Archive for the ‘controversies’ Category.
The BCS computers used to consider the point difference between any game’s winning and losing teams. As discussed in this post, the mandatory dropping of this factor is still controversial. In a later change, the proportion of a team’s BCS rating that the computer rankings comprise was reduced from 1/2 to 1/3.
This season, the effect of these modifications can be seen most prominently by focusing on Nebraska and Oklahoma. Two (Massey and Sagarin) of the six BCS computer systems publish rankings, not used by the BCS, that take into account margin of victory.
Massey places Nebraska at #41 in his BCS rankings, but at #16 in “MOV”.
Sagarin puts Nebraska at #45 in his BCS rankings, but at #9 in “Predictor”.
Massey places Oklahoma at #42 in his BCS rankings, but at #24 in “MOV”.
Sagarin puts Oklahoma at #47 in his BCS rankings, but at #5 in “Predictor”.
As can be seen on the first-place votes page from 2009, 53 voters in the Coaches‘ poll ranked Florida #1 before the season started, and, a week before the final BCS rankings, that number had changed to … 53.
I’ll just note the schoolboy’s taunt directed at ESPN‘s Chris Fowler and move on to Jeff Anderson‘s arguments against the BCS computers considering margin of victory.
- “The object of the game is to win.”
A team wins by scoring more points than the opposition. Anderson ignores the stated purpose of the BCS, which is to “match the two top-rated teams in a national championship game and to create exciting and competitive matchups between eight other highly regarded teams in four other games.” It has failed miserably. I’ve proven that before, and will undoubtedly write about this issue again this season.
- “The BCS Standings are not trying to mirror Las Vegas in projecting who would win in a (hypothetical) future matchup. They are trying to reward the most deserving teams.”
Guess what, Mr. Anderson – regardless of any BCS computer algorithm, betting on college football games will occur and Las Vegas bookmakers will rank teams.
“The Hawkeyes are the only team in the BCS top-10 that has beaten two current BCS top-25 teams on the road …”
Bully for them. USC was the only ranked team to have beaten three ranked opponents on the road. So what? As noted in a previous post, the BCS has deterred teams from scheduling quality OOC opponents, so ranking on mere win-loss records is even sillier than it would have been pre-BCS.
- “Unquestionably, including margin of victory in the computers would encourage teams to run up the score in an unsportsmanlike way.”
Florida 62, Charleston Southern 3
- “If margin of victory is going to be considered at all (and, for reason #1, we don’t think it should be), then it should be considered by subjective voters who can better appraise subjective style points.”
This isn’t even an argument, but note Anderson‘s misuse of the derogatory term “style points”. No Mr. Anderson, football is not gymnastics. There are no style points – period. Anderson fails to mention that the fraction of a team’s BCS rating determined by the computers has been reduced from 1/2 to 1/3. Why? USC, clearly the nation’s best college football team, ended up #3 in the BCS rankings after the 2003 season due to the foolishness of not considering margin of victory.