Texas Longhorns: BCS

3-point stance: Filling the schedule

December, 4, 2013
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1. Just as the 12-game schedule separates pretenders from contenders, so does the nine-game conference schedule. A reader pointed out to me that the top five in the BCS all play only eight conference games. The Pac-12 and the Big 12, which play nine league games, fill five of the next seven spots. The Big Ten is moving to nine games in a few years. The ACC dropped its plans for a ninth game when it made the deal with Notre Dame to play five league teams a year. The SEC has no such excuse.

2. When the Big 12 season began, the league drew attention because of its inexperience at quarterback. David Ash of Texas, with 18 starts, led the league. As the Big 12 heads into its final Saturday, only Bryce Petty of Baylor and Jake Waters of Kansas State have started every game. The 10 teams have started 19 different quarterbacks, six of them freshmen. That explains why only three Big 12 guys rank in the top 20 of the QBR: Petty (third), Clint Chelf of Oklahoma State (fifth) and Davis Webb of Texas Tech (18th).

3. Did Chris Petersen wait too long to leave Boise State? He has averaged almost 12 wins a year with the Broncos, taken them to two BCS bowls, and made them a national player. Boise State has gone from 12-1 to 11-2 to 8-4 in its three years in the Mountain West. He also has put his name into a few coaching hats, only to either back off or be passed over, as was the case at USC (assuming that’s why he “withdrew his name” from the search). Petersen seems as if he would fit at Washington. If that gets serious, I hope he takes it.

60 days, 60 stats: No. 30 

July, 4, 2012
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Each day, as a countdown to fall camp opening Aug. 2, we are going to provide you with a number that was important in 2011 and let you know why it will be important in 2012.

It wasn’t supposed to take this long for Texas to be Texas again.

But it has been 30 months since the Longhorns played in the national title game against Alabama. No one, not even Aggies fans, would have wagered that Texas would be shut out of a BCS game for that amount of time. After all, Texas had been to four BCS bowl games in six years and figured to just keep on rolling.

Video: Examining playoff selections

June, 29, 2012
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College Football Live talks to two members of the oversight committee and examines details of the new plan.

Is Texas one year away? 

May, 4, 2012
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ESPN College Football Insider Travis Haney takes a look at a few teams that are one year away from a run at the BCS title.

Among his teams that could be competing for a championship in 2013 are the Texas Longhorns:

There's no mystery what this comes down to: Can the Longhorns score enough to complement what should be another outstanding defense? UT was 55th in the country in scoring a year ago, and that figure doesn't fully tell the story of the Horns' offensive ineptitude (their No. 89 rank in passing efficiency and No. 86 rank in turnovers lost get us a little closer).

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Edwards: Potential playoff hold-ups 

May, 1, 2012
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College football Insider Brad Edwards wades through what came out of the recent BCS meetings and the playoff talks.

After the meeting came an announcement that serious conversation had taken place regarding several new formats, including some that could quite clearly be categorized as a playoff. This news wasn't surprising, but it did indicate that conference commissioners would have many questions to answer in the coming months -- the same types of questions that had been debated in hypothetical scenarios by sports media and fans for the past couple of decades.

Now that the BCS leadership has subsequently met a few more times in February, March and April, it seems that some of the key questions have been all but officially answered.

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Podcast: Latest playoff discussion

May, 1, 2012
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In this week's ESPNU college football podcast, Ivan Maisel and Beano Cook discuss what's next in the process to set up a college football playoff.

Listen here.


Joe Schad and Rod Gilmore discuss the possibility of a college football playoff system.

Five keys to BCS meetings

April, 25, 2012
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SEC commish Mike Slive outside shot of the Rose Bowl Stadium Big Ten commish Jim Delany AP Photo, Cal Sport Media, AP Phototbd by editor


As the BCS meetings get underway, Mark Schlabach looks at the key points that will factor into the future of the championship format.

"They know this game is in the fourth quarter," BCS executive director Bill Hancock told ESPN's Joe Schad. "And it's time to get it done."

A final decision won't be made this week, but the BCS's governing body is expected to begin to iron out details such as how many teams will be involved in a playoff, how the teams will be selected, where the semifinals and championship game will be played and how the existing BCS bowl games will be incorporated into a playoff.


Schlabach has five key elements:

1. The model: How to play? The current leader seems to be a four-team, plus-one format.

2. The participants: Who gets in? One idea has a conference champions only format which doesn't seem to be sitting well with commissioners.

3. The sites: Where to play? Big Ten officials and coaches are pushing to have the higher-seeded team host a semifinal game on campus. This would give more northern teams an advantage were they to host a southern team. However, this hasn't gained much traction because of stadium sizes and available accomodations in some cities.

4. The calendar: When to play? This is a hot topic considering the 44 days Alabama waited between its regular season finale and the BCS title game. Many want to move BCS games closer to New Year's Day, but that date could be a likely date for semifinals in the plus-one scenario.

5. The Rose Bowl: What to do with the Granddaddy? Simply put, the Rose Bowl wants to keep its traditional tie-ins with the Big Ten and Pac-12. That is a monkey wrench in the works and could keep the Rose Bowl out of the mix for a semifinal game.

Read the full story here.

Kristi Dosh also looks at what a playoff model would be worth financially:

Economists and television consultants value a playoff system around $600 million to $1.5 billion per year, depending on the number of teams included. That’s a major increase from the more than $125 million per year the BCS currently receives annually from its contract with ESPN for the national championship, Fiesta Bowl, Orange Bowl and Sugar Bowl. The Rose Bowl’s contract with ABC generates another $30 million per year.


Read the full blog post here.

Future of the BCS

April, 25, 2012
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ESPN.com continues its offseason look at what is happening with the BCS.

In a conference call of all the bloggers, they look at future of the BCS.

Adam Rittenberg looks at how location will affect what the Big Ten does:

The Big Ten's destination dilemma is inherent within the current bowl/BCS system. The big bowl games always have been played in the South and West, and because of the "double-hosting" model, the same holds true for the national championship games. Most Big Ten fans understand the reasons behind this, and have willingly hopped on airplanes every December and traveled far and wide to see their teams play. It's this willingness that has made Big Ten teams so attractive to BCS bowl committees.

But the future postseason structure will bring change. A four-team setup would create two semifinals, which might take place within the current bowl structure, but most likely will not. The semis could take place at on-campus sites belonging to the higher seeds, a plan Delany advocates, or at neutral sites like Indianapolis' Lucas Oil Stadium and Detroit's Ford Field. The Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis? Beats facing LSU in NOLA.


Ted Miller talks about what the Rose Bowl means to the whole equation:

When the BCS power brokers meet in Hollywood, Fla., this week with the intention of transforming the college football postseason, the Rose Bowl must be given special status. Why? If you were to request a list from the sports' cognoscenti on the greatest traditions in college football, most would rate the Rose Bowl No. 1.


David Ubben looked at the Big 12's need to get a championship game again:

Can it survive in college football's new world without a title game?

Expanding to 12 teams is a possibility, but not a necessity for the league to reinstitute a title game. The Big 12 could petition the NCAA and likely bring back the event on the season's final weekend, the same weekend the league hosted from the time it began in 1996 until 2010.

There's little motivation to do so from those who tend most to on-field matters: Coaches. At least one expressed a desire on Monday, though.


There is, of course, more to this discussion. Read the full notebook here.




BCS changes coming soon?

April, 24, 2012
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BCS Logo (Superdome) John Korduner/Icon SMItbd by editor


The silence is deafening. At least that's the case when it comes to changing the BCS, according to Ivan Maisel.

When SEC commissioner Mike Slive asserted in January that the BCS championship would be transformed, "and I don't think those changes are going to be tweaks," no one rose to rebut him.

The silence that met Slive's comment to Tony Barnhart of CBS College Sports spoke volumes. For 14 years, in the face of loud, nasty and occasionally shrewd commentary mocking the BCS, the administrators in charge of it kept repeating their belief in its virtues.

When USA Today published a memo earlier this month outlining four new formats the 120 FBS schools are considering, the proponents of the status quo said nothing.

As the 11 FBS commissioners and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick meet in South Florida this week to discuss the format of the postseason circa 2014, they face a new reality of their own creation. If they come out of this process without changing the BCS championship, Congress will look efficient by comparison.

"I think the climate has changed," Slive said in January.


What has sparked all this talk of change after years of success and the untold sums of money made? Maisel talked with commissioners and others who said that this has been a gradual acceptance of the playoff or plus-1 model and that this past season finally tipped the scale.

Mountain West Conference commissioner Craig Thompson's advocacy of a playoff four years ago went nowhere. He is delighted that the room no longer goes quiet when he brings up the subject. He favors some sort of four-team format.

"I think a combination of factors got people to a different place," Thompson said. "A national championship game that included a team [Alabama] that won neither its own conference division nor its [conference] title game, playing on Jan. 9 against the NFL playoffs and a growing movement towards a playoff in general have pushed the agenda."


There will undoubtedly be a lot more maneuvering on this subject with one of the biggest obstacles being finding the right television arrangements.

But it it moving. Read Ivan Maisel's full story here.




Three Deep: More good news for UT hoops?

March, 28, 2012
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1. Waiting on Brown: First Myck Kabongo decides he’s staying on the 40 Acres. Then, Texas fans finally here from top recruit Cameron Ridley who told ESPN’s Dave Telep that he will sign his national letter of intent in April. All in all, the good news is rolling in for Rick Barnes’ team. But now you have to wonder how, if at all, will any of this affect J’Covan Brown.

There’s still no news on that front. But it’s interesting to consider the possible lineups for next season. One version is Kabongo, Sheldon McClellan, Ridley, Julien Lewis and Jonathan Holmes. Four sophomores and a freshman. Not bad. NCAA tourney berths have probably been won with less. But when you think of having Brown in that lineup, this looks like a team that could make some noise in March, 2013. It’s a big if, but having Brown as the scorer he is, but also a guiding presence to the young guys suddenly make Texas a little deeper and certainly more explosive on offense. The ball is in Brown’s court.

2. Visitors welcome: It will be interesting to see who shows up for Sunday’s spring game. William Wilkerson reported that a trio of Lancaster (Texas) prospects, including Texas commit Daeshon Hall, will be there. This is surely the first of many reports about which prospects are coming to Austin. On top, there are said to be a number of sophomores who have also been invited.

As the schedule goes, that could determine where Texas stands with some 2013 prospects. LSU is holding its spring game Saturday and some Texas targets are attempting to attend both. Baton Rouge to Austin isn’t that difficult of a trip, but we’ll see if that has any bearing on landing anymore 2013 prospects this weekend.

3. Meetings, meetings: Hopefully college football fans aren’t holding their breaths waiting on anything to come from the BCS meetings. The meetings went on for more than seven hours Monday and continue. The conference commissioners and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick are meeting in Grapevine, Texas, and playoffs are amongst the things being discussed. SEC commission Mike Slive intimated that change could be a ways off. But, on the bright side, there are more meetings in April.

Video: BCS changes needed

January, 11, 2012
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