I’ll start by saying that I have been a college football playoff-system supporter since the very beginning. And I still am. I believe it would be the more exciting and lucrative system to decide a national champion.
However, attending the Rose Bowl game in person may have slightly changed my mind. I am a die-hard Oregon Ducks fan; so, this year, I was lucky enough to attend the Rose Bowl where they defeated the Wisconsin Badgers for their first Rose Bowl win in 95 years.
Earlier this year, when Oregon looked to be on the road to play in the National Championship for the second straight year but then lost to USC effectively killing their chance, I thought it was a disappointment to play in the Rose Bowl. And it was.
The jubilation that took place after the victory was awe-inspiring. Players were absolutely filled to the brim with pride and joy for what they had just accomplished. Their families sitting in the stands were smiling from ear-to-ear and may have never been more proud than they were at that moment.
I have never attended a game in which any of the teams I emphatically root for won a championship so I do not know what that would feel like but I expect that feeling and the feeling I had after the Rose Bowl win would not be all that dissimilar.
And that was a bit surprising to me. This was not a national championship. I cannot say that Oregon is the best college football team in the nation (they are not). But it did not matter. I was incredibly proud and excited over what had just taken place and I would bet the team’s feelings were similar.
So, go ahead and push ahead for a playoff system. It really IS a better system of determining a national champion. And it IS a more lucrative system for the schools and everybody else involved (except for the players themselves but that’s a different topic).
But don’t say that the Rose Bowl Game and the Fiesta Bowl and the Sugar Bowl and all the other bowl games for that matter do not mean anything because many of them do for that team and that fan base.
And please, think about what a playoff system would destroy. Because if yesterday’s Rose Bowl were a playoff game, that elation and celebration and feeling of pride would be all but destroyed. It would just be another game.