Last time I outlined the reason why this could be the year for Ohio State to win another National Championship. Here are the reasons why that may not actually happen:
5.) The System- Generally the BCS has been kind to the Buckeyes, but if the Big-10 proves to be as weak as I think it will be, it may not be.
4.) Luck- As noted last time, luck can play a factor. Unfortunately that can cut both ways. What if Robert Marve has turned himself into the greatest quarterback ever? What if there's a bad call in a close game against Wisconsin? That element of uncertainty could cost the Buckeyes.
3.) Expectations- There are great expectations for this year's Buckeye team. That could work against the team in several ways. There is believing your own hype and therefore thinking it will be easy. There is also the burden of high expectations that could cause poor performance. Finally, there is the target that is produced by being considered a 'great team.' It's not that Ohio State doesn't always have a target on their backs; it's that it's bigger this year.
2.) Injuries- This team is loaded with talent, but at some critical positions there is an apparent lack of depth. It is not entirely true that Ohio State would be in trouble with certain injuries, because the depth is still big name recruits, just generally unproven. If someone can name Pryor's back-up in comments I'd be impressed.
1.) Alabama- Alabama is loaded and if they make it to the National Championship game, I do not think there is a match for them anywhere in college football.
The Agent Problem
In recent weeks four programs have come under investigation by the NCAA for alleged player involvement with agents. This is a serious problem in big-time college athletics. Agents are trying to assure themselves a cut of a player's rookie contract, which in the NFL is massive, and there are no real consequences for the agent or player. I have a feeling that this issue will prove to be rampant in college football and even worse in college basketball due to the one and done rule.
So, what's the solution? There really isn't one that the NCAA can implement that will be truly effective. The most effective tool the NCAA has is the punishment that it can issue to programs whose players commit violations. Unfortunately, these punishments never actually punish the guilty parties, but those who are in the program long after those who are responsible have moved on. It is still all the NCAA can do and it does really encourage programs to ensure compliance, when they see the type of punishments that was handed to USC. These punishments still don't really solve the problem of agent involvement with college athletes though.
The only real effective solution can come from the agents themselves, the NFL and the NBA. Starting with the agents, some sort of trade-union or organization of agents that provides licenses and oversight would be a step in the right direction. If an agent is found to be involved with a college athlete, that license should be revoked. If the player's unions of the NFL and NBA could make it so they only deal with licensed agents, that would make doing business with college athletes a huge risk and not worth it. Also, introducing a rookie pay-scale in the NFL would reduce the incentive for an agent to involve himself with a college football player. Sam Bradford is looking at 50 million guaranteed money in his rookie deal, so the agents cut will be massive. Not only will it help with the problems in college, but it would fix one of the really messed up things about the NFL.
Thanks for reading and please comment.