By Chadd Cripe
© 2011 Idaho Statesman
UPDATE: On Tuesday, ESPN Radio's Colin Cowherd ripped Boise State coach Chris Petersen for criticizing the Bowl Championship Series.
Listen to Cowherd's comments here. He says Boise State has "nine garbage wins" and that Petersen should take a job in a bigger conference if he wants better access to the BCS. "If you choose small, you get small," Cowherd said.
Boise State football coach Chris Petersen said Monday it’s time to scrap the Bowl Championship Series system that left Nos. 6 Arkansas, 7 Boise State, 8 Kansas State and 9 South Carolina out of the elite bowls in favor of four teams ranked outside the Top 10.
“The whole thing needs to be changed, there’s no question about it,” he said. “… I think (change) is coming, I really do.”
The Broncos (11-1) were left out of a BCS game with a Top 10 ranking for the fourth time in eight years. This time, they were passed over for a Sugar Bowl matchup that features No. 11 Virginia Tech (11-2) and No. 13 Michigan (10-2). Virginia Tech lost by 28 points Saturday and hasn’t beaten anyone currently ranked.
“Everybody is just very tired of the BCS,” Petersen said. “I think that’s the bottom line. Everybody is frustrated. Everybody doesn’t really know what to do anymore. It doesn’t make sense to anybody. I don’t think anybody is happy anywhere.”
Petersen votes in the USA Today Coaches’ Poll and ranked Boise State No. 5, Michigan No. 15 (outside the top 14, which is what the Wolverines needed to be eligible) and TCU No. 18 (outside the top 16, which is what the Horned Frogs needed to get an automatic berth). Here is his ballot.
He admitted he voted in Boise State’s interest.
“I haven’t seen any of the voting,” he said. “I know how I voted and I know what I’m trying to do, which is make the best case for Boise State to get in there, so I probably shouldn’t be a voter.”
Besides, Petersen said, the standings don’t seem to matter for who gets selected. He pointed to the four Top 10 teams left out.
“Why are we even voting if they’re all left out of games like that?” he said. “It doesn’t make any sense. … I don’t know who it makes sense to. I haven’t heard anybody say, ‘This is pretty good.’ Everybody goes, ‘This is really bad.’ ”
Petersen’s suggestion: use a committee like the men’s basketball tournament to rank the teams, trim some of the bowls and implement a “plus-one” system that gives the top four teams a shot at the national title.
“That’s still subjective, but at least it’s closer,” he said.
In the past, Petersen has chosen not to slam the BCS for his team getting snubbed.
“It just seems like each year it’s getting further and further away from anybody understanding what’s going on,” he said.
Here is video of Petersen's press conference.
TCU coach Gary Patterson, who doesn't have a ballot, criticized Petersen for his vote:
“I’m more disturbed by Petersen voting us 18th when we beat him at home,” Patterson told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “And defensively we didn’t even play that well. You’re not supposed to show bias.”
Last year, and in years prior, Petersen chose not to attack the system.
“Good karma,” Petersen said when last year's MAACO Bowl matchup with Utah was announced. “You’ve just gotta keep believing. … The last few years, it has worked out well for the Broncos. That’s really the message that we’ve preached to our guys — we take care of what we can control and good things will happen.”
As for this year's MAACO Bowl Las Vegas matchup with Arizona State, Petersen said:
“We sure enjoyed our time down there last year in Las Vegas. I think our players, our fans, everybody had a real good time. It’s a well-run bowl, a good location, there’s a lot to do. Our players handled it well last time. … It’s a nice matchup.”
Junior linebacker/fullback Tommy Smith will miss the bowl game with a broken leg, Petersen said. He wasn’t sure if other injured players would return.