Why shouldn’t College Football have a real Cinderella for a change?
Ever since Tulane’s undefeated 1998 season on the back of Shaun King, I’ve paid close attention to the College Football rankings hoping that one day a mid-major might one day rise to a National Championship. I also live in hope of the Indiana Hoosiers having a relevant Football programme, so I’m a proper dreamer.
Back in the day when there was no National Championship Game per se, when the Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl, Sugar Bowl and Cotton Bowl ruled supreme, it was literally impossible for a mid-major to crash the party. Since the addition of a National Championship Game and even more so since the addition of the Playoff Semi-finals, it is at least theoretically possible for a mid-major to win a National Championship but that is still a fanciful dream.
In reality, the only way a mid-major can make the National Championship is to stack their non-conference schedule with ranked opponents and win them all, which is difficult to do on a number of levels but especially difficult taking into consideration the timetable around scheduling future games and the unlikelihood of that combining with a stellar recruiting class. A Mid-major’s only real shot is to eventually join a power conference during a re-alignment which would ironically mean they were no longer a mid-major.
When I planned to write this post it was really just an objection piece. A ‘rich get richer, the poor get the picture’ treatise. The haves and the have nots and all that. But after the Armageddon of the last weekend where the unbeatens were pared back from 5 to just Alabama and Western Michigan, part of me dared to dream that if enough teams kept losing that Western Michigan might slide into the top 4. In reality, that is never going to happen so in the interest of chewing the fat and throwing out all kinds of ideas I propose the following (drum roll):
College Football should expand the playoffs again with the addition of 2 more teams. Teams 1 to 5 would be the teams ranked highest by the Selection Committee and team number 6 would be the highest ranked mid-major outside the power conferences. This year it would be between Western Michigan and Boise State depending on the outcome of the next couple of games. Teams 1 and 2 would have the first week off with a wild card playoff game between 3rd vs 6th and 4th vs 5th playing for the right to play in the Playoff Semi-finals.
That way we will know if Western Michigan can play its way through Michigan, Ohio State and Alabama. Given Leicester City won the EPL, the Cubs won the World Series, Villanova won the NCAA tournament, the Cavaliers won the NBA Finals, Cronulla won the NRL and the Western Bulldogs the AFL, surely it is time for College Football to give an outsider a chance?
What is sweeter than Jelly Bread?
- The Thai Football team. 2-2 draw with Australia. Nice work.
- The Australian Cricket team. Just diabolical.
Next exciting episode will be on Wednesday, 30 November 2016 titled ‘I’d forgotten how much I love College Basketball and the Indiana Hoosiers reminded me’.