On April 5, 2010, an opportunity was bestowed upon a university which may never occur in Division 1A college football (I refuse to call it the Football Bowl Subdivision). In one corner, you had the behemoth, heralded program which exudes the finest pedigree known to man. In the other, you had a little known up and comer of a university. Why do so many wish to put down and deem unworthy those schools which fight for a chance, an opportunity for a mere place at the table amongst "the elite" of college football? If you don't recall, Butler pushed the Duke Blue Devils to the brink in the national championship game on the aforementioned date before losing 61-59, in what was one of the most exciting finales to any hoops season I can recall. Unless the BCS is treated like Osama Bin Laden and blown to smithereens, never to be heard from again, this will never have a chance of happening in college football for the foreseeable future. What a shame. Follow along after the jump.
A friend of mine and I were sparring back and forth over the merits and worthiness of Boise State yesterday (actually most of this season). The common theme I hear from Boise State haters is they don't belong since they "don't play anybody." Their conference is atrocious. They only have to get up for a few games per season. We've heard it all before. No sooner had the final seconds ticked off after Nevada's improbable comeback victory, my phone was lit up with texts stating, "see...told you!...they don't play anybody." Did I mention that I offered to take Boise in the Rose Bowl (had they won yesterday they would have been invited to play), straight up against the Big 10 opponent for a friendly $20 wager and was not taken up on the bet? I wonder why that is?
Everyone wants Boise State to improve their strength of schedule. However, nobody wants to assist in doing so. Well, hardly anyone (thank you Georgia Bulldogs). Boise State's yearning of an improved schedule is akin to needing a shelter to house the homeless. You all recognize the problem, but just don't want it built in your neighborhood. Yeah, that is someone else's problem to fix. You don't want any part of it...
Look at all of these homeless people...don't they have a shelter for them to go to? How sad------> But sir, we could build it right here...NO WAY! Not in my back yard. That is too close to my house!
Boise needs to improve their schedule...I mean, look, they don't play anybody worth a flip-----> Hello, is this Ohio State? Yes, this is Boise State and we'd like to play you in a home and home series (click/dial tone)...hello? Hello? Ohio State, are you there?
Boise State is the guy that needs a job, but nobody will hire him. They are the inventor who needs an investor to back him. They are the typical American wanting a better life, not being satisfied with the one they have. They are Chris Daughtry, an auto-parts manager turned recording superstar, who just needed an avenue, a shot at glory, and his talent would take care of the rest. Simon said 'no.' Randy and Paula said 'yes.' Two consecutive number one albums would ensue, the first American Idol alum to do so. The rest, as they say, is history. All of this was made possible by one guy's desire, talent, heart and opportunity.
Chris did not have to be perfect. He only needed a chance to reach the pinnacle of music. He was given that opportunity as an underdog. Boise State, TCU, Utah, Cincinnati, and countless others will not be given that same opportunity unless something goes wrong with the BCS formula in horrific fashion. Just now, Gary Danielson on CBS stated that TCU would not be in his "Top 10" rankings currently. To quote Oklahoma State Coach, Mike Gundy, it is this very blatant bias that "makes me want to puke."
A loss to Nevada does not diminish what Chris Peterson has built at Boise State. This same Nevada squad hung a 50 spot on California earlier this season. Sure, they are Pac 10 fodder this season, but they hail from a "power conference." By that reasoning alone, they should have whipped Nevada. I mean, Nevada is unworthy, right? Wrong. Nevada is a very good football team. They, like Boise State, simply live on the wrong side of the tracks and are discriminated against by nothing more than good ol' boy politics. I wrote about this earlier in the season. My opinion has been altered slightly. I do believe there is some hesitancy to schedule Boise for fear of a tough game, especially since Boise commands $1 million to ink the home and home deal. Why pay for a potential loss has a microbe of validity to it.
Do you know how you can tell if you've arrived as a football program? Here are a couple of clues: First, when other teams dodge your calls. Boise State will play anyone, anywhere, anytime. Yet behemoths like Texas, Ohio State, Florida, etc. refuse to schedule them. Second, when students and fans of of the opposing team storm the field after their game winning field goal halts your 24 game winning streak. Those moments are savored for victories over opponents that routinely cane-whip your hiney like a thief getting served just desserts in Singapore.
Keep plugging away Boise et al. It just might take the Justice Department to right the wrongs which have been inflicted upon each of you. How sad that the BCS honks won't do the right thing unless they are forced to. Yes, it makes me want to puke too, Coach Peterson. Instill a damn playoff. Now. Without one, this sport is becoming more ill with each passing season.