A Champion in a Day

So you’ve got big New Year’s eve plans – a crazy party, going to watch the ball drop, find someone to kiss, mumble the words to “Auld Lang Syne” (I had to look up the title). I hope it will be memorable in a good way. Me – I’m just excited for the next day Jan.1 . I am ready to watch some college football – some great games going on with the final game deciding the championship. Wait a minute. It’s January 8th – New Year’s eve is long gone. So, who is the national champion? The game takes place on Monday, January 9th – huh?

Of course I knew it all along. It’s just that I miss the old format.  It was exciting to watch the January 1st college bowl games – Outback, Sugar, Cotton, Fiesta, and Orange – throughout the day.  You knew the top teams with their storied programs – Notre Dame, Miami, Michigan, Texas, Nebraska, USC, Penn State, Alabama, etc. – would be there and the quality of play would be supreme.  This year on January 1st (well the 2nd actually as the first was a Sunday and therefore dedicated to the NFL), there were six games played and some big name programs were competing and a few of the games were competitive. Yet, they had no bearing on the National Championship.  Of course, these days, with the BCS system setting up a game between number one and number two, there is only one game that has any true bearing on the National Championship. 

I simply miss having the big name teams and meaningful games on one day. When all the games were on one day, it was fun to spend one day flipping the channels watching college football because you knew at the end of the day (night actually) there would be a national champion. My wife tells the story of how one New Year’s day she watched nine hours of college football. Her mother walked in at one point and noted she was watching football. She came in a few hours later and asked, “How come they changed uniforms?” By the time she came in a third time and saw still more uniforms, she was completely confused.

Now, the NCAA strings the season along with games nearly every day from the first till the big game a week or so later. Not only that but the games are often between mediocre teams. In fact, there was a contest on Saturday between two teams whose respective records were 6-6 and 7-5.  Other than alumni, who cares?  Get to the point – bring on the national championship game. By the time it is finally game night, either you’ve watched the earlier games and overdosed on college football or you’ve skipped them all together. I don’t even care about the game at this point as it seems anticlimactic.

I hope those of you who have a strong rooting interest enjoy the Allstate BCS Championship Game. I cannot name one player on either LSU or Alabama and have no intention of watching the game.  College football is over for me. My season ends on January 1st.

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