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.
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!