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Kenneth Darby #34 of the University of Alabama is tackled by center Ali Highsmith #7 of Louisiana State University on November 12, 2005 at at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
It has become a right of fall as dependable as cold weather and “Black Friday” - the ongoing controversy of the Bowl Championship Series and its complex and seemingly byzantine process of selecting the match-ups for college football’s champion has once again inspired the annual gnashing of teeth.
This year’s fracas involves the BCS rematch between Louisiana State University’s undefeated Tigers and Alabama’s single loss Crimson Tide. Alabama’s solitary loss came courtesy of an overtime field goal at the end of a grueling defensive grind against LSU on November 5th. LSU and Alabama are ranked #1 and #2, but 3rd-ranked Oklahoma State made their BCS case by beating Oklahoma 44-10 on Saturday night. But the coaches and computers ensured another year of drama by setting up the first intra-division rematch in BCS history. The score will be settled one way or another in the BCS Championship game on January 9th. The selection of LSU-Alabama will likely rouse the chorus of those who make their yearly plea for a college football playoff season to replace the BCS system.
Can the BCS system be improved or should it be cast aside? Is a college football playoff season a viable way to determine which team is the true champion?
Frank Deford, sports author, journalist, six-time National Sportswriter of the Year, senior contributing editor, Sports Illustrated, commentator, NPR's Morning Edition