CBS Sports columnist says SEC is over-rated: Breaking down the ‘Ponzi Scheme’ Part I

Houston, we have a problem; that is, if you are an SEC fan.

CBS and the SEC have been in a beautiful marriage for the better part of the last decade. The sports network has talked up the league, week-in and week-out, that has put a stranglehold on the college football world.

Those reasons are presumably why CBS Sports columnist Gregg Doyel’s latest piece of work has the ability to strike fans by surprise.

Doyel, a well-respected journalist among the publishing industry, wrote the following on the leage:

It’s a Ponzi scheme, this 2012 SEC fraud, built upon layers of air. Georgia is great because it has beaten Florida. Florida is great because it has beaten Texas A&M. Texas A&M is great because it has beaten Alabama. And Alabama is great because it has beaten … um, who has Alabama beaten, anyway?

But we’re about to see another SEC team get into the national title game, and we could see another all-SEC showdown if Southern California beats Notre Dame on Saturday. No, Notre Dame fans, I’m not predicting a USC win. But that would open the door to a national championship game featuring two teams from the SEC, a league that has scheduled gutlessly and seen itself rewarded by voters who don’t know better and computers that need to be rebooted.

The SEC has cracked the computer code.

Schedule easy non-conference games, win them all, and then lose only to each other in league play. Voila! It’s love, computer style. The SEC isn’t playing football — it’s playing eHarmony.

Hold on SEC fans, don’t go jumping off the ledge just yet. If I were you, I wouldn’t take Doyel’s words to heart.

The SEC knows how to lift the crystal ball. (Marvin Gentry-US PRESSWIRE)

For starters, the backbone of his argument being the fact that the SEC “has scheduled gutlessly and seen itself rewarded by voters who don’t know better and computers that need to be rebooted,” is not just a little off-base, but entirely out of whack.

Florida plays Florida State each and every year, a game that many outside of the South seem to completely wipe off the plate for one reason or another. This year, yes, the game is a top 10 matchup with national title implications.

Alabama has consistently scheduled top 25-worthy out-of-conference opponents to kick the season off: Clemson (’08), Virginia Tech (’09), Penn State (’10 & ’11), Michigan (’12). The outcomes of all five games? You guessed it, an Alabama victory.

LSU and Les Miles have also proven that they aren’t scared to go outside the comfy confines of the SEC: Washington (’09), North Carolina and West Virginia (’10), Oregon (’11), Washington (’12). Want to know the outcomes of these five games? All victories for the Tigers.

Ole Miss is in the middle of a two-game series with Texas, Georgia plays Georgia Tech every year (not to mention having the cajones to schedule Boise State when they were the elite-Boise State), and Auburn has squared off against West Virginia (1-1) and Clemson (1-2) over the past five years.

The fact is, every team from every conference schedules cupcakes, with the occasional blockbuster showdown. If you think otherwise, just take a look through the recent schedules of Ohio State, Florida State, Oklahoma, and Michigan. Very rarely do teams schedule multiple prominent out-of-conference opponents.

For all intents and purposes, the scheduling point being a moot factor has been made by barely even scratching the SEC schedule’s surface.

Then comes the kicker, the BCS national championship game, aka the elephant in Doyel’s room that is stomping all over his hypotheses.

The nation has given the SEC their best shot over the last six years. The SEC has taken that shot, chewed it up, and spit it right back out. In the game for all bragging rights, the SEC has shown up and dominated each and every time.

Six straight titles, with a potential seventh, should be all the proof that one needs. It’s not a “Ponzi Scheme”, it’s SEC domination.

What do you think of Doyel’s statements? Is the SEC over-rated? Let us know in the comments below!

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  • Jeff McDonald

    The reason it looks down is that everyone else is down also…Look at Michigan. They were preseason #8, with a heisman hopeful QB. Bama spanked them and all of a sudden, the Wolverines are not a legitimate contender. Clemson NARROWLY defeats a BAD Auburn team, then gets pounded by FSU…Conclusion: Clemson is overrated so Auburn must be horrible.
    Fact is, the national media is jonesing for a BCS game with NO SEC participation. They will say or write anything to influence human voting in the polls. They do the same with the heisman. If a guys name is brought up enough times, he will find himself in New York for the ceremony.

    • Desiree

      ummm Auburn IS horrible… 0 wins in its OWN conference???? horrible. Clemson turned out to be overrated.. SC beat em….. NO SEC participation in the BCS national title game????? come on now really??? SEC is what makes the BCS actually worth watching…. even though the majority of the sports analysts say that when an SEC team is vying for the National title, its going to be a “lackluster” game at best…. probably because the SEC team whoever it may be, is going to bring its A GAME and whoever its opponent is… will just lay down and take this beating. Sorry but the SEC is not going anywhere… so suck it up and deal with it….

      a Florida Gator
      yep SEC 🙂

  • Ed Baxley

    I think the other conferences are a bunch of crybabies, just haters, they cant beat us, so they gotta hate. 6 National titles in a row says it all. The SEC is the best. The victims that have gone down to the SEC include a number of traditional powers, namely, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Texas, and Oregon. How much more proof do they need? Does the SEC champ have to beat an NFL team? The bottom line is the other conferences need to get better or just shut up and learn to lose.

    • Desiree

      Love that comment “Does the SEC champ have to beat an NFL team?” Alabama could…. lol 🙂

  • pjmaxx

    Wow we all just last weekend watch #1 and #2 get beaten by teams not even ranked so hummmm over rated? We watched the mighty Ducks a few years ago get their butts handed to them.. I can remember Hawaii getting smoked by Georgia.. SEC doesn’t makes the rules so go get a real team then come talk sh*t..

  • Toni Browning-Early

    We’ve known that the sports media have been biased against the SEC for years. With this they’re just providing written proof.

  • Eddie Dowlin

    While I do believe that the reputation of the SEC carries a lot of weight with voters; why is that their problem? Why is it the SEC’s problem that the championship game is determined by some ridiculous computer program? The fact of the matter is, until someone outside of the conference wins a national title, why wouldn’t we believe the SEC is the best conference in football? The cupcake match ups are only a problem because the SEC plays them at the end of the season compared to the front of the season ie. the Big Ten. Sadly, the SEC title game is usually a better game then the national championship game because those typically are the 2 best teams in the country! Go SEC! Go Gators!

  • Steven A Leonard

    I think it’s time the SEC drops CBS. Im sure there is something in the contract that would be voided do to this. CBS has the worse commentator and writers . Then just bid out a new contract to bring in FSU AND OHIO STATE to the SEC!!!

    • Michael

      Hell, CBS and ESPN whore ot the less profitable games to Fox SportsSouth or the SEC Digital Network anyway. Why have a 25 year contract if all they are going to do is pimp out games?

  • TEX

    This year the BIG12 lost thier 5th place team to the SEC,almost beat LSU,FLORIDA and did beat the Forest Gumps.

    • Keith Smith

      The Texas Cup Cake 12 did not lose a 5th place team. They picked up lesser schools.. Thus, their competition level decreased. The Aggies got tired of being the OTHER team in Texas, the way UT see’s itself this year.

      To Bad the “Cows from Austin” took the COWARDS way out. and ran from the inter-conference rivalry.

      • Dave

        i certainly hope they make ut and aTm play in the cotton. Will be a blood bath for the horns

    • Joe Brumley

      Almost…. are we playing horseshoes? … Last year LSU almost won a championship…. Ohio Almost beat Florida for a Championship…… Texas faired almost as well…. Oklahoma also…. Who else has almost Beat SEC hehehe

  • Poppy

    All the so-called experts are just like the rest of us. They don’t know anymore than anyone else who will win until the game is over!!

  • Tex

    SEC teams are allowed to lose to each other,other conf teams are required to win out.Do you think a non-division winner from anouther conferance would be allowed to slip through the DOGGY door like the FOREST GUMPS did last year?

  • GEAUXTigers

    Ok…. Lets talk +1 which is what the NCAA Football postseason is going to. Last year we have LSU and Alabama at #1 and #2 and OSU and Oregon #3 and #4. LSU beat Oregon last year in Cowboys stadium to open the season. OSU lost to Iowa State… Who are they again? Have they EVER won a national title? So with the +1 system, LSU would have played Oregon and Alabama would have played OSU… Both of these teams (LSU and Bama) would have dominated those teams. Their coaches can sit back and play the what if game all they want, but the facts were and still are that those were the best two teams in the country last year and no matter what system the NCAA was running, those two teams would have been in the title game. And other conferences can run around saying “The SEC doesn’t play anyone” or “The SEC schedules cupcakes for out of conference play”…. BUT you don’t see other conferences waiting in line to play the SEC now do you? No, because they are scared. The SEC reigns supreme… bottom line.

  • GatorStrong

    Glenn McGraw You Are An Idiot!

  • Jeffery Wood

    I guess stupidity isn’t just confined to the news arm of CBS!

  • Michael

    Doyle just suffers from a bad case of “Sour Grapes” and should hang out in the world of Lee Corso, where the sky is red and everyone HATES Georgia. I LOVE seeing ANY SEC Team crawl up inside the BCS Top 5 (But especially the Georgia Bulldawgs) because chances are, the BCS can only screw the SEC out of a trip to Miami for SO LONG, before the computers blow up and the BCS dissolves into the BS and mus it started from. Hopefully, a playoff system will cut down on the BS and maybe widen the girth of the system and allow for more undefeated, smaller teams to play in a tiered bowl system based on wins, schedule and conference, instead of popularity with Sportswriters, Coaches and Computer Geeks..



  • Joe Blow

    Yeah it looks good for the SEC at the beginning of the year because all those teams they play before the conference games are against teams with overrated preseason rankings. They need to get rid of preseason rankings because those same teams are ranked out of the top 25 or barely in the top 16 at the end of the season. Meaning they weren’t that good to begin with. Just look at Michigan this year. Same with USC. Clemson is WAY overrated. So is FSU. West Virginia as well. And Washington?? Really?? Pathetic. Virginia Tech and Penn State are terrible. The CBS columnist is right, the SEC “dominates” because they beat each other and all end up with one loss. If Oregon, Oklahoma, Stanford, Ohio State, Texas, Fla St, Boise st, etc all played each other every year in the same conference, they would all rotate victories too, just like the SEC.