Attention TCU: Welcome to the Big Show. Now Act Like You Deserve It.

I’m only writing this because I’ve heard multiple TCU friends complaining/grumbling over the past 24-hours about the BCS selection process.

They’re saying…
“We got robbed.”
“We should be in the big game.”
“The BCS is afraid of us.”
“The system sucks.”

OK. For the record? I totally agree with the last statement. Yes, absolutely, the system sucks. Yes, absolutely, we need a playoff system. Right with you on that, baby. Power to the people.

In fact, if you’re really interesting in a playoff system, check out this idea. I came up with this last year, when my team, the Texas Longhorns, seem to be one of the teams that got “screwed” by the system. Please remember that last year, the Horns *beat* Oklahoma. Yet Oklahoma went to the national championship game. In fact, we beat Missouri too, and the Sooners and MIzzou played for the Big 12 Championship.

Was that fair? Of course not.

So, it made me again consider the grail-like quest for a playoff system. But that’s not gonna happen this year. In fact, it’s not gonna happen next year either. In fact, the earliest it seems to me like it will happen could be 2015, but personally, I don’t even think it will happen then.

So, that leaves us with the system we have now. The BCS. And you can love it, or you can hate it, but it is what it is.

So, to my TCU friends, let me say the following as lovingly and with as much care as I can:

Get over yourselves. Grow up. Welcome to the BIG SHOW. You’ve made it. Now act like you deserve to be here. Barring a *loss* by Texas, there was no way you were going to the National Championship Game this year. No way. (Sorry anybody told you differently…)

You’re mad to be playing Boise again? Get over that too. I can give you a list of 100 other teams that would *kill* to play Boise in the Fiesta.

Please see that this is a totally different game. Nobody’s “afraid” of TCU. Promise. You were not the only team in the top ten that needed to be placed in a big bowl. Given the way all the other chips fell, you ended up with Boise again. It wasn’t because anybody is *afraid* of you. It’s just how the whole system works.

You’re playing in one of the five biggest games of the bowl season. Millions of people will put aside everything they are doing that day and enjoy watching your team. I hope you *crush* Boise. Seriously. That should put you in the top five, pre-season next year. (Possibly even #2) This is a good thing.

Almost NO team *ever* goes from never having played in a BCS game to playing in the championship game. Very few ever have. If you hope to be in the big time, play with the big boys, you’ve got to be play with them year after year after year. And you’ve got to get used to the fact that, now and then, your team will get “screwed.” Some other year, your team won’t get screwed. That’s the way it works.

When I was in college UT lost a national championship because some guy dropped a punt. Was that fair? In the past few years, LSU has definitely been “screwed” by the system. Bama feels like they got “screwed” last year.

But, LSU has also won the whole thing in the recent past, and Bama now has a chance this year. That’s the way it works.

Did you really think this year was your only shot? I hope not. I hope you’ll be competing at the top for some time. College football needs the Boise’s, the Cincy’s, and you. Your emergence may be the thing that finally breaks up the BCS for good.

But it’s not gonna happen without yall knocking at the door year after year after year…just like Texas does…just like Oklahoma, Florida, LSU, Oregon, and USC do. (BTW, since my Dad went there, Cincy is actually my personal favorite “Cinderella” this year. I think they are at least as deserving as TCU, but they’re not getting a shot this year either…and their coach is definitely positioning the Orange Bowl as a step on the road to the Big Game….)

A win in the Fiesta Bowl will be a great next step for TCU, and it matters not that you’re playing the same team you played before. Hate to tell you, but nobody watched that other game. (Yes, I know *you* did…) This year, we’ll all be watching.

Finally, how pitiful that you say you’ll cheer for Bama over UT. Again, this shows a lack of class and make me argue that you really don’t yet belong at this level yet.

When OU goes to the championship game, I cheer for OU!! No kidding. If A&M went to the big game (hey, pigs could fly…) I would absolutely cheer for them. The same for Texas Tech or Oklahoma State. (Yes, I am now officially on record…)

Especially if the opponent is from the SEC, Big 10, or Pac 10, it makes sense to cheer for the team from your region. If TCU had gone to the National Championship game, I would *totally* be cheering for TCU over Alabama.

It’s good for every team in this region if a team in this region wins.

But you’re so “hurt” by the BCS this year that you can’t see that. Which is really sad to me.

But I’m also trusting that, over the next few years, you’ll grow into your role as a big-time program. To get mentioned by the media, to finally get to the big game, takes years and years.

Get over yourselves. Buy your tickets to Arizona. Cheer like hell.

And welcome to the Big Time.

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Eric Folkerth is a minister, musician, author and blogger. He has been Senior Pastor of Northaven United Methodist Church in Dallas, Texas since 2001. During his tenure, church membership has grown almost 30 percent, and a completely new church facility (sanctuary and education building) has been constructed. Northaven is a leading progressive Christian congregation in the Southwest. Northaven is an eclectic collection of gay and straight families, artists, musicians, theater folks, academic theologians, lawyers and judges (go figure), socially conscious community activists, people who don't "check their brain at the door," and a wide array of others who either see it as their "last chance" inside the "institutional church," or their first trip back in decades. Eric is an avid blogger and published author.  Eric is also an award-winning singer-songwriter, who performs throughout Texas and the Southwest. He's an engaging live performer whose first CD was released in 2000. His songs have won honorable mention in both the Billboard and Great American song contests; and he's been a finalist in the 5th Street Festival and South Florida Folk Festival songwriter competitions. Eric is also a leader of Connections, a unique band comprised of United Methodist clergy and layfolk from throughout North Texas. Connections performs "cover shows" of artists like Dan Fogelberg, Chicago, Eagles, Doobie Brothers, Billy Joel, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor and others. Their shows draw crowds of between 300 and 1,000 fans, and they have raised more than $240,000 dollars for worthy charities. Eric has led or co-led hundreds of persons on mission trips around the globe, to places such as Mexico, Haiti, Russia, and Nepal. He has worked with lay persons to build ten homes, and one Community Center, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Dallas. He's a popular preacher, and often tackles challenging issues of social justice in his writings and sermons. His wife, Judge Dennise Garcia, is a State District Judge for Dallas, County. As judge of the 303rd Family District Court, she consistently gets high ratings from area lawyers, and was named "best judge" by The Dallas Observer. First elected in 2004, she was the first Latina ever elected to a county-wide bench in Dallas County. She was re-elected for a third term in 2010. They have the world's best daughter, Maria, and an incredible dog, Daisy. (As always, if you like this post, then "like" this on Facebook by clicking the box below, so others can see too...)

6 thoughts on “Attention TCU: Welcome to the Big Show. Now Act Like You Deserve It.

  1. Totally. I disagree that we need a playoff system (that would devalue the regular season and put a lot of undeserving teams in a lot of undeserved slots) and to my understanding last year's UT/OU thing was down to how the Big 12 does things, the TCU fans are screeching a little loud a little early.TCU's strength of schedule is still very dodgy and you're right: playing in the big games is about staying in for the long haul, not being a two-season wunderkind. Northwestern was a two-season wunderkind not too long ago, and where are they now?As for conference loyalty… absolutely. If Florida went on to play UT at the Rose Bowl, I'd root for Florida. You pull for your conference.(now, if Auburn played Notre Dame, I think I'd just hope for spontaneous double forfeit.)

  2. Eric,I agree with a lot of what you say…however, the point is that TCU and Boise both are constantly required to validate their status as a quality football program. The only way to do that is by beating a team in a BCS conference.I'm a TCU guy (and a sweet clean P1). I'm accepting of the BCS system and therefore am accepting of not playing for the National Championship…Fiesta Bowl has traditionally been a great showcase. But pairing these two teams against each other will minimize our accomplishment. I think it shows that the BCS selection committe is out of touch and ignorant.With that being said, I already have my tickets to Phoenix and am excited to be going to a BCS game. Hopefully we can have another great year next year and take one more step.

  3. Eric,Wow talk about intense. Where is the pastoral care? Actually you are correct if TCU fans are angry at UT and are not rooting for them because of their slight. It was not UT who decided, but the system. Had UT had a worse record, then that might be something to hold against UT. "Having Said That" your comparison of TCU this year and UT last year is not completely germane to the issue that faces TCU, Boise St. Cinci this year. These teams did all that they could to play for the championship, last year Texas did not, nor did Tech. Yes it was a Big 12 policy or system that decided that OU would play for the big 12 championship and have a shot at the number 1 poll bowl, but still had Texas not given up the TD to Tech on last play they would have gone. TCU or the other teams did all that they could do. Also, your statement that big schools not scheduling strong "non BCS" conference teams is interesting given the inability of Boise St to schedule against such teams after their victory over OU. You are correct that is how the system works, and the whole point that I and the TCU horde is making is the system doesn't "work."Frankly I am not sure why you say in the first part of your post that you agree that the system is failed and needs to scrapped but then you spend the entire rest of the blog refuting the arguments made as to why it should be changed. That may not be your intentions but that is the way it seems. I also find your comment "It is what it is" curious. Should teams and fans on the margins, and excluded, because they are not in a "major" conference and or don't have the "necessities" of a long or curent tradition just be happy with minor bowls and the occassional appearance on ESPN 2? The "is what it is" sentiment has been used through the years to impede changes to unjust policies, traditions,and descrimination in general. Yes I hesitate to compare or even use the word injustice to something truly frivolous as a college sport, but the comparison "is what it is."Lastly. Yes it was fair that Texas lost the national championship because they fumbled and lost the Cotton Bowl to Georgia 10-9. It was lost on the field, and wasnt even a blown call, just a blown play. It was a shame from the Texas point of view, but in no way unfair.Ken: The claim that a playoff would devalue the regular season is simply incorrect. I hear no one campaigning for the NCAA to do away with March Madness. I hear no one calling for the NCAA to do away with playoffs in EVERY OTHER sport they sanction. Why should Div 1 (I know they call it something else now) be any different. People said the same thing about major league baseball when they put in the wild card and it has in fact enhanced the regular season, especially when it heads down to the wire as more teams have a shot at making the playoffs. The same was said when the NFL expanded the number of wildcards, and the NFL has certainly thrived in the last 25 years.I have said before, you cannot crown a champion without a playoff, esp when there are other teams with the same record, you can only award a number team.

  4. Anonymous: I think you will have a good time, and I bet you beat Boise pretty soundly. You know, as for the selection process, I heard something today, after I wrote this, about last year's Orange Bowl, where Cincy played Virginia Tech. The story there is that neither team sold their bowl allotment, and that scalped tickets could be had for as little as .99 cents. Given that, the Orange Bowl was *not* keen on having Cincy back. Since FLA was predetermined to go to the Sugar (and will probably draw very well…) it was thought that Cincy was an OK gamble for the Sugar.I also heard that there may well be *another* bowl game added to the BCS (a resurgent Cotton Bowl, played at the Death Star in Arlington…) and that if this happens, some of the conference affiliations for the Fiesta may switch. The rumor I heard is that the Mountain West Conference might get some future tie-in with the Fiesta Bowl.If so, that's again a good reason for the Fiesta to want TCU. The Mountain West, it seems to me, is poised to become a pretty nice conference, with teams like TCU leading the way.All this is to say what I said in the blog: where TCU ended up wasn't just about them…it was about who was or was not going to the other BCS bowls too.

  5. Hey Kenny: I actually agree with very much of what you say here. I think a college football playoff would be CRAZY good…and even more amazing than March Madness.I tried to make that point early in the blog, when I talked about the proposal for a playoff that I came up with last year.My point was that, from what I understand, the current system will be with us through 2013. They BCS bowls have it sewed up until then. And, just listening to all of them, I don't hear them too eager to change it.No, it's not "fair." It's *very* unjust. But my "is what it is" is just an acknowledgment that it's not gonna change anytime soon.But if anybody figures out how to jump start serious debate on a playoff, I'd be right there with them.

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