Thursday, May 31, 2012
Checking in on Big 12 spring meetings
By David Ubben
The Big 12's spring meetings kicked off with the league's athletic directors meeting in Kansas City on Wednesday, and made it clear beforehand that expansion would be only informally discussed.
Still, the questions had to be asked, and they were answered. For now, the league is happy with 10 members, echoing its stance for the past few weeks.
Will anyone believe them? (Does it matter?)
"We could expand to some number. You name the number -- 12, 14, 16," Texas AD DeLoss Dodds told CBSSports.com. "We could expand, but the question is, do we need to expand?"
Big 12 commissioner Chuck Neinas, in fact, made it simple.
"The Big 12, athletic directors reaffirmed their commitment to 10 members," he said.
For now, anyway. Florida State is still only flirting, but if the Seminoles make up their mind, the safe bet is that stance will change very quickly.
Until then ... here we are.
Playoffs were a hot topic, but the league's athletic directors reiterated what we essentially already knew: The Big 12 is in favor of a four-team playoff.
"We're in favor of taking the four highest-ranked teams," said Neinas, who has begun to transfer power to new Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby. "We think it should be some type of selection committee operation, and how you rate a conference champion, strength of schedule must be included."
I love the selection committee idea personally, an idea reiterated by chairman of the league's athletic directors, Iowa State's Jamie Pollard.
The BCS has its flaws. That's obvious. The biggest flaw in piecing together a selection committee? How do you do it? How do you find panel members without bias? Is that possible? Do you copycat the NCAA's formula for the basketball tournament?
All difficult questions with answers to come.
"There needs to be a human element to kind of handle the unknowns. You can't always say computers get it right or opinion polls will get it perfect," Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione said. "You still need someone with good, rational thinking to deal with unforeseen circumstances that may come up.
"Who knows what form that takes, but some form of human element that gets college football to the point of determining the best teams."
Chalk me up on board with that.