Monday, October 24, 2011

Washington Post column: BCS represents college football’s ongoing scandal

Here is my newest column for The Washington Post -----

Amid the morass of college football scandals that have unfolded in recent months, there is one man who loves the sport who has benefitted greatly from the ongoing debacles at Ohio State and Miami and North Carolina and USC.

Bill Hancock.

Hancock is the genial executive director of the so-called Bowl Championship Series, which is the ongoing scandal in college football that is still being perpetrated on players, coaches and fans alike much the same way reality TV continues to be a pox that simply won’t go away.

This fall, Hancock’s bosses — the BCS presidents — have conspired to keep the wolves away from his door. First, many of them have allowed their athletic programs to run completely amok. The two people who symbolize what the BCS stands for are, without question, Miami President Donna Shalala, who did everything but rename her school “Shapiro U” while currently jailed booster Nevin Shapiro was lavishing money on her and the one-time “U,” and, of course, Ohio State President Gordon Gee, whose two trademarks are his bowtie and his foot planted firmly inside his mouth.

It was Gee who made himself the Neville Chamberlain of college athletics last spring when he was asked if he would consider firing Jim Tressel as football coach and he replied with a straight face, “Fire him? I just hope he doesn’t fire me.”

The shame of it is that Tressel didn’t stay at Ohio State long enough to get around to firing Gee before Tressel left in disgrace. Of course, the NCAA, led by its top stooge, President Mark Emmert, has been so busy calling meetings and being shocked to learn that cheating is going on that it has yet to take any action against anyone — and will probably come down with a really hard wrist slap when the time finally comes.

Instead it has been left to Roger Goodell, who at last glance was running the NFL, to impose any discipline on Tressel and Terrelle Pryor, his oft-tattooed quarterback. Goodell suspended both for five games when they fled Ohio State for jobs in the NFL.

Maybe Goodell can do something about the BCS. You can bet that Emmert won’t at any point in this lifetime. All of which brings us back to Hancock and the BCS.

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John from Indiana said...

OK, so this is stinky. Money talks... Always has, always will.

By the way, a really great, competitive, World Series is going on; and nobody on either end of the country is paying attention. One Albert Pujols is the closest thing to Ted Williams we will see in our lifetime. God help us if he signs with the Mets or the Yankees. Then we will read about nothing but King Albert.

One last question.... My kids keep asking me what I would like for Christmas. I would like to tell them the new John Feinstein book, but have no inkling if it will be out by that time. Inquiring minds want to know...

Ed Tracey said...

The NCAA could set-up a second national championship match - between the two highest-ranked teams not in a 'major conference'. At least they would be honest doing things that way, rather than allowing the TCUs, Boise States and Houstons to believe they are actually in consideration for BCS honors ... when they are not.

Gunnar said...

It is about money. This conference shuffling is crazy, and it is about the BCS bid, the BCS money and the regular season TV money in the conference deals. That is motivation #1 for AD's and school President's. I thought TCU to the Big East was crazy, then we hear about Boise State considering the Big Hawaii is being considered as part of the 4 division Big East super-conference. Hawaii vs UConn?

Anonymous said...

Actually, John, Gorgy Gee, Ph.D. has another trademark which overrides his Wizard-of-Oz shtiklech and booowtie.
He IS a corrupt, lavish-living, money-squandering figurehead hired twice (as OSU's president) by Conservative corporate & legal market-driven Central Ohio GOP powers-that-be, a Republican majority state government apparatus--including the GOP-filled OSU Board of Trustees, and lastly, Republican-owned, Century-old COLUMBUS DISPATCH (Gee's greatest public promoter and protector). Metro Columbus, OH is the 16th most populated nationwide, and a one-newspaper town. Gorgy Gee, Ph.D. is neatly ensconced in this preservative political cocoon. Only Independent hard-nails scrutiny and investigative journalism by interlopers will open the curtains, and truly expose Gee's incompetencies, misuses, and abuses throughout his tenure at THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY.