2013-10-19 11:17

The selection committee for the playoff system effective next season is revealed.

You might remember me writing in my week 5 preview regarding that committee:

"It looks like it will be filled with no longer active athletic directors, coaches, media members and maybe other members somehow connected to college football. Also there should be 1 selected active AD of each of the 5 biggest of the 6 current BCS conferences (SEC, PAC 12, Big 12, Big 10 and the ACC (called the big 5 conferences ...)).
So we have 5 active ADs plus up to 15 other people formerly involved in College Football."

Now let's have a look:

Active ADs:
Jeff Longa
He is from the Arkansas Razorbacks and will not only represent the SEC, he will also be the chairman of the committee
(a bit surprising for me, I would have expected a different University bully their way in, but the SEC knows what they do normally, so who am I to judge)

Barry Alvarez
He is the AD of the Wisconsin Badgers and will represent the Big 10
(Not surprising, a long time Big 10 member and a well-known program)

Pat Haden
The USC Trojans athletic director will represent the Pac-12
(for me also not surprising, the most powerful University sends it's shark)

Oliver Luck
As AD of the West Virginia Mountaineers he will speak for the Big 12
(THAT is the most surprising one, since WV is quite new in the Big 12, but I'm not deep enough in the political connections inside the Big 12 so who knows. Father of Andrew Luck by the way)

Dan Radakovich
He is the Clemson Tigers athletic director and will represent the ACC
(Not surprising, works for ACC programs for some time now and the Tigers have some name)

Now the "Former"-Members, which are 8:
Lt. Gen. Michael Gould
The Former Air Force Academy superintendent (2009 - 2013)
(Probably the guy to keep an eye on the service academies point of view)

Tom Jernstedt
Former NCAA executive vice president (2003 - 2011)
(That's the NCAA representive probably)

Archie Manning
Former NFL quarterback (1971 - 1984 as NFL QB)
(A famous sports star and father of Payton and Eli Manning, Celebrity selection probably)

Tom Osborne
Former Nebraska coach/athletic director (1973 - 1997 as HC, 2007 - 2013 as AD)
(a heavy weight former coach which won 3 national championships. That guy knows football)

Condoleezza Rice
Former U.S. Secretary of State (2005 - 2009)
(I don't get why she is on that list, but she was on more than one list of possible members send to the Committee selectors, so some people wanted her in)

Mike Tranghese
Former Big East commissioner (1990–2009)
(Not much to find on him on the web I guess, since the Big East or their successor the AAC don't have a say in that new system (they were part of the BCS, the former system) he represents the conferences NOT represented by an AD. For me not a clever choice, I would have picked one of the smaller conferences, like the MAC or the SBC)

Steve Wieberg
Former USA Today reporter (1982 - 2012)
(the press representive, I'm surprised to have only one on the committee)

Tyrone Willingham
Former Stanford/Notre Dame/Washington coach (1995 – 2001 as Stanford HC, 2002–2004 as Notre Dame HC, 2005–2008 as Washington HC)
(That's also a selection I don't get. He is a not so successful coach, they have Osborne, so the coaching position is set, why another one? Maybe he is some kind of balancing member or has a reputation for being very unpolitical?)

That's it.

I don't see how this should help a lot, to avoid controversial selections, but the best out of this system is the +1 game we get.
Means now we will see semi-finals and we will see the winners of those finals playing for the big one.

But I also see bad selections and I see cupcake semi-finals in the future.
Not every season, but for sure in some seasons.

Now let's have a look at the BLOCK OF GRANITE TOP GAMES FOR WEEK 8

Saturday, October 19 12:21 PM ET
#22 Florida @ #14 Missouri
Florida lost against LSU last weekend, which pushed them maybe into the Non-Contender-Territory.
But they are only 1 win behind and if they win against the Tigers, there would be no unbeaten team left in the division and everything starts almost new.
Mizzou won against Georgia, on the road, but lost their starting QB.

What to do with this game?
It's a home game for the Tigers, against a very good defense.
Their offense is a bit down, since their QB was quite good. The new one is a really NEW one.
Floridas offense is down, too. They lost their RB.

It looks a bit like do-you-believe-in-Cinderella if you like Missouri in that game.
Their coach basically said "we won't miss a beat", so that QB was not so good? Or the other one, with no experience is as good?

I pick Florida for two reasons.
First I don't believe the "we won't miss a beat" statement, a QB change is always a change, and if that new guy never played much ....
Second I don't believe that the Tigers came out of that Georgia game not exhausted. Of cause also Flordia did play a hard game, but that's Florida, which knows the SEC, Mizzou is in its second year in the SEC.

So, Gators win.
(PS: Don't ask me regarding the kickoff time, that was the time stated at ESPN ....)

Saturday, October 12 3:30 PM ET
#24 Auburn @ #7 Texas A&M
Now it gets really interesting for Auburn.
They lost against LSU so far and that's it.
Now comes Texas A&M.
Also a big opponent.
Too big?
Or did they grow big enough in those last few weeks?

I give the Aggies the home advantage, so that won't help Auburn.
I give Texas A&M the bonus on QB plays.

I give Auburn the upsetter bonus, since nobody had them on their map before the season.

Hard to figure this out.
It could happen that A&M takes this game for granted and stumbles.
It could happen, that Auburn is over-confident and implodes right on the field.

I'm expecting a home game party and a conservative approach of Texas A&M to control Auburn and win this.

Yes, A&M wins. But Auburn stays in the picture for some "upsets".

Saturday, October 19 3:30 PM ET
#9 UCLA @ #13 Stanford
That's also tough to pick.
UCLA did beat Utah, Stanford did lose against them.
UCLA visits the Cardinals, but they are unbeaten.

I give Stanford my pick for one reason.

I can't believe them to play bad 2 games in a row.

I fully respect UCLA and I'm very confident they will play for the PAC 12 crown in December, but playing against this Cardinals team, on the road, after a shocking loss?
They will be angry to the teeth.

Stanford win.

Saturday, October 19 6:00 PM ET
#20 Washington @ Arizona State
Quite interesting matchup here.
Washington lost twice and they are still ranked at 20, but are at the moment at place 5 in the division.
Arizona State lost only against Stanford in the PAC 12, so they are better in their division, but not ranked.

They play in the desert, so nice benefit for the Sun Devils.

I doubt they will be able to stop that very good Huskies RB, and I think the Huskies Defense will be good enough to keep ASU out of the scoring range often enough to win this.

Huskies rebound and win.

Saturday, October 19 7:30 PM ET
USC @ Notre Dame
This is huge for both schools, even if they are not ranked at the moment.
USC with an interims coach, but they won their first game under his watch, Notre Dame with a bye week, playing at home.

I'm still sure Notre Dame will get some more losses this season, but not on this game.

All signs do point into an Irish win direction.

The only dark horse the Trojans can bring into this game is a maybe very relaxed and play happy group of players willing to play.
THAT could turn the tide, since much of the effort comes from your dedication.

I doubt it will be enough. So I pick the Irish.

Saturday, October 19 8:00 PM ET
#5 Florida State @ #3 Clemson
This is the biggest game of the ACC this season. Even bigger than the ACC Championship game.
Whoever wins here knocks on the door for a national championship ticket.

Both teams are very good.
I'm still not convinced regarding the Clemson defense, but they won all games so far, behind their offense and their defense kept their opponents often enough out of the endzone.

Not this week.

I see two very good offenses, but that Florida State defense is better.
So they will keep the scoring drives of the Tigers in low figure and on the other hand will score more often.

Only reason for a close game is the home field advantage.

But I'm expecting a FSU win.

‘Til next time

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