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Blog Entry

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

Posted on: November 27, 2011 11:38 am
Edited on: November 27, 2011 12:16 pm
 

Look what the NCAA has done. Look what the Pac-12 done. Look what Rick Neuheisel has done.

Actually, UCLA’s coach-for-now might be the least culpable in the farce that has turned into the first Pac-12 championship game.  Start with the fact that there is every reason to believe the best team might not be playing in it. And that one of the league’s worst is playing in it.

USC has the same record as and has beaten North Division champion Oregon (both 10-2). The Ducks will be the prohibitive favorite in the conference’s first championship game that looks more like a September conference opener. It’s hard to argue against the Trojans playing the best Pac-12 football at the moment. Actually, some of the best football in the country.

The Trojans all but shouted that from the top of the Coliseum Saturday night routing UCLA, 50-0. That would be the UCLA that is the South Division “champion” facing Oregon Friday in Eugene. There may not be a worse league title game in history. And, yes, I’m counting the MAC and Conference USA.

At least teams from those conferences had earned their way to their championship games. UCLA is the back-up date to the prom after the head cheerleader said no. Take away the divisions and UCLA finished in a tie for fourth. But in this age of divisional formats, paper heroes can be created. UCLA was that Back-Up Plan because, well, you might have read somewhere that USC is ineligible for postseason play. The Trojans, Pac-12 and NCAA went into this season knowing that was the case.

What they didn’t know is that the second-place team in the South would be 6-6 UCLA, coming off a skunking by the Trojans. What they didn’t know is that UCLA would “clinch” the South when Colorado, a team that had lost 23 straight road games, would win at Utah.

They couldn’t have conceived that only that championship game is keeping Neuheisel from being fired right now. Should be quite a celebration in Eugene, and a funeral dirge in Westwood once the plane lands. Among other sins, UCLA’s coach actually had the temerity to suggest that UCLA had “closed the gap” on USC in the last four years. Bad move, Slick Rick. That probably explains why Matt Barkley was still in the game in the fourth quarter chucking his sixth touchdown pass.

USC got hammered with the one of the worst penalties in NCAA history. In terms of closing that gap, UCLA couldn’t even kick down a door that was left wide open.

Neuheisel being fired after Friday’s Eugene beating is a given. AD Dan Guerrero can’t tap dance fast enough around the issue. If the Bruins somehow won and got to – wait for it – another home game in the Rose Bowl, that would only heighten the urgency. The Bruins would be playing in the Rose Bowl but they’re not nearly a Rose Bowl team

Call it one of the unintended consequences of a postseason ban. Surely, the NCAA infractions committee couldn’t have conceived of these circumstances when it banned USC: A team ineligible for a bowl would be replaced by a team about to be ineligible for a bowl.

An explanation: A UCLA loss would drop the Bruins to 6-7, making the Pac-12 South Division “champions” (love using those quotes) ineligible for a bowl. The Bruins could then could seek a bowl waiver from the NCAA if the Pac-12 can’t fill its seven bowl slots.

Great. Nothing says “bowl experience” than a team with a losing record. Though, using that logic, if Ohio State is going to be allowed in the Sugar Bowl because of some unknown rule, UCLA at least has played by the rules to get to 6-7. Those rules being set by the NCAA when it banned USC.

You’re way ahead of me if you’re thinking that Alabama can play for a national championship without winning its division, but UCLA can’t play in a bowl after “winning” its division. (Check the standings. USC is two games better than UCLA.)

 

 

Category: NCAAF
Comments

Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: December 1, 2011 12:33 am
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

"That wasn't the second harshest penalty in NCAA history. It wasn't even in the top 10."

Can I get some of what you're smoking? Seriously. IF in fact Miami and Ohio State get slaps on the wrist, that's likely because Paul Emmert and members of the kinder, gentler NCAA Infractions Committee is now hyoer-sensitive to the questioning they received about the nonsensical logic used assessing infractions and doling out sanctions. Meanwhile, the innocent players on the team who were prevented from playing in a bowl game the past 2 years and the 30 kids who will not get scholarship offers to attend USC just might disagree with your assessment.

Out of curiosity, I'd love to see your list of the Top 10 NCAA penalties handed down since SMU got the death penalty in 1985 - or are you just a Trojan hater? This should be interesting.



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: November 28, 2011 6:10 pm
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

Stop crying...USC got hammered (what many sports writers believe to be too harsh considering recent events and Paul Dee's sparkling past at miami) and is serving the penalty.
I'm not crying at all. I don't have any problem with USC's sanctions. I do have a problem with people saying USC got hammered when the Trojans got a slap on the wrist. Without a television ban, these punishments are meaningless. USC will still be excellent, as the Trojans are proving now.

USC got a slap on the wrist. Ohio State is going to get a slap on the wrist. Miami is going to get a slap on the wrist. The NCAA has two penalties that can really cripple a team: TV bans and the death penalty. They won't use either one, so cheat, cheat to your heart's content. Nothing is going to happen to you. If the NCAA catches you, they'll give you 10 minutes in the corner and then you can go play again.



Since: Sep 4, 2006
Posted on: November 28, 2011 12:15 pm
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

"Oregon is the worst top 3 team in the conference. They rely heavily on trick plays and gimmicks to confuse the opposition. That's why their players struggle in the NFL. Trickery will only take you so far. Speed, intelligence and desire are more valued in the NFL. Oregon beat Stanford because David Shaw got outcoached by Chip Kelly. Lane Kiffin and USC beat Oregon because Kiffin knows how to coach. "

Go ahead and check some rosers and find out how many Ducks are listed on 2 deep rosters in the NFL.  It sounds to me like you don't have frickin clue.  By the way Oregon would spank Clemson home or away.  



Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: November 28, 2011 10:07 am
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

Oregon is the worst top 3 team in the conference. They rely heavily on trick plays and gimmicks to confuse the opposition. That's why their players struggle in the NFL. Trickery will only take you so far. Speed, intelligence and desire are more valued in the NFL. Oregon beat Stanford because David Shaw got outcoached by Chip Kelly. Lane Kiffin and USC beat Oregon because Kiffin knows how to coach. 



Since: Jun 14, 2010
Posted on: November 28, 2011 1:34 am
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

sky hawk...

tv bans will never happen again. get over it and stop crying about it. way too much tv money flying around for corrupt NCAA cronies to throw around tv bans and essentially start burning money. tv rights during SMU days were pennies when compared to today's mega dollars.

USC did receive the harshest penalty in modern media times.

NCAA makes way to much $$$ off of Fox and ESPN and CBS to just ban a team from tv in the second largest media market...especially when the NCAA says the school "should have known" and couldn't prove that anybody at USC actually knew or that one single person at USC was involved (at least without stretching evidence to bust USC and violating their own NCAA bylaws to do it) or spearheaded Bush's shenanigans like the SMU circus. A single two minute phone call at 1:30am two years after Bush left school was the only thing for the NCAA to hang its hat on in the end. Hardly SMU territory.

Stop crying...USC got hammered (what many sports writers believe to be too harsh considering recent events and Paul Dee's sparkling past at miami) and is serving the penalty. 




Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: November 27, 2011 6:24 pm
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

I'm pretty sure they stopped giving TV bans because those hurt every team the penalized team played. So TV ban doesn't enter the equation when talking about how bad the sanctions are.
And that's why the NCAA's sanctions are toothless. As long as kids can be seen on television, they'll still want to play for that school, bowl or not. They care about going to the NFL, not about going to the Holiday Bowl. The NCAA hasn't handed out a real football penalty since 1996. USC's so-called harsh penalty is a complete joke compared to what the NCAA did just 20 years ago to programs besides SMU.



Since: Nov 3, 2009
Posted on: November 27, 2011 5:43 pm
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

I'm pretty sure they stopped giving TV bans because those hurt every team the penalized team played. So TV ban doesn't enter the equation when talking about how bad the sanctions are.



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: November 27, 2011 5:25 pm
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

skyhawk are you retarted USC recieved the second harshest penalty in NCAA history only behind SMU because they got the death penalty.  Check your facts before you say dumb a$$ stuff like that.
Check yours. That wasn't the second harshest penalty in NCAA history. It wasn't even in the top 10. Did USC receive a television ban? They didn't? OK, then sit down and shut up.

Second-harshest penalty in NCAA history. What a joke.



Since: Oct 21, 2007
Posted on: November 27, 2011 3:30 pm
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

A USC alum. I am sure.




Since: Jun 26, 2007
Posted on: November 27, 2011 3:29 pm
 

The farce that has become the Pac-12 title game

I hope fUCLA keeps Neuweasel on as coach. I'd love to see many, many more years of frustration, mediocre football, and excuses. Here's to your combined "scores" of 100-3 in the last two games of 2011 there, Slickster!!


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