When he’s not busy defending polygamists (hey, props to you if you can pull it off), Senator Orrin Hatch likes to meddle in intercollegiate athletics – something that’s become a friggin’ pandemic in the state of Utah.
In fact, after watching his home state get the shaft last season, Hatch is raising hell against the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) – i.e. the convoluted, computerized corporate whoredom the NCAA foists upon the nation every year in lieu of implementing a “let’s settle this the way every other sport does – on the field” playoff system.
We get it, Orrin. We really do. Polygamy, BCS hatred … the whole nine yards.
And as we’ve noted in the past, we hate the BCS. Hate it, hate it, hate it. Of course, we wouldn’t make a “federal case” over the whole thing, because quite frankly Congress has no business sticking its nose into the sports world … college or professional.
Hatch is making a federal case of it, though, pushing the U.S. Justice Department to investigate the BCS for … get this … violations of the Sherman Antitrust Act, which prohibits unfair agreements that inhibit trade and commerce.
Look, while we have puritanical objections to computers deciding champions and corporations stifling competition, Hatch arrives at his hatred of the BCS from another perspective.
“The purposeful disparities in funding created by the BCS ensures that schools in privileged conferences, even those whose football teams are not all that competitive, enjoy advantages in offering scholarships and providing staff and facilities for all their athletic programs.” Hatch says. “The increased visibility that accompanies automatic qualification into a BCS game guarantees that the teams from outside conferences face disadvantages with regard to recruiting players and hiring top coaches.”
Ummm … we hate to break it to Hatch, but the Southeastern Conference (winner of the last three BCS championships) is “privileged” because its teams kick the ever-living crap out of every other football conference that’s out there.
Hell, if it weren’t for computer programs and an antiquated bowl system keeping things competitive, the SEC would emerge victorious in every NCAA playoff.
Seriously, people … think about it.
All last year we heard about the Big XII and its high-powered offenses … only to watch Heisman Trophy winner Sam Bradford and the Oklahoma Sooners get shut down like a JV powder puff squad by the Florida Gator defense.
How good is the SEC?
Ask Ohio State, which got steamrolled by LSU and then Florida in the 2007 and 2008 championship games … and by South Carolina in the 2001 and 2002 Outback Bowls, for that matter.
Sure, sure, sure … Utah beat the crap out of SEC powerhouse Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, and we gave them props for it.
We also argued that Utah Coach Kyle Whittingham was well within his rights to demand a Utah-Florida winner-take-all championship – in which Florida would have beat the Utes like they stole something.
Anyway, if politicians like Hatch are going to meddle with the BCS, they should investigate why bailout baby Citi is being allowed to sponsor the championship game this year … on top of spending $400 million to name a baseball field, for that matter.
Do your job.