One week from today, TCU and Boise State will play each other in the Fiesta Bowl. Each school will receive a large payout for being in Arizona for the game. The schools’ alums, supporters, students, and football fans in general will anticipate a close game between two programs very much on track for future success. Everything seems so right about this game, yet many look at this game and see everything that is wrong about the BCS and high level college football. This is a game where the participants would rather play someone else. That isn’t out of disrespect for each other but a nagging feeling that a tremendous hose job occurred in 2009.
Boise and TCU were the party crashers this year into the most exclusive club in college athletics, the BCS. Their conferences are not the big BCS ones. Both schools made the top 8 in the country based on their records and on the field performances. However, the BCS in their infinite wisdom decided to keep the big boy conferences away from the two interlopers. Boise and TCU got treated like Larry and Flounder did at the snooty frat rush party in Animal House. You can be here, but you’re not associating with us in any meaningful way.
So instead of getting a bowl date with Florida, or Iowa, or any of the top 10 teams in the BCS, number 3 and 6 play each other and remain virtual outsiders in the BCS system. The shame in this is they deserved their shot this year. This of all years the Mountain West and Western Athletic conferences deserved that chance to shine or fail in a bowl against a Big 10, SEC, Big 12, Big East, ACC or PAC 10 school. Everyone wanted to see how they would do. Their supporters were ready to go anywhere in the country to see their team play one of the stalwarts of college football.
They just didn’t want to play each other.