Sports

Current BCS system continues to be a hot topic in the college sports world

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The current BCS system has been a constant topic of controversy. (photo from bleacherreport.com)
Throughout the last several years in college football, there has been a significant debate going on. Should the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) change its post season to a playoff or should it keep its rich tradition by letting the regular season determine the championship game. Whether a team is in a BCS conference such as the Big Ten, a mid-major conference such as the WAC, or independent such as Notre Dame, everyone has great interest and opinions as to how the end of the college football season should unfold. Since the BCS has been put in place in 1998, it has created a number of rules and stipulations as to how a team can compete after the regular season has competed. If a team is at least .500 they are considered “bowl eligible” and can be chosen to play in a bowl game. In addition, there are also the BCS bowls which consist of the Fiesta Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Orange Bowl, and the BCS National Championship in which the top teams automatically qualify for or are chosen as an elite team. There are currently over 30 bowl games that a bowl eligible team can compete in. Many fans would say that they enjoyed the bowl setup after the BCS was instated but would agree that it is time for a change. In nearly every other college or professional sport, the season is concluded with a post-season tournament. This creates a magical atmosphere and is what makes March Madness so special for College Basketball. This set up gives teams a chance to compete for a national title even if they slip up with a loss or two in the regular season. Another reason why many people are leaning toward a playoff is because a tournament would provide one winner and no split-championship. With as big of a fan base that college football has, the question is also asked why not give the fans what they want? There is no doubt that watching up to 16 teams compete for a National Championship would be more exciting than one game where only two teams are given the chance to compete. On the other hand, there are a number of things that makes college football a unique sport and reasons why people believe that it should remain the same. College football has a rich tradition and has been using bowl games in their post season for a long time. In addition, many people would argue that the regular season is in some sort a tournament because it decides who gets to play for a national championship. With most teams playing around twelve games in their regular season, each game carries more emotion and fan base than a Saturday afternoon college basketball game. College football us very special because it is an emotional regular season and in no other sport do fans care so much about national rankings. Having a playoff would take away from its exciting regular season. Throughout our own Bethel Campus there are a number of opinions that students and faculty share regarding whether or not the college football system should resort to a playoff set up. “It seems logical to find the best team through playing a playoff,” said senior Harrison Fausey. Many people would agree with this statement because producing a playoff is something that serves to the fan base of college football. “I would like to see a playoff because it gives everyone a fair opportunity such as Boise State and TCU in the last couple of years,” said freshman Trenton Stout. This is a legitimate argument in the sense that this would be a valid way to give teams that come from a mid-major conference a chance to win the national championship. “I think it would be good to maintain the history of the bowl games and set up a playoff system as well,” said senior Tim Long, interested in both the history and giving the fans what they want. Although it may not seem like there are as many people that favor the current system, there are people who oppose going to the playoff system. “I like the current BCS system because of the emphasis put on the regular season,” said Bethel student Joe Rallo. “As a Big Ten fan I love the current system and enjoy the tradition of a Big Ten team playing a Pac-10 team in the Rose Bowl,” said senior Derrike Kolb. Both of these views give a great illustration of why it is so difficult for the BCS officials to change the tradition and significance of the current BCS system. In the end, it will be interesting to see what happens with the BCS over the next couple of years. No one wants to see the importance of each Saturday college football game go down but who doesn’t want to give the fans what they want with a playoff system.  
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