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Utah Attorney General To File Antitrust Suit Against BCS (Hurt Own Cause In Process)

The attorney general for the state of Utah said yesterday that he has decided to file a lawsuit against the Bowl Championship Series.  Republican Mark Shurtleff says the BCS is “an illegal monopoly” and that it violates antitrust regulations.

You can click the above link for the details.

We’ll make five quick points on this subject:


1.  While we at MrSEC.com aren’t fans of the BCS and would prefer a small playoff system in college football — 8 teams — we do not support a lawsuit attempting to crush the current system.  We believe that the court system and state attorneys general should have enough on their hands when it comes to real world issues.  To put it plainly, there are bigger fish to fry than college football’s postseason system.  So, respectfully, we ask that politicians butt the hell out of our sports and instead do their damn jobs.

2.  While the BCS is a flawed system, it has poured more money into schools — all FBS schools — than any system previously created.  Non-AQ teams want an equal share of postseason cash, just like a Texas, a Southern Cal, an Ohio State or a Florida or an Alabama.  But check the TV ratings and you’ll see that no one is wearing out their remotes to catch Boise State and Nevada on television (unless they’re playing a big boy school).  The BCS schools are the traditional powers who demand huge sums of cash from television networks.  That cash then trickles down to the little guys.  If the supporters of the little schools actually kill off the BCS system…

3.  We’ll be headed right back to the old bowl system.  And the small schools will go back to never ever playing in the Fiesta, Orange, Sugar or Rose Bowls.  Hope you enjoyed your shots in primetime, Boise State and Hawaii.  And forget that check your league gets from the BCS each year.  Enjoy the heck out of the Humanitarian Bowl.  As for the rest of us, we’ll go back to having the national title decided by pollsters.  The big schools won’t agree to a playoff that splits college football revenue evenly.  If they’re faced with a “playoff or no playoff” choice, they’ll choose “no playoff” and go back to controlling all the cash.  We can’t blame them for that.  The mega-schools built the sport, they beat one another other up in top-tier leagues each season, and they feel they deserve the lion’s share of the riches.  They do.  Where’s Joe the Plumber when you need him?

4.  Why not let the free market decide the matter?  Public demand for a playoff is growing.  Television dollars are rising.  Eventually, a playoff system is likely to take root.  But that’s if the politicians and courts allow things to play out on their own.  Unfortunately, most of these do-gooders don’t grasp the fact that there are currently only two choices on college football’s gear box — neutral and reverse.  The attorney general of Utah clearly doesn’t understand that he can’t force 60-some-odd college presidents to do something that they don’t want to do… which is move forward toward a playoff.  In reality, the options are the BCS (neutral) or the bowl system (reverse).

5.  The fact that guys like Republican Mark Shurtleff of Utah don’t understand the situation and can’t see what a destruction of the current system will bring takes us right back to our initial point: Butt the hell out of our sports and do your damn job, politicians.

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