If there indeed is a selection committee to decide the four participants in a major-college football playoff starting in 2014, former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden wants to be on it.
“I think ex-coaches have a lot of wisdom,” Bowden said. “I watch the games. And I watch the game films on my iPad.”
Also desiring a spot on such a committee is former Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer.
Throw in former Texas A&M coach R.C. Slocum, as well.
“We have the time to do it. We have the expertise from years of coaches,” Slocum said. “It’s a lot better than a computer. And it’s a lot better than people who have never worked in the game. The system is flawed. We all want to do what we can to help preserve the integrity of the game.”
Nonsense, nonsense, nonsense.
Are you telling me former coaches with good friends still in the coaching profession, athletic departments and conference offices wouldn’t carry biases when it came time to pick a final four teams? Are you telling me Bowden could leave a borderline Florida State team out of his picks, or Switzer likewise with Oklahoma? I think not.
No, you need people who haven’t been part of the circus, not those who lived on the high wire for decades.
That’s why I humbly accept the responsibility. Why?
Because it would make for good copy and get me a lot of page-views. Oh, you meant why would I do it otherwise?
Because I don’t care who the four teams will be, I just want them to be the four most-deserving. And I barely even care about that, which is good, because you can care too much and have your judgment clouded by the pressures that come with getting it right.
Last year I would have picked LSU, Alabama, Oklahoma State and Oregon in the time it took to say their names, and then gone off to lunch. And my choices would have been correct. Would that have required watching game film on my iPad? Of course not. Would that have required years of experience in coaching? No way.
But you cover Iowa and Iowa State, some would surely say. Wouldn’t you feel pressure to cut them a break if they were in contention for a playoff berth?
That’s a reasonable question. But the answer is no. If they’re worthy, they’re in my final four. And if they aren’t, I give them the thumbs-down and get heralded by the rest of the nation as a brave, brave soul who did the right thing rather than cave in to local pressure. There would be a book deal, an HBO special, maybe even a judging gig on “America’s Got Talent.”
Er, I mean there has to be a lot of personal pride in picking the four teams you think are genuinely the best. And that’s the important thing.
But how could you continue to live in Iowa if, say, the selection committee excluded the Hawkeyes when it was clear they were on the bubble for the fourth spot? Now that’s a good question.
Simple. I’d get on this blog and write, “The rest of the committee wouldn’t listen to my detailed, impeccable logic supporting Iowa’s case. I am appalled at its woeful decision-making.” Then I’d go have lunch.
I don’t think I will be asked to be on that committee.