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I Love You, Gene Wojciechowski. I Do Not Love You, Lloyd Carr. - Sauce1977 [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

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I Love You, Gene Wojciechowski. I Do Not Love You, Lloyd Carr. [Dec. 3rd, 2006|09:50 pm]
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ESPN will probably keep you quiet the next few months, but you wrote the pants off Ivan Maisel and Pat Forde.

The latter two were openly campaigning with Urban Meyer for "anyone but Michigan."

Florida's fine, but how is Michigan left out?

By Gene Wojciechowski

If you're Michigan coach Lloyd Carr, how do you explain to your players that they won't be in the BCS Championship Game? How do you tell the second-best team in the country to get pumped about playing USC in the Runner-Up Bowl? How do you resist the urge of wishing Nutcracker drills on every person who jumped one-loss Florida ahead of the one-loss Wolverines in the final polls?

Lloyd Carr and Michigan lost to No. 1 by three points...and aren't title-game worthy.
There is no polite way of saying it: Michigan got jobbed. Sunday's rankings are Exhibits A-Z why the BCS means well, but simply doesn't work -- and never will.

Carr had to do what Auburn's Tommy Tuberville did two seasons ago. Tuberville's team finished the regular season 12-0, but was left out of the Tostitos BCS Championship Game in favor of undefeated USC and Oklahoma.

"It's hard," said Tuberville. "It's hard to look them in the eye. Heck, we're still not over it. You never get over it. It's like a question that's never been answered."

Carr is asking those same questions. And he'll get the same shoulder shrugs that Tuberville got.

Let me get this straight: Michigan, which was unbeaten against all teams on its schedule ranked lower than No. 1, isn't going to Glendale, Ariz., for the Jan. 8 national title game because ...

• It didn't win its conference.

No, it didn't. But did you see who did? Team by the name of Ohio State. Maybe you've heard of the Buckeyes? Undefeated. Ranked first in the country. Beat Michigan in Columbus by the grand total of three whole points.

And feel free to show me in the BCS handbook where it says you've got to win your conference to play in the championship game?

• Nobody wants to see a rematch.

Just asking, but how did Ali-Frazier II and III work out? Or that Georgetown-Villanova Final Four?

I know Florida's Urban Meyer doesn't want to see a rematch, but he's not exactly an impartial observer, is he? And if Meyer were in Carr's Nikes, I guarantee you his objections to a second Ohio State-Michigan game would have disappeared.

A rematch, this time on a neutral field, would have been a game for the ages. And if you threatened to take away his precious sweater vest if he didn't tell the truth, I bet you Buckeyes' coach Jim Tressel would rather play Florida than have to face the Wolverines again (Tressel declined to vote in the final coaches' poll).

• Florida played a tougher schedule.

Agreed. But strength of schedule is part of the equation, nothing more. Tuberville's 2004 team had the strongest strength of schedule, but didn't make it.

You want to give the Gators the edge based on scheduling? Fair enough, though you could argue that Florida didn't exactly beat vintage Alabama, Georgia and Florida State teams this year, and Central Florida and Division I-AA Western Carolina were dreadful.

And look at the one loss each suffered by Florida and Michigan on their schedules. You tell me which defeat was more impressive: the Gators' 10-point road loss to an Auburn team that finished the season No. 9 in the BCS standings? Or the Wolverines' three-point road loss to an Ohio State now favored to win the national championship?

• The BCS system rewarded Florida for finishing its season with wins at FSU and against Arkansas at the SEC championship in Atlanta.

And the BCS penalized Michigan twice for being on the wrong end of the calendar: once when USC moved to No. 2 after beating Notre Dame (even though Michigan beat the Irish worse), and now, when Florida overtook the Wolverines (even though U of M's season ended two weeks ago).

How can you call this a "system" when Florida belongs to a league that plays a conference championship, and Michigan doesn't? How can you call it a quasi-playoff when Michigan drops twice in the standings without losing a game.

• Florida has earned the right to play Ohio State.

Absolutely true. But so has Michigan.

Ask the coaches at Vanderbilt (the Commodores played both Michigan and Florida this season) who is the better team, and the consensus pick -- privately, of course -- is the Wolverines. Florida has more speed and a handful of players to die for, they say, but Michigan is more physical, would control both sides of the line of scrimmage, have wonderful wide receivers, and are led by a senior quarterback who doesn't make many mistakes.

Ask them who would give Ohio State the better game, and you'll get the same answer.

Tuberville voted Ohio State, Florida and then Michigan on his final ballot. "But I watched Michigan this year," he said. "Heck, I think they could beat anybody. But that's the way the system is. It's a screwed-up system."

Michigan never had that chance. It was 11-1 on Nov. 18. It was 11-1 on Dec. 3. But between then and now the Wolverines apparently became the cellulite queens and somehow lost the swimsuit portion of this ridiculous BCS beauty pageant.

Michigan didn't do a thing wrong. And yet Carr was the one who had to console his team Sunday night. He did it, but here's guessing he wasn't Mr. Congeniality.


Gene Wojciechowski is the senior national columnist for ESPN.com. You can contact him at gene.wojciechowski@espn3.com.

Gene stated:

Lloyd Carr and Michigan lost to No. 1 by three points...and aren't title-game worthy.
There is no polite way of saying it: Michigan got jobbed. Sunday's rankings are Exhibits A-Z why the BCS means well, but simply doesn't work -- and never will.

Gene's assumption can be grouped with mutliple other reasons that are all valid assumptions. All are certain and resolute in the fact that the BCS does not compare to a true playoffs system.

Florida got screwed until today because they never won sexy games, in terms of 'style points.' Michigan, however, lost to Ohio State for three consecutive weeks, fueled by the utter back-stabbing by Ohio State with preference made clear to play USC . . . to which USC jumped ahead of Michigan the week they played Notre Dame and beat them heavily . . . despite the fact that USC was weak and proved it against UCLA the next week. After all, the start of the chant "anyone but Michigan" originated from Columbus, Ohio, right after the conclusion of the real national championship, #1 Ohio State vs. #2 Michigan.

I feel it is absolutely unfair for Ohio State to play a championship game. They stand the most to lose, and no matter who they faced, Ohio State had to win twice to claim their rightful championship.

There's a bigger transgression with regard to Lloyd Carr's refusal to campaign for a spot in the championship game.

While Tressel's students proclaimed every yearning desire to face USC, and Ohio State expressed unified and general revulsion with the idea of facing Michigan twice, Lloyd Carr and the athletic director and president . . . they sat there and gave no vehement counter.

While Tressel's students were dismayed to watch UCLA take away their weak USC team this last Saturday, Urban Meyer's students ham-fisted their way ahead of Michigan with a steady multiple-week diet of how the BCS was unfair, how Florida's most deserving of a shot at the title, fueled on the sentiment of Ohio State's students.

And, today, I'll bet you the Urban Meyer campaign can be added to yet another list of losses that Michigan should never have suffered. This stands as big, to me, as some of the more dubious Wolverines slips, like the one that Michigan dropped in a previous year to Willingham's weak Notre Dame club. This refusal to campaign is the greatest mistake that Carr, the Schembechler remnant, ever made.

Schembechler, mind you, would never have stood pat while the entire world campaigned against his school.

Lloyd Carr, if you lose the USC game in the Rose Bowl, it won't be the first time your school was shamed by ol' Pete Carroll. It should, however, be the last. I couldn't hate you any more than I do right now. I never forget, Lloyd. You made your last mistake with me a long time ago. They fired Earle Bruce and John Cooper at Ohio State because neither coach could maintain national prominence and competitive games against Michigan. As far as I'm concerned, Lloyd, I have no sentimentality with your connection to Bo Schembechler. You're no Bo Schembechler, Lloyd, and you never will be. Win the Rose Bowl, or you and Bill Martin should turn in your resignation papers.

The University of Michigan Wolverines are football royalty. If you can't win the big games, Lloyd, then you have to leave. If you're about honor, the right thing, and loyalty, then you would do this. In other words, beat USC, or else. You're in a deep hole. Don't ever forget that.

Upon the likely victory of Ohio State in the championship game, Florida will never have known what monster Urban Meyer released. For the sake of a campaigned shot, Ohio State, with a string of top recruits, national exposure, and all the love afforded an outright champion, will make USC's arrogance seem quaint.

College football, and the NCAA, you brought this on yourselves.


[User Picture]From: fruitpunch76
2006-12-04 03:00 am (UTC)
Well put. I do find it odd that Michigan has stayed silent and under the radar for most of this....Urban has to be bipolar....his extreme attitudes and comments these past few weeks give a definite indication of this.

I don't understand why it's ok to do an NCAA Final Four for basketball, but Football is run the way it is. Ridiculous.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 03:09 am (UTC)
Michigan would generally be accepting, like most large programs and the big conferences, of the polls and current BCS system. It keeps the rich rich. Teams like Boise State are not only ecstatic . . . their entire conference gets a split of the proceeds from their bowl game. This usually isn't the case, especially with regard to usual bowl chances for the Boise States, Rutgers, teams from the MAC, Sun Belt, and all the other recognized 'have-nots.'

A playoffs system could allow a theoretical Pittsburgh Steelers team . . . let's say, Boise State this year . . . to upset their way to a national championship. The way college recruiting happens, much is placed on the shoulders of champions and their recognized shares when applicable. If Boise State were to suddenly get into a sole possession of a championship, let's say, before a long-standing high-profile team like Arkansas does (Arkansas hasn't had much luck since the 1960s but remains relatively popular due to association of their conference - the SEC) . . . the string of chaos would begin. Suddenly, it's not a lock that the big schools will continue to draw 5-star recruits. Maybe a kid from Columbus suddenly changes his mind, let's say, and heads off to Boise State next year, and that kid turns out to be a future member of Canton's hall after a fantastic career in the pros, not to mention a huge boost to the Idaho Blue Boys.

A playoffs system would make it much more difficult for the Michigans, USCs, Ohio States, and Floridas to get their usual perennial due. However, after the way Ohio State played their hand, I'm convinced the old way doesn't matter any longer.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 03:26 am (UTC)
They gave it to Florida because the SEC threatened to secede all the college states from the NCAA Union. Myles Brand is no Abraham Lincoln.

lol I'm joking.

Anyway, I'm happy that USC and Michigan will face off in another smashing traditional bowl game.

I just wish that people would realize that the SEC isn't all that and a sack of fries, with regard to that conference. SEC farms up fantastic NFL players. SEC does not breed great college football teams.

What made me sick was the constant stream of nonsense I had to blow down from giddy, prideful, and ignorant SEC-based fans about how college football should work.

I'm still cleaning out the bullshit from Arkansas and Notre Dame fans about how they ever had a legitimate shot. Their seasons should have been over in September.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 05:00 am (UTC)
I agree that the SEC is a tough conference, but the hype surrounding teams like Ole Miss >>> Iowa, for example, is a bit overblown. SEC schools dog Michigan for Ball State, but what the hell is Florida's schedule against Western Carolina?

Florida and Michigan were 50/50, with a slight edge to Florida for arguable strength of schedule nod. But, I wonder how Leak's going to enjoy possible humiliation on a national stage against one of the more potent and balanced Ohio State teams I've seen in a while.
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[User Picture]From: gjenkins05
2006-12-04 03:26 am (UTC)
Wisconsin is getting the BCS shaft too, so it is just dirty dickin' the entire Big Ten, lol.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 03:32 am (UTC)

Wisconsin Has Reason to Hate OSU and Mich Even More!

Six dirty dicks in a row, the Gang of Six, in general.

I hoped Wisconsin would get a share of the mad money, but the one game I wanted them to play was against Notre Dame, just to rock the ever-loving shit out of ND's pathetic defense. That would have at least made the NCAA consider a revoke of ND's season pass to the bowl games the way the BCS is set up . . . instead, they'll get housed by LSU at another LSU home game, and of course, SEC fans will keyboard-masturbate about how the SEC is oh so tough, yet again.

I can't believe that people didn't think John David Booty was going to collapse, what with 2 interceptions against ND's D. ND's D is crap.

I secretly hoped for a Boise State championship bid to show Idaho just how far it had to go to piss at the same stall with the Gang of Six, but alas, I'm kind of happy this is all going to hell oh so well, the way it is.

All I gotta say is, if Florida pulls out the same shit they did against Arkansas, it's going to be over in the first quarter. Good luck, Florida . . . you'll need it, lol.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 08:31 am (UTC)
At least Michigan will end up divvying the Rose Bowl loot, I believe, with Wisconsin and the rest of the Big Ten.

Too bad Illinois gets anything. j/k.

And I think that's a major problem, considering that unlike the NFL, all of this perceived "loot" is organized and distributed in such a wacky way.

All of this is a sad notion, college football, with regard to the notion of amateur = pure, what with piles and piles of $$$ going toward payment in scholarships to a number of students to promote their university through a playing field. It just seems like this is the case, and it should be the other way around, if there was any major weight to love for the amateur league. What is amateur? I don't know, I guess that's when they can't prove money exchanged hands into that of the person labeled an amateur competitor.

As much as I rail on Arizona and Detroit in the NFL, at least the system's fair. I've lol'd at the MLB for years along a similar line.

I would like to focus on the games, but the money keeps clouding my NCAAF vision!

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[User Picture]From: gjenkins05
2006-12-04 09:05 am (UTC)
Illinois has Michael Vick Juice Williams, that's all they need to make lots of money.

Money needs to stop clouding everyone's vision. But at the end of the day, everything comes down to the mighty dollar, as sad as that may be.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 09:09 am (UTC)
No matter how shitty the quality of play seems to me for the NFL, it means a whole lot more to me than anything drummed up in college football. I just can't get into these kids farther than their relative worth to any NFL team that selects them.

That doesn't exclude so many odd games well into this NFL season, heh.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 12:11 pm (UTC)
Boise State's conference should be the most displeased, but at this point, they're kind of thankful to be given any kind of nod.

I think it's time for a Royal Rumble after the champ game, Ohio State vs. Florida (again), Michigan vs. LSU (LSU probably would win this one), and Wisconsin vs. Arkansas (my money'd be on Wisconsin). I can't help but think that 2-1 outcome would be possible for the Big Ten.

But, at this point, instead of the SEC seceding from the NCAA, I think Michigan should secede from the Big Ten.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 09:53 pm (UTC)
If the Big Ten were to re-organize . . . re-name, first off the to-do list . . and if the New Big Ten somehow had two divisions . . .

1) which division would you desire, with interest for Wisconsin, to be . . . in the division with Ohio State . . . or the division with Michigan?

2) should Michigan and Ohio State be grouped in the same division?

3) should Michigan or Ohio State be allowed to leave the New Big Ten?

4) What about Penn State? Would Wisconsin want Penn State in their division?

5) Should the New Big Ten add a 12th team to even out the divisions?

6) Which team would that be? Would that team be preferred to be a lesser-viewed team . . . or would that team be more on the range of another giant, like Notre Dame?

7) Would any division and re-organization even matter, if there was somehow the possibility that with polls . . . division a was #1, division b was #2, division a won the New Big Ten champ game by 3 points, and after that week, the two teams are still #1 and #2?
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[User Picture]From: deadspook
2006-12-04 04:04 am (UTC)
All I got to say is, props to my UCLA Bruins for crushing their cross-town rivals and throwing a wrench into the system. Woot! Stole the rivalry trophy after seven years of pain and we're going to be holding this over the trojan's heads for years. :::maniacal laughter::
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 04:09 am (UTC)
That was the 2nd best game I watched this year, next to the OSU/Michigan match.

Iron Bowl got jobbed, too. The whole world watched the other game.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 05:05 am (UTC)
Since Ohio State's going to make damn sure the BCS money train works for them for the next 4-5 years, I have to ask . . . how would you organize the Pac-10 and Big Ten into a restructure that allows for a comparison conference championship game?

Meaning, how would Pac-10 set up two divisions, plus how would Big Ten set up theirs?

Also, if there was ever a reason to demolish the old Pac 10 and Big Ten (especially Big for having more than ten, lol), this was it. Ditto any other conference that doesn't have a championship game.
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[User Picture]From: deadspook
2006-12-04 06:19 am (UTC)
I like a lot of the points you've made. I honestly don't know enough though since there seems to be a constant point-counter point going on with valid point on both sides. That said, I think it's clear that the current system is ass and I think it's clear that Michigan deserved to be the title game more than Florida, and when Florida gets mauled everyone will definatively know that.

I'd honestly probably scrap the whole damn system, add two games to the season (since everyone loves them anyway), and have a big friggin' play off style tournament. When a high school team wins state, I don't here any complaining. When an NFL team wins the super bowl, I don't here any complaining. But, I've heard good points against that system, but that's just me.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 06:35 am (UTC)
Humans will always complain.

We complain about the United States, when in Iraq, et cetera, ad nauseum, Rock for Darfur, Ethiopia in the 1980s, all that.

I was an objector to the last Super Bowl played. However, at the end of the day, Pittsburgh can be confident that they struck while the iron was hot. Ditto the Miami Heat. Neither of which were strong teams, but there was plenty of argument, and where's that argument three years from now? It will, of course, have died out a long time before then, unlike Auburn, LSU, USC, Oklahoma, Michigan, of which Michigan's the first to get jobbed by the NCAA's agreement with the BCS that, while they do not recognize an official champion, they let the third party BCS system do it for them and claim it under their third party authority.

I can guarantee you that in an alternate reality, as I just typed out to someone else, I'd be congratulating Florida on a fantastic season, wishing them the best to stick it to USC to prove the SEC's might, all while being a USC fan (forgive me, buddies attend that school).

Meanwhile, in that alternate reality, 75-85 percent of fans from SEC schools in the states of the Bible Belt, plus Ohio State, would somehow deny that Florida and the rest of the schools in question were somehow threatening Ohio State's position to have to play two consecutive games for a national championship. Ohio State did that to themselves, though.

As far as I'm concerned, I could care less for the Big Ten forever, with the way Ohio State behaved. Needless to say, I expect this from the SEC.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 10:25 pm (UTC)
Also, while being a USC and Michigan fan, I found myself choosing which team I'd see as the stronger team to face Ohio State.

When the USC/UCLA game began, I enjoyed that rivalry, but I switched sides to root for UCLA. I figure that I would have ranked 1-4 as Ohio State, Michigan, USC, and Florida, going into that day, with numbers associated as a gigantic divide between Michigan and USC.

I suppose my switch to USC was very similar to the time that I watched the Lakers and Pistons play in the Finals . . . and I shifted my rooting to Detroit.

I guess I do not feel with as much potency of emotion as Valenti did when he had an on-air meltdown over his Spartans losing to Notre Dame, earlier this year.

I believe Valenti's meltdown was fueled by a sense of hopelessness, but the hopelessness had to have been present, I'd guess, with more than just that. Because I do sense that malaise of hopelessness with Valenti from that mp3 clip of the show, but by itself, hopelessness, to me, would denote an aura of depression or sadness, both of which would probably not result in a meltdown so strong as from that particular show.

As for that link you provided with the increased choice and the tendency to be linked with decrease of satisfaction, I can't thank you enough for that link.

I also have to thank UCLA for helping everyone to expose not just USC, but some underlying nation-wide dissatisfaction with the BCS as a result of the UCLA win.

It clearly wasn't the first time the BCS did not work too well for everyone, and it probably won't be the last, but I hope this time was enough for people to see that the NCAAF I-A needs to re-organize.
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[User Picture]From: holzerhedrpca
2006-12-04 04:04 am (UTC)
The fact that schools had to campaign to jockey for a shot in the title game, or who got their shot in the title game, is ludicrous and the best example of the BCS not working.

There needs to be a playoff system.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 04:09 am (UTC)
Emphatically agreed.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 06:06 am (UTC)
I love how fans from SEC schools suddenly act, like Pittsburgh Steelers fans did last year, that there was never a problem with anything at approximately 8 PM EST this last evening.
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[User Picture]From: sauce1977
2006-12-04 10:29 am (UTC)

If you weren't too busy wasting the time and money of everyone at Michigan University with the fight to preserve the right to accept as many Johnnys and Janes from a particular school district and demographic as the university feels, perhaps you could spend some more time and money addressing the fight to keep Michigan University's attractiveness to the world through the amateur sporting world!

You know that if that Johnny or Jane played one of Michigan's NCAA sports that drew plenty of national attention through the television, well, then you'd be the first to pay them to attend your school, especially if they were considered a five star recruit in their sport! Of course no one cares as much if they meet the requirements, in that case!

Your university's being attacked by the nation at large in the realm of NCAAF I-A, over the last 3 weeks! Are you aware that the Big Ten conference doesn't seem to mind? Seems to me like they don't! You better hop on a sweetheart deal, quick, in order to secure your university's prominence! After all, your AD and football program's head coach didn't seem to catch this need to defend the school! What are you paying them for, anyway!?! That's more money to fund your appearance and interpretation of an egalitarian institution! What were you thinking? I don't know! That's a problem!
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