Wednesday, January 2, 2013

College Football With an NFL Flavor

What if college football was, say, organized like the National Football League?

With the sport's powers-that-be rapidly moving toward another segregation of the haves and have-nots - just like when Division I football was split into I-A and I-AA in 1978 - the days of the super conferences hoarding just about every last dollar to themselves will be upon us soon enough.

They have the power and the clout to ditch the NCAA if they want to. So what if they did and formed a super division of top-echelon college football teams? We can have a balanced schedule, a sensible playoff, and above all, a legitimate champion every season. There will be less griping and more football. Who'd be against that?

It's probably not going to happen, but since we do traffic highly in hypotheticals, let's say it did ...

1. First, we have to determine who's IN the big boys' club. The easy thing to do is to include the five conferences that will comprise BCS 2.0 starting in 2014 - the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC - and their 64 members, plus Notre Dame. But to have balance, we need an even number of 72, which makes the math easier, and there are a few worthy candidates to choose from.

Boise State would be a no brainer, as are UConn and Cincinnati, which probably will both end up in a BCS conference at some point anyway. That leaves us with four more to pluck, and we would go with BYU for its pedigree, SMU and Houston, former members of the Southwest Conference now on the upswing, and San Diego State, which just edged South Florida for the last spot.

2. Then, we need to divide them up neatly and sensibly. With 72 members, this allows us to form two 36-team conferences, within each four divisions of nine tams. And to make sense geographically, we'd have a Union League composed of Big Ten and Pac-12 teams plus Notre Dame, and a Dixie League composed of SEC, ACC and Big 12 teams - plus a few variations.

For geographical reasons, we'll reassign Syracuse, Pitt, Boston College and Iowa State to the Union League, as well as add UConn, Cincy, BYU, Boise State and San Diego State. Naturally, SMU and Houston will join the Dixie League. Now you can draw a boundary along state lines from Chesapeake Bay to El Paso and the teams will neatly fall on either side of this divide.

3. Next, we can put together a balanced schedule. With each conference composed of four nine-team divisions, each team will play a full round-robin divisional schedule, plus games against a team from each of the conference's three other divisions and a game against a team from the other conference, for a total of 12 regular season games.

As for the postseason, the eight divisional winners would qualify for the playoffs, with first-round winners matched up for the conference championship and then conference winners would play in the College Football Championship, staged annually at the Rose Bowl on Jan. 1. At the most, a team would play 15 games in a season, exactly the same number as the setup in BCS 2.0.

4. And the divisions, with an eye on preserving and restoring college football's cherished rivalries, would look like this:

Northern League
  • Northeast Division: Boston College, Connecticut, Syracuse, Rutgers, Maryland, Pittsburgh, Penn State, Ohio State, Cincinnati.
  • Great Lakes Division: Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Indiana, Purdue, Northwestern, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota.
  • Northwest Division: Washington, Washington State, Oregon, Oregon State, Boise State, Colorado, Nebraska, Iowa, Iowa State.
  • Pacific Division: California, Stanford, USC, UCLA, San Diego State, Arizona, Arizona State, Utah, BYU.
Southern League
  • Southwest Division: Texas, Texas A&M, Houston, TCU, SMU, Baylor, Texas Tech, Arkansas, LSU.
  • Central Division: Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Kentucky, Louisville, Tennessee, Vanderbilt.
  • Deep South Division: Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Florida, Florida State, Miami (Fla.).
  • Atlantic Division: West Virginia, Virginia, Virginia Tech, North Carolina, N.C. State, Duke, Wake Forest, South Carolina, Clemson.

5. Finally, this is how the 2012 season would've turned out had this alignment and format been in place. Keep in mind we discarded results from conference championship and bowl games (AP regular-season ranking):
  • 1. Notre Dame 12-0 (Great Lakes winner) vs. 8. Stanford 11-1 (Pacific winner)
  • 3. Ohio State 12-0 (Northeast winner) vs. 5. Oregon 11-1 (Northwest winner)
  • 7. Kansas State 11-1 (Central winner) vs. 9. LSU 10-2 (Southwest winner, by virtue of head-to-head win over Texas A&M)
  • 2. Alabama 11-1 (Deep South winner, assumed winner over Florida) vs. 11. South Carolina 10-2 (Atlantic winner, by virtue of head-to-head win over Clemson)
How does this compare to BCS 2.0? We'd say favorably, since the pool for the playoff is bigger and each participant is a legitimate winner of its own division. This model is better than even a proposed 16-team playoff, because only quality teams are included, so we're spared of a first-round mismatch as was simulated in the Orange Bowl on New Year's Day.

Of course, something this sensible and logical will never happen. That's why you own an XBox or PS3, right?



Anonymous said...

Here is my, James James Bamarni, a radio personlity from ESPN radio, and Mel Kiper Jr, another ESPN associate would organize the leagues:
North east Division:
Rutgers, Maryland, Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Indiana, Missouri, Illinois, Wisconsin
Atlantic Division: Boston College, WVU, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Duke, NCState, Wake Forest, Miami, Florida State

Anonymous said...

America East Division, done by only Mel Kiper, previous list by Jamer James Bamarni:
Minnesota, Iowa State, Northwesterm(From Chicago), Louisvills, Memphis, Arkansas, LSU, Notre Dame, Conneticut, Syracuse, Pittsburgh,, Cincinatti,


Anonymous said...

North Mountain West division: Colorado State*, Fresno State*, Boise State, BYU, Utah, Nevada*, Colorado, Wyoming*
Pacific Division:
Washington, Washington State, Oregon, Oregon State, Nebraska, SDSU, California, Stanford USC, UCLA, Arizona State ASU

Anonymous said...

Central Division:
Houston, Texas, OU, OKState, Kansas, Kansas State, Baylor, TT,
South east division:
VTech, Florida, Georgia Tech, Georgia, Auburn, Alabama, Mississippi State, Ol Miss, Kentucky, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Iowa

Anonymous said...

Please contact me at on a price for these moves.
One change: Iowa and Texas A&M in the central. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

erase the change for Texas A&M and Iowa, Texas A &M already left central, Iowa would be odd number of teams.

Anonymous said...

New trial moves for 2015:
by colleges: BYU to MOuntain West
Idaho back to Independents to fill spot
by Jamer Bamarni
Iowa to Big 12
South Carolina, WV to ACC
VTech,Clemson, to C USA

other moves done mixed by other associates and me

do America East moves next offseason

Anonymous said...

Missouri to Big 10
All these changes and prior post old division moves in 2 years.
New super division changes in 6 years

Anonymous said...

Atlantic - BC UVA WVU Duke UNC NCState Wake Clemson FSU Miami
America East - Minnesota Iowa State Northwestern Lousville Memphis Arkansas LSU Cincinatti Pittsburgh Syracuse Conn Notre Dame
Northeast - UMD Rutgers MIssouri Illinois Indiana OHio State MIchigan MIchigan State Penn State WISconsin
South east - Tennessee Alabama FLorida Georgia Ol MIss MIss State
Auburn SOuth Carolina
Mountain West - Vegas Nevada USU Colorado CSU Idaho Wyoming New Mexico Boise Fresno San Jose Air Force
Central - Iowa OU OK State TCU Texas Texas Tech KANsas Kansas State
Pacific - Washington WSU Oregon OSU
Cal USC Arizona ASU
2 inter conference matchups/year
Pacific v. Central
Independent - Army Navy SMU BYU

Anonymous said...

Erase all eariler movex except the prior one, all done by Jameir JAmes Bamarni and Mel Kiper JR.

Anonymous said...

I am NOT in favor of this at all . You know , it seems that the primary reason for this would be to make a profit , period . We live in a world today where MONEY and PROFIT is the most awesome, god-damn force in the whole godless world and the more you have , the better less off everyone else is . Not only is the profit a plus to those who would desecrate a country's traditional past time for it , but the bonus of those who would do it would be to further erode the customs and values that hold a countries people together . I've shyed away from the NFL in recent years for this reason . From what was once a simple fun game to watch has turned into a Mega-Corporate Cluster-Phuck that has taken the entertainment away and replaced it with higher ticket costs , higher concession costs , higher parking costs , higher pay per view cost ... God Forbid if College Football turned into the corporate monsters that have taken over the NFL .

Anonymous said...

League numbers:
72 teams, 8 playoff berths, 1/9 chance to play for title, rather than around 1/60th now.
Also 8 divisions for the 8 playoff spots,average of 1 berth per division , and maybe more for the stronger ones.

Anonymous said...

2 schools requested being added to the Central:
North Texas and South Mississippi

New Playoff system is being setup. Please be patient until we get the fight mix of less teams with more playoff openings.