What ESPN contributor Paul Finebaum thinks and says doesn’t really matter. Check that, it shouldn’t. It’s interesting. It stirs thought and emotion, and it has its value, its place in the pantheon of college football entertainment. Ultimately, though, it’s just one man’s opinion.
If it’s more than that, then college football remains antiquated — and deeply flawed.
And, well … it is.
If Finebaum believes, as he said on Wednesday, that Utah is on the outs when it comes to the College Football Playoff, and that the country does not want to see the Utes in — “I mean, it’s Utah!” he said — then, that’s what he should say.
Here’s the real issue: Is that the attitude of members of the selection committee?
No matter how much that committee wants to project that the selection process for the four playoff invitees is logical, following good reason, even committee head Rob Mullens repeatedly has admitted what is true — it’s as much art as science.
Which is to say, everybody’s guessing, and everybody has their own frames of reference, of appreciation.
Committee members may favor Monet over Picasso, not because his painting is better, but just because they like it better.
And that underscores the sham, the stupidity of the entire process.
If Utah beats Oregon on Friday night in the Pac-12 title game and Oklahoma beats Baylor in the Big 12 championship game, both should be in. The same with all the P5 league winners. Add three at-larges, requiring just one more week of competition, and bingo, the problem is largely solved.
As it is, it’s not just opinion that reigns, it’s bias.
And the system empowers bias.
It’s also interested in great brands making great matchups to create great ratings in the playoff. Does the committee believe more people want to appreciate Monet’s art over Picasso’s?
If it does, and it does, look out.
The Utes will go ahead and use Finebaum’s comments as motivating material. But they only need worry if they are reflected in the minds of committee members. I mean, it’s Utah.
They should worry.
GORDON MONSON hosts “The Big Show” with Jake Scott weekdays from 3-7 p.m. on 97.5 FM and 1280 AM The Zone.