Does Conference Realignment Shut Out Non-BCS Conference Teams?

Commissioners from BCS conferences have reached a consensus on a postseason but all of the details have not been made public. Among the criticisms of the previous system, is that it made it nearly impossible for deserving teams from non-BCS conferences (think Utah, Boise State, and TCU) to compete for national championships. But now that the three best examples of worthy teams outside BCS conferences have joined BCS conferences, what might that mean for a playoff?


Phil Steele has had a particularly good track record (if he does say so himself) in recent years of identifying the best teams outside of BCS conferences. This year he predicts that Central Florida will be the best team playing outside of a BCS conference. He has the Golden Knights going undefeated in their conference, but doesn't spell out whether the team will win nonconference games against Ohio State and Missouri. Chances are the school will neither be undefeated nor competing in the national championship game next year. If UCF is prototypical of what non-BCS conferences will have to offer in the future, then what level of respect or inclusion should they be entitled to under the new playoff? Put another way, is it possible to have a legitimate playoff that doesn't include schools like UCF?

It's not hard to concoct a scenario where another Boise State is born that sits outside a BCS conference. But will it happen in the next five years? Hawaii is still in the Mountain West, and they earned a Sugar Bowl bid in 2007. Of course, they were blown off the field in that game. Could BCS schools get away with adopting a proposal that entirely leaves out the non-BCS schools? Will it matter if they do?

This will likely all be determined before teams like UCF get to prove their mettle on the field. And the Golden Knights have a fair amount to prove as publications like Athlon give UCF a preseason ranking of 66, behind even Minnesota. In any case, the games against Missouri and Ohio State should be of interest early in the year to see whether or not leagues like Conference USA have any more Davids that can hang with the Goliaths within BCS conferences.

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Comments 9 comments so far

If Boise St and others want to play for all the marbles they need to “earn” it like everyone else. Playing creampuffs all year long shouldn’t get you to the NC game.

Gee, do you think Alabama could go undefeated with their schedule? Haha, ok seriously…...using only their 4th string players? 5th string? LSU using only their waterboys?

At any rate, I’m not overly worried about the creampuff programs not making it. Quite frankly, not at all.

Of course Boise St. Wants to play for all of the marbles. They are part of the NCAA which should entitle them to play for championships.

All Boise St. has done is play lights out against competition they have played. If you can believe Phil Steele (I do) and his stats, he clearly shows on the right hand page (for his 2012 College Football Preview) on Boise St., the statistics under Chris Petersen’s 7 years as head coach. 3-0 against top 10 teams and 8-3 against top 25. He also has a slightly better home winning record than Coach Stoops (77-3).

As far as cupcakes? Yea, he does have cupcakes in his conference but the Big 12 North was no giant slayer so let’s just stop there.

Be careful with comments about Chris Petersen’s teams because he just might be NU’s next head coach. If Bob Stoops calls it quits, watch OU go balls out for this guy. I believe he will coach either of those 2 in the future.

Truthfully, Nebraska could call this guy their own for what they pay Pelini.

Coach Petersen just does so much more with lesser talent. Walks and talks as a college coach should and heck, he just might be the next ‘Bear Bryant’ of college football if a larger college will give him the opportunity.

OU7 - Pepole have tried to get him…  He ain’t leaving…

Never say never. The chance to be mentioned with the likes of Osborne, Wilkinson, etc…

I just have to think he’s obtainable, somehow.

We have already seen that movie play out.  Dirk Koetter, Houston Nutt, Dan Hawkins….no thanks

Koetter: fired from ASU
Nutt: fired from Ole Miss
Hawkins: fired from Colorado

All of them former Boise St. coaches who had little success once they moved on to the big boy league and weren’t playing games in Las Cruces anymore.

Okay, but Devaney came from Wyoming, right? Myer came from Utah.
I just mentioned it in the event coach Pelini doesn’t work out.

Urban Meyer started his HC career at Bowling Green University

Houston Nutt did have a little success at Arkansas before cratering, well I guess we know about that because Pedey sent the plane after him in 2003

I remember that exact incident and Pedersen’s arrogance when the plane was reported on the tarmac waiting on coach Nutt.
I would love to know exactly what was said and exactly who was on that plane.
Do you suppose Tom Osborne was on that plane?

I would think BCS access would have to be part of the eatquion, but I just don’t see the BCS making that kind of promise. My thinking is the BCS restructures after this cycle, which ends in 2013, and maybe only goes to four conferences?If it includes BCS access I would sign off on it yesterday. And, I do like you scenario with the playoff there.RG

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