Saturday, December 4, 2010

SEC Picks Championship Over Integrity

(Updated with standings and BCS bowl projections, with analysis below)

Auburn is going to play Oregon in the BCS championship game. That's not a surprise.

The SEC, with help from the NCAA, isn't going to suspend Auburn quarterback Cam Newton even though the NCAA investigation has confirmed that Newton's father Cecil has broken a rule that in almost all instances would've rendered the player ineligible.

That, is not a surprise, either.

Digging deep into lawyerlese, SEC commissioner Mike Slive somehow found a way to justify the decision not to suspend Newton. But really, did anyone expect him to sit the SEC's meal ticket, the one who could run the SEC's streak in the BCS title game to five?

Not to mention the untold millions from both the BCS payout and added exposure for the conference.

This is the conference that has a coach who keeps on truckin' even though more than two dozens of his players have been arrested for one offense or another. Another coach who's made a habit of kicking substandard players off the team by accusing them of 'violating team rules' or claiming that they had career-ending injuries. How about oversigning? The SEC practically invented it.

You don't become the self-proclaimed "toughest conference in college football" by graduating players and keeping them out of jail. Or by scheduling decent teams in OOC games instead of having a tour of the Sun Belt and mauling whatever I-AA schools scattering throughout the old Confederacy.

Auburn's appearance in the BCS championship game is not a vindication of the SEC, but an indictment of it. This is a conference that has decided that it values winning above all else and therefore rules must be bent to satisfy that goal.

That is truly unfortunate. The SEC has plenty of law-abiding players who compete to play high-caliber football; and it has arguably the most rabid fans of anywhere in the country, even though some of them share the value system of those that run the conference.

So for the fifth year in a row and seventh time overall, an SEC team will take part in the BCS title game. By any means necessary.

(By the way, CBS really ought to be ashamed of that SEC championship broadcast, one that would've made Pravda and Xinhua proud. From Gary Danielson's absurd defense of Slive's decision, to Tracy Wolfson's sharing bodily fluids with Cam Newton. I thought they couldn't have topped their 2006 title game performance, but I was wrong.)

Projected BCS standings and matchups (for non-BCS bowl projections, see chart):

1. Oregon, 2. Auburn, 3. TCU, 4. Stanford, 5. Wisconsin, 6. Ohio State, 7. Oklahoma, 8. Arkansas, 9. Michigan State, 10. LSU, 11. Boise State, 12. Missouri, 13 Virginia Tech, 14. Oklahoma State, 15. Nevada.

BCS Championship: Oregon vs. Auburn
Rose Bowl: TCU vs. Wisconsin
Sugar Bowl: Arkansas vs. Ohio State
Orange Bowl: Virginia Tech vs. Stanford
Fiesta Bowl: Oklahoma vs. Connecticut

If even as many as one voter decided to flip his vote from Auburn to Oregon, the Ducks will be No. 1. The computer scores will be unchanged and the human votes are that tight. The projection is that maybe a handful of voters will change their votes to Oregon because of the Newton saga. But maybe not. In any event, it's largely irrelevant other than Oregon's uniform options.

The projection also calls for the Orange Bowl picking Stanford over UConn. Since neither school is expected to travel well, Stanford is fourth-ranked (vs. the currently unranked Huskies) with just one loss, and a compelling storyline involving coach Jim Harbaugh, who may be headed elsewhere. It's still possible that Fiesta makes the Orange an offer for future concessions and then the Orange bites the bullet and takes UConn instead.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your opinion on this is as valid as your blogpoll--fail!

Anonymous said...

My, my, my ... such a shame that a person with your talent allows himself to be so biased.

Anonymous said...

SEC didn't choose a championship over anything. They chose to allow a student who was ELIGIBLE to play the opportunity to play.

Anonymous said...

I certainly didn't come to this website to read this blog. Who let's you write on this website man? First of all, you should practice writing something else, before writing about a great player, great university, great conference, and the governing body, i.e. NCAA.

Alex said...

Honestly, this is one of the sadder things I think I've read. I really gave you a lot of credit for the mea culpa over the Wisconsin/OSU mix up, but this is just absurd. Cam Newton is eligible because there is no evidence that he or his father actually received impermissible benefits. I don't understand why this is hard for people to understand. The NCAA and SEC can't risk declaring him ineligible because of the possible lawsuits from Auburn and Cam, as well as the risk that he is ultimately deemed to have never received the benefits. Yeah, it might seem like a long shot, but how would it look if that's what happened? They would have taken away a national title shot from a team because of assumptions without any evidence backing them up. What would you say to Newton and Auburn fans then? Sorry, our bad? Maybe we jumped the gun a little? Sure, a other teams have vacated titles after the fact, but we couldn't risk letting you have that chance? Its just absurd logic.

I also love how you paint the SEC as this totally immoral conference. Its simply another example of rampant hypocrisy in your writing. Who was it again that actually turned in Newton for the alleged pay-for-play scheme? Another SEC school that refused to pay him? But yeah, rule-breaking is clearly way more rampant in the SEC than anywhere else. I'm pretty sure they have the most recent team to face significant scholarship reductions and a postseason ban, right?

I'm sure the SEC is the only school that has players arrested, right? Not like Oregon saw their expected starting backfield go down to arrests this offseason or anything. We definitely didn't get a whole series of stories about the legal incidents surrounding the last successful Washington football this past offseason or anything. Nope, all the bad apples are down in the SEC.

Or maybe, just maybe, you have a tiny bit of bias when it comes to the SEC. Did you ever actually consider that before you wrote this article? If it weren't for the lack of spelling and grammatical errors, I would swear this is nothing more than a drunken rant...truly sad writing.

Anonymous said...

I don't see any misspelled words or grammatical errors. I guess SEC fans just can't stand it when somebody picks at their warts.

Alex said...

Apparently you struggle with reading comprehension. In case you were confused, "the lack of spelling and grammatical errors," means that there aren't any spelling or grammatical errors you should see. As I said, if there were in fact spelling or grammatical errors, "I would swear this is nothing more than a drunken rant." Sadly its just the ramblings someone with a serious inferiority complex when it comes to the SEC. I mean come on, he failed to rank Auburn in the top 2 until this week.

Alex said...

Also, nice job addressing any of the points I actually brought up. Easier to try and rip on someone and show off your own stupidity. Considering your lack of reading comprehension skills, I think we can all agree you did yourself a favor stopping where you did.

Anonymous said...

The NCAA is really at fault, I can't blame the SEC and Auburn letting Newton play. There is absolutely no justification for Newton being deemed eligible, there is no way he was not involved. Why else would he have considered Miss. St. so seriously? I wonder how much Auburn is paying him.

Anonymous said...

Regarding Auburn fan's rant,

It doesn't matter that it has not yet been found that Cam Newton received money; all you need to know is that it was found that Cecil Newton solicited money. That's against NCAA rules, and Cam Newton should be ineligible.

And for anyone that argues that Cam shouldn't be punished for his father's transgressions, you are opening it up for every player in the country to solicit pay-for-play scenarios; all they have to do is make sure that their dads do all of the talking.

And when Cam tells a Miss St. recruiter "sorry, but the money was too much," what the hell do you think he was talking about.

Cam Newton is on trial for murder; if that were the case, then it would need to be shown beyond a shadow of a doubt that he is guilty. But regarding the NCAA and SEC rulings, you don't need "beyond a shadow of a doubt." Both the NCAA and the SEC believe that Cam Newton did some shady stuff, and therefore they should have ruled him ineligible indefinitely.

Anonymous said...

*isn't on trial for murder

Anonymous said...

"And when Cam tells a Miss St. recruiter "sorry, but the money was too much," what the hell do you think he was talking about."

This.

I happen to be an SEC fan (except Florida, which is essentially New Jersey of the South)..but I think it is pretty well established that his father did receive impermissible benefits. Whether Cam knew about them is at issue (though not really) but his father was very clearly found guilty.

Finally, Auburn, great university? Let's be serious. Think Vandy is the only SEC school who throw that around.

Anonymous said...

Just a $ad $ad week for college football, which will never be the $ame again. I feel ab$olutely terrible for TCU becau$e they $hould be going to Glendale. P.$. Oregon will win regardle$$.

J. said...

@Alex

I am kind of pumped because the national champ game will be between 2 undefeated power teams. No one else deserves to play in the game more. No other teams can claim they earned it more.

But putting aside the fact that im pumped to see these teams play, i think its pretty obvious what is going on with the NCAA. I wanted to comment on when you said this:

"They would have taken away a national title shot from a team because of assumptions without any evidence backing them up. What would you say to Newton and Auburn fans then? Sorry, our bad? Maybe we jumped the gun a little? Sure, a other teams have vacated titles after the fact, but we couldn't risk letting you have that chance? Its just absurd logic."

It is actually your logic that is 'absurd'. It would be much worse and is always worse, when a title has to be vacated after the fact. That results in no title to anyone, a blemish in the history books and no way of correct it. Having ____ listed as the national champion is as bad as it gets.

But just to apply your logic of "what would they say to Cam and Auburn"---your talking about 1 school and one player, that may have done something wrong. It would be bad for sure, but it would be contained and Cam only has his father or himself to blame.

On the other hand, if you do what you propose, you must tell EVERY other school and EVERY other player, the same sob story you would tell Auburn. Thats much worse as far as societal benefit goes. Its not even close.

The real issue is that there IS some evidence of wrongdoing. How much? Neither you nor I know for sure. But if there was enough evidence to suspend him 24 hrs and if the investigation is still ongoing, clearly there IS some evidence. Thus, the best policy is to issue a temporary injunction on Cam playing. The remedy if wrong to Cam is a lot easier (reinstatement /extra year of eligibility if possible) than any possible remedy to the rest of the country.

The NCAA is super shady, they always have been. They hate vacating titles and they really hate suspending players/vacating wins for the "IT" team in the moment.

They love to wait because then the NCAA doesnt take heat and thats simply wrong. Reggie Bush is a perfect example. D Rose in basketball is another and had he won a title, they may have swept it under the rug.

Im excited about this upcoming champ game, but the right thing to do, is to suspend Cam until the situation is resolved. He is on record talking about money. His Dad, who i believe was his guardian, is guilty of something. Further, Cam does not have 'clean sheet' as it is with all his previous controversy.

So if/when it comes out that Cam should have been suspended how do you tell every other team in the country that they all played for nothing because there was no title that year.....or does the NCAA sweep it all away. My bet: If Auburn wins the title nothing happens for a long time, maybe never. If Oregon wins...

J. said...

@Alex

I am kind of pumped because the national champ game will be between 2 undefeated power teams. No one else deserves to play in the game more. No other teams can claim they earned it more.

But putting aside the fact that im pumped to see these teams play, i think its pretty obvious what is going on with the NCAA. But i wanted to comment on when you said this:

"They would have taken away a national title shot from a team because of assumptions without any evidence backing them up. What would you say to Newton and Auburn fans then? Sorry, our bad? Maybe we jumped the gun a little? Sure, a other teams have vacated titles after the fact, but we couldn't risk letting you have that chance? Its just absurd logic."

It is actually your logic that is 'absurd'. It would be much worse and is always worse when a title has to be vacated after the fact. That results in no title to anyone, a blemish in the history books and no way of correcting it. Having ____ listed as the national champion is as bad as it gets.

But just to apply your logic of "what would they say to Cam and Auburn"---your talking about 1 school and one player, that may have done something wrong. Cam has no one to blame but his father and possibly himself.

On the other hand, if you do what you propose, you must tell EVERY other school and EVERY other player, the same sob story you would tell Auburn. Thats much worse as far as societal benefit goes. Its not even close.

The real issue is that there IS some evidence of wrongdoing. How much? Neither you nor I know for sure. But if there was enough evidence to suspend him for 24 hrs and if the investigation is still ongoing, clearly there IS some evidence. The best policy is to issue a temporary injunction on Cam playing. The remedy if wrong to Cam is a lot easer (reinstatement/extra year of eligibility if possible) than any possible remedy to the rest of the country.

The NCAA is super shady, they always have been. They hate vacating titles and they really hate suspending players/vacating wins for the "IT" team of the moment.

They NCAA loves to wait because then they dont take heat. This is truly wrong. Reggie Bush is a perfect example. D Rose in basketball is another and had he won a title, they may have swept it under the rug.

Im excited about this upcoming champ game, but the right thing to do is to suspend Cam until the situation is resolved. He is on record talking about money. His Dad, who i believe was his guardian, is guilty of something. Further, Cam does not have 'clean sheet' as it is with his previous controversy.

So if/when it comes out that Cam should have been suspended, how do you tell every other team in the country that they all played for nothing because there was no title that year.....or does the NCAA sweep it all away. My bet: If Auburn wins the title nothing happens for a long time, if ever. If Oregon wins...

J. said...

@Alex

I am kind of pumped because the national champ game will be between 2 undefeated power teams. No one else deserves to play in the game more. No other teams can claim they earned it more.

But putting aside the fact that im pumped to see these teams play, i think its pretty obvious what is going on with the NCAA. But i wanted to comment on when you said this:

"They would have taken away a national title shot from a team because of assumptions without any evidence backing them up. What would you say to Newton and Auburn fans then? Sorry, our bad? Maybe we jumped the gun a little? Sure, a other teams have vacated titles after the fact, but we couldn't risk letting you have that chance? Its just absurd logic."

It is actually your logic that is 'absurd'. It would be much worse and is always worse when a title has to be vacated after the fact. That results in no title to anyone, a blemish in the history books and no way of correcting it. Having ____ listed as the national champion is as bad as it gets.

J. said...

But just to apply your logic of "what would they say to Cam and Auburn"---your talking about 1 school and one player, that may have done something wrong. Cam has no one to blame but his father and possibly himself.

On the other hand, if you do what you propose, you must tell EVERY other school and EVERY other player, the same sob story you would tell Auburn. Thats much worse as far as societal benefit goes. Its not even close.

The real issue is that there IS some evidence of wrongdoing. How much? Neither you nor I know for sure. But if there was enough evidence to suspend him for 24 hrs and if the investigation is still ongoing, clearly there IS some evidence. The best policy is to issue a temporary injunction on Cam playing. The remedy if wrong to Cam is a lot easer (reinstatement/extra year of eligibility if possible) than any possible remedy to the rest of the country.

The NCAA is super shady, they always have been. They hate vacating titles and they really hate suspending players/vacating wins for the "IT" team of the moment.

They NCAA loves to wait because then they dont take heat. This is truly wrong. Reggie Bush is a perfect example. D Rose in basketball is another and had he won a title, they may have swept it under the rug.

Im excited about this upcoming champ game, but the right thing to do is to suspend Cam until the situation is resolved. He is on record talking about money. His Dad, who i believe was his guardian, is guilty of something. Further, Cam does not have 'clean sheet' as it is with his previous controversy.

So if/when it comes out that Cam should have been suspended, how do you tell every other team in the country that they all played for nothing because there was no title that year.....or does the NCAA sweep it all away. My bet: If Auburn wins the title nothing happens for a long time, if ever. If Oregon wins...

Anonymous said...

Watching ESPN Gameday, there was a video essay celebrating the SEC Championship game and how you have to earn your way there on the field(as opposed to the BCS system). In the middle of this video, there is a video clip of TCU's Andy Dalton and the narrator says "TCU would never play in Atlanta." It was the most ridiculous cheap shot I have ever seen. Here is a kid (Dalton) who has done everything right and led a program to the top of the college football world against all odds, all the biases, all the money discrepencies; and ESPN and its SEC cronies slam him.

Meanwhile, ESPN and all these SEC fans celebrate Cam Newtown. Thrown out of Florida for cheating; being pimped around the SEC cesspool for cash. How does any of this make sense to anyone who loves college sports? It doesn't, except throught the warped, ignorant lense of SEC fans, who think these teams are their own private NFL franchises, and who care nothing about education or ethics. What do you expect from people living in the states that rank 45th to 50th in every educational statistic?

Thanks for speaking truth to power, Guru.

Anonymous said...

It's morning on the West Coast now so it's time for some non-SEC fan commentary. I'm undecided regarding Cam Newton, primarily because I don't care enough to dig into the facts. That said, I 100% agree with your assessment of the CBS broadcast. Good lord! I think CBS signed up the Auburn home radio broadcasters for the game. And by the way, as far as QB's go, I'll take Andrew Luck over Cam Newton any day...

Vinnie the Shark said...

BCS is Fraud and that is why I am using the rankings as a way to come up with my own playoff. Conference Champions receive automatic Bids yes that includes the MAC and Sun Belt teams.

Anonymous said...

I thought the posted essay was a well reasoned argument. I am not convinced that Cam Newton should be punished for the actions of his father. It is arguable that his father did that without Cam's knowledge. If Cam did the cheating while a freshman, he has, hopefully learned the value of work and effort in academia and is time to let him move on. The argument that I can not refute is the SEC's willingness to make 33% of their schedules the Nun's from "Little Sisters of the Blind." Conferences should always play 75% of their games in conference and the other 25% against actual competition. I love the SEC, but it would be hard for them to argue against Boise State's and TCU's schedule with the rather large soft spot in their schedules.

With all that said, it is shaping up to be a great championship game and I am looking forward to the game.

Anonymous said...

have been coming to this site for 3 years every sunday...am officially done with it...being biased never produces knowledgeable posts.

TheDukester said...

Self-righteous rants from losers who post as "Anonymous" are hysterical. Like your opinion even counts if you can't take three seconds to make up a user ID.

The author of this post hit it dead-on. The SEC is a renegade conference, always has been, and always will be. There is a culture of cheating and winning at all costs that permeates everything bout the conference, and it has been there for about 80 years now.

If I was a conference commissioner, I would not let my schools schedule SEC teams in ANY sport, ever. The playing field is simply not even.

The SEC should just renounce the NCAA and form its own confederacy of cheating, lying, and warped values. It would be easier for everyone that way.

Frank said...

sorry Dukester...not everyone is old enough to have a user id like you...maybe all of the anonymous people just don't care enough about everyone else who reads this...if your points are more valid than theirs' because you have a user id, and you truly believe that, maybe you have issues. And if you are going to go down that road, then at least have the decency to log in with facebook or something that attaches your real name, otherwise what is the difference between anonymous and Dukester? Heavy amount of creeps on this board.

Anonymous said...

BCSGoober is just an Anti-SEC idiot. He think Oregon will be #1. What kind of "guru" believes that? Learn math before you start criticizing people based on rumors and such. If you knew the real story, you wouldn't seem like such an idiot.

Anonymous said...

Jealousy has struck the "guru" again. Remember his earlier post: "SEC Stranglehold on the BCS is Over?" Wishful thinking....wrong again. I'm making the call for Oregon to be blown out by AU. Look at Strength of Schedule. The Only in the top 26 with an easier path was Nebraska (before they played OU in the title game). Also, note Oregon beat Cal (and unranked team) by only 2 points. They also never recruit highly...never in the top 20. Finally, and most importantly, how many blacks live in Oregon? Game Over...SEC...SEC...SEC!!!!!!!!!

JPL said...

As written by one of the many anonymous posters above:

"Conferences should always play 75% of their games in conference..."

So that list would include...the Pac-10 only? I might be able to guess what region you're from. And they haven't even done it all that long (let alone the fact that conference title games effectively add a game vs. good competition).

"...and the other 25% against actual competition."

Very few schools can make this claim. A majority of FBS teams face an FCS foe during the year, and a single quality FBS opponent on the schedule is the standard.

Nick said...

Dear BCS Guru,

Thank you for writing what everyone was thinking. You have balls, good sir.

- Dink

Anonymous said...

Pat Haden seems to get it....the parent is the kid....this will all come out at some point and it will be too late to do anything or matter...just like the reggie bush stuff.....wonder where the money came from within Auburn..most likely alums...

Dan said...

I'm very disappointed in the Guru on this. (For the sake of full disclosure, I'm an Auburn Alumnus.) I've always come to this site to find unbiased statistical projections that predicted how the convoluted BCS formula was expected to shake out. Any additional commentary to this was merely to explain interesting abnormalities in the voting/computer results. After this article, I'm almost sickened to find that one of the few websites where I could escape the "politics of the NCAA" and just focus on a level-headed discussion of the polls has now also succumbed to this mess. Certainly, it is the Guru's prerogative to give his opinion on whatever subject he sees fit. But these opinions have now crossed over into an outright bias against the SEC and all of it's member schools, which instantly causes me to question the validity of his projections.

Anonymous said...

Yep, your opinion is valid... Are you crazy? You sound like some extreme radical... You say that the SEC's stranglehold over the BCS is over.. Yeah, right. Your the most biased college football website on the internet... I want those drugs bad man..The truth is the SEC "is the toughest conference", whether Auburn cheated or not. Sounds a lot like sour grapes to me. The real question is "what conference do you like?" Its not a AQ conference, so who is it? The mountain West or the WAC? It cant be the sunbelt......

Concerned Citizen said...

Man-o-man I bet you feel like a jerk after the scandal with the five Ohio State players has surfaced to the media. It seems that the SEC isn't the only conference that picked pride over so-called "integrity". I really love your site, but your opinion on this matter is like that of a kid who didn't get what he wanted for Christmas. Please stop crying because your conference didn't get the bid for the big game (and I'm not saying the Big 10 is your conference).

My first thoughts after I read this blog post... "What a douchebag!"

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Jeremy said...

LSU plays Oregon in a season opener at a neutral stadium... how, sir, is that an easy non-conf game. The tigers also travel to play West Virginia.
Georgia has Boise State in Atlanta and travels to play Georgia Tech
Alabama travels to play Penn State.

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