COLUMBUS, OH—In what many BCS officials are citing as "proof that their flawless system indeed works," no Division 1-A college football team was found to possess the sheer excellence required to face Ohio State, the No. 1 ranked team since the season began, in this year's BCS Championship game.
"The main job of the BCS is to place the best football players in the nation in a single game in order to decide the national champion," said BCS chairman Mike Coleman. "This year, our computer took hours to process the polls' relevant data—by which I mean the opinions of the nation's finest sportscasters, sports-radio hosts, coaches, color commentators, and ESPN The Magazine contributors—and determined that no championship game is necessary. No team in America deserves to even step on the same field as Ohio State, let alone actually play in a game against them."
"It's good to know that, after the Harris and the USA Today polls carefully and painstakingly take care of the fallible, emotional, potentially biased human element of the ranking through old-fashioned voting, the BCS then takes that human element and subjects it to its own infallible rigid mathematical formulas," Coleman continued. "It's a confidence-inspiring system that has never failed us before."
"Although I'll be the first to admit that previous years have usually featured some sort of game," Coleman added.
According to Coleman, the University of Florida's lackluster running game and one-loss season, USC's "abominable" offense and two losses, and Michigan having already lost to Ohio State 42-39 seemed to be the determining factors in the BCS's decision. Coleman also said that Ohio State clearly being the most popular and exciting team in college football didn't hurt. However, Coleman insisted on adamantly stating for the record that the BCS is not a popularity contest.
"I think this year more than any other year proves that the BCS is working," ESPN College GameDay anchor Lee Corso said during a live broadcast from Ohio State's campus. "The system does an excellent job taking into consideration things that poll voters don't even think about: strength of schedule, whether or not the team won their conference, total distance the teams' fans are willing to travel for bowl games, average amount spent on souvenirs by alumni, and grade point average. After all those things, it's Ohio State, baby. And only Ohio State."
Corso then put on the costume head of Ohio State mascot Brutus Buckeye and was met with cheers from thousands of students.
"My guys were disappointed at first, but they eventually understood," said Michigan coach Lloyd Carr. "We had our chance against Ohio State and we blew it, and I guess a rematch would be boring. But can you blame us for thinking we had a chance? Sure, Troy Smith is easily the best player ever, and that defense, well, quite frankly, I'd be afraid for our guys' safety if we had to go up against that defense again, but our fans are rabidly single-minded and a lot of them have poll votes."
"I wish Bo Schembechler had lived to see this," Carr added. "He had a vote in the poll, you know."
Florida Gators head coach Urban Meyer agreed with Carr, saying that even if his team had been offered a chance to play Ohio State, he may not have taken it.
"We don't deserve to play Ohio State. Period," Meyer said, adding that though Florida had a tough schedule, being the SEC champion was not the same thing as being Ohio State. "Every coach that I know voted for Ohio State in the coaches' poll, or at least had them second after their own team. In any case, I can certainly see why no one who votes in the BCS wants the national championship to be decided by a mere football game."
All coaches interviewed supported Meyer's claim, with the notable exception of Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis, who said that despite his team's two losses, weak schedule, and unremarkable defense, he still felt in his heart that Notre Dame deserved a chance at the title—a feeling that, according to a BCS official who wished to remain anonymous, was not completely overruled.
"First of all, I should note that although Notre Dame is an independent, and a highly regarded independent at that, it does not have its own special set of rules as far as determining its football team's rankings," the official said. "Instead, we use a special set of mathematical algorithms to determine its football team's rankings, which the BCS specifically determines only after ranking all the other teams. And though I shouldn't say this, we—er, the computer—would have dearly loved to have seen Notre Dame in the championship."
The Fox network has announced that in place of the game on January 8, it will broadcast four hours of Buckeye players working out in preparation for the 2007 NFL draft.