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THE INSIDE TRACK | T.J. SIMERS

Before You Talk the Talk, Know Your BCS Priorities

November 30, 2000|T.J. SIMERS

Like most of you, when the family gathers around the dinner table these days, we like to talk about the BCS.

I believe the BCS has changed our lives. Before the BCS came along I remember nights when no one could think of a thing to say except for the occasional admonishment not to chew with your mouth open.

I still have to remind the wife every once in a while, but it no longer ruins the rest of the evening now that she is so intent on making her case for Miami. I've never seen her so passionate, and dummy me, I just never thought of whispering "Miami" into her ear.

The thing is, we're talking about an emotional issue here over dinner, the wife detailing plans to introduce a BCS computer virus, the younger daughter telling us what her boyfriend thinks, and the older daughter singing "Cheer, cheer for old Notre Dame."

The other night it got so bad I think we were there as a family together for almost 15 minutes because everyone wanted their say. In certain cases--making no mention of names here-- allowances were made to talk with food in their mouth so eventually everyone could be excused from the table.

And I must say, as head of the household, I took pride in my family, the way everyone worked Miami, Florida State and Washington into our annual holiday tradition of going around the table and offering thanks.

In case someone gets a look at the home video, let me apologize to the folks in Corvallis--we didn't mean to leave Oregon State out--it just happened.

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I DON'T KNOW how many times a day I hear someone say "BCS," and yet I'm not sure there is anyone out there who can explain to you how it works. Ask the guy next to you, and he probably doesn't even know what the initials BCS stand for--but the darn thing has become a monster in our lives.

Washington beat Miami and it has a worse ranking than Miami, which beat Florida State and has a worse ranking than Florida State, and unless Kansas State defeats Oklahoma Saturday, the world will be rocked by injustice.

I turned on the radio the other night, got Lee Klein on 1150 AM, and will deny it if anyone ever brings it up again.

"It's pathetic that America lets this happen," he was saying, and while I was thinking Bush and Gore, he was talking about the BCS, and taking calls from agitated Americans everywhere unhappy with college football rankings.

Talk about being surprised--I didn't know anyone listened to Klein.

But I also couldn't get over the fact so many people are worked up about who will play each other for the national championship, as if it's anything more than another prime-time night of sports entertainment to enjoy on Jan. 3.

I guess you could put the whole thing in the context that some people also fretted about who would be selected to play in the Galleryfurniture.com Bowl, but all I got to say is, "Miami . . . Miami . . . Miami."

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THIS PENCHANT FOR always being late is ridiculous, but not as damning as Isaiah Rider's lack of effort once he took the court against the Indiana Pacers--finally a good reason to play, "Who Let the Dog Out?"

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ON A POSITIVE note, although the Ducks are in last place, they now have as many points--22--as they have fans.

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IN FOOTBALL LANGUAGE, Butch Davis saying he's not going to Alabama and is going to stay at the University of Miami, means he will be coaching the Houston Texans when they make their debut in the NFL in 2002.

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I DON'T FIND it amazing that Billy Sims will be auctioning off his Heisman Trophy, knowing that Charles White's drew $184,000 and O.J. Simpson's netted $230,000, but that someone out there would pay that much money for a doorstop.

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HE'S STILL GOING TO have his offices here in L.A., will remain a Dodger and Angel season-ticket holder, and if successful as a spy among us, the Angels will have no chance of winning the pennant, the Dodgers no hope of claiming the World Series if matched against the Chicago White Sox--he's that good.

Dennis Gilbert, a baseball agent for 18 years here representing players such as Barry Bonds and Mike Piazza, has been hired by the White Sox to assist in contract negotiations and advise on other baseball matters.

The Dodgers and Angels--it should go without saying--need no advice.

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THE HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS met with Pope John Paul II and gave him a jersey with his name on it--presumably so the Swiss Guards will be able to identify him if he loses his ID while trying to reenter Vatican City.

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THE PGA TOUR put out a news release saying Tiger Woods and Commissioner Tim Finchem had met to discuss their differences. In a joint statement, Woods and Finchem said they remain confident they can work together.

In other words, Woods elected not to fire Finchem.

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UCLA, WORKING TO silence the critics, came roaring back from its monumental loss to Cal State Northridge to trash winless Santa Barbara, by six points. Witnesses said the Bruins held nothing back in this statement game.

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FORMER JET QUARTERBACK Pat Ryan, doing radio commentary for the Tennessee Titans, has apologized for saying football players hate having a game come down to "two foreign guys, the kickers."

That's funny coming from an Irishman--even funnier when you consider that Ryan's broadcasting partner, Mike Keith, immediately pointed out that neither Tennessee's Al Del Greco nor Jacksonville's Mike Hollis are foreigners.

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ONE OF TWO things is happening here. Either USC Athletic Director Mike Garrett has identified Oregon as the hotbed of coaching, and his search is nearing an end, or he's going down the list of teams that beat the Trojans, which means the search is just beginning.

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TODAY'S LAST WORD comes in an e-mail from Larry:

"Have you ever been to a Raider game? Yes, there is a lot of less intelligent fans at the game, but I'm not one of them."

Obviously.

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T.J. Simers can be reached at his e-mail address: t.j.simers@latimes.com.

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