Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Column: Forget broken system, just keep winning

December 5, 2011
Senior wide receiver B.J. Cunningham breaks into the open field after pulling in a catch. The Spartans lost to the Wisconsin Badgers, 42-39, in the Big Ten Championship game on Saturday night at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind. Josh Radtke/The State News
Senior wide receiver B.J. Cunningham breaks into the open field after pulling in a catch. The Spartans lost to the Wisconsin Badgers, 42-39, in the Big Ten Championship game on Saturday night at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind. Josh Radtke/The State News —
Photo by Josh Radtke | and Josh Radtke The State News

Following Saturday night’s loss to Wisconsin in the inaugural Big Ten championship game, MSU head coach Mark Dantonio said the Spartans will be back in Indianapolis next year.

Um, why?

Come on, Coach. You know the drill by now. You understand how the BCS system works. There’s no emphasis on finishing first in your conference. Just coast behind the top two teams — if you lose to one of them and don’t play the other, even better — and let them beat each other up in the conference title game.

Meanwhile, you and your team can sit back and smile as you wait to accept the BCS bid.

I mean, I guess roses are cool and all, but sugar isn’t half bad. Sure, going undefeated and potentially making a BCS — wait, never mind, Urban Meyer is in the conference now. Bow to the Buckeyes.

Actually, now that I think about it, don’t even bother selling tickets to Spartan Stadium. Forget home games, you guys need to show you can “travel well.” Because apparently the BCS is only about how many fans attend games at opposing stadiums.

Although I’m pretty sure the designated section for away fans in Spartan Stadium is usually half-full at best, this is clearly the best tiebreaker.

And please, don’t try to argue. I was at Lucas Oil Stadium. I saw the thousands of Spartan fans fill up every designated section while Wisconsin fans covered their empty seats with red shirts. I heard Spartan fans screaming, doing everything possible to prove their worthiness as fans to the BCS.

But come on, the Badgers did their start of the fourth quarter “Jump Around” with no music. That fan base is the best. You can’t match that.

Also, what’s with this Boise State stuff? Let me repeat, the emphasis isn’t on challenging yourself and certainly not on going above and beyond. Quick, get together with MSU Athletics Director Mark Hollis and try to get him to rip up that contract.

When the Broncos show up on opening day next season, just pretend you have absolutely no idea what they’re talking about.

Why should both teams play each other when they’re the BCS’ favorite two teams to disappoint? Don’t help them out in the first game of the season.

Here, try this for nonconference: Appalachian State, East Carolina, Arkansas State, Marshall. That’s Virginia Tech’s 2011 nonconference schedule, and the Hokies somehow got an at-large bid out of the ACC.

Then, lose to Ohio State and Wisconsin — you might as well just rest your players — and there you have it, your 2012 Sugar Bowl team.

Wait, wait, wait. Now that I think about it, the Sugar Bowl is a joke. This year the bowl has Michigan, the lowest ranked at-large selection in BCS history, versus Virginia Tech, the first ACC team to ever gain an at-large BCS bid.

Last year, Ohio State was allowed to play in the game with five guys who broke NCAA violations. And the past four contests — that actually counted — have been decided by an average of 25 points. Missing out on that is what the Spartans are ticked off about?

In reality, forget everything I said, Coach. Screw that. Continue to dominate.

It hurts now, but the Spartans will live with the Capital One and Outback bowls all day, as long as they have bragging rights each year over Michigan and any other Big Ten team that makes the BCS. MSU is 5-1 in the past two years against the conference’s most recent BCS teams.

So just keep exposing the system for the fraud it is.

Anthony Odoardi is a State News football reporter. He can be reached at odoardia@msu.edu.

Discussion

Share and discuss “Column: Forget broken system, just keep winning” on social media.