If you read the blog regularly you can probably tell that college football is my favorite sport. The 2010 season is over but the 2011 season can’t come soon enough. Here are 10 things I would change about college football to make it even better in 2011:
10. Get rid of the pre-season polls – the AP, Coaches, and Harris polls shouldn’t be released until at least week four. ESPN.com, SI, ESPN The Mag, Phil Steele, etc. can all release theirs to please the fans but tams are too often given the benefit of the doubt because of high pre-season rankings. Teams should have to earn their rankings during the first few weeks of the season before we start deciding who the best teams in the country are.
Photo via bcsknowhow.com
9. Abolish the new excessive celebration penalty – if you didn’t know, college football is implementing a new twist on excessive celebration penalties. If the celebration begins before the end zone the refs can call a 15 yard penalty from that spot even if the player scores – essentially taking touchdowns off the scoreboard. Typically touchdowns are exciting – I don’t see why players can’t celebrate as long as they aren’t taunting the opponents?
8. Create a relegation system - between the “AQ” and “non-AQ” similar to English soccer leagues. The worst six teams from the “AQ conferences” based on ranking will be dropped to “non-AQ” conferences while the six highest ranked “non-AQ” will be promoted to AQ conferences. Why should teams like Duke, Indiana, Vanderbilt, and Washington State, get the benefit of added exposure and tv money when they do nothing to deserve it?
7. ”Suspend” players for 5 plays for committing personal foul penalties – if a player commits a personal foul it’s usually for trying to take someone’ s head off or doing something stupid after the whistle. Most coaches will pull players out of the game after committing personal foul penalties but some do not – see Gene Chizik with Nick Fairley. On top of the 15 yard penalty – players would be required to sit-out the next five plays they would be on the field.
6. Injured players requiring the attention of trainers must sit out at least 3 plays – if you’re injured enough to require medical attention and stop play on the field it’s probably in your best interest to sit out a few plays. Not to mention this would hopefully cut down on players faking injuries – especially against teams teams that play at a fast offensive tempo like Oregon.
Photo via photos.oregonlive.com
5. Cut down on the cupcakes – “AQ” teams would only be allowed to schedule two non-AQ teams (including division 2) as non-conference opponents each season. Too many teams load up on non-AQ teams on their non-conference schedules to ensure wins and bowl eligibility. Only being able allowed to schedule two non-AQs would create better out of conference match-ups and separate mediocre teams.
4. Eliminate 5 bowl games - it doesn’t matter which 5, there are just too many bowl games. This year there were 35 with more than a handful being extremely boring. Eliminating 5 bowl games would prevent 10 mediocre, undeserving teams from diluting the bowl season.
3. Play all BCS Bowls on or before January 1st – giving teams over 30 days to prepare for BCS games creates rusty offenses, gives defenses too much time to prepare, and often doesn’t reflect the team seen in the regular season.
2. Add a 5th BCS Bowl – make the Cotton Bowl a 5th BCS Bowl. Don’t create a conference tie-in with the Cotton Bowl unless it takes the Fiesta Bowl’s tie-in with the Big-12. Regardless, the 5 BCS Bowls would serve as a showcase to then select the two best teams to…
1. Create a plus-1 – After all five BCS Bowls have been played (Rose, Fiesta, Sugar, Orange, & Cotton) the top two remaining teams will play for the national championship. This year we could have seen TCU play Auburn (or another match up depending upon how the BCS bowl selection would have gone). An 8 or 16-team playoff would be preferable but this seems more realistic at this point.
How would you improve college football?