Big Ten Needs Big Say in Playoff Discussion

Big Ten Needs Big Say in Playoff Discussion

As the Bowl Championship Series dies a slow death over the next two years, don't expect many mournful tributes. It became the repository for endless complaints. But like with everything else, when critics cry that anything would be better than the status quo, they get it and learn "anything but" is potentially worse.

The Big Ten treads studiously into this summer of college football upheaval.

Conference commissioner Jim Delany reaffirmed Wednesday during an informal meeting with select national writers what many have long believed to be the Big Ten's procedural position in this discussion: It'll listen to all options, it'll participate in defining whatever final parameters and, as Delany phrased it: "You won't find the Rose Bowl thrown under the bus."

Delany wouldn't delve into particulars. The negotiation secrets will remain that way until the new formula is announced, perhaps within the next six weeks. It's most likely to be a four-team, national semifinal arrangement that could rotate among the four BCS bowls: Rose, Sugar, Fiesta and Orange.

Delany once was one of the most vocal anti-agents of change. But it's a testament to his political acumen that he "sees the writing on the wall" and is now more flexible regarding college football's altering landscape. He said all parties involved feel the tremendous public pressure but are committed to taking the most responsible course.

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