Only college football could come up with a four-team playoff with three semifinals (the Rose Bowl plan). usat.ly/HeN2Gy— Stewart Mandel (@slmandel) April 4, 2012
The current BCS contract expires after the 2013 college football season at which point the BCS forefathers will have an opportunity to right their wrongs and give America the college football postseason playoff it so desperately desires. Or, failing that, they will just get rid of the current BCS championship system in favor of a three-game semifinal round. Yes, three games.
In (one) plan, the four highest-ranked teams at the end of the regular season would meet in semifinals unless the Big Ten or Pac-12 champ, or both, were among the top four. Those leagues' teams still would meet in the Rose Bowl, and the next highest-ranked team or teams would slide into the semis. The national championship finalists would be selected after those three games.
Good grief, that's an awful idea!
The BCS has three other favorite ideas along with the one where the Rose Bowl holds common sense hostage. Idea #2: Keep everything the way it is. Idea #3: A plus-one format where national championship participants are chosen after the bowls are complete. Idea #4: A traditional four-team playoff.
You will notice no mention of the 16-team playoff, which everyone on earth agrees is best.
The reaction to the BCS's postseason brainstorm session has mostly centered on the complete inanity of the Rose Bowl plan, which makes all other plans look sheer genius by comparison. But there's also this: All four of the plans, in large part, get small-conference teams like Boise State no closer to a national championship game than the current system.
Take the 2009 season, for instance. Boise State finished the regular season undefeated and ranked No. 6 in the BCS standings. In a traditional four-team playoff, the top four teams - undefeateds Alabama, Texas, Cincinnati, and TCU - would have faced each other with the Broncos on the outside looking in. Same thing for the Rose Bowl plan. And the plus-one format would have left the powers-that-be to choose between one-loss and No. 3-ranked Florida or no-loss and No. 4-ranked Boise State after the bowls played out. All roads would lead to my writing Mr. Fiskers articles until I exhausted all the pictures on the Internet.
If you figure that most undefeated non-BCS schools would fail to crack the top four and that many deserving one-loss BCS teams might not make the cut either, these BCS postseason solutions aren't really solutions at all. We need a 16-team playoff or an eight-team playoff or something, anything, that lets every FBS team control its own destiny, even if controlling means being perfect for three straight months.
And failing that, you might as well give us that Rose Bowl plan because we could all use some humor in our lives at that point.
What do you think of the BCS's proposed postseason alternatives? Which one do you prefer? Which one were you hoping to see? Share your thoughts in the comments.