Saturday, March 2, 2013

Let’s Just Scrap the Top 25 in College Basketball

I'm serious. The best argument to get rid of it is to ask for a reason why we shouldn’t. The so called “number one team” has lost so many times that Gonzaga is about to claim the top spot going into the final week of the season.

Does anyone outside the Northwest believe the Zags are the best team in the country? Of course not, but they’ll be called “Number One Gonzaga” for the rest of the season by announcers and analysts who don’t for a second believe what they’re saying.

So why do we do this? Aside from “It’s always been done”, the only reason the college basketball world holds onto this obsolete tradition is the same reason the NCAA holds onto its obsolete “amateur” label: money.

If the NCAA and conference commissioners want to keep ESPN and CBS happy and shelling out millions, then they better provide every marketing tool possible. Can you imagine this commercial for the Duke/Miami rematch without a number attached to their names? Because it’s #3 vs #5, it validates why you should spend your Saturday evening in front of the TV.

But after this season especially, shouldn’t we as fans be smarter than this? Is it necessary for a bunch of AP sports writers to affirm my decision to watch Miami and Duke, or would it make a difference if they were ranked 13th and 15th? Are ratings for Gonzaga games going to go throw the roof because our arbitrary system says they're number one?

I’ll throw it out there again. The best argument to scrap it is to ask, “Why not”?

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