Will 5-7 teams play in bowl games?

Nobody asked me, but:

**–I decided a long time ago that I wasn’t going to rail about the number of bowl games that are played. Former SEC commissioner Roy Kramer once told me that if two conferences and one community decide they want to have a bowl game, then more power to them. Nobody compels us to watch.

 But with 35 bowls approved for the 2010 season, the math does not look good. It means that 70 of 120 teams in Division I-A will participate in a bowl game. Last year 71 teams finished 6-6 or better. That’s cutting it pretty close. The rules say you have to be 6-6 or better in order to qualify for a bowl. There have been reports that the NCAA is working on contingency plans if there are not enough qualified teams for the bowls. I will have a problem if 5-7 teams are going to bowls. That is not good for the game.

 **–Here is a guy who got some bad advice. After he threw 26 touchdowns as a sophomore in 2008, Ole Miss quarterback Jevan Snead came to the SEC Media Days in Birmingham in July of 2009 as a possible Heisman Trophy candidate and a potential high draft choice.  Snead started playing poorly in the first month of the 2009 season and never really got better, throwing 20 interceptions. After losing at South Carolina in September, Houston Nutt did the smart thing and started putting Dexter McCluster in the backfield and running it. Snead could see his draft stock dropping with every game and decided to jump off the merry-go-round while he still could. He left school early to enter the draft and was not among the 255 players selected. He would have been much better off staying at Ole Miss and figuring out what was wrong.

 **–The hot topic, in fact the ONLY topic at last week’s BCS meetings was the possible expansion of the Big Ten and what that could do to the rest of college football. Also during those meetings the BCS released the formula by which it is now possible for one of the non-automatic qualifying conferences (MAC, WAC, Mountain West, C-USA, Sun Belt)  toqualify for an automatic bid. I’m not going to get into the formula because it would only give us all a headache. But here are two things you need to know. We are two years into a four-year evaluation period. At the end of the next two years, if the Mountain West keeps playing at this level (Utah in the Sugar Bowl in 2008, TCU in the Fiesta Bowl in 2009), the MWC will get an automatic bid for 2012-2013. That should keep Utah Senator Orrin Hatch, a big BCS critic, at bay for a while. Or maybe not.

 **–There were a bunch of head scratchers in the draft but none more puzzling than what happened to Georgia Tech running back Jonathan Dwyer. The 2008 ACC Player of the Year had over 2,700 yards rushing the past two seasons and, when he turned his paperwork into the NFL, received word that he should be picked in the first or second round. Dwyer fell to the sixth round, taken No. 188 by Pittsburgh. He did test positive for a prescription drug taken for ADD, but that was not an issue with the NFL. Dwyer has also battled his weight (229 pounds or more on a 5-11 frame) and I know some NFL teams wondered about that. But someone suggested yesterday that Dwyer’s issue was Georgia Tech’s offensive system. That sounds like a recruiting junkie instead of somebody evaluating talent. If Paul Johnson’s offense was the problem, why did Dwyer get such a good NFL evaluation in the first place? I can’t think of anything NFL backs are asked to do that Dwyer can’t do.

**–I think this may come up in the May recruiting period. The SEC had 49 players selected in the draft followed by the Big Ten (34), ACC (31), Big 12 (30), and Pac-10 (29). The SEC has won four straight national championships and Alabama, the defending national champion, is a likely preseason No. 1. But here is an interesting stat: All 12 schools in the SEC had at least one player chosen in the draft: Alabama (7), Arkansas (1), Auburn (2), Florida (9), Georgia (5), Kentucky (3), LSU (6), Ole Miss (4), Mississippi State (2), South Carolina (2), Tennessee (6), Vanderbilt (2).

The ACC had 30 players chosen in the draft for the sixth straight year. Since 2005 only the ACC and SEC have had 30 or more players chosen in the draft every year. The breakdown: Clemson (5), Virginia Tech (5), Georgia Tech (4), Miami (4), Florida State (3), Maryland (2), North Carolina (2), N.C. State (2), Wake Forest (2), Boston College (1), Virginia (1).

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105 comments Add your comment

14TH--ON THE WAY

April 27th, 2010
8:49 am

Jim Mora Jr.

April 27th, 2010
8:51 am

Jim Mora Jr.

April 27th, 2010
8:52 am

Ichiban
(okay, so I’m first in Spanish and Japanese…)

Reptiles Rule

April 27th, 2010
8:53 am

First? For what it’s worth.

GaGa4Gators

April 27th, 2010
8:56 am

How do you say 2nd in Spanish and 3rd in Japanese, Jim? Reptiles Rule, you’re first in the Tampa, FL market. Nicely done.

wesleywhatwhat

April 27th, 2010
9:08 am

gaga4gators wins. everyone else posting “first” fails.

Sam Houston

April 27th, 2010
9:09 am

Everyone who is against a playoff, including Tony, says it will hurt the great bowl set-up. So we have had a lot of 6-6 teams playing in empty stadiums and now they want to add more bowls. Does anyone remember when bowls were a reward for a GOOD season and not only about the money? It is a shame that the largest amateur sport votes on its national champion. All the other divisions in football does not have a problem with a play-off, only the big boys.

Alphare

April 27th, 2010
9:18 am

Why the falcons did not take Dwyer since he was available until the 6th round? You’d think those falcon business people know business a thing or two.

droopydawg

April 27th, 2010
9:18 am

for the record, even in a down year UGA sent more players to the NFL through the draft than GT. Double the number if you count undrafted free agents.

jumbeauxtiger

April 27th, 2010
9:21 am

I don’t have a problem with having 35 bowls. ESPN televises most of the non-BCS games and I like how they have spread them around. You can watch most without having some on at the same time or not televised at all as was the case years ago. I do agree Tony a 5-7 team in a bowl is hard to swallow. On the other hand it is possible for a losing team to get in to the NCAA Basketball Tournament by winning its conference tournament.

Snead should have stayed in school but it’s not the first time this has happened. I believe he did sign with the Bucs and I hope he does well.

The MWC champ has been very competitive the last 2 years so I don’t see anything wrong with them earning an automatic BCS bid. I still think there should be a Plus One Model with the top 4 teams seeded against each other with the winners playing for the NC.

I haven’t followed Dwyer that closely. I didn’t know he was that quick until I saw him in person against LSU in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl. It is strange he dropped that far.

The NFL draft is just another example of why the SEC is the premier conference in college football (BTW Tony, LSU had 9 other players, besides the 6 drafted, who signed with NFL teams).

Geaux Tigers
Go SEC

Miles

April 27th, 2010
9:22 am

There’s only one bowl game that matters: The National Championship! All the other bowls are merely contrived nonsense.

droopydawg

April 27th, 2010
9:23 am

Alphare: learn English, but to answer your question: The Falcons had other needs to address and because of the depth of this draft, there were a lot of good players in the late rounds. I would also be willing to bet that the Falcons did not have Dwyer graded much higher than the 5th or 6th round. If they had graded him as a 1st or 2nd round talent, they would probably not have passed over him in the 4th or 5th round.

Reptiles Rule

April 27th, 2010
9:23 am

Way too many Bowls. Reminds of the NHL Playoffs where everyone gets in. But it’s all market driven so I guess it will seek it’s own level. I would suspect that most people don’t really start watching the games anyway until New Years approaches or the few days before. But at least if you need the college football fix, you got some choices.

KR

April 27th, 2010
9:24 am

Nobody asked me either, but…

6-6 teams should not go to bowl games, 5-7 teams certainly should not.

Instead of giving out more automatic bids, I’d like to see them done away with.

Gen Neyland

April 27th, 2010
9:25 am

Tiger Woods didn’t handle 1st so good, so 14TH–ON THE WAY, keep it real…

I gotta wonder how many times we Volunteer fans are gonna get ripped on these boards in 2010 for CDD’s retooling efforts..? Nobody will remember this tomorrow but as I’ve already mentioned here, it’ll be a struggle for us in 2010. But if we’re lucky enough to go 5-7 in 2010, I’d take Shreveport for the practice time…

Dan Williams (DT), 1st round to AZ Cardinals, was considered to be an experiment/borderline talent to Coach Fulmer. Under Monte, he took off last year and look what it got him. As for Crompton, the guy was written off more thimes than Yella Fella but was done so by people that didn’t have the day to day knowledge of what he was put through Atop Rocky. His being drafted has to be a blow to many ‘expert football bloggers’…

Again, congrats to ALL (especially SEC) draftees and free agents…

Miles

April 27th, 2010
9:26 am

Mr. Barnhart, I’m confused. My understanding was that the the Big 10 Network was not a money maker. However, based on your recent articles I’m inferring that it will make money if it expands its coverage by adding more teams even though the teams they are eyeing for expansion are not football power houses. It doesn’t make sense. Am I missing something? Please advise. Thank you.

Otto

April 27th, 2010
9:49 am

BCS level football has far to many teams. The MAC, Conf USA and maybe others should drop down to the playoff level.

I don’t care if Buffalo plays Troy the week before Christmas in Detroit.

Scholarships should also be upped by 10 for the top level of CFB.

Vandyman

April 27th, 2010
9:51 am

How is it that the ACC has such mediocre results on the field while having such obvious talent. I guess it is either bad coaching or more uneven talent. I guess the point is that everybody on SEC rosters (except possible for my beloved Dores) is marginally better than ACC rosters. The ACC just also happend to have a lot of stars. The coaching in the ACC has improvd so I do not think that is the issue.

dawgfan

April 27th, 2010
10:07 am

Tony, NFL backs are asked to catch passes, pass block, and recognize defensive schemes. Dwyer had to do NONE of that at Georgia Tech. I think the fall to the 6th round was a little surprising too. The guy is a good (not great) back, but that was just a dumb comment Barnhart. Do you even watch the NFL? Its not exactly Wake Forest and Duke over there you know? Its big boy football and its complex. Dwyer is in for an adjustment. Maybe he makes it. Maybe he doesn’t. But I don’t think his 180 yards rushing against Wake and Vandy last year really tells us much. Thanks.

Ormewood

April 27th, 2010
10:12 am

Vandyman, the ACC has plenty of talent. There’s no doubt about that. Their problem is that there has been no dominant team or program, I guess since FSU in the late 90’s. Since then, the SEC has had powerhouse teams at LSU, Auburn, Florida, Bama, at times Georgia. Most teams in the ACC are decent and competitive, just not elite. They had ten teams go to bowls the year before last, but they have just not been stacked enough to compete on the national level.

ACC will have plenty of talent on the field this year too: Ponder is rated as possibly a top ten pick. Va Tech has as good a TB tandem as you will see anywhere, plus Tyrod Taylor. UNC is absolutley loaded on defense. I saw yesterday where they have the #1 DE, #1 DT, #1 OLB, #1 FS, #2 CB, and #2 ILB rated as pro prospects. Miami has Jacory Harris, some great TB’s and WR’s. Still, I think the same thing will happen this year. No dominant team will emerge.

HugoStiglitz

April 27th, 2010
10:22 am

so dawgfan,

Dwyer had 158 yards rushing against North Carolina, which had the 10th best rushing defense in the country. There was only one SEC team (Alabama) ahead of them in that category. Did that game tell us anything? Its pretty obvious that Dwyer fell for reasons other then his talent and the offensive scheme he was in.

The rest of us

April 27th, 2010
10:26 am

Well Hugo. If it wasn’t talent and scheme and it wasn’t a failed drug test or character, what’s left?

14TH--ON THE WAY

April 27th, 2010
10:30 am

Gen Neyland–other than being first, I didn’t have anything else to say.

Miles, Big Ten teams make 5 million dollars more than SEC teams. Guess their network is profitable.

HugoStiglitz

April 27th, 2010
10:32 am

I think the drug test did unfortunately play into it to an extent. But answer Tony’s question, why did he go from a late 1st rounder/early 2nd rounder to a 6th rounder without playing football in between? Did all of the scouts forget to look at tapes of his play until close to draft day? Did nobody tell the NFL that he played in a unique offense until close to draft day? They knew everything about him when he was a potential 1st round pick, nothing changed. You have to admit its a little fishy, and there has to be something we dont know about.

McDawg

April 27th, 2010
10:32 am

Dwyer is the kind of back you want late in the 4th quarter churning out the yds keeping Defenses on the field-i would have taken him over the guy from Ole Miss

The rest of us

April 27th, 2010
10:39 am

It must be how he looks in his underwear. The last two days: failed drug test, character, speed, scheme and talent have been defended at length here at the AJC.

Alphare

April 27th, 2010
10:43 am

Tony, you may want to read this on al.com

As the landscape of college athletics continues to rattle with the looming prospects of major conference realignment, Harvey Schiller was recently recalling what might have been.

From 1986-89, Schiller was the commissioner of the SEC. Light years ahead of his contemporaries, Schiller helped to spectacularly alter the direction of the SEC by moving toward expansion and a championship game in football.

In a recent interview, Schiller reflected back on how Arkansas and South Carolina became the 11th and 12th schools in the league. But the most shocking revelation concerned how close the University of Texas came to joining the SEC.

Schiller, who left the SEC to become the executive director of the United States Olympic Committee and would later serve as president of Turner Sports and CEO of YankeeNets (going from working for Ted Turner to George Steinbrenner), said Texas had virtually agreed to become an SEC member. Arkansas and Texas would join the SEC from the Western side and South Carolina and either Florida State, Miami or Virginia Tech would enter from the East.
Paul Finebaum Column Head

“The one that made the most sense was Texas,” Schiller said. “I spent some time with DeLoss Dodds (the Texas athletic director) and he really wanted to join the conference.”

Done deal. Everything agreed to but the name on the dotted line. Then, it all came apart.

“The state legislature (in Texas) somehow got wind of it through Texas A&M and said we had to bring in both schools or we couldn’t take Texas,” Schiller said.

The SEC didn’t want A&M. Ultimately, the two Texas schools would leave the Southwest Conference and join the Big 12.

The scramble on the other side of the league was just as furious. Schiller remembers Vince Dooley of Georgia was pushing for Georgia Tech. At Florida, officials were pushing for FSU and Miami.

“They felt it was the only way to control recruiting,” Schiller said. “We liked Miami, but passed because they didn’t have a complete commitment to all their programs. Tulane was passed for the same reasons.”

Schiller, who lives in New York and is the chairman and CEO of GlobalOptions Group, an integrated risk management firm, said Virginia Tech simply wasn’t a good fit from a geographic standpoint.

Schiller was personally high on Florida State, but left for the USOC before the deal could be consummated. In July of 1990, Arkansas ended its 76-year affiliation with the Southwest Conference to join the SEC. South Carolina would join a few weeks later, but only after a heated courtship pitting the ACC vs. the SEC for Florida State. To this day, many still blame Roy Kramer, Schiller’s successor, for blowing the talks with FSU.

As for Schiller, he was not around to see his expansion efforts come to fruition, but it was definitely his baby, even though most in the media today continue to give Kramer all of the credit.

As with the league’s title game, which remains one of college sports’ most prized jewels, it was all Schiller.

Schiller remembers sitting around one day with one of his assistants, Mark Womack, now the league’s executive associate commissioner. He was looking at the NCAA rule book and the idea was born.

“You know, Mark,” Schiller said, “we can have a football championship.’” “What you mean?” Womack responded. “I’m looking at a rule book and it says if you have more than 10 institutions, you can effectively have a championship in any sport,” Schiller said.

Somehow, Walter Byers, the dogmatic head of the NCAA, caught wind and immediately called Schiller in Birmingham.

“He said, ‘what the heck are you doing?’” Schiller said, remembering the fiery conversation. “That (rule) was not meant for you,” Byers told Schiller. “It was meant for hockey, volleyball and soccer (and smaller leagues) where they have 12 or 14 or 16 schools.”

“But that’s not what the rule books says,” fired back Schiller, a former combat pilot in Vietnam who later attained the rank in the Air Force of Brigadier General. Schiller once headed the chemistry department at the Air Force Academy and holds a doctorate in the subject.

Schiller said the conversation deteriorated from there, with Byers “calling me an SOB.”

“You’re not going to do it,” Byers demanded.

Oh yes we are, Schiller responded.

In 1992, the SEC made history by holding its inaugural championship game.

“de Tocqueville said the revolution only tells you something that already took place,” Schiller said.

Schiller’s words spoke volumes about his extraordinary tenure as the SEC commissioner more than 20 years ago. But it may also be applicable to current landscape of college athletics as well.

What will happen over these next few months remains a mystery. However, there is no mystery about the vision employed more than 20 years ago by Harvey Schiller, and how the SEC is still reaping dividends from his genius even today.

[...] well just let everyone play in a bowl.  A couple of other opinions…Tony Barnhart of The AJC doesn’t want to see 5-7 teams in bowl games.Ray Melick of The Birmingham News believes the NCAA is trivializing its [...]

5IML

April 27th, 2010
10:47 am

One day there will be so many bowls that Bowl Week will resemble the first round of the basketball tournament, and I will enjoy it.

Jay

April 27th, 2010
10:48 am

Duke’s qb didn’t get drafted? That would have put the acc like the sec with all 12 teams.

Rick

April 27th, 2010
10:59 am

Another ugag player arrested? LOL. Too funny.

Shug

April 27th, 2010
11:06 am

News Flash: Dwyer’s failed drug test was an issue with NFL teams. Kids and NFL wannabes out there, don’t do drugs.

Shug

April 27th, 2010
11:10 am

Bowl games long ago stopped being a “reward” for a good season. Anymore they’re just a 13th game on the schedule with the opponent to be determined.

#2 BAMA FAN

April 27th, 2010
11:20 am

Over the weekend watching the NFL draft waiting for the draft picks of the Titans and Dolphins my 2 favorite NFL teams in day 2 you starting hearing Utah players being picked right and left and I had to
remember the worst bowl game Alabama ever played and completely wiped by a WAC team, but hey
the Utes were loaded and it proved out the Dolphins picked a linebacker in the 2nd round from Utah who was in Bama’s backfield all night in the 2009 Sugar Bowl. The SEC is loaded with great players
but don’t forget the WAC!! RTR

ThUGA

April 27th, 2010
11:20 am

Georgia is in a great position to win the Fulmer Cup this year. Richt has said it would be an honor, and that the trophy will look fine on his mantle, adjacent to his can of spray tan.

PTC DAWG

April 27th, 2010
11:20 am

Why should I care if a sponsor wants to foot the bill for a Bowl that I will not watch. Survival of the fittest.

That said, the Ncaa should step in and say NO 5-7 teams in bowls.

SaintsLSU

April 27th, 2010
11:25 am

ThUGA, what is the Fulmer Cup? Does that go to the SEC HC with the most arrests in a season? Or is that the 2nd place in the East prize, “can’t spell Citrus with out UT”. Please educate me, I know more about the SEC West.

Ormewood

April 27th, 2010
11:25 am

Utah is in the MWC, not the WAC.

SEC Fact Check

April 27th, 2010
11:26 am

Tony,
May be one of the reasons the SEC has more players selected in the draft is that they have MORE PLAYERS OVERALL. This has a little something to do with recruiting 30+ players a year and subsequently cutting/forcing out the ones the coaches dont want anymore. Also take into account the incredible number of junior college players that find their way on/off SEC campuses. Do you have any stats on the total number of players SEC teams ‘go through’ over a 4-5 period vs other conferences, say the ACC for example? The SEC is a revolving door for football players, hence the higher yield into the NFL.

HugoStiglitz

April 27th, 2010
11:27 am

The bowl system is already ruined anyways so you might as well make it worse if it creates more revenue. I mean, really. Does anyone really care about any bowl games outside of the MNC and their teams bowl game? The rest are just meaningless extra games with two random teams playing for basically no reason.

ThUGA

April 27th, 2010
11:32 am

SaintsLSU: UGA will probably win the arrests (Fulmer Cup) and come in third or fourth in the SEC East, behind Florida, SCar, and possibly Tenn.

The rest of us

April 27th, 2010
11:35 am

Tech fan makes me laugh! ThUGA is as cute as a pail of kittens!

not so fast

April 27th, 2010
11:52 am

Duke , minnesota , and 3 or 4 more schools are currently ahead of uga in the fulmer cup standings , but don’t worry pups you still have plenty of time to make up ground.

Darindawg

April 27th, 2010
11:52 am

Hey Tony….are the fans ever gonna get what they want…a playoff? I agree with “Hugo”….bowls are useless and meaningless. Just a way to “reward” some schools for a mediocre season so they can call themselves some sort of “champion”. I don’t always agree with Mark Bradley, but he’s right. College football season starts out the best sports season in the world, then ends the worst. When is the greedy B ull C rap S ystem people and the university vips gonna get rid of their greedy little agendas and give the world a true playoff and a true way of competing for a NC? Alot of criticism has been thrown at Mark Richt for not winning a MNC, but I want hold that against him until there is a playoff and real way of winning one. If we win the SEC I’m happy…it’s the only championship you actually can earn the right way…..not playing for one after a bunch of computers spit out “polls” and a bunch of business people sit around and play “rock/paper/sissors” to decide who gets to play for one.

The BCS

April 27th, 2010
12:01 pm

I’m working perfectly fine. Look at all the comments about college football on the last week of April.

gernblanksi

April 27th, 2010
12:16 pm

Jevan Snead can blame Todd McShay for the bad advice.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/03/31/todd-mcshay-backlash-builds/

Although in fairness, McShay said in October of last year that Snead was not longer a first round pick. Snead should have called Andre Woodson about McShay’s player evaluation and draft knowledge before he left Ole Miss.

5IML

April 27th, 2010
12:22 pm

#2,

The worst bowl game Bama every played (at least in my lifetime) was the 1991 Fiesta Bowl against Louisville. It was the first year at Bama for both Coach Stallings and me. That game singlehandedly put Louisville’s football program on the map.

Gen Neyland

April 27th, 2010
12:25 pm

SaintsLSU : Look..! Your guys are tied for 10th. Go to EDSBS and looks around.

http://www.sportsargumentwiki.com/index.php?title=Fulmer_Cup

secfactcheck.com

April 27th, 2010
12:28 pm

Tony, looks like someone has taken my alias. He/she does make a good point.

Chester Lakomski

April 27th, 2010
12:49 pm

Q: Why did the fan from Cleveland paint his commode orange?

A: Because he wanted to see the Browns in the Orange Bowl!