COLLEGE FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP ANNOUNCMENT BRINGS NEWS TO THE DOG DAYS
Bye, Bye BCS: The announcement that college football’s national championship will be decided by a four team tournament will not satisfy everyone, but it is a great improvement over what we have had for the last fifteen years. The chances of a third undefeated team getting left out of the championship will be greatly diminished, although the criteria for selection have not been determined. Even though the FCS has a full-blown tournament to decide its champion, I have never been in favor of that method for what has been called the FBS. The regular season and conference championships need to stay relevant. This will certainly maintain that. All in all, it may have taken a couple of decades, but they got it mostly right.
Bye, Bye Bird: Larry Bird’s departure, at least for now, from the Indiana Pacers doesn’t really surprise me all that much. He looked tired during the playoffs, despite building a tough and solid team that appeared ready to de-rail the Heat in the second round. Bird cited health reasons for leaving and I hope it isn’t anything serious that is forcing him out of the game at age 55. Bird’s Indiana State team beat Virginia Tech, my alma mater, in my senior year on their way to a matchup with Michigan State in the NCAA championship game. The Sycamores scored 25 consecutive points in that win over my Hokies to put the game away early. Larry Bird’s success at every level, including college player, NBA player, coach and front office executive is incredibly impressive and I certainly hope he can get healthy and come back to contribute to the game again in the future.
Howard’s Hostage: Otherwise known as the Orlando Magic, who hope to get some value for Dwight Howard. The Houston Rockets are gearing up to make a run at Howard by stockpiling draft picks. Not a bad deal for the Magic if they want to rebuild. The only problem is Houston may not be an attractive destination for Howard. And without draft picks, will the Rockets be able to surround Howard with enough talent to compete for a championship? Lebron was severely criticized for his actions two years ago, but I believe Dwight Howard’s manipulation of the Magic is far worse. I’m interested to see how this plays out and if fans will be as critical of Howard as they were of James.
Penalty Kicks Again for Spain? Really?: This just in: the college presidents have decided that any ties in the Football Playoffs will be decided by a field goal kicking contest……from the 10 yard line…..I’m sorry, but I’m going to repeat myself: I have a very difficult time following a sport that uses something as arbitrary as the penalty kick to decide a game as important as a EURO semifinal or a World Cup knockout game, up to and including the final. So players are tired? Allow two more substitutes per overtime period. Or do what they do for hockey and have a full intermission between periods. But what do you expect for an organization that still won’t use replay to verify or nullify a goal. I mean really, it’s the lowest scoring sport on the planet. How many times would you have to use it? Once or twice in an entire tournament? Oh, brother, if I’m spending this much time on a soccer tournament that doesn’t even include the U.S., then I really am ready for football.