John Feinstein used his substantial platform of the Washington Post to urge the AP voters to pick Utah at No. 1 -- entirely out of sheer spite.
I can think of no more crassly cynical thing to do or to ask for. One might even question whether it is the sports journalism equivalent of tanking a game or shaving points.
There should be a single consideration in any voter's mind: Which team do you think is No. 1? It doesn't have to be the Florida-Oklahoma winner.
It merely has to be the team you ACTUALLY THINK IS NO. 1. I can see sense in the argument that Utah is No. 1. If I truly believed it, I would vote for them as No. 1.
However, if you vote for Utah not because you think they are No. 1, but because you want to stick it to the BCS, you -- yes, you: Feinstein -- are more corrupted than the system you seek to ruin.
UPDATE: The argument is not HOW people are voting, but with WHO gets to vote -- if a voter is picking the BCS game winner because they have never seen Utah play, that is just as bad as picking Utah just to spite the BCS. Generally, we do a terrible job of qualifying voters -- the Coaches are a mess of conflicts; the Harris pollsters are a joke; the computers are opaque; the AP doesn't deserve its power. Maybe we're better off with a small Selection Committee.
What gets lost in the criticism of the current system is that no system (including a playoff) removes the inclusion problem. Four-team playoff? Utah wouldn't have been invited. 8-team playoff? Only if you abandon conference auto-bids and limits and go off of Top 8 (and, again, who picks the Top 8, and how on Earth do you decide between 6-7-8 and 9-10-11-et al?) Even a 16-team playoff would be problematic; how do you account for conference auto-bids? Do you let in all conferences? If that's the case, I'm quitting the SEC and joining the Sun Belt.)
UPDATE 2: Dammit. Orson always says these things the way I would like to say them. And he takes on Reilly's screed about Utah, though he throws in a hell of a kicker about Feinstein at the end.