Posted by Chip Patterson
The Bowl Championship Series has been criticized since it's inception by fans of a football playoff. But a combination of the constant tweaking in recent years along with a good ole dose of scandal have turned the BCS into public enemy number one for many college football fans. While some have fantasized about President Barack Obama delivering a playoff, there are more realistic legal ways the federal government can get involved. That process began when BCS executive director Bill Hancock agreed to a "voluntary briefing" on the BCS with the Department of Justice later this year. Outside of Hancock, some of the biggest players in the BCS are the commissioners of the six conferences holding automatic bids to the bowls. The BCS bowl games create huge injections of cash for the conferences, which are divided amongst all of the teams. So it comes as no surprise that Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe would seem a little perturbed at the DOJ's threatening stance towards the BCS.
"It's good to know that they've chased down all of the people who have caused our banking system to have problems," Beebe said from the Big 12 meetings in Kansas City. "We've strongly believe and the BCS position has been stated that the government has better things to do than insert itself into how college postseason football should be operated."
The process was kickstarted earlier this year Christine A. Varney, who runs the antitrust division for the DOJ, wrote a letter to NCAA president Mark Emmert with concerns regarding the organization and any plans for a playoff. Utah attorney general Mark Shurtleff has threatened to file an antitrust lawsuit against the BCS, and some believe that violation of antitrust laws is the idea way to change college football's postseason. Hancock, on the other hand, seems very confident in the organizations ability to withstand these threats.
"We view it as an opportunity to make it clear that the BCS was crafted very carefully with antitrust laws in mind," Hancock said.
If there is anything that will ruffle feathers in this country, it is messing with someone else's money. The ones who benefit the most from the BCS will continue to openly criticize and question any attack on the organization. But while this is a hot topic for now, like most things with the NCAA this will be a long process with no swift action. So get comfy folks, because this debate is not going to be settled anytime soon.