CONVENIENT TRUTHS: Forget TCU; BCS already busted

The end of the college football season is fast approaching, and it would appear that several fan bases should be steeling themselves for the drama-filled politics involved with picking the two ‘best’ Football Bowl Subdivision teams in the land.

As it stands now, the BCS National Championship game will probably see the winner of the Southeastern Conference Championship game play Texas for the national title. But who else has a claim to play for college football’s most prestigious prize?

Aside from obvious contenders Florida, Alabama and Texas, three undefeated teams have emerged as dark horse candidates to play for the BCS Championship: TCU, Cincinnati and Boise State.

To date, TCU (10-0) has played three teams who at some point this season have been ranked in the Associated Press Top 25: Clemson, Brigham Young and Utah. In those games, the Horned Frogs won by an average score of nearly 36 to 15.

With games left against Wyoming (5-5) and New Mexico (0-10), TCU should not have a problem running the table.

Cincinnati (10-0) has also played three teams that have been ranked – Rutgers, South Florida and West Virginia – and closes its regular season against No. 12 Pittsburgh.

The Bearcats have begun inserting quarterback Tony Pike back into the lineup in a limited role following his injury against South Florida on Oct. 15. This could make the Panthers a tough out for Cincinnati, but anyone who has followed Pitt head coach Dave Wannstedt’s career knows that he is about as savvy a coach as Charles Barkley is a gambler; the Bearcats shouldn’t have much of a problem in this game.

Boise State started the year by beating Pac-10 frontrunner Oregon on the Smurf turf at home, but hasn’t really played anyone of note since. The Broncos’ best win was a 48-0 thrashing of powerhouse Miami of Ohio (1-10) in Boise, Idaho on Sept. 12, and their nonconference schedule included Football Championship Subdivision lackey UC Davis.

It is likely that all three of these schools will finish their regular seasons undefeated. If they do, all three deserve a shot at the title.

So what can be done to fix the potential problem of having five undefeated teams fighting for two spots? Implement a playoff system.

Under the current format, the ‘big six’ conferences (Atlantic Coast Conference, Big Ten, Big 12, Big East, Pac-10 and SEC) each get one automatic BCS game bid.

The NCAA needs to install a system similar to that of the English Premier League, in which the weakest of those conferences would be relegated at the end of each season and replaced with the strongest non-BCS conference (Conference USA, Mountain West Conference, Western Athletic Conference, etc.).

Next, an eight-team playoff needs to be put in place.

The winner of each BCS conference would get a bid, and the remaining two seeds would be at-large spots. One spot would be guaranteed for an undefeated non-BCS team, but if there isn’t one, both would be voted on by the Associated Press poll voting members.

This may not be the best solution, but it’s better than what’s in place now. Who wouldn’t be thrilled at the possibility of a TCU-Georgia Tech national title game?

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