Mark Cuban has always been slyly self-aware and happily showy. He possesses an MBA's intellect, the ego of an Academy Award winner and the attention seeking of P.T. Barnum. And I love him.
Sure, when Cuban interjects himself into the BCS playoffs argument, a part of what he's doing is grandstanding. It's actually such a grandstanding move, Donald Trump thinks Cuban has a big ego.
|Mark Cuban isn't likely to let a little resistance end his anti-BCS crusade. (AP)|
This is what people who want a playoff system need. A tough, smart billionaire who will take on a group of entrenched, old-school coots stuck in the 1950s.
Cuban is Mark Zuckerberg and the BCS is Fonzie. Ayyyyyyy. If Cuban sticks with his mission of bringing a playoff system to college football, this won't be a contest. He'll smash the cartel. He'll eventually shame them or force them into a playoff system. Cuban will bring them kicking and screaming into the 21st century.
By the time Cuban is done ripping out the innards of the BCS, the only thing left will be a pile of ashes and a few charred toupees.
This is actually a pivotal moment in the fight against the BCS and its anti-playoff stance. In many ways, Cuban is as powerful -- and ruthless -- as the college presidents themselves. Good. That's what we need.
If you don't think Cuban is fully capable of taking on the cartel then you don't know Cuban. Once he locks on a target he's relentless. Just ask the NBA's refs or commissioner David Stern.
It is Cuban, after all, who has accumulated over $1.7 million in fines from the NBA. He has also reenergized the Dallas Mavericks and added smart, fresh blood to the sport. Cuban can do almost anything.
He's not perfect. Cuban's bid to own the Texas Rangers failed, and while his Mavericks reached the NBA Finals, they've yet to win a championship.
Still, bet against Cuban at your own risk.
|Mark Cuban vs. BCS|
At the very least, Cuban will wear down the college presidents so another rich and powerful owner like, say, Jerry Jones, can pick up where he leaves off.
This is what I think Cuban will do. He'll use his massive social platform to embarrass the BCS. Cuban just won't throw cash at the issue. He'll spend years on his blog, on Twitter and in media interviews discussing the ineptitude of the BCS. It's already happening now. Cuban is making the media rounds.
My guess is Cuban will at some point get a hearing before Congress.
Again, Cuban can be relentless. The BCS has never seen an opponent like him.
He'll push his idea, which is too brilliant to fail. Cuban wants a 12- or 16-team tournament. Losers in the tournament would play in the best bowl games (it's something I had never thought of). He would raise half a billion dollars as an enticement to the presidents. My guess is, because he's Mark Cuban, he could get a boatload more money if needed.
"As a college football fan, I hate the BCS simply because of all the inefficiencies," Cuban told the media. "My orientation always is if there is something everybody hates, and there are all kinds of inefficiencies and a lack of transparency, then somewhere in there is a business opportunity."
The mistake people are making is that they believe Cuban will have to convince university presidents to go along with a playoff system. That's not true. He doesn't have to convince them. He can embarrass them into a playoff system or even bully them. Cuban is one of the few sports figures who has the acumen, power and stubbornness to do it.
I've rarely rooted for an owner. It's like rooting for Wall Street.
I am now.