As I noted two weeks ago, I am a die-hard member of the Southeastern Conference bandwagon. I believe with all of my heart that the SEC is the best conference in the country for both on and off-field reasons.
However, when the announcement was made as to who would play for the BCS National Championship on January 9, my enthusiasm for an all-SEC affair was less than stellar.
As an Auburn man, there is perhaps nothing that brings me closer to vomiting than seeing Alabama anywhere near the crystal trophy.
Aside from the purely biased reason of in-state hatred, I also truly believe that the matchup is unfair and flies in the face of the BCS’s slogan of “every game counts.”
Apparently, every game counts unless you’re the most popular team among sports writers and “purists” — whoever they are.
Supposedly the muddled 9-6 “Game of the Century” between LSU and Alabama showed us that the Crimson Tide deserve a second chance.
Even though an Alabama win in the Super Dome would give us a one-one split. And then what? Of course, the university that claims 14 bajillion mythical championships would slap another one on its banners, but could they seriously hold their heads up to the rest of the country and say “we are the champions?”
As sickening as it is and as much as I believe Oklahoma State deserved the same chance to do what Alabama failed to do in October, I am happy this rematch has been set up.
No, you did not misread that. I am quite pleased and content with the “Rematch of the Century” or whatever this snoozer part two will be billed as.
Why? Perhaps the only thing that trumps my love of my school and my conference is the love of college football as a whole. There is no better sport in the country, or the world for that matter.
Pageantry meets play on a level unseen in any other sport. But no matter how good the BCS era has been to the SEC, I unequivocally believe the BCS is seriously flawed, a taint on our sacred sport.
It is my hope that the rematch that has been divinely appointed by computer and pollster will be the final straw for a fed up fan base who has for too long endured controversy after controversy in the name of big money television deals and revenue sharing.
Be it a playoff or a plus one model, it seems the politicians of college football have finally awoken to what millions of observers have known for years: a game cannot be decided by a computer or the subjective will of “experts.” A true champion can only be decided on the playing field.
And so it is my hope that when LSU and Alabama square off, no matter how sloppy or boring the second go-round is, that viewers will not feel a sense of closure when LSU claims its rightful title, or Alabama claims another faux title. It is my hope they will collectively ask themselves “what could have been?”
“What could have been” can and will be a college football championship that is rightfully decided on the playing field.
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