Rarely have I been angered watching a sports show the way I was Sunday night when watching ESPN's BCS Selection Show. It was like I was trapped in a nightmare and everyone transformed to their alternate First Take selves. Kirk Herbstreit was yelling at me about the affront to humanity that was #15 Northern Illinois qualifying for the Orange Bowl to face Florida State. Jesse Palmer and David Pollack were feigning surprise and shock over the news of NIU's berth that was broken hours earlier in the day. The first ever BCS berth for the MAC was turned into a debate point and all of it was insulting and infuriating.
Maybe it just has something to do with ESPN analysts hating mid-major programs and teams from non-power conferences. Kirk Herbstreit's incredible tirade against Northern Illinois making the Orange Bowl conjured up memories of Jay Bilas deriding VCU making the NCAA Tournament in 2011. Of course, we all know how that ended with VCU making the Final Four.
The BCS and the bowl system sucks. It's always sucked and it always will suck until there's a true, expanded playoff where every FBS team has a chance to win a national championship. Right now there are 54 non-AQ teams (excluding Boise State) that know they have zero shot of winning a title every time they begin a season. That's the sad state of college football. At least in other sports you have the opportunity, however large or small, to win a championship on the field/court/pool/etc. Northern Kentucky University basketball knows they can win the NCAA Tournament if they win their conference and go through the tourney unbeaten. Northern Illinois football begins the season knowing no matter what they do, they won't make the BCS Championship Game. No other sport on the planet is as exclusionary as FBS college football and it has always sickened me. Heck, the only reason this non-AQ qualifying scenario that benefited NIU is in place is to protect the BCS from anti-trust lawsuits.
But until the day comes when the FBS has a true playoff (not this four team access/host bowl monstrosity that will have the same issues we're dealing with now), a token Orange Bowl appearance is the best a team from the MAC can ever hope for. That's their ceiling. That's their high point. That's the farthest they can get in college football until the powers that be stiff arm them back to reality.
And NIU and the MAC should be celebrating their accomplishment today. #MACtion in the BCS is a great story. Instead, we all have to deal with this drummed up, sensationalized debate of the scoundrels at Northern Illinois taking a BCS spot away from those poor disadvantaged people at Oklahoma and Georgia.
Watch the video, I need to take a lap around the block to calm down...
Palmer and Pollack diss Northern Illinois' resume like they're an at large team in consideration for selection in the NCAA basketball tournament. The entire debate about Northern Illinois "deserving" a BCS bowl berth is such a straw man argument it's offensive to men made of straw. Northern Illinois EARNED their BCS slot. There is no "deserving" or "undeserving" here. They won their conference, finished in the Top 16 of the BCS Standings, and finished with a higher ranking than an AQ conference champion. Northern Illinois AUTOMATICALLY QUALIFIED FOR A BCS BOWL.
That's it. There is no discussion of their resume. There is no "eye test." The biggest problem I have with this "debate" is there is no debate. It's completely fabricated.
For whatever reason, it wasn't Louisville and Wisconsin that drew ESPN's scorn, it was Northern Illinois crashing the monopoly that marauds over college football. I'm sure if the powers that be had their way, the SEC, Notre Dame, USC, and Texas would break off from the NCAA and then everybody would be happy.
But it's the vitriol from that video towards NIU that troubles me. As SI's Stewart Mandel observed, only in college football does there exist this bizarre hatred of the underdog. Perhaps it's because the protective power structures have been in place for so long. Who knows. Nevertheless, this is not a measured critique of what's wrong with the BCS. It's an attack against the Huskies. It's the dismissive attitude of what that team accomplished this year. It's the unadulterated elitism oozing from Kirk Herbstreit that bothers me more than anything. It's the way in which he berates NIU for earning something of value.
How dare Northern Illinois pick up one measly table scrap from the BCS party! Chain them up in the cellar and banish them back to the Beef O'Brady's Bowl where they belong! It was surreal to see the BCS Selection Show rant against NIU. It honestly felt like watching an NWO beatdown from back in the day.
What ESPN did Sunday night was turn the most notable accomplishment in the history of the MAC and the NIU football program into another tired debate point. Need proof?
"To put Northern Illinois in the BCS is a joke." - @kirkherbstreit... AGREE or DISAGREE?— College GameDay (@CollegeGameDay) December 3, 2012
As if all of that wasn't bad enough, Kirk Herbstreit ended his rant in the most wishy-washy manner possible:
"I love MAC football, don't get me wrong. But to put them in the BCS is an absolute joke to the rest of these teams that are more deserving."
Are you kidding me? Herbie loves MAC football??? What a ridiculous thing to say after completely burying the MAC's champion for five minutes. His whole argument against NIU is their week in and week out schedule!
ESPN can dump on the MAC all it wants, but do these people who cover college football for a living realize the MAC has more bowl eligible teams than the ACC and Big East this year? It's convenient for ESPN analysts to cherry pick Kent State's loss at Kentucky while choosing to ignore their victory at #15 Rutgers or Toledo's victory over Cincinnati or Ohio winning at Penn State. They want to ignore the MAC's 4-1 bowl record last season. They even want to forget the Boises and TCUs and Utahs of BCS games gone by because heaven forbid 7 SEC teams won't make BCS bowl games this year. (Here's where you can insert your own conspiracy theories on the money ESPN has invested in the power conferences and BCS bowls.)
In the second half hour, Herbstreit and the ESPN crew tried to walk back their criticism of Northern Illinois. Herbstreit even came back and attempted to make the point that NIU could rally against the negativity created on their program and help inspire them in the Orange Bowl! Seriously! That happened! But it was too late to save this farce. Credit NIU QB Jordan Lynch for somehow managing to stay civil while being interviewed by Rece Davis, although reports are already out there about the disrespect he rightfully feels.
When it comes to celebrating an opportunity for a conference like the MAC and a school like Northern Illinois versus protecting the interests of the powerful, I'm always going to choose the former. Herbstreit, Palmer, and Pollack took what should have been a feel-good moment for NIU, the MAC, and college football and desecrated it with power conference propaganda and grandstanding.
If Northern Illinois making one BCS appearance in 15 years at the expense of Oklahoma and Georgia is really the biggest thing wrong with college football, the sport is in more trouble than I ever imagined.
The 15th ranked NIU Huskies looked alot better against #12 Florida State than #3 Florida did against a Louisville team ranked 21st! Who was the big BCS joke here? I would say #3 Florida!!
@MarkAndrew1 I agree on the Florida point you made, But that's it! Muskchamp and Bridgewater are the reasons for that game going the way it did. Horrible coaching and a stud QB against a slow secondary. Florida was more dominant at the line of scrimmage but turnovers and momentum were never in Floridas favor. NIU got bullied up and down the field on both sides of the ball for the entire game by FSU. To say NIU looked better against the Noles than the Gators against the Cards is just plain crazy!
Total Offense 534 to 259! FSU completely dominated the game. It was never really a game from the start. Now NIU is 5-28 all time against top 25 teams. Sorry folks, Herbie was right, there were several teams more worthy of this bcs spot.
Hey Morons!! Watching the game right now, and guess what 31-10 so far and NIU is getting their asses spanked, so I'd say Kirk Herbstreit is a genius. It was a joke they were playing in this game. Seriously? 8,000 fans??? Iowa State had over 30,000 fans at the crappy Liberty Bowl.
I am so proud to be a Huskie! The underdog always has its days, and this is our time to shine. If we lose, we lose and it was an opportunity we never had and Florida hasd the chance to show us they are better. If we win, Hebstreit be get on the ground and kiss our paws. Determination to prove him wrong is what is driving our university. We will support our Huskies every day, all day. NIU NIU NIU!!!!
Written by a Friend and Former Teammate of Mine from NIU: Christy Arnold Feinberg
For my NIU peeps (and FSU friends as well), here's a column I wrote Monday: Northern Illinois University? I know. I know. It’s just as shocking to me too as an alum who went there during the football team’s 23-game losing streak. Those were the dark days for the red and black Huskies. The cold, Midwestern winds felt even harsher on those depressingly-gray autumn Saturdays from 1996 to 1998. Then, one day, the Huskies won a game. And the students carried the goal post across the campus and into the lagoon. Then, on another day, we won again. This time, we stormed the field like we’d won the BCS National Championship, tore down the goal post and threw it in the lagoon again. We sure do value victories. After all, they’ve never come easy to us in the cornfields of Northern Illinois, where the Big Ten literally surrounded us: Iowa, University of Illinois, Wisconsin and Northwestern. Those few wins turned into actual winning seasons. And those winning seasons culminated this year with a MAC Championship win against Kent State and a bid to the Orange Bowl against Florida State. Within minutes of the announcement Sunday night, the ugliness and arrogance surfaced on the Internet. “Should be a colossal (expletive) whipping,” wrote one FSU fan on Facebook. Other FSU fans wrote: “Easy win!!!” “Pathetic match up. There will be no sell out for that game. I bet you will be able to get a ticket outside the stadium for $5.” You’d think Florida State had a Notre Dame-Alabama kind of year based on those comments, instead of having lost to unranked North Carolina State and state rival Florida Gators. Since NIU last played Kent State on Oct. 8, 2011, the Huskies are 21-1. One loss, by one point to Iowa in more than a year. Let’s look at some of FSU’s super-challenging opponents this year: • Mighty Murray State, who finished the season 5-6 with losses to Central Arkansas, Eastern Illinois, Jacksonville State, among others. • Strong Savannah State, who lost every game this season except one to Edward Waters College. • Whoppers of Wake Forest, which also produced a losing season with just five wins. • Skippy’s University of South Florida, who won only three games and just fired its coach. • Unranked North Carolina State, who defeated the Seminoles, had a 7-5 season and hired NIU’s coach. • Booming Boston College, who won two games. • Mighter-than-Murray-State Maryland, with a 4-8 season. • And for the ACC Championship Game ... totally average Georgia Tech ... who ended the season 6-7. At least NIU and Kent State were both ranked team when they squared off in the MAC Championship. But that doesn’t stop the naysayers. ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit couldn’t fathom NIU’s success: “The fact that Northern Illinois is in the BCS in 2012 is really a sad state for college football and where we are in the current system. Thank goodness we’re moving toward a new system in 2014. They don’t deserve to be in the BCS this year. Are you kidding me with Northern Illinois playing in the BCS? Northern Illinois, no one knew they were playing until the Toledo game a few weeks ago. You’re going to leave Oklahoma out to put Northern Illinois into a BCS bowl game? Are you kidding me?” Let’s clarify some things Mr. Herbstreit: “If this had been 2014, NIU would have been guaranteed a spot in a playoff bowl as the highest-ranked non-BCS champion. There would be no top-12, top-16 standard to meet,” wrote Dennis Dodd for CBS Sports. Since we are in Florida, many people (including Mr. Herbstreit) may not be familiar with the Huskies and our biggest offensive weapon: Jordan Lynch. This season, Lynch has thrown for 2,962 yards with 24 touchdowns and only five interceptions. Maybe Mr. Herbstreit is uneducated or a little envious. As quarterback for Ohio State, Herbstreit threw for 1,904 yards with four touchdowns and six interceptions. He rushed for 29 yards ... in the wrong direction. Lynch rushed for 1,771 yards ... in the right direction. Forget all the negativity. Forget all the naysayers. Certainly forget Herbstreit. Focus on Florida State. They aren’t the Chicago Bears or the New England Patriots. They aren’t undefeated Notre Dame. They are Florida State, who lost two games this season including one to unranked NC State. And NIU’s presence in a BCS bowl “is really a sad state for college football?” Are you kidding me, Mr. Herbstreit? NIU deserves to be in the Orange Bowl just as much as FSU. We don’t mind being an underdog. We’re used to it. We’re the Huskies, and we’ve been waiting to tear down another goal post.
@kelly2566 And how do think your boys would do playing the same schedule as the Noles? I bet you'd have several losses....
@DustinHamlin Is your definition of several two or more??
@kelly2566 You got your chance and I hope you do well. Considering the 5+ billion espn is going to shell out to cover these games i hope it's nothing like we saw last night. Since everyone will be paying for these games in there satellite and cable packages, something needs to change. This bcs system is a joke, I do believe in underdogs having a shot, but with the money that's being tossed around on these games and how it effects everyone watching, the only true way for everyone to win is a playoff. As much as it isn't fair to the small schools not having "their shot" in the big game, it's just as unfair for a big school to endure a far more challenging schedule and get snubbed at the end of the season because a smaller school has an extra win or one less loss against lesser competition.
@DustinHamlin Buddy- just let us enjoy this moment!! If your Edison Community College Chargers' were a 4 year Division 1 School and made it to the BCS Bowl- I would be all about it!! Let the our guys have a chance- EVERY D1 school should have a chance!
@kelly2566 I think 4-6 would be quiet generous. C'mon man, NIU couldn't beat most of the ACC schools.
this is one of the best days of their lives as Huskie football players, and for Dekalb people. we are a proud hometown and we think they deserved the spot. they played the game and they won fair and square. and instead of being able to enjoy it, like all the other teams, the players have to deal with the backlash of a rude person who thinks its ok to bash the hard work of the team. everyone has their beliefs, but to take away such a joyous occasion is downright unacceptable.
Look, at the end of the day, it is not going to be a very compelling game between FSU and NIU. Period. They lost to my father's lowly Hawkeyes. Come on, man.
So, I realize people are naturally jealous of Herbie (i.e., he arguably has one of the BEST jobs in the entire world), but let's be candid. The BCS system is flawed and corrupt. Nobody presently making millions via the BCS really wants to change it any more than K street wants clean elections.
"Everyone acts according to self-interest." - Gracian
@drudown NIU did lose to Iowa but by 1 point in a game that they dominated until the refs screwed them in the closing minutes. NIU would probably wipe the field with Iowa if they played them now. All these elitist schools and elitist commentators better hope that NIU doesn't beat FSU or they will have a lot of crow to eat. Let's play the game and find out. There will be a big TV audience at the start and if NIU hangs around, watch out! The big money schools need to perpetuate the myth; it scares them when an NIU-type crashes their party. ESPN trashing NIU and promoting the big schools is like the big media trashing Romney and promoting Obama.
Herbstreit should change his name to Gobshite. The definition on the Urban Dictionary is an accurate description of him.
gobshite (n.) Loud-mouthed person who talks a lot, but nothing with any value
He whines about the schedules of NIU and other "mid majors", yet he calls it "tough scheduling" when the SECond rate conference teams all play I-AA teams. If NIU is "so much worse", the "big" teams should drop the I-AA games and play the I-A teams that DO want to play them.
But that's not what this is about. Hypocrite fanbois like Herb Gobshite want to protect and hype the teams they like. They're absolutely terrified of "small" teams earning respect and credibility on the field, which would happen by winning games. "Small" teams can't win the propaganda war, and gutless cowards like Gobshite know it.
@JohnSmith19I agree that the 1A conference teams should not play 1AA or lower teams. There are plenty of 1A teams to go around.
But, I don't think anybody is "... absolutely terrified of "small" teams earning respect and credibility on the field, which would happen by winning games". It's about fielding competitive teams against each other in the major bowl games. Sure, once in a while a non-power conference team will win or put up a good game against the PAC10, Big10, SEC...but it's not the norm, and people (the general football watching public) don't want to see the smaller conference schools play in the major bowls.
My video response to Herbstreit's rant ...
If you don't play against the big dogs, you don't deserve and form of end of season recognition PERIOD
@DustinHamlin NIU is glad to play any of the "big boys" with the guts to play them. They beat Tennessee a couple years ago, beat Alabama and Maryland back to back weeks four years ago, and have always looked to play as many big teams as possible.
@spiro And if any of those games were on this years resume I would have no issue with the way things played out. They just didn't show me (and I'm only using my opinion) that they are capable of competing in a major bowl game with millions of dollars on the line. You have Georgia, S,Carolina, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, even Clemson that had major competition on their schedule nearly every week. These schools all finished really well considering who they had to play and they miss out because of playing a very competitive schedule. Meanwhile, NIU didn't have any major competition (compared to the above mentioned teams schedules) this season and they walk right on in. It is what it is, I'm worked up more about peoples reactions to how things played out. NIU did not earn this years orange bowl spot. The orange and sugar bowls now have matchups that in my opinion aren't even worth watching. Hell even the sugar bowl isn't a very enticing game. The numbers say that FSU will blow them out of the water. I think the same goes for the Sugar bowl. Wisconsin going to the rose with 5 losses is a joke and Oregon is clearly a better team than Stanford. You plug some of the above mentioned teams into these games, and those bowls get way more interesting....
People say Things are not fair from the bottom looking up, but I think it's the other way around.
@DustinHamlin Really? So is that how it works in professional sports too?
so it is okay for big name schools to beat no-names and get ranked in the top 5. but god forbid a no-name beat other no-names.
that is why we need a playoff. if you go undefeated, regardless of who you beat. you'll either be exposed or validated by a playoff.
@awfulannouncing good job on this. Ever notice that @KirkHerbstreit never has to defend what he says? He's almost become bayless lately
@mikjones24 so did minnesota and michigan state...perhaps they should stay home as well. Nice baseless commentary Mike
I cannot stand this "eyeball test" nonsense that I'm forced to digest every year. It reminds me of the Oklahoma State/Alabama discussion a year ago. It isn't, or it shouldn't be, about putting in the teams you think are the best. It's about putting in the teams that have earned it and deserve to be there. Northern Illinois earned it. If you're using the "eyeball test" then why even bother having a regular season? Why don't we just skip it and put all the SEC teams in the biggest bowl games ? Because, clearly, that's what these talking heads want.
@thisandthatfellow Why do we have a regular season? Why, to have something for our eyeballs to look at of course!
Once again, I can say Oklahoma State earned it because they won their conference and Alabama didn't (oh wait, it was Alabama who went to the BCS title game - do you think they "earned it"?), but I can't say Northern Illinois earned it despite losing a game for lucking out just enough in the human polls and computers to cross some arbitrary ranking threshold.
I HATE THE EYEBALL TEST ARGUMENT!!! like you said, why even bother playing the regular season. if that same logic was applied to other sports the lakers and heat would get automatic berths to the nba finals. the cowboys and patriots would be in the super bowl every year and duke, kansas, kentucky and unc would be in the final four.
"Maybe it just has something to do with ESPN analysts hating mid-major programs and teams from non-power conferences."Or maybe it has something to do with NIU losing to a shit iowa team and barely escaping kansas with a non-loss?
Hey Nolessports get a clue! FSU’s super-challenging opponents this year: Mighty Murray State, who finished the season 5-6 with losses to Central Arkansas, Eastern Illinois, Jacksonville State, among others. Strong Savannah State, who lost every game this season except one to Edward Waters College. Whoppers of Wake Forest, which also produced a losing season with just five wins. Skippy’s University of South Florida, who won only three games and just fired its coach. Unranked North Carolina State, who defeated the Seminoles, had a 7-5 season and hired NIU’s coach. Booming Boston College, who won two games. Mighter-than-Murray-State Maryland, with a 4-8 season. And for the ACC Championship Game ... totally average Georgia Tech ... who ended the season 6-7. WOW what a powerhouse that FSU team is!
@Nolessports Winning by a TD is barely escaping ? Iowa barely escaped a win over NIU by 1 point....be real...NIU should have won that game ......IT WAS THE FIRST GAME OF THE SEASON
@T1m3out @Nolessports and came just days after their offensive coor. had to be replaced due to cancer. Considering they were starting 5 new offensive lineman playing their first games of their careers with new coaches, it was a great performance. After they made some adjustments, they became dominant.
@Nolessports As opposed to Notre Dame, playing for a title, that barely escaped Pittsburgh?
d-1 college football is the only sport on any level where a team can win every game by 30 points, go undefeated and have ZERO chance at a title because of the name on the front of the jersey.
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@JoshBoutwell @jd4000 I guess nothing....you can keep sitting on your coach eating your closet full of twinkies. NIU over FSU....deal with it.
One major clarification is needed. Northern Kentucky is transitioning to Division I and is not eligible for the NCAA Tournament for a few more seasons.
To add on to what morganwick said, you wrote in the article:
"They even want to forget the Boises and TCUs and Utahs of BCS games gone by because heaven forbid 7 SEC teams won't make BCS bowl games this year."
They specifically mentioned those BCS Busters of the past and said how there wasn't a standout win from NIU this season that compares to the TCU's and the Boise's of years past. And NIU's "big" wins vs the Big East weren't impressive considering the conference had no Top 25 teams entering the final week.
I agree that the NIU criticism was a little much, you can't ignore what was said to make your point.
"Northern Illinois EARNED their BCS slot. There is no "deserving" or "undeserving" here. They won their conference, finished in the Top 16 of the BCS Standings, and finished with a higher ranking than an AQ conference champion. Northern Illinois AUTOMATICALLY QUALIFIED FOR A BCS BOWL."
But how did they finish in the top 16 of the BCS standings? Because of moves in corrupt polls and unaccountable, non-transparent computers. By the way, the Big 12 had EVERY SINGLE TEAM BUT ONE bowl-eligible. And they couldn't get a second team in the BCS?
"For whatever reason, it wasn't Louisville and Wisconsin that drew ESPN's scorn, it was Northern Illinois crashing the monopoly that marauds over college football."
I think there was some scorn towards Louisville, though that may have been Rece Davis trying to keep the conversation fair and balanced in general.
"As SI's Stewart Mandel observed, only in college football does there exist this bizarre hatred of the underdog. Perhaps it's because the protective power structures have been in place for so long. ... Nevertheless, this is not a measured critique of what's wrong with the BCS. It's an attack against the Huskies. It's the dismissive attitude of what that team accomplished this year. It's the unadulterated elitism oozing from Kirk Herbstreit that bothers me more than anything. ... How dare Northern Illinois pick up one measly table scrap from the BCS party! Chain them up in the cellar and banish them back to the Beef O'Brady's Bowl where they belong!"
I don't think college football hates the underdog. Ever since Boise beat Oklahoma (always an overrated non-upset, Boise was ahead of Oklahoma in the polls to begin with because Oklahoma only even won the Big 12 because Texas fumbled its Big 12 South lead late) every subsequent BCS buster has been celebrated. But I think there's an undercurrent that Northern Illinois is less than an underdog, they shouldn't even be in the Beef O'Brady's Bowl (or more accurately, the Little Caesar's Pizza Bowl). This isn't the Giants against the Patriots; I think a lot of old-school college football fans look at it more like Notre Dame or Alabama playing the Patriots. Simply put, they shouldn't even be playing the same game at all.
What I've learned in the six or so years I've been following college football is that a large number of the eyes that have been attracted to college football in the past couple of decades don't know the first thing about it, and have inadvertently ruined it in the process. FBS college football is not an NCAA activity. It is formed by the schools with the most tradition, the best rivalries, the longest histories, and the biggest fanbases. It is almost more like a professional sport in that sense; there was one comment on the Frank the Tank blog that if you compare the makeup of the power conferences before the collapse of the Southwest Conference to right after the Rutgers/Maryland move was announced, only three schools changed their in/out status when it all shook out: Utah in, Temple and Rice out. But even then it's different, because unlike every other sport in this country, the power works its way from the bottom up.
Other schools may start football teams, but they will never truly be playing <i>college football</i> in the same sense as an Ohio State, Notre Dame, or Alabama. That has been the driving force behind each successive sub-division of the NCAA, right down to the formation of I-A, as an attempt to formalize the <i>true</i> college football teams as separate from the interlopers, and what will ultimately lead the power teams to secede from the NCAA. And it's why I have long proposed a European-style <a href="/http://sports.morganwick.com/2012/05/college-football-promotion-and-relegation-revisited/">promotion and relegation system</a> for college football; in England, even the tiniest Sunday league team has a chance to work their way up to the Premier League, yet very rarely will they truly threaten the Arsenals, Chelseas, and Manchester Uniteds of the world.
"It's convenient for ESPN analysts to cherry pick Kent State's loss at Kentucky while choosing to ignore their victory at #15 Rutgers or Toledo's victory over Cincinnati or Ohio winning at Penn State."
I'm pretty sure the Rutgers game was mentioned at some point.
"They even want to forget the Boises and TCUs and Utahs of BCS games gone by because heaven forbid 7 SEC teams won't make BCS bowl games this year."
Northern Illinois, unlike those other BCS busters, has a loss, and sort of a nasty one at that. Funny you didn't mention that Herbstreit complained about the four SEC teams at the bottom of the top 10 not getting a shot, despite the fact that the BCS is capped at two teams per conference and so Northern Illinois didn't take a spot from them. Perhaps because it didn't quite fit your narrative of six minutes of non-stop hating on the little guy.
"In the second half hour, Herbstreit and the ESPN crew tried to walk back their criticism of Northern Illinois. Herbstreit even came back and attempted to make the point that NIU could rally against the negativity created on their program and help inspire them in the Orange Bowl!"
If there's an ESPN conspiracy here, it's wishful thinking that this is precisely what happens - or at least, that they've planted the seed in viewers' minds that it'll happen, because you know the ratings for that Orange Bowl are going to be atrocious otherwise.
@morganwick You are a moron! Playing against schools that would lose to high school varsity teams is not "earning" shit! NIU's only AQ conference win was against Kansas (0-9, 1-11). Earned?? what exactly did they earn? They didn't prove anything to the college football world that they deserve a spot in the BCS! Oh yeah, they beat a team in the conf. championship that lost to Kentucky(0-8, 2-10) by 33. Earned??? You're a dumbass! Do you even know what a football is? Your little rant about the little schools limited success is cute. Lets not forget, this is a game and there will always be let downs( YES MORON - those games were definitely let downs). But to sit there and say a school that might schedule 1 game against the worst team in an AQ conference is worthy of even being in the discussion of the bcs is just plain stupid. If you're a small or unrecognized school, you play the tough games and earn some recognition, not hide in your own conference's mediocrity. Schools like Lousiville, Rutgers, even South Florida scheduled "real" teams and eventually left their lousy "crap" conferences to get that same recognition. Bottom line is, If you don't run with the big dogs, STFU when it comes to the end of season notoriety!! All of your points are factual blobs mix with simple minded - small town logic. NIU in the bcs is not for the greater good of the sport. Put them against everyone in the top 25 and they would be lucky to win one game. If they aren't capable of even playing a game ( let alone winning) against a quality opponent, they shouldn't even be mentioned in the bcs. You sir are an idiot!
@DustinHamlin Why are you calling me an idiot when I'm arguing against Matt saying they earned it? I'm not disagreeing with you. For someone who repeatedly calls me a "moron" and "idiot", I think you came off a lot more of a "moron" and "idiot" making your point than I did mine.
@morganwick You're right, I did come off sounding more like a jackass than an idiot. I should have walked away and caught my breath. No ill will against you, i just love college football and think the whole bcs system is criminal. With so much money involved, this whole 1A college football bsc system should be regulated by a much higher power. I do still strongly feel that NIU does not deserve to play in a bcs game. How ever a louisville team that lost to uconn and syracuse (in football, not basketball) to end the season doesn't really deserve to be in a bcs game either. Same for Wisconsin. The college football world has been robbed of several great potential matchups for this years bowl games. A Florida - Oklahoma or a FSU - Georga/ S.Carolina match up would have been FAR more entertaining then the crap games that we are going to see. I have watched all the bsc bowl games religiously for as long as i can remember. 3 of the 5 "Big" games this year aren't even worth watching. I say 3 because even the rose bowl with Bret Bielema leaving for Arkansas and Oregon (clearly the class of the pac 12 this year) not even playing in the game, it's just not a very enticing match up for me. I do like the K State - Oregon match up, but I think Texas A&M, Florida, Georgia bring better game to the table against the ducks. Instead we have OU and A&M for the cotton bowl, which is a great match up, but it's the same game we've been seeing since the Big 8. Oregon - A&M, K-State - Georga, ... now those are games that have way more appeal than what they scheduled. @Sean Hamlin