You all know my obvious bias. I am and will always be a serious Ohio State Buckeyes football fan. I am happy that they are playing in the national championship game. For the record, I would have been just as happy with a USC/ OSU Rose Bowl game. But that’s not what the BCS decided. There are good reasons why their right to be there is being questioned. It’s fair to question the strength of a schedule that includes Akron, Youngstown State, and Kent State. But it’s not their fault the Big Ten is weak, and that they don’t have the last official championship game. Some flaws in their resume they can’t control. They did end up winning the Big Ten, which should count for something. It’s reasonable to question OSU’s resume. Where those people lose me is when they start talking about Hawaii as the team that they think should replace Ohio State. Yes, they are undefeated, but they played an even weaker schedule than the Buckeyes. The only way for OSU to get the respect they lack from the national press and from the fans of other worthy championship teams is to play LSU and to win that game. I think that they can do it.
All this is not to defend the BCS. It’s a deeply flawed system that produces flawed matchups and much controversy. We need a playoff system and we need it now. Teams should be rewarded for playing tough schedules, and thats not what we get with the current system. Maybe teams like Ohio State would play tougher schedules if they knew that they still had a chance at the national championship with 2 losses. The BCS provides no incentive to do this. There should be a way to determine which 1-2 loss teams are the best teams. Playoffs would be one way to determine which 2 teams deserve that last game. That said, the regular season should matter in college football. I think that its a bad argument to say that only the hottest teams at the end of the season should play in major bowl games. Its impossible to get an objective measure of the top 8-10 teams without a playoff, so until we get one, there will always be arguments and controversy over whos #1.