Monday, August 03, 2009

Mountain West Commish Craig Thompson:
Banish Harris, Coaches Polls from BCS

I've been hard on Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson. I mocked his playoff proposal because his big idea seemed to be "Let the MWC into the BCS." I mocked that he ripped the BCS cabal yet subordinated playoff to payoff to remain on the outside looking in.

But, in the face of new evidence, I am going to flip-flop my opinion of Thompson: Good man!

Why? Because he is the first commissioner to point out that both the Harris Poll and Coaches Poll are TERRIBLE ways to pick a BCS title-game pairing, let alone account for 60 percent of the vote. Per the Palm Beach Post's Ben Volin:
In our conversation, Thompson said he would like to see the Harris and Coaches polls removed from the BCS equation, because they amount to little more than opinion polls, he said. And most of the voters only know about college football what they see on ESPN at the end of their Saturday night.

"I’ve never been a great fan of the opinion polls. That's all they are" Thompson said. "Just the Tim Tebow story from last week is the perfect example. Coaches aren't filling those (ballots) out, and those that do, aren’t they kind of busy on Saturdays?"
For Thompson, the system would best be left up to the computers. I agree 100 percent. Perhaps you have a small selection committee to reality-check the computer data -- like the NCAA Tournament selection committee basically does -- but I like the computers more than the BCS' human components.

(That said: The computer polls need to be WAY more transparent. Every computer-poll administrator should be forced to lay out -- and even defend -- his system. If they don't want to do that, they don't have to be part of the BCS equation.)

But kudos to you, Commissioner Thompson.

-- D.S.

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