Enjoy this funny piece imagining the lament of the BCS computers.
Every year, pretty much, reveals another crazy aspect of the current BCS system. A well-done article in the Oklahoman discusses the voters in the Harris Poll and how their views affected who went to the national championship. They focus on an 80-year-old retired Iowa official who confessed to not doing much research.
Now, it is interesting this year that everyone is down on human polls. A decade ago people were down on the computers and the system was changed so that the human polls had more influence. This year if the computers decided, then OSU would be in the national championship.
And other times this season, as the University of Michigan celebrates the 40th anniversary of Spectrum, its LGBT student group, the oldest in the country.
Read about it and watch the video here.
I wonder what the visiting Nebraskans will think and will think of now being in the Big 10 which has a better history on this issue.
A fascinating analysis in the NYTimes discusses fan base, tv market share, and geography in order to explain the seismic shifting going on in college football.
I just spent most of the afternoon reading Taylor Branch's cover article for the new Atlantic which arrived in my mailbox this morning. An eye-opening report on the cartel-like behaviours of the NCAA and their exploitation of young people. Branch frames this as a civil rights and human rights issue, and after reading the article, I must agree.
Now we are the first team to rank #1 in the AP poll 100 times!
Why is the conference with 6 of its ten teams currently ranked in the top 25 (and one of its recent former teams ranked) the conference that is imploading? Why isn't healthy sports competition and success outweighing everything else?
And why, when politics, the economy, and the weather are such anxiety-inducers must college football be as well? Shouldn't it be a haven of rest for the weary to watch and enjoy?
These are the questions of the moment.
The Omaha World-Herald has put together a nice map showing what areas of the country Big Ten schools recruit from.
Women may have won lots of legal battles a generation ago, including the right to compete in athletics. But the issue does not go away, as evidenced in Iowa this week where a boy refused to wrestle a girl in the state competition and, thereby, forfeited.
What annoys me most is not this kid (more on that in a moment), but when I logged onto the Omaha World Herald website today, the daily poll was about the situation and people's opinions of the boy. The paper is, first off, irresponsible to treat this as an issue dependent on public opinion. People's equal rights are not subject to a poll; they exist inalienably. Also, I was disgusted that most people voted that the boy had done the right thing. Appalling.
According the article the boy refused to wrestle, "citing his faith." His faith? Now, if he were a conservative Muslim I'd see where he had a point, but my guess is he probably isn't. Nor would his religious difference (if he were Muslim) change the situation -- the girl has her civil rights. This would be one of those cases where religious liberty is the right to refuse to participate, but society does not have to bend-over-backwards, or, more importantly, sacrifice someone else's rights for the practice of yours.
But, my guess is, the boy isn't a conservative Muslim (or Orthodox Jewish rabbi in training, or something else). I'm guessing he is a conservative Christian. So, the same constitutional argument applies as if he were a Muslim.
But I'm trying to figure out why his Christianity would forbid wrestling with a girl. I don't remember that anywhere in scripture or the Christian tradition. What this amounts to is some sect that maintains its patriarchal fear of women's bodies. It isn't your religion, it is your patriarchy and misogyny as expressed in your religion. We have to legally and constitutionally tolerate such religions, but thankfully, as a society, we are moving beyond patriarchy and the fear of women's bodies (except in the U. S. House this week) and, so, increasingly sects with views like those of this boy will find themselves isolated from the broader society.
All three Oklahoma Divison One teams end the season ranked in the top 25. And the Big 12 comes out of the season pretty good.