The SEC recently announced its new scheduling rules – taking hold in 2016 – and they’ve ticked quite a few people off. If you thought LSU’s crew was miffed, they have nothing on the Pac-12. ESPN rounded up quotes from select Pac-12 coaches and man are they salty.
Let’s take a look at the wide range of bitterness coming out of the left coast – from lightest to saltiest.
Planters Dry Roassted Peanuts – Rich Rodriguez
“I think it would make it more fair,” Rodriguez said. “But I’m not worried about that. Hell, I’m just trying to get a first down right now.”
Rim of a Margarita Glass – Mark Helfrich
“If we’re going to call anything equal and everybody pointing in the same direction as far as a playoff, it seems like the qualification for that playoff should be equal. We’re a long way from that with a few leagues. We can’t do anything about that …
“I’m not surprised. They do that for a reason. There are a couple of leagues that are in the minority. That’s definitely to their advantage. I don’t think that part of it was surprising.”
Tears of a Clown – Mike Leach
“Until that is required, I think they are elevating their conference and I think they are fairly clever to do it.”
Great Salt Lake – Jim Mora
“I think the Pac-12 is an incredibly competitive conference. I look at the teams that make up this conference and I think anybody can beat anybody on any given week. I think the same can be said for the SEC. And yet we play nine games against each other. I like that.
“I think we like that as a conference and I think we take pride in that because we’re interested in competing against the best week in and week out. We try not to schedule too many patsies.”
Dead Sea – David Shaw
“Play your conference. Don’t back down from playing your own conference. It’s one thing to back down from playing somebody else. But don’t back down from playing your own conference.
“I would hate for one of those teams left standing that didn’t go through the same gauntlet as all the other teams have [to be selected for a playoff].
“There’s no taking away anything that LSU and Alabama and Auburn recently have accomplished,” Shaw said. “They’ve been phenomenal. My take is to say, ‘OK, the rest of us are playing our conference. We’re playing nine out of 12 teams in our conference. Why can’t you do the same thing?”
Isn’t this the point of having the College Football Playoff? So that real people can determine each school’s merits. Real people will finally decide whether a team has padded its schedule too much. These people should be able to sniff out fluff.
There’s also the issue of the SEC forcing schools to schedule one game against a power conference team (or Notre Dame). Shouldn’t that alleviate some of the cupcake dreams the Pac-12 is worried about? Aren’t two of LSU’s upcoming out-of-conference games are against the Pac-12’s UCLA and Arizona State (not to mention Wisconsin and Syracuse)?
And why is the Stanford guy the saltiest when two former Cardinal employees are on the 13 person committee?