Thursday, December 8, 2016

Third Playoff Rankings Released: Bias at an All Time High

There is a show on MTV called Ridiculousness. The show airs crazy internet clips while a couple guys critique them in front of an audience.

What confuses me is what they are going to re-name it, because that title belongs to a 30 minute show on Tuesday nights formerly known as the College Football Playoff Rankings.

As WVU fans who have watched, supported and followed their gold and blue this season, they should be OUTRAGED. I’m not even sure where to begin on the complaining trail, but here is one suggestion: The college football playoff committee needs to be replaced immediately. Bring the back the BCS formula for ranking teams. The human power over that pathetic excuse of a selection room has way too much influence over the actual teams they are ranking. Below is my opinion on some of the teams and committee’s formula for these absurd rankings.

West Virginia is 8-1 in a power five conference. It doesn’t matter if it’s the worst power five league or the best one, they are 8-1 in a power five conference. But the Mountaineers check in this week at number 14, up two spots from last week’s 16th ranking. But here’s the thing.  WVU won at Texas, who had won two games in a row, has numerous five and four star athletes and has a top five Heisman contender in their backfield in D’onta Foreman. Not to mention that five teams lost in front of WVU over the weekend. The Mountaineers did not play well, but still won a road game against a 5-4 team. Remember that 5-4 reference.

On ESPN on Sunday morning, one ESPN analysts said something along the lines of “good for West Virginia you beat a 5-4 team on the road”, while rolling his eyes in sarcasm, then said they are “irrelevant”.

How is it that Washington can lose at home in what’s considered a weak Pac 12, but still be ranked seventh, seven spots ahead of West Virginia when WVU’s schedule is rated better according to the Sagarin ratings?

So let’s go to Clemson, a team that’s squeaked by all year long to close wins against teams that aren’t even supposed to be near their level. Well, this past Saturday their luck ran out and they lost to a 5-4 team at HOME. And that team was Pitt! But all of a sudden according to the national media Pitt is an up and coming team. Yes, the Pitt team that wanted to fire their coach Pat Narduzzi two weeks ago after getting manhandled by the always overrated Virginia Tech Hokies. So there’s how you protect precious Clemson and keep them in the top four at number four. Yes, Clemson LOST at HOME and dropped one spot.

Michigan is another interesting story. The Wolverines also lost this past weekend to a 5-4 team, Iowa. Michigan lost on the same field that FCS member North Dakota State was able to win. But if you were thinking they were in trouble, you were wrong. The Wolverines dropped one enormous spot to number three and are safely in the playoffs probably even if they lose again. But the biased media says Iowa was fired up and Michigan just had a bad game. Really? That’s all there is to that. WVU gets mocked for winning at Texas and Michigan gets excuses made for them for losing to Iowa? By the way, Iowa had 62 yards passing in that game. Think about how bad the Wolverines had to be to lose a game like that. But it’s cool, they get a pass for their “whole body of work,” says a committee member.

The USC Trojans are playing really well right now. So well, that they have moved ahead of West Virginia at number 13. Why is that a big deal? Because USC has THREE LOSSES. But they are playing good right now says the committee. Apparently USC’s whole body of work doesn’t matter like the committee member had just stated about Michigan. Again, a contradicting pathetic excuse of a ranking.

That brings me to Colorado. At 8-2, the Buffaloes are a feel good story of football. They have been pitiful for years and now they are not. However, they are also not worthy of being in the top 10. The reason they are in the top 10? To make Michigan’s win over them look good for Michigan and justify keeping the Wolverines in the top four. The Buffaloes best win is 10-5 over Stanford. With two losses, is that enough to keep them in front of the Mountaineers? I say no.

Penn State is still hovering around in the top 10 even with their two losses. They are continuing to win, but with James Franklin as coach, they are sure to screw up here soon and will probably end up losing to Michigan State to close out the year. But even with their win against Ohio State (a fluke win, by the way, but yes, a win), they are still too high based on the rest of their body of work. They were crushed by Michigan, 49-10 and weren’t even competitive, and we all know how slightly overrated Michigan is by now. Another team that the body of work does not apply.

There is more wrong with this poll such as Tennessee debuting at number 19 after two really impressive wins over Tennessee Tech and Kentucky (sarcasm). So yeah, I just realized the Volunteers lost three in a row and seriously are coming off of those two wins and they jumped several teams and got in the top 20. That is the ultimate SEC bias right there. This one may actually be the biggest joke of the poll. Wow, that is truly unbelievable.

So here is obviously the formula:

If a team has a great tradition, multiple national titles, a bunch of TV sets to market, in the SEC, Big 10 or ACC, you are golden and will be given every opportunity to make the top four or if you are having a bad season, you can still be ranked somewhere to show your recruits.

If you’re in the Big 12 and you aren’t named Texas or Oklahoma, you have zero chance to make the top four, but you can still get ranked so that’s good, right? Don’t think that statement has merit? Below is what Kirby Hocutt, committee chairman, had to say regarding WVU vs Oklahoma:

explain

The Mountaineers could beat Oklahoma 60-0 this weekend and honestly I doubt it will matter in regards to the playoff rankings.

So as fans right now, forget about the top four of the playoffs. That is not happening. I would love to be wrong, but at this point every team in front of WVU could lose out and the Mountaineers would still be on the outside looking in. When six two- loss teams and a three-loss team is ranked ahead of a one-loss WVU team, it goes beyond lack of respect. That’s a sign of straight dislike.

West Virginia needs to focus on winning the Big 12 and trying to get to the Sugar Bowl. That is the ceiling for this season and unfortunately, probably every one from here on out.

 

 

 

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