The 2017 college football season has been a memorable one to say the least and the craziness continues this week. The last two games of the season are upon us and determining the final 4 of the CFP will be a challenge for the committee. Usually, by this time of the year we know who is likely in and who probably gets ousted. This year, nothing is guaranteed and in fact, everything is up for grabs.
We know they are good, they are really good, but are they #1 and do they deserve a spot in the final 4 simply because they are Alabama? The short answer is no. They do not deserve a spot because they are Alabama and coached by Nick Saban. It’s not enough and should never be enough. If it is enough, then we make the argument for Ohio State. Urban Meyer has earned his stripes as one of the best coaches in the history of college football, however, this year is just not his year. His team must earn their way and although the Buckeyes have had great back to back games, with a beat down over Michigan State, they are not qualified.
The point is this: Saban gets a pass. He just does and football fans must accept it. It’s a bummer, it’s not fair, and it stinks but that’s how it is in the high stakes world of Division 1 College Football. For whatever reason, Saban gets a pass. Oh don’t misunderstand, Saban is a winner a big winner and he always seems to win when it counts. The guy can flat out coach and nobody can take that away from him. Let’s go ahead and take the leap. Let’s say it; Nick Saban is the best college football coach in the history of the bowl era.
College football once lived in a world that said teams must cover the spread from week to week and they must pound their opponent’s mercilessly, never taking their foot off the gas and embarrassing the other guy. That’s not how it is anymore. Those days are passing by and now it’s a booster thing.
College football is all about boosters, their money and what they have done lately. The bigger the program (Alabama) the more of a voice the boosters have. The boosters dictate everything. No, they do not dictate winning but they do dictate recruiting, scheduling, sponsorship and what the hot dog vendors will wear as uniforms!
A solid program with solid numbers from year to year. The Broncos made a name for themselves in the 2006 season when they went 13-0, outscored their opponents by more than 24 ppg, held their opponents to 15 ppg while going on to beat the Oklahoma Sooners and Bob Stoops in the Fiesta Bowl. This was obviously a banner year for Boise State and the entire program.
Did Boise State stop winning? Is this why we never hear of them?
Beginning with the 2006 season, until today (12 seasons) the Broncos have done nothing but win! It is easier to count the team loses. 24! 24 loses in 12 seasons. They have proven themselves to be perennial winners. It’s impossible to discount the program and what they have achieved and what their coaches have achieved over the past decade.
Why then do we never hear of Boise State vying for a national title or even being in the hunt?
Nick Saban will tell you it is strength of schedule but look at Alabama’s schedule and you decide. This is the latest and most tired excuse in the book and its getting old. A national title is not about strength of schedule. It never has been and under the current system, it never will be.
Alabama, Clemson, well, let’s make a long story short… the SEC, the Big 10, the Big 12 and a couple of other teams scattered about, have all the booster money. Booster money dictates ranking. If you don’t believe it, then wake up. Boise State has no booster power and they are flat out broke when compared to a school such as Alabama.
Are we saying college football is rigged? In Vegas terms no, it is not rigged, (although that’s debatable). In terms of money and power and “old school prestige and clout”, of course it’s rigged! Always has been and always will be.
This year will be no different. Alabama will probably be playing for yet another title even though their opponent this week is Mercer, who Boise State would beat by 60 or more! This certainly doesn’t take away from the enjoyment we all get from watching college football. We love it, we demand it and we have to have it. How the rest of this crazy season unfolds will be an interesting ride.