that isn’t going to happen, and I know why it won’t. However, the idea of Texas and Oklahoma meeting again for the national championship is as preposterous to me as Bama and Florida meeting again. Or if Georgia had met LSU last year. Texas did not win its conference championship. I know, what about the Red River shootout (I am not pc enough to care they changed the name)? But Texas didn’t win the conference, Oklahoma did. Would anyone argue that Kentucky, Arkansas or Illinois or have the opportunity to play in the national championship game last year? I agree that we are talking about differences in quality and quantitiy, but those three teams beat the national champion participants last year, Illinois doing so on Ohio State’s home field late in the season. The fact is that the Big 12 has a set of tie breakers in place and those were in operation.
Look, if UT takes care of business and holds onto two interceptions or sufficently covers the best player on the field during the final drive of the game against Texas Tech, we aren’t having this discussion. Florida would have been ranked third going into the SEC championship and Texas would have been ranked first. We would have had a slam dunk BCS and blogging about something else kind of Sunday. It didn’t happen, so we are having the disussion.
There have been plenty of people calling for the BCS to cease opperation. Some have pointed to what ‘happened’ to Texas as an example of the problem with the BCS. I agree with billyzane at Burnt Orange Nation: the beef shouldn’t be with the BCS, it should be with the Big 12. I don’t necessarily disagree with the Big 12’s use of the BCS rankings to break ties, but your problem here isn’t with the BCS. If you were watching the Big 12 championship game last night, you heard Don Beebe, Big 12 commissioner, explaining that the tie breaker is designed to give their conference champion the greatest chance to play in the BCS national championship game. The Big 10 does essentially the same thing by not having a conference championship game. It is a valid way to assess who should go forward. The Big 12 got what they wanted.
I don’t understand the angst from the college football media. Yeah, Texas beat Oklahoma. But Texas Tech beat Texas. If Texas is all that, shouldn’t a one loss Red Raider team be included in the discussion? Perhaps the Big 12 should go with the team with a loss to the highest ranked team. That would appease those that say having the higher ranked team isn’t the best way to decide by penalizing those with ‘bad’ losses. In that scenario, Oklahoma would still represent the Big 12 South. There is no perfect way to break the three way ties that come about in the way it did this year. If you want suggestions, you can call the SEC. They still use the BCS to help decide, if it works out a certain way. Why? The same reason as the other conferences: the best chance to have a BCS national championship participant.
So, should Florida be worried? No, they beat the number one team soundly. The team they beat played a tough game and effectively silenced the critics that thought they were the softest 12-0 team ever. Florida played a complete football game against a quality opponent, something Texas didn’t do yesterday. That alone will be enough to give the Gators the bump they need to jump Texas. We have seen that with the Coaches’ Poll, released a few minutes ago. The Gators are one point behind number one Oklahoma and are now 80 points ahead of the Longhorns (as opposed to 11 points behind them last week). This alone gives Florida a .05 lead on Texas in the BCS. If Florida jumps to first in the Harris Poll, which they should do and they have about a 100 point lead over Texas, it is all over but the crying. We’ll find out for sure when the final BCS rankings are released at 8pm eastern tonight.