Wednesday, April 30, 2008

College Sports Potpourri

Two recent articles of interest concerning college sports today:

- No surprise, but the BCS format won't be changing any time soon. The BCS is a very accessible example to use in the classroom to highlight entrenched interests and the transitional gains trap. I'm always surprised that announcers and studio analysts, year after year, put forward their most dire ploy to change the system with the mindset that change is on the horizon. Thanks for the optimism, but do you know how much money these people make? And they're going to vote for something that (partially) eliminates these rents? Really? Yes, the old system was worst, yes, the BCS is better but flawed, and yes, a playoff would, in all likelihood, be better still. The only thing that really displeases me about college football is that Congress has intimated at possibly getting involved. Yikes. Keep my government out of my college sports!

- I'm a big baseball fan, so this story about the College World Series staying in Omaha was of interest. My uncle pointed this out to me, and it's a valid point-- why doesn't the College World Series rotate like the Final Four? I can understand the traction that it has in Omaha, but look at the following the Final Four gets in different cities-- I'm not saying the College World Series will become the Final Four, but imagine the traction the Final Four would have if it were in one city year after year. No one argues against the Final Four moving around because it has been moving around-- baseball can do just fine moving cities year after year.

The closest big city I live near is Pittsburgh-- I would absolutely drive the hour or so to watch some of the games. (Hell, I'd drive an hour to watch the Pirates, so figure the revealed preference there.) There are plenty of beautiful stadiums in the country to hold this in. I would venture to say that the NCAA could make more money doing this too. The only downside would be forcing a major league, or AAA team, on the road for about a week and a half...but that happens to the AAA affiliate of Kansas City every year anyway, and even that isn't a particularly long road trip.

What if you held the College World Series at Wrigley one year? You don't think people would show up to that? Or Yankee Stadium? Or Dodger Stadium? Or in San Francisco right on the bay? Or Seattle in a carport? People would absolutely go to these-- and cities would love to host it.


Unknown said...

I think it's unlikely that the college world series could be hosted in MLB parks, due to the aforementioned forced road trip (then again the Spurs are forced out every year for the rodeo), but I think moving it around to different AAA parks would be a no brainer. At least on a short-term basis to gauge interest and attendance. College world series in Durham Bulls Athletic Park? With the smoking bull? Hell Yeah. That and the LLWS...

rolub said...

I'm not very familiar with the structure of the College World Series (that is, number of games in a certain time period), but isn't it possible that a city can use various ballparks within reasonable distance?

Early games could be played at minor-league stadiums with the semifinals through the finals played at the major league ballpark. For example, there is a AA-stadium in Akron and low-A stadium in Lake County, both within 45 minutes of Progressive Park in Cleveland. While that may not be convenient, I'd imagine there are some major league cities with other ballparks in a comparable vicinity as this.