Friday, November 03, 2006

BCS Mania: Why Louisville is Worthy

Friday A.M. Quickie here.

My question for those who watched L'ville's win over WVA last night: Were you impressed enough with Louisville that, if they run the table, you'll be satisfied if they're the second team in the BCS title game?

I was. No team is going to be able to stop Ohio St.* But at least we know Louisville can score on them -- on anyone -- with as explosive an offense as there is in college football. Giving Bobby Petrino a month to scheme for an offensive game plan for the title game seems unfair.

Louisville will presumably jump to No. 3 – taking WVA's place -- in all the major polls, including the only one that counts: The BCS poll. Then, all L'ville has to do is:

(1) Take care of their own business. (And that's no gimme: I cannot WAIT for Louisville at Rutgers next Thursday in primetime.

(2) Wait for a loser to emerge from Ohio St-Michigan.

(3) Hope to god that a 1-loss SEC champ doesn't out-rate them in the final BCS poll. (I suspect it won't, even with an Auburn-Florida SEC title game. But it'll be close.)

But if you had any concerns before (or, like me, presumptions that WVA was going to win last night), fans can feel good about this Louisville team being BCS title-game worthy. As one commenter pointed out, I'm a year late in picking Louisville to run the table via the Big East and make the BCS title game. I had them pegged for that result LAST season. D'oh.

(That said, please keep in mind my sentiment below: Who DOESN'T want to see Rutgers beat Louisville, win out and crash the BCS title game? America's Team!)

-- D.S.

(* - Too presumptuous? I'm sorry: Michigan's offense doesn't scare me as much as Ohio State's offense does. Meanwhile, I think if any team can put points up on Michigan's sick D, it's Louisville.)


Gerard L. Callan said...

why is the big east viewed as 'horrible'

west virginia, louisville, rutgers, pitt... these are all good teams and IF someone can emerge undefeated then they've earned the right to play for a title.

if rutgers wins out they will be screwed by the inertia of the polls.

Unknown said...


Shanoff...Giving Petrino a month?

How about giving Tressel a month to gameplan his defense?
Did a good job against Miami a few years ago..ND last year (better offense than UL this year).
Naw..Louisville would put up no more than 17 on Ohio State. Ohio State would put up 42 on L'ville.

rukrusher said...


I admit, not a great fight song but is what we have.

March, men of Rutgers,
Down the field today,
March to another score,
Foward to the fray,
Fight! men of Rutgers
As in days gone by,
Fight! for the Scarlet flag
Over the rest must fly.

I hope the RU defense that played Pitt shows up next week.

Trey (formerly TF) said...

Quick name the biggest out of conference win in the Big East.

It's 5-3 Miami (who has only 1 win over a D-IA opponent who has a win over a D-IA opponent, thank you Houston).

Outside Louisville's Miami win (who is a good team, but not great), name the big win for the Big East.

Maryland? Decent, I wouldn't hang my season on it because it's a BAD ACC.

Indiana? See Maryland

The Big East has FIVE out of conference games they have the schedule that means 8 more chances to beat a big conference team (or 16 if you look at the Pac -10's 9 game schedule).

I'm just not buying the Big East, it's a better conference than the MWC, MAC, C-USA...but it is nowhere near an Big 10, SEC, or Pac 10

Joe (Dayton)

ToddTheJackass said...

I'm sorry Dan, but watching that game didn't give me the sense that Louisville was worthy of being in the BCS Championship, it only showed me that the Big East is horrendously overrated. I'm sorry, but you can't tell me that you weren't thinking that half of the teams in SEC could man-handle either of those teams.

Both teams looked sloppy at times, and showed a complete inability to play defense (esepcially West Virginia). Their respective offenses are good, but I'm not so sure either scheme would do well in the Big Ten or the SEC.

I still think from top to bottom the ACC is better than the Big East this year, or at the least it's a lot, lot closer than people think.

-Todd (Boston)

BLUE said...

give me a break that ND last year had a better offense then Louisville. They don't even come close. And honestly if I was an NFL coach, i'd rather have Brohm then Quinn in a heartbeat.

Anonymous said...

So if 'Ville goes unscathed, most people think that's not worthy enough to get them to the NC? I call bullshit on that. No matter what your conference, if you come out undefeated, you should AT LEAST be considered for the national championship. Trying to win games in your conference is hard, why do you think USC lost to Oregon St? Conference games are tough and there will only be three (maybe) remaining undefeateds in 1-A. They should get to go. I highly doubt that Louisville will get through Rutgers & Pitt with two wins, and I do think Rutgers will lose one game also. So really, if that's the case, what happens when we're left with just OSU/Mich undefeated and Boise St. undefeated? I say OSU/Mich plays the 1-loss SEC champ. Boise St. should get a BCS bid and they will.

And Dan, with picking Louisville last year, wouldn't you be a year EARLY on your prediction?

john (east lansing, mi) said...

I observe that this is a different topic/comment thread than the regular Daily Quickie one. With that in mind, I copy and paste half of my comment from that thread, since it pertains to this discussion instead of that one. If you read it on the other, you can skip it:

Was Louisville really that impressive? I was pulling for them, since I've been predicting for nigh on two months that they would destroy WVU, and they kept frustrating me with dumb penalties (how many 'dead ball - personal foul's were called in that game? 12?) and sacks allowed at just the crucial moments to kill drives.

And that juggernaut offense was having a lot of trouble punching it in (in general, but now I remember especially the drive where they almost settled for another field goal because they couldn't move 2 inches) - imagine the trouble they'd have against a serious defense. I only saw the first half and 5 minutes of the second, but I saw a ton of dropped passes and receivers falling of their own accord (wtf?), and Louisville did get one honest-to-goodness offensive TD against what can only be called a very suspect secondary/line/defense, but the game was not tilting either direction until the defense capitalized on UL's insanely clever "surrender a fumble to advance the ball since WVU will inevitably fumble" strategy. Rumor (aka ESPNEWS) has it that 7 of those points also came from a... 40-yard punt return, which must be among the shortest TD returns in the history of everything.
I can't speak to the offensive contributions after the 12-minute mark of the 3rd, but I know I was watching a team with a finishing problem get a lot of help from their friends.

Don't be blind! Somebody has to win EVERY game! Just because Louisville finally demonstrated that WVU really isn't that great, doesn't mean that Louisville is! ...does anybody think those two stupid California newspaper guys will vote UL #1 now? I hope they feel like huge douchebags (they are).

This topic frustrates me beyond compare, go Scarlet Knights.

(oh, and Dan - I do want to see Rutgers win out, and I even almost believe in it, but I don't want to see the complete competition vacuum that is the Big East make a mockery of the national championship game. Maybe if they had an SEC-Big East play-in game and Rutgers proved their mettle against a good team.)

Also, your dismissal of Michigan all season is starting to prove humorous to me. That is all.

Brave Sir Robin said...

Apparently, someone pissed in Richard's cornflakes. Why is such a bad mood Dick?

Brave Sir Robin said...

John, dont' forget another 7 points came off a fumble recovery after 3 consecutive fumbles or something like that.

That was just really sloppy football and I don't think the weather warranted it (unlike the rain soaked crap fests that were OSU/Penn St. and MU/NW to name two off the top of my head.)

Christian Thoma said...

If you want the team most deserving, stick to the BCS. If you want the best team, we need a playoff.

I prefer most deserving. I fully support the BCS.

john (east lansing, mi) said...

A rare but undeniable well-composed post, ndyanks.

If only they could read...

rukrusher said...

At least Rutgers defense shut out Navy. :)

john (east lansing, mi) said...

Richard -

You had to follow that up with a really stupid post? Great jorb.

A playoff system is not going to happen. Search your heart - you know it to be true.

If a team wants to come out of nowhere and make a claim for the National Championship, ever, it needs to make its own luck by playing top-tier teams and beating them. OSU and Texas didn't really need to do that to get in the National Championship picture; but I feel a lot better about Texas '05 and OSU '06 being highly touted, because they made a bold move a couple years ago and set this whole thing up.

I think every fan of college football should be offended anytime they hear the suggestion that Boise State would deserve to play on January 8th for the National Championship because they failed to fuck up against Sacramento/Oregon/New Mexico/Fresno/ San Jose/Utah State, Wyoming, Hawaii, Utah, Idaho, Nevada, and LA Tech, and I think you should be logical enough to pull your head out into the light and see that a playoff won't happen, and shouldn't happen.

A playoff destroys everything that college football is and everything that I love about it. If you feel differently, you should find another sport, or maybe a Division II team.

If (the College Basketball equivalents of) USC and Texas were losing to (likewise) Oregon State and Texas Tech, respectively, on a given evening in February, would you skip dinner in favor of staying in to watch the former two teams flirt with a catastrophic drop from the Top 5 to the Top 15 in the CBB rankings? I'm guessing no.

As much as DS drives me crazy with his Big East love (they haven't really beaten anyone, Dan), he's perfectly right about the importance of CFB's regular season games; if one loss just means a lower seed in January, then I'm not watching CFB anymore.

Trey (formerly TF) said...

I'll say this. I agree that Louisville should be #3 right now, they're undefeated and have earned it. Should they be there in a few weeks? I am reserving judgment, there is still a lot of football left.

However, the argument has been that the Big East is a BCS conference, and if you leave a team out from the BCS auto conferences you defeat the system.

Here's my problem with that. The BCS and the 5 other conferences wanted NOTHING to do with the new Big East being part of their clique, they KNEW this would happen and really did not want to deal with a 8 team league (2 less than the Pac 10) that included 2 teams that had no major football on campus before 2002 (UConn and South Florida)making a claim at the national title game and/or a portion if the 15-17 million dollar payout. The teams left in the Big East mean very little to TV ratings and can't draw at their own stadiums much less a bowl game 1000 miles away. However, lawyers stepped in, and they were extended in the new BCS deal with conditions that they could lose their bid (must average 2 teams in the top 12 over 4 years, plus some other requirements)

While it is great that the Big East has bounced back and been a great story this year, is this league as a whole worthy of a shot for the national title? I think the fact that Rutgers (Schiano has done a GREAT job) remains undefeated shows that this league isn't on par with the other 5.

I'm not calling for the exclusion of the BE from the BCS, but they need to show that they can beat teams with a PULSE outside their conference before I'm buying this league, 1/2 of which are only in their second season being able to call themselves BCS caliber schools.

Joe (Dayton)

TBender said...

SEC teams play good teams outside of their conference? When did this happen?

SEC 1-loss Non-Con opponents:
Florida = USM, UCF, WCarolina, FSU
Auburn = Wash St, Buffalo, Tulane, Ark. St
Tennessee = Cal, USAF, Marshall, Memphis
Arkansas = USC, Utah St, SEMO, LA-Monroe

2.5 real opponents (.5 for a down FSU)

Maybe some of these SEC schools should schedule up too. Louisville might be looking for games...

Trey (formerly TF) said...


You do know Wazzou is ranked right?

I see each of those teams playing 1 big out of conference game, which is about right.

Remember, the Big East has 2 teams that were not D-IA schools 5 years ago and 5 out of conference games to schedule.

I will not bash Louisville's scheduling, it was done right. Unfortunatly, those teams just didn't pan out as well.

Joe (Dayton)

Worldwide Reader said...

Maybe some of these SEC schools should schedule up too.

I am no SEC guy (I actually went to a Big East school - go Friars!), but their teams don't have to "schedule up" to be considered for the title game. They already beat up enough on each other.

The BCS is not the answer. College football, while I love it, will always be flawed, due to lack of a playoff system. This idea of, "the entire season is a playoff" is bullshit. Go ask Auburn from a few years ago how that worked out.

Oh, and I cannot wait until the end of this regular season, when L'Ville loses to Rutgers, and Rutgers loses to WVU, and a winner from OSU/Michigan emerges ... and you have one undefeated team (Boise does NOT count) and a whole shitload of 1 loss teams, most seemingly deserving.

Then what are you going to do - still defend the BCS?

Anonymous said...

Guys, you don't need a playoff. Tell me one controversial year that wouldn't have been remedied by adding one game at the end. I've posted these thoughts more than once on this site.

'93: Notre Dame-FSU
'97: Michigan-Nebraska
'03: LSU-USC
'04: USC-Auburn

Four controversies solved with one additional game! Not a 16-team battle-royale. Just ONE game. The simplest solution is the best. (And those are just the first four I could think of. Didn't Oregon deserve to get a shot one year?)

All a playoff would do is supplant the regular season, but we all seem to like the regular season! Why do that? Somebody please convince me that a playoff is better than one additional game.

TBender said...

Apologies to missing WSU...but they are hardly a power year-in/year-out. And I don't recall them being touted as good (see Cal) at the start of the year.

The beating up on each other argument doesn't work for me at all. Why? Because it becomes an easy built-in excuse for Auburn getting shellacked by Arkansas. Plus you cannot control the conference schedule, but you can control the non-con.