Well, as if Boise State and TCU's undefeated records weren't causing enough controversy already, Ohio State president Gordon Gee thought now was a perfect time to pour gas on the fire.
"Well, I don't know enough about the Xs and Os of college football," said Gee, formerly the president at West Virginia, Colorado, Brown and Vanderbilt universities. "I do know, having been both a Southeastern Conference president and a Big Ten president, that it's like murderer's row every week for these schools. We do not play the Little Sisters of the Poor. We play very fine schools on any given day.
"So I think until a university runs through that gantlet that there's some reason to believe that they not be the best teams to [be] in the big ballgame."
Really, there's nothing Earth-shattering there from the fan/media perspective, but to hear it come from the mouth of a major university president is quite telling about the mood of BCS conference administrators toward these smaller schools. Then Mr. Gee dropped the real bomb.
"If you put a gun to my head and said, 'What are you going to do about a playoff system [if] the BCS system as it now exists goes away?' I would vote immediately to go back to the bowl system," he said.
He said the current system is better for the student-athletes.
"It's not about this incessant drive to have a national championship because I think that's a slippery slope to professionalism," he said. "I'm a fan of the bowl system and I think that by and large it's worked very, very well."
This is going to fire up the pro-playoff crowd big time. And not the "We want to see a playoff because it'd be cool" crowd, the "We want a playoff because the BCS is exclusionary and just poops on the little guy." crowd and the "We're going to investigate on Capitol Hill" crowd. You know, the people who think Ohio State should have to play a game in East Bumpkin County, Idaho before playing for a national title.
So thanks, Gordon. You've just given Sen. Orrin Hatch and his cavalcade of legislators more ammunition with which to establish the "fairest" system possible, rather than the most exciting one. Bravo.
If you're looking to book bowl game travel, the Gator Bowl is starting to look like a pretty safe bet, because president Rick Catlett pretty much told the Post-Gazette that his bowl will select Penn State if Capital One and Outback don't.
So put those fears of dropping into a late December bowl-game to rest. We're going to Florida for New Year's, baby. O, and Catlett is pretty happy Joe Paterno isn't retiring, too.
No, Rick, I'm sure you don't.
Cook On Paterno's Return
Also in the Post-Gazette, today, Ron Cook believes Paterno's announcement of his return puts the University in a difficult position.