Texas Longhorns: Ivan Maisel
April, 24, 2012
By HornsNation staff | ESPN.com
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.
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