Explain this to me. Why does it take an 83 year old man, who will be coaching only a few more years, to have the most forward thinking attitude in a conference stuck in the 70’s?  Joe Paterno, who will be making his 36th bowl appearance this Friday against LSU in The Capital One Bowl, thinks his league needs to add a 12th team and have a title game.  Gee, no kidding!!  A league in their own backyard, the MAC, has been playing a championship game for 12 years—12!!!!  And the Big 10 just now realized this is a good idea?  But bear in mind this is a league that still wants to cling to the sanctity of the Rose Bowl rather than have a playoff.  And it has its teams ending its season long before anyone else, making them good and rusty come bowl season(see last years 1-6 bowl record, thank goodness for Iowa!!)  Look there is no doubt these championship games are a money grab.  But, you can’t deny the excitement they bring, not to mention giving us a true champion.  Remember Florida and Alabama both were undefeated in the SEC but didn’t play each other, does anybody think they deserve to be co-champs after what we saw in the title game?  Plus it’s as close to a playoff as we have and as you may have heard I want a playoff(see–My Favorite season of the year).

So who does the Big 10 add?  Well the obvious choice is Notre Dame but they are delusional and think they are too important to be tied down by conference affiliation(check out Paul Crane’s great blog–Notre Dame is Finally Irrelevant).  So that leaves probably these 4 schools–Missouri, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and Rutgers–as the Big 10’s likely targets if they decide to actually pull out of neutral and drive forward.

The interesting thing will be the domino effect, especially if the Pac 10 also starts moving forward and adds 2 teams so that they could have a title game.  Since they like regional rivalries, that league could look to scoop up BYU and Utah.  If Missouri went to the Big 10, then the Big 12 would need a 12th–maybe TCU?  Suddenly the Mountain West Conference, could go from trying to get into BCS to being non-existent if they lose 3 teams. Or the Big East could lose a team but would have to replace that team and then maybe look to add enough for their own title game, raiding teams from Conference USA.

If we do get some movement it could start a great shift in teams and conferences much like we saw when the SEC went to 12 teams and the Big 12 was created.  I personally would relish a day where all of the BCS conferences have 12 teams and we have a championship weekend of conference title games.  I just hope I don’t have to be 83 before that day comes.

Bowl Notes

—LSU is 4-0 under Les Miles in bowl games with wins over Miami, Notre Dame, Ohio St., and Georgia Tech

—LSU’s last appearance in the Capital One Bowl was Nick Saban’s final game with the Tigers.  The game ended on a last second 56 yard bomb from Iowa’s Drew Tate to win the game for the Hawkeyes.

—New Orleans Bowl–Middle Tennessee St. QB Dwight Dasher was impressive in front of a record New Orleans Bowl crowd Sunday— gashing Southern Miss for a bowl record 201 rush yards, the most by a QB ever, breaking Vince Young’s mark in the 2006 Rose Bowl.

—Sugar Bowl-It doesn’t appear it will be a record crowd for the Sugar Bowl, in fact just the opposite–the crowd may be quite disappointing.  Officials are hoping for a sellout but the Gators aren’t exactly doing their part, as they are well short of selling out their 17,000 seat allotment.  Not exactly a proper sendoff to the most popular Gator ever-Tim Tebow.

Finally congrats to SMU, completing the comeback from the mid-80’s death penalty with a Christmas Eve romp of Nevada in the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl.  Now, to see if Temple can end another drought.  When they play the Eagle Bank bowl vs. UCLA they will be looking for their first bowl win since their last bowl appearance in the Garden State Bowl in 1979.

By: Paul Boron