College Football

Michigan Plays Delaware – No

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This is a game that dilutes the value of college football. For $500,000 dollars, Division 2 or Football Championship Series school Delaware State has agreed to go to Michigan and play a game. Its a travesty in more then one way. They have screwed up their own conference schedule while reaffirming that the path to success in the Division 1 or Football Bowl Series conferences lies in scheduling guaranteed wins instead of attempting to play the hardest games possible.

During a period of time last fall in which Delaware State had no Athletic Director, Michigan offered big money for the small school to come to their stadium and play a one time football game in which Michigan is all but guaranteed a win. In doing so, somehow, Delaware State forgot to arrange the rest of their schedule to allow for this game. When it came to light that this scheduled away game conflicts with an in conference game, Delaware stated that they would forfeit the in conference game and go get beaten up by Michigan. Wonderful. This screws up the Middle Eastern Atlantic Conference in which Delaware plays. One team is getting a free win while Delaware is starting their season in a one loss hole that they would have to climb out of in order to compete for their conference championship.

Michigan should be condemned for this move. Rather then scheduling an opponent of roughly equal size and capability, which is, after all, what the FCS and FBS divisions indicate; They scheduled a cream puff. This is worse then David and Goliath, this is Goliath searching out children and offering them candy if he can hit them in the face. Michigan is a school known for being a football power, recruiting the best, biggest, and fastest athletes available in the nation. The pure athleticism they can attract to their campus out shines that of small Delaware State such as putting a candle up beside a light house.

The problem is that the system rewards this type of behavior. BCS calculations barely take into account strength of schedule and reward perfect records. Michigan is a big time football school, making millions a year. With this excess they can afford to buy their wins. Delaware State needs money, by taking Michigan's half million, they can afford to fund all of their athletics, with excess spilling over to the general fund of the university. I'm not sure how many games they would have to play to fund the whole thing, but it is very difficult to say no to that much money.

I place little fault with Delaware in this situation, that's too much money to pass up. I place all of the fault with a system that would reward Michigan for scheduling a guaranteed win and not seeking out the strongest opponent available.

More about this author: Troy Gardner

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