In honor of the eight teams in the Big East Conference, here are eight reasons why I will not be writing a preview of the Big East this year:
1. The BCS still gives the Big East an automatic berth
We know what kind of a travesty this is. Even though the ACC also gets to keep its bid, the Big East is far more egregious this season. Hyper-mediocrity in a conference is something I’d expect from the MAC or the Big Ten, but it shouldn’t be rewarded in this fashion every season. I realize it’s all about money, but there has to be some kind of system for taking a conference’s BCS bid away if they suck.
As it is, the BCS already kind of has a system for dealing with crappy conference champions. There’s two ways this could go. First, the BCS will try to have one game they want to “hide” from the fans. Think Virginia Tech versus Kansas in last year’s Orange Bowl. Everyone knew that would be the worst matchup, so the BCS let it happen in the name of other, better, games. The other option for the BCS is to pit the Big East champ against the non-BCS invitee who managed to get themselves ranked in the BCS top twelve before the games were picked. Then we could see a team with a real fighting chance to win a major bowl. Think Utah versus, hey whaddya know, Big East champion Pitt a few years back. If it’s what we’ve got to deal with, then I guess it’s okay. There are too many BCS games as it is.
2. It’s not “depth within the conference.” It’s “universal sucktastic-ness.”
There isn’t one team in the Big East that’s a real threat to the national rankings. They’re awesome that way. West Virginia? Lost their biggest playmaker. Rutgers? Also lost their biggest playmaker. USF? Wake me when Matt Grothe learns how to pass. Louisville isn’t going to recover from last season in one offseason in which they lost both of their best receivers and their starting quarterback. Cincinnati is still Cincinnati, even though they’re competently run now. UConn? Pitt? Freaking Syracuse? Please.
Despite that garden of mediocrity above, seven of the eight teams could potentially win the conference in 2008. Usually, that would be a good thing. Everyone loves to fawn over the SEC and how any of the teams could pull off a trip to the SEC championship game. Not so much here. None of the teams are any good, so were we to pay attention all season, we’d get to see everyone beating everyone else and end up with a conference champion with two or even three conference losses. It’s not depth, it’s crap.
3. They don’t even have a conference title game
Speaking of the SEC, since there’s only eight teams, there’s no pointless money-grab of a conference title game to look forward to. On the one hand, that means we can avoid matchups like the Tennessee/LSU suckfest in last season’s SEC championship game. On the other hand, it means teams like Pitt can sneak into the BCS even though they clearly sucked. They lost to freaking Syracuse during the ’04 season and only got in through a tie-breaker in the four-way tie for first. This past season, West Virginia and f*cking UConn tied for the title, with West Virginia getting the BCS bid.
4. Wanny’s lip-warmer
5. No Relegation
I’m actually a proponent of this for every major conference. If a team/program simply sucks for a fairly long period of time, say, five years, they should be relegated to one of the minor conferences. Then some of the more deserving small-conference teams can be moved into the major conferences and have legitimate shots at the BCS honey pot. Wouldn’t the Big East look better with a growing, improving East Carolina program instead of Syracuse? What about the Pac-10 with Fresno State or BYU instead of Stanford or Washington State? If a team can’t muster eleven wins in five seasons, there should be relegation in major college football.
6. Pitt 13 West Virginia 9
I realize the Mountaineers destroyed Oklahoma, but that was after a month off and OU chokes in January anyway. Indiana would have had a fighting chance against the Sooners in that game. What kind of conference champion can lose to Pitt but still get a BCS bid? And no, the transitive property doesn’t work here. Pitt isn’t better than Oklahoma too. The Big East just sucks. There’s a reason Rich Rodriguez got the hell out of there after the Pitt game, and don’t believe the hype about “disagreements with the administration.” He wanted the hell out of the Big East.
7. There’s only eight teams for football, but 23,420,942,234 for basketball
So they get to have 16 teams for basketball but only eight for football? I realize many other conferences do this, but the real reason this makes the Big East suck is they let teams like Notre Dame, who have no business as an independent other than money, get away with being in a conference for everything but football. All they had to do was put their foot down, but instead they bowed to the Irish and let them compete in everything but football. Sick burn on the sign in the picture, by the way. Very creative.
No conference is more representative of how much the BCS cabal sucks than the Big East. They legitimize all the greed and shady business deals that college football has come to symbolize. The Big East gets to make all that BCS money while it sucks. Notre Dame gets to stay independent and compete for the Commander in Chief Trophy because NBC is stupid. And we have absolutely no say in it whatsoever.
8. Because I couldn’t do this bit with both the ACC and the Big East
Hey, it’s a good reason.