DETROIT—Claiming that determining an unquestioned national champion through a playoff system "went against the very idea of sporting competition," and that the sheer exuberance of college basketball fans was "a shocking and nauseating display of everything wrong with collegiate athletics," top BCS officials roundly condemned the NCAA Tournament Monday.
"I frankly cannot even believe what I'm seeing, and I can't stomach the sight for long," said a pale, trembling Jack Swarbrick, the Notre Dame athletic director who, along with the commissioners of the major conferences, manages the complicated system of polls and computer rankings that make up the Bowl Championship Series in college football. "The elegant logic of actually having teams play one another instead of having a council of their betters select which team is superior to which—that is not what sports is all about."
"And the fans...urgghh...simply enjoy their teams' triumphs or mourn their defeats. Where are the heated arguments? Where are the unsettled disputes that will fester forever?" said Swarbrick, a sheen of feverish sweat curdling on his face. "Oh, God, I think I got vomit on my tie."
"It's the joy, the sheer joy on the fans' pathetic joyful faces and in their insipid happy voices that fills me with such loathing—loathing for the certainty they will feel when all is said and done and they know exactly who is the best, and hatred for the pure joy they will feel because of it," Pac-10 conference commissioner Larry Scott said as he panted, slumped down in a wheelchair. "Mark my words, their certainty regarding exactly how good a team is or isn't will never be allowed to corrupt the BCS—and neither will their joy."
As of press time, Scott had been hospitalized due to nausea and bile scarring in his throat.
Other notable BCS executives have either expressed disgust or been involved in disgust-related incidents in the weeks since the tournament began. The White House has asked several conference commissioners to stop calling after 10 p.m. or while drunk. And retching, unstable statistician Kenneth Massey, a sports-ratings expert whose calculations play a part in the BCS rankings, was arrested by police in Detroit last week when he attempted to chain himself to the gates of Ford Field, all the while screaming that both stochastic and determinist calculations prove that Xavier could not have beaten Wisconsin in the second round.
"It's wrong. It's just wrong," Swarbrick said. "I haven't been able to keep food or fluids down since this...this March Madness began. Everywhere I go, I hear the cheering, the talk, and I see that goddamned bracket everywhere. Why? Why are all these people so happy after watching a championship tournament? How can they be happy without a network of polls and computers run by an arbitrary board of university executives to tell them who the champion really is?"
"Imagine if we'd let this happen—if we had let, say, Boise State play for the championship after all the filthy happiness and cheering they inspired," a vomit-drenched, glassy-eyed Scott said from his hospital bed. "College football as we know it barely survived them upsetting Oklahoma. If we had let teams compete in a—a—a playoff, as they call it, the resulting combination of joy and true competition would have gone against everything the BCS stands for."