Meaningless schedules produce meaningless results

KrAzY3

Hall of Fame
Jan 18, 2006
9,412
1,052
178
40
www.myspace.com
I've been on record for quite some time as saying there are too many FBS teams. There are programs that are basically just a vanity project for the college (at a time when I hear more and more complaints about student debt). Along with losing money, some of these programs meet the minimum NCAA requirements purely through gaming the system or the NCAA simply failing to enforce rules.

They're pretenders, and to emphasize to what extent, I've seen lists showing college win totals showing pre-FBS win totals for Boise State and Appalachian State as though winning a junior college game or something is comparable to winning at the top level. Here's a hint, Boise State has only been playing in the FBS since 1996, they darn sure haven't won 20 games a year.

So, the idea is through smoke and mirrors to confuse us into thinking these nothing programs are something special. Boise State was the queen of this for years, but lately they've been getting tripped up by fairly mundane obstacles. Then there was that time in 2018 when their bowl game got cancelled and no one seemed to notice. However, with much of the Power 5 teams playing conference only schedules, a new opportunity for these wannabes presented itself.

So, we have undefeated Cincinnati, Coastal Carolina, and BYU. First, I'll address Coastal Carolina. They're a joke. They didn't even play anyone last year and they went 5-7. Their schedule consists of the sort of teams Alabama gets made fun of for scheduling as OOC games. They did manage to play one Power 5 program and that is telling in and of itself. One of their closet games of the year came against 0-7 Kansas (I remind people not all Power 5 programs or conferences are equal). This also happened to be Kansas' closest game of the year by the way.

BYU can posture all they want, but they haven't played anyone either. What's their big win? The only ranked team they played was another pretender, 4-1 Boise State. They want us to pay attention to the 0 losses, but who did they beat? What did they accomplish? Then we have Cincinnati, who I'd argue might be getting too much credit. The wreckage of the Big East still gets attention sometime, but at least Cincinnati did play Army out of conference. Think about it though, Cincinnati's big victory is Army?

If we shift over to Sagarin, we have SoS rankings to look at. They are going to be a little weird this year, but for instance Alabama sits at a healthy 24. Cincinnati is at 84, Coastal Carolina is at 107 and BYU is at 108. How many SEC teams would be undefeated with those schedules? I am actually for Alabama playing some of those type of games OOC, but specifically so Alabama can rest the starters.

Generally speaking though, I think the committee did a good job of not awarding participation trophies with their rankings. BYU, Oregon, USC, and Coastal Carolina all fall 15 or lower and deservedly so. They haven't done anything. I think Cincinnati might be too high, but who is supposed to be higher? 5 win Northwestern? 5-2 Georgia? So I understand that rational and take solace in the fact that three 1 loss teams are ranked higher.

This will be interesting to watch play out. But so far I have to agree with the basic position the committee seems to have taken. They're not going to reward a team for accomplishing nothing of merit. That's the way it should be.
 

TideEngineer08

Hall of Fame
Jun 9, 2009
22,759
5,602
178
Beautiful Cullman, AL
For years I have fought against anything that makes the college game closer to the NFL game. However, on this topic I have come around. The NFL has it generally correct on scheduling. They can't help it... 32 teams creates default parity. Every schedule is tough and going undefeated is next to impossible. The worst team in the league can beat the best team on any given Sunday.

One this note I would not be sad at all to see the Power 5 jettison the rest of the group of 5. I would not be sad to see the also rans of the power 5 get swapped for the elite of the group of 5. Vanderbilt for Cincinnati, if you will. However, it needs to be said that in those cases, the Cincinnatis will simply become the new Vanderbilts, so swapping is probably not a net benefit at all.
 

BamaPacacola

All-SEC
Oct 2, 2020
1,491
1,233
163
40
Pace, FL (from Andalusia)
The little guys get lucky every now and then. Boise State/OK, Troy/OK State, etc. Still, the consistency is never there. I didn't like &M and Mizzou joining the SEC and really didn't like the fact that we have a group of 5. Those teams just whine.
 

KrAzY3

Hall of Fame
Jan 18, 2006
9,412
1,052
178
40
www.myspace.com
Cincinnati is ranked ahead of Oregon.... but there a few here terrified that the PAC 12 was going to sneak in.
Well prior to the ranking you could have counted me among them, not sure if you still do. I never thought they'd sneak past major undefeated programs but I had concerns about the one loss teams. I'm still not sure what they do post-conference championships, since that's supposed to mean something. I'd personally get great satisfaction if I see something like an undefeated Pac-12 champion ranked around #10 but we shall see. Fairly pleased with the first rankings though.
 

81usaf92

Hall of Fame
Apr 26, 2008
18,915
9,778
178
South Alabama
Well prior to the ranking you could have counted me among them, not sure if you still do. I never thought they'd sneak past major undefeated programs but I had concerns about the one loss teams. I'm still not sure what they do post-conference championships, since that's supposed to mean something. I'd personally get great satisfaction if I see something like an undefeated Pac-12 champion ranked around #10 but we shall see. Fairly pleased with the first rankings though.
I think the committee doesn’t have any hidden agenda. They value #of wins and # quality wins more than undefeated records. The only two instances in which they messed up was 14 and 15. Otherwise they have stuck to formula. That’s my point. I just don’t understand the theories that have been circulating around the idea that the committee is going to let the PAC 12 waltz in to a title. I would even say Oklahoma has a better chance at this point than Oregon
 
Last edited:

Ole Man Dan

Hall of Fame
Apr 21, 2008
7,329
1,017
178
Gadsden, Al.
Well prior to the ranking you could have counted me among them, not sure if you still do. I never thought they'd sneak past major undefeated programs but I had concerns about the one loss teams. I'm still not sure what they do post-conference championships, since that's supposed to mean something. I'd personally get great satisfaction if I see something like an undefeated Pac-12 champion ranked around #10 but we shall see. Fairly pleased with the first rankings though.
If the smaller teams are insulted because they aren't talked about in the same breath as Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, they can put on their big boy pants and schedule games against the big boys.
 
  • Like
Reactions: B1GTide

BamaBoySince89

All-SEC
Aug 13, 2016
1,616
450
98
39
Harvest, AL
With BYU being a Independent, they should have gotten smart and pulled a ND and tried to join the Big 12 for a season. Otherwise I don’t know what they were expecting from the committee by playing a Chitlin Circuit type of schedule.
 
  • Like
Reactions: B1GTide and KrAzY3

KrAzY3

Hall of Fame
Jan 18, 2006
9,412
1,052
178
40
www.myspace.com
I think the committee doesn’t have any hidden agenda. They value #of wins and # quality wins more than undefeated records.
I still can't forgive the committee for ranking a two loss Auburn team ahead of one loss Alabama. I went over it at the time, but not only did it age horribly (Alabama won the championship and Auburn had 4 losses), but at the time it was very wrong in my opinion.

It was as though Alabama's win over LSU didn't count, or that Alabama didn't basically break FSU as a football program. As it turned out, Alabama went on to beat both Georgia and Clemson, showing just how wrong they had been.

I have two takeaways to that though. One would be that you can't go too far in assuming a team would lose a game they didn't play. In this case Alabama had played 4 ranked teams, it wasn't a soft schedule. So, I still personally struggle with the point in which you stop penalizing a team for their schedule and reward them for their accomplishments. I think they do to, I'm not sure how you can argue Ohio State schedule has proven much yet (Nebraska, Penn State and Rutgers are a combined 2-12 so they're in the top four basically on one win?) . So Ohio State kind of breaks that win total/quality win criteria...

The other aspect of this is of course the rotating nature of the committee. Just because they did something in the past doesn't mean they do it in the future. However, it is precedent I'm really looking at. Once they establish one, they are more likely to follow that the next time. The thing I'm currently looking for is (assuming Cincy keeps winning) whether or not Cincinnati gets chased down. They are 8-0 and 7th, but if Northwestern keeps winning, or if Oregon keeps winning I wonder where they end up. I am as I've said in the past very curious about this.
 
  • Like
Reactions: B1GTide and Con

Crimson1967

Hall of Fame
Nov 22, 2011
14,538
3,287
178
For years I have fought against anything that makes the college game closer to the NFL game. However, on this topic I have come around. The NFL has it generally correct on scheduling. They can't help it... 32 teams creates default parity. Every schedule is tough and going undefeated is next to impossible. The worst team in the league can beat the best team on any given Sunday.

One this note I would not be sad at all to see the Power 5 jettison the rest of the group of 5. I would not be sad to see the also rans of the power 5 get swapped for the elite of the group of 5. Vanderbilt for Cincinnati, if you will. However, it needs to be said that in those cases, the Cincinnatis will simply become the new Vanderbilts, so swapping is probably not a net benefit at all.
With only 32 teams it is easy to have parity. Division rivals play practically the same schedule. Sure, you will have situations like the NFC East this year but now they have three wild cards per conference so everyone has a fair shot.

But with 130 teams you have teams playing wildly different schedules. I don’t have a problem with a G5 getting a NY6 bowl bid. But unless you want a 24 team playoff like the FCS then every conference isn’t going to have a “fair” shot.

That being said, I wouldn’t mind playing Cincinnati in the semifinals just to shut up the G5 crowd.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Con

81usaf92

Hall of Fame
Apr 26, 2008
18,915
9,778
178
South Alabama
I still can't forgive the committee for ranking a two loss Auburn team ahead of one loss Alabama. I went over it at the time, but not only did it age horribly (Alabama won the championship and Auburn had 4 losses), but at the time it was very wrong in my opinion.

It was as though Alabama's win over LSU didn't count, or that Alabama didn't basically break FSU as a football program. As it turned out, Alabama went on to beat both Georgia and Clemson, showing just how wrong they had been.

I have two takeaways to that though. One would be that you can't go too far in assuming a team would lose a game they didn't play. In this case Alabama had played 4 ranked teams, it wasn't a soft schedule. So, I still personally struggle with the point in which you stop penalizing a team for their schedule and reward them for their accomplishments. I think they do to, I'm not sure how you can argue Ohio State schedule has proven much yet (Nebraska, Penn State and Rutgers are a combined 2-12 so they're in the top four basically on one win?) . So Ohio State kind of breaks that win total/quality win criteria...

The other aspect of this is of course the rotating nature of the committee. Just because they did something in the past doesn't mean they do it in the future. However, it is precedent I'm really looking at. Once they establish one, they are more likely to follow that the next time. The thing I'm currently looking for is (assuming Cincy keeps winning) whether or not Cincinnati gets chased down. They are 8-0 and 7th, but if Northwestern keeps winning, or if Oregon keeps winning I wonder where they end up. I am as I've said in the past very curious about this.
1) 2017 Auburn deserved to be ahead of us going into championship week. Beating two #1 teams in three weeks and have two quality losses while Alabama’s best win is MSU and LSU. The real problem wasn’t Auburn it was Clemson and Wisconsin. Everyone knew they weren’t top 4 material but really how could you not put them there at that point?

2) I don’t think winning a national championship proves people wrong about your schedule. Clemson 2018, Ohio St 2014, and Nebraska 95 really stands out in that regard

3) Personally I had Ohio St at #3 and Clemson at #4 but it really doesn’t matter at the end because they are near equal.

4) Cincy and BYU aren’t getting in and neither is the PAC 12. There is too much chaos involved with too few weeks left. Oklahoma stands a better shot at sneaking in.

5) NW is really relying on aTm losing. I really think aTm’s loss and Big win has positioned them strongly as 1st alternative

6) also this narrative that “well Auburn was a 4 loss team” is just wrong in the sense that it has been used. They skull drug both us and Georgia in the regular season. Both of your national championship teams. They were a two loss team going into the SECCG. Had they won and Wisconsin still loss how could you not have them at #3? They would’ve beaten 3 top 5 teams in the span of a month. The ranking was more a show that Ohio St wasn’t getting in more than anything else, and that Auburn stood everything to win vs Georgia.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Con

KrAzY3

Hall of Fame
Jan 18, 2006
9,412
1,052
178
40
www.myspace.com
1) 2017 Auburn deserved to be ahead of us going into championship week. Beating two #1 teams in three weeks and have two quality losses while Alabama’s best win is MSU and LSU.
Never going to believe that. Didn't believe it when the rankings came out and it only looked increasingly foolish as time went by. I made this point at the time, not in retrospect and I broke down the schedule in detail. For the record one "quality loss" is better than two quality losses. You can't assume a team will lose a game they didn't play, and as I said before it wasn't as though Alabama hasn't played anyone. They beat LSU who beat Auburn, and they beat a then #3 FSU team and as I said basically broke them. A champion vs. a 4 loss team, clearly didn't age well. We're not going to agree on that one though... Not trying to go in circles but I never will agree with basically assuming losses in rankings.

The thing about Ohio State is they have one quality win and that's it. They only have 4 wins total. I personally would rank them top 4 as well, but there's no way to say they are there purely on win totals and quality wins. So there are clearly exceptions.

I'd agree with #4, but remember I'm interested in the process and always have been. This isn't just about who gets in, but how the process works. I think the rankings solidified the idea that only chaos opens any sort of window for those teams.

Just the Alabama/Auburn debate is a good example of how complex some of these issues can be, as well as Ohio State's current ranking. Ohio State's opponents are 6-13. That's atrocious. While I can agree with the ranking, it's clearly not because of who they beat and how many wins they have. It's just based on how good a team they appear to be. So there is some inconsistency there.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Con

B1GTide

TideFans Legend
Apr 13, 2012
35,593
20,551
178
I don't think that Cincy gets in before any of the teams currently ranked ahead of them if those teams all have 1 loss or less because they all have a few very solid wins that Cincy will not have an opportunity to match.

Only chaos gets Cincy up 4 slots and into the CFP.
 

81usaf92

Hall of Fame
Apr 26, 2008
18,915
9,778
178
South Alabama
Never going to believe that. Didn't believe it when the rankings came out and it only looked increasingly foolish as time went by. I made this point at the time, not in retrospect and I broke down the schedule in detail. For the record one "quality loss" is better than two quality losses. You can't assume a team will lose a game they didn't play, and as I said before it wasn't as though Alabama hasn't played anyone. They beat LSU who beat Auburn, and they beat a then #3 FSU team and as I said basically broke them. A champion vs. a 4 loss team, clearly didn't age well. We're not going to agree on that one though... Not trying to go in circles but I never will agree with basically assuming losses in rankings.

The thing about Ohio State is they have one quality win and that's it. They only have 4 wins total. I personally would rank them top 4 as well, but there's no way to say they are there purely on win totals and quality wins. So there are clearly exceptions.

I'd agree with #4, but remember I'm interested in the process and always have been. This isn't just about who gets in, but how the process works. I think the rankings solidified the idea that only chaos opens any sort of window for those teams.

Just the Alabama/Auburn debate is a good example of how complex some of these issues can be, as well as Ohio State's current ranking. Ohio State's opponents are 6-13. That's atrocious. While I can agree with the ranking, it's clearly not because of who they beat and how many wins they have. It's just based on how good a team they appear to be. So there is some inconsistency there.
Okay. Let’s say Auburn beats Georgia and Ohio St beats Wisconsin in 2017. How in the world are you going to justify Bama at #3 over Auburn? Auburn would’ve beaten 3 top 5 teams in 4 weeks while Alabama didn’t beat 1 top 15 team in 13 weeks (CFP rankings and not preseason ones)
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: B1GTide

TF Shop : NATIONAL CHAMP GEAR!

TideFansShop.com up to 65% off!!

TideFans.Shop - Get your Bama Championship gear here!
TideFans.Shop - Get your Bama Championship gear here!
TideFans.Shop - Get your Bama Championship gear here!

Purchases made through our TideFans.shop and Amazon.com links may result in a commission being paid to TideFans.

Latest threads