I love Twitter.
Twitter and sports are a match made in heaven. From Vines to rumors to conversation.
Last night after Ohio State knocked off Alabama, I tweeted this:
Everyone is condemning the SEC West. All but one of their games were exhibitions. Flawed theory.
— Brady Stiff (@BradyStiff) January 2, 2015
It was retweeted by a Wisconsin Badgers beat reporter, and in came the replies.
@BradyStiff Because no one actually tries to win their bowl games or something?
— Mike Bischoff (@mpbMKE) January 2, 2015
Of course they try and win.
@BradyStiff Exhibitions don't count in the standings. These games do.
— Luke Logemann (@Luke_Logemann) January 2, 2015
What standings are those?
Never said anything about not wanting to win the last game of the season
I mean, if you're not playing for a championship...
The only games that matter every year are the ones that count towards the pursuit of a National Championship.
The same way we allow Wisconsin fans to try comedy.
— Bob Peterson (@BigEddySprings) January 2, 2015
I'm not even sure what that last guy means by saying "ALL" games are exhibitions. All bowl games? Every single game ever played? I still don't know...he's yet to respond to my request for elaboration.
My point is, again, the only games that matter during bowl season are the ones that go toward winning a National Championship.
The SEC West (largely considered to be the best league in college football) went 2-5 this bowl season. Their only wins came from Texas A&M and Arkansas. That means LSU, Auburn, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, and Alabama were losers. People want to take that record and condemn that division of the SEC as being overrated or bad.
We've seen the SEC dominate the national football college conversation, and with good reason. They play for and win championships. They send players to the NFL. They pay coaches. They have rabid fan bases. The list goes on. But fans of teams in other conferences can't wait for the SEC's Reign of Terror on college football come to an end. Will it? Probably at some point, but I don't think we can look at this year's SEC West bowl record as a sign of the beginning of the end.
Every bowl game except for three is an exhibition. It's a vehicle to make money. For sponsors, for TV networks, for schools, for bowl game CEO's (yes, that's a thing). It's a "reward" for having at least a .500 season. The kids get to travel somewhere (maybe even somewhere warm), have one last hurrah, and pick up some swag in the process. Coaches get a few more practices, and maybe a bonus for actually winning the game. The reality is, in the big picture, nobody will remember who won last year's TaxSlayer.com Bowl (Nebraska), but EVERYONE knows who won last year's national championship.
Some people can sit down on the couch as soon as bowl season starts and not get up until a champion is crowned. That's not me. You couldn't pay me to watch Louisiana-Lafayette and Nevada battle it out in front of a 3/4 empty stadium. No thanks.
Give me games that MATTER. Oregon against Florida State...Ohio State against Alabama. Loser goes home, winner goes to the National Championship Game. Those are the games that matter!!
For the teams who aren't playing for a national championship, the bowl game is an opportunity to maybe try something new, or get a player some run who maybe didn't get much during the season. I would be willing to bet that coaches put together a game plan that's a little more loose than if they were in the College Football Playoff. Trick plays, go for it on 4th down....things that wouldn't actually happen in a playoff game.
Sure it's great to win, and I believe that the kids and coaches in the games try their hardest to win. Despite that, the games still DON'T MEAN A DAMN THING.
As far as I'm concerned, the SEC West went 0-1 this bowl season.
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