Why early season big games won't last

There is so much money in college football today that early season showdowns are likely to be a thing of the past this Sunday a.m… Even if it takes a few years to work the schedules out, college football powers like USC, OU and Notre Dame are not going to tolerate the risk of having two losses by week three. Ole Miss has two losses. Texas and LSU have one each. Auburn is a team in flames.

Don’t get me wrong. There is dancing in the streets at my house over the woes of each team mentioned. I just don’t see the AD’s at those schools putting their programs in such a position, year in year out.

By the way, if you haven’t had the pleasure of reading the boards of some of these struggling powerhouses, take the time. There could be some serious upheaval at years end. Furthermore, LSU is a wreck. Those fans would have gone crazy last night if MSU had pulled off that comeback. I am telling you,that LSU is a powder keg ready to blow.

There are pressures in both direction. If OU had scheduled two cupcakes instead of Houston and Ohio State, and got to the end of the year at 11-1 but missed out on the playoffs because of weak NC opponents (a la Baylor two years ago), Joe Castiglione would be justifiably criticized for loading up on cupcakes. Of course now they have virtually zero chance to make the playoffs with nine games to go.

The big games in September are also money-makers, and good exposure for recruiting, which is why Jeff Long is working on scheduling one in Kansas City or Orlando in the future (I’m guessing playing Baylor in Houston probably died when Briles got himself fired, but we’ll see. Of course, we now have an NC opening in 2019 thanks to getting Michiganed).

The CFP committee, formerly led by Jeff Long, has let it be known that strength of schedule matters. I’m waiting for someone to test that. Baylor didn’t really; they lost a game and weren’t even undisputed Big 12 champs that year. But if Baylor had gone 12-0 with a squishy schedule, would they get a playoff spot over an 11-1 team that tested itself in nonconference play? That remains to be seen. Somebody will probably decide this is the year we can run the table in conference, load up on pastry in September and dare the committee to leave an undefeated team out.

I disagree. The conferences are not going to renege on the scheduling mandates. Notre Dame always schedules hard; that won’t change, either.

If those teams can’t win these early season games, they will change coaches, not schedules.

I agree with Matt. Are we forgetting the influence of ESPN, ABC, CBS, etc?

This is just one of the effects of the CFP. I know I’m in the minority, but I don’t like the CFP even in its current limited format. Oh, I can live with it. Don’t have any choice. But don’t like it. We’re bound & determined to turn college football into the NFL where no game counts except in how it impacts a team’s chances to get to the playoff. OU’s season is essentially over. The big rivalry game over Texas? Meh.

Teams will still want to win & would rather finish 9-3 & win a bowl than go 5-7 & not, but if we expand the CFP much more even that won’t matter.

Ah, but I’m just the lone voice crying in the wilderness. We’re not going back to split NC’s, polls, controversies about “who’s #1?” The trend is to have an exhibition season & then a tournament. Just like NCAA basketball.

You guys may be right, but all I have to say is it goes against the interest of some of the vested powers in college football.

Just watch the push back. There is no way the biggest programs are going to remain silent when they are out of the national hunt by mid September. You watch and see.

The bummers seem to like scheduling a tough game early, often at a neutral site. When they win, it just enhances their mystique. It is not good to lose those, but the winners can sometimes do a little coasting.