Friday, January 2, 2009

The End of the Village

I hope the weather yesterday doesn’t portend a very cold year for 2009. I don’t mean cold weather for the year but rather a cold recovery from the recession we’re in. Today should be a little nicer. I guess we could get some snow showers through the weekend, but there’s no forecast of any major snow in our area.

Gator Wife and I had a very productive day yesterday. Does this give you’re a little hint as to what we did?

Yup. Our annual seasonal village is coming down. We got about two-thirds of it down yesterday. The work does leave a little mess in the living room for a couple of days, but the mess, along with the village, will be gone, probably tomorrow but definitely no later than Sunday. The hundreds of pieces will have been packed away and stored until next November 11th. I believe we had the best village this year than we’ve had in the many years we’ve been creating one.

Bowl Games and the National NCAA BCS Championship

I like college football and ever since the football New Year’s tradition I’ve spent my New Year’s Day watching bowl games. That dates back a whole lot of years. The bowls have diminished in importance, though, due to, and this is only my opinion, the exponential growth of the number of games. The bowl season began this season back on Dec. 20th. And it continues to next Thursday.

All but one of the bowl games is just for bragging rights. And, of course, huge sums of money to the teams’ schools. The Rose Bowl in Pasadena has contractually been the PAC-10 champion against the Big Ten champion. And so it was yesterday. As they have done most of the time, the PAC-10 dominated the game.

I think that contract ends this year. I’m not going into the archives to check on this, but I think that’s what gives the Rose Bowl the National Championship games next season. This year the National Championship is in Miami.

Now the purpose of all this is to say I believe the national championship should be determined on the football field and not by polls of some people and some computer output. College BCS football is the only sport whose champion is not decided on the field. All the divisions below the BCS have elimination playoffs that lead to divisional titles.

College basketball, baseball, soccer, swimming, volleyball, you name the sport, are all decided in the venue of play. So are all professional sports. And youth sports, including high school level. But the powers to be decided years ago that the top level college football championship be decided first, by all human polls, then a few years ago added computers to the mix. That was about the most ridiculous of all.

I shouldn’t be unhappy with the system. After all the Gators, my school was the University of Florida, are playing in this year’s national championship game. That should make me very happy. But their selection wasn’t by accomplishment on the field, except of course, they had to play a good schedule, win all but one of their games, and although not a requirement, win their conference title to get there.

But there were a whole lot of other teams that did the same thing. USC, Texas, Alabama (which was undefeated until the SEC Championship), and two or three others also won 12 games. I should include Oklahoma in the list, but they’re already in that championship game against the Gators even though the Sooners were beaten by another hopeful, Texas.

College administrators against a playoff series say it would increase the season too much. Shucks, the last regular season and conference championship games were completed a month ago. That’s four or five weeks between the season’s end and the national championship game. Seems to me the best 16 teams in the country, including many conference champions, could be reduced to just two teams by the time the national championship comes around.

All those bowl games could be used in the process. But that has the potential of reducing the income of some schools, and, as we all know, it’s all about the money.

There are more games today. And tomorrow. And right up to the National Championship Game next Thursday between the Gators and Sooners. I’m very happy for the Gators, but there are other teams that should be there, too.

Go Gators!


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