NCAA Should Turn Back the Clock by Bob Ryan

ncaa football logoFor years, the top Bowls in the Bowl  Season (December-jan 1) pitted conference champions…no question who was going to the Rose Bowl for example…it would be the Big 10 champ vs the Pac 10/12 champ…other bowls tied into SEC, ACC, Big 12 (as it was called) sent their champions to specific bowls…unofficial “champions” were declared if a team was the only unbeaten team or the writers voted after the bowls had been concluded on Jan 1.

A few years ago, the NCAA decided that it wanted a clear cut champion….so initially,  a computer system picked the  top two teams but many didn’t care for that style…which means that their team didn’t get in….so …now we have a committee that chooses the top 4 teams to compete to determine the ncaa championship brackets and seeds them #1,2,3,4.  Since there are 5 major d1 football conferences, the Big 12 has been left on the sidelines in these first 2 years. The claim is that they don’t hold a championship game….so what.

…these committee members work extremely hard to determine who’s # 1, #2, #3 and #4 but it’s  really a crap shoot… I tip my hat to them for all their efforts but let’s turn the clock back a bit to find our national champions not by trying to choose the #1, #2, #3, #4  but by choosing the conference champions. The top 5 conferences send their champion…ACC, Big 10, SEC, Pat 12 AND the Big 12 should send their conference champions. The Big 12 is installing a  championship game for their 2 top teams…which seems superfluous to me..let them send their champ…actually winning a conference outright as you slug it out through the season …may mean more than winning one single game…anyway their representative should be in the 5 conference championship slots.

but….moving along…let a  committee choose the other 3 teams…that’s right …let’s go to 8 teams….those other 3 teams could be #2 teams in conferences or champions of smaller, less recognized conferences .  Let the committee seed the teams for the 1st round… or…if you really want a made for TV event….have a show where each team draws their opponent and site on TV…why not…it’d be better than the NCAA brackets drawing day…..the #1 team has to beat the #2 team sometime anyway, right…so what if its 1st game?!

These 4 games could be on played…if it were next year…which it won’t be…. Saturday, Dec 16.  The next round on New Years Day and the Championship Game on a Monday night, 2 weeks later….we don’t want to butt heads with the NFL playoffs now do we?  Let some of the New Years Bowls move off New Years to get into the 7 game rotation…since they’ll make tons of $$$…they’ll be happy!

Also …on a side tangent….let’s cut back from the 41 bowls….enough is enough…and too much is too much…I’m throwing out the number of 30 bowls…that’s 60 teams…as the maximum….I  mean how many teams really deserve post-season games?  That might be too many…make the bowls really special…don’t tell me its’ money…..schools are actually losing money on these small bowls in mid-December. The group of 82 teams playing this past year had several .500 teams(actually some got a waiver when they were under .500)…really (can u hear the tone there?)….500.. considering a team schedules 2 cupcakes or so each year… a team 2 games under .500 in league goes to a bowl….those teams are on absolutely NO interest to me …. and…who’s to say that a bowl couldn’t be held every other-year ? Ya know that bowl in FarAway Texas called the Slumber Bowl, for example? Maybe some 5-10 of the smaller bowls could operate in that manner.

Why not?   Your thoughts on this ol’ fashion approach?   Different for sure..but we’d actually be turning back to the clock and going back to conference champions first instead of agonizing over is a team a #1 or a #3 or #2 or #4, yada-yada-yada…then choose the best of the rest for the other 3 teams.

Btw….it was a tough week on unbeaten….falling off the unbeaten cliff were Baylor(lost to 4-4 Texas 35-34), Boise State(lost to 6-2 Wyoming 30-28), Nebraska (lost to  6-2 Wisconsin 23-17)and W. Virginia (lost to 6-2 Okl St 37-20—Oklahoma State is very tough to beat in Stillwater, OK)

Quick Cardinal thought…now that Zack Duke is out for 2017 with arm surgery….a quick look at some of the best of the  other free agent lefties –Mike Dunn (32),  Marc Rzepczynski (31)—would we bring him back?  He was very good vs lefties this year….or the big enchilada-Aroldis Chapman (29)—will we pay him that gigantic pay load? I doubt it since we’ll probably invest major $$$ in a CF.

Some fastballs  as I watch the movie the Longest Day…oops the World Series games…                      …Corey Kluber going on a short  3 day rest did well enough for his team to win in his 2nd start of the Series after his dynamic outing in game 1

….is Kyle Schwarber for real?  5 AB all year…hits off a machine ..then boom …here he goes in the Series…. long term….where does they put Mr. Hayward next year….you don’t think Schwarber is going to be out of the lineup much do ya?

….I enjoy Joe Buck & John Smoltz. To me they are really, really good…entertaining, informative, conversational…everyone has their own “favorite”..we hear what we like by our favorite and hear what we don’ like by the announcers that we don’t like!….some of my walking friends don’t care for either one J

…all the catchers on both teams “pull back” the ball on most balls hoping to get the strike call….as an umpire …many centuries ago…..after an inning or two, if that was happening…I’d call time..sweep off the plate as I told the catcher “If you have to pull it back…it’s a every time you move your glove…you know it will be called a ball, OK”..of course they acted like they didn’t know what I was talking about J but…it stopped.

…I didn’t realize how good Francisco Lindor of Cleveland is/was’s good.

…In Jake Arrieta’s start in game 2…they were talking like he was going to be yanked in the 1st inning if he walked another guy or two?  He didn’t give up a hit until what..the 6th inning?


Pigskin bounces…

…..Mizzou seems to be in shambles…Head Coach Barry Odum installs the old Mizzou defense in a week and discards the earlier defense of 2016 that was favored by DeMontie Cross, his defensive coordinator. Cross had been a teammate of Odum @ Mizzou and a good, long time friend. Cross was using a  defense similar to the TCU defense. Now…I have questions….last year, Mizzou’s defense was #6 in the country and TCU why change…2nd question, throwing it out in mid-season shows desperation to me….now that Kentucky crunched the “new” defense …game wasn’t as close as the final score, 35-21, made it seem… …what now? 3rd question, if you were DeMontie Cross would you be sending out “feelers” now?  Or later?  U’r toast @ Mizzou. ….2nd comment on Mizzou…the starting lineup is changing every week…I know Coach wants hard, good practices so he rewards them…but continuity with o-lineman, QB-receivers is necessary for success.

….Notre Dame beat Miami on a late FG but Coach Brian Kelly  saw his team blow a 20-0 lead, fell behind 27-20 and won it late 30-27….watching the ND team for the 1st time…they seemed jittery, nervous in the final quarter and made two horrible mistakes..fumbling a bouncing punt close to the goal line and Miami recovered it for a TD. Then being careless with the ball close to their goal line and fumbling it…although it was recovered after a 3-5 man scrum on the ground for the ball.  Apparently from what I read, Coach Kelly isn’t especially cordial to many folks around South Bend…….he better win….being jittery in the 4th quarter doesn’t make that an easy thing to do.

….Washington (8-0)had a great game with Utah(7-2) …beat them 31-24 on a punt return where the replay seemed to show 3 “clipping” (blocking in the back) penalties on the runback ..none of which were called…so be it…mistakes happen by players and officials…the notion in all sports that replays are the answers to ensure the “quality” of the game is damaging the game in my eyes….baseball & NFL football are really just way too long…in my younger days, those sports completed games in 2 hours…now it’s 3+ and approaching 4 hours….. that’s about ¼ of my day!

…I’m turning off my clock..not turning it back….as I step aside..Have a great week. 


YOUR thoughts, reactions, ideas are always welcome…just put them right on the Prepcasts site.



  1. John Rocco says:

    Bob, good stuff.

    I’ve been thinking the same thing about where are the Cubs going to play Heyward
    Next year. Also should John Maybury
    get recognized for how well Heyward
    hit last year?

    I do think there are too many bowl games
    But the coaches like it because they
    get lots of extra practice time. Plus
    I think charities benefit from most if
    not all bowl games.


  2. Art Hanff says:

    Bob, great cogitations! I like your ideas on college football playoffs. 41 bowl games are way too much.

  3. Mizzou should drop football or go D-111 in hopes of beating Wash U

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