Thursday, October 26, 2006

The Ultimate Championship

Ohio State. Michigan. The best rivalry in college football. This year is a dream year for the two colleges, as they are currently ranked #1 and #2, respectively, with joke-easy schedules remaining until Michigan visits Columbus in November for the last game of the season. They are both undefeated, having blown out pretty much everybody they've faced - including some top-tier teams. The consensus seems to be that whoever wins that game will play in the championship game against some other team that will likely have one loss on their record. This is simply because after a loss, teams tend to drop in the rankings which are big factors in determining who goes to the championship.

But why? Think about this: Let's say Ohio State beats Michigan in a tough, close, nail-biter in Columbus on November 18th. This is somewhat likely. Now, Michigan will be 11-1 with its sole loss to Ohio State - the best team in the country - on the road, in a huge conference championship game, in a tight game, in one of the best rivalries of any sport. The fact that it happened on the last game of the season should not make it therefore have more weight than (say) a loss by Florida to Auburn by 10 points this past week, an Auburn home loss to Arkansas the week before, or an Arkansas blowout loss to USC in the first week. Barring USC or perhaps West Virginia remaining undefeated, Michigan should retain their #2 ranking and play in the championship - against their utter rivals, the Ohio State Buckeyes.

Michigan vs. Ohio State for the national championship in a rematch of a game played just a few weeks prior. Wouldn't that be incredible?