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Pork Barrels and Pigskins

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by lust4life, Dec 7, 2009.

  1. lust4life

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    I read an article in today's WSJ that reported that Rep. Joe Barton of Texas is sponsoring a bill in Congress to force a playoff system in college football. The House Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection Committee is expected to vote on the bill this week, which if passed, would effectively force a playoff system by 2012 (assuming we're still around). How? The legislation would make it an "unfair or deceptive" trade practice for anyone to market or promote a "national championship game" unless the game is "final game of a single elimination playoff system."

    Nevermind the greater issues at hand such as healthcare, war and the economy (afterall, it's much more fun to talk football). Should (does?) Congress have the authority to impose legislation on college sports?
     
  2. Robbie Clark

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    http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html

    I can't seem to find anything about college football in there. I just did a simple text search for "football" though so it may have missed some finer point.
     
  3. shake n bake

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    Not going to look it up, because it's obvious. TCU is in Rep Bartons district.

    Orin Hatch made similar noise about forcing a playoff system when Utah was getting left out of the title game.

    It's just an empty appeal to pissed off constituents.

    Edit: looked it up. He's from the neighboring district. Close enough.
     
  4. The Village Idiot

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    I suggest doing a search for the phrase 'interstate commerce.'

    That might help you get started.

    Congress has seeming jurisdiction over Baseball, so I'm not sure this is really that far afield. Now as to whether or not I think Congress should be involved, that's another story...
     
  5. Robbie Clark

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    That phrase isn't in there, but I found this:
    Still don't see football. Elsewhere I found this quote though:

    It may have some relevance to this discussion.
     
  6. The Village Idiot

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    My bad, yes, the phrase above is what it actually says, but it is commonly referred to as the 'interstate' - i.e. commerce conducted among the several states - 'commerce clause' or 'commerce clause' as noted by ballsac.

    Nor would you. As I'll get to in a moment.

    Yes, that is correct, however, the very phrase you have quoted ('regulate commerce...among the several states') IS the enumeration of the power within the Constitution.

    Now the next question you should be asking is 'what the hell is 'commerce among the several states?''

    The answer to that question has baffled and frustrated lawyers and judges, including the Supreme Court, for over 200 years. At times, the Supreme Court and Congress treat the clause like a cheerleader on prom night - everything gets in. At times, the phrase is contracted and the power of Congress to 'regulate commerce among the several states' is leashed. It's a moving target, but I'm pretty sure, as ballsac also noted, if there's a push for Federal Regulation, it's probably going to be justified on the above noted phrase.
     
  7. ghettoastronaut

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    Normally I'm suspicious of government poking too much into private enterprise, but at this point, I wouldn't mind if parliament passed a law making it illegal for teachers unions to own hockey teams.

    I don't follow college sports at all (and the concept always seemed really weird to be), but more than forcing a playoff system, this is likely going to cause a clever renaming of what I presume used to be called a national championship game. I mean, really. Everything follows the path of least resistance. Same way that you can't smoke in bars, but you can join a private club for a $1 lifetime fee and smoke all you want in there.
     
  8. Jay-Bird

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    I don't have any actual legal experience, and I agree that the government has plenty of other things to worry about other than a playoff system (Which I would actually like), but, doesn't the fact that the state and federal governments give money to colleges mean that they should have a say in how they operate?

    I was just having this discussion the other day with my brother and dad, and they agreed that a playoff system wouldn't generate as much revenue as the 34 bowl games that were out there, because no-one is going to go watch their team in the "sweet 16" etc. I disagreed because overall there will be more games played thus generating more money. Obviously we were just speculating because we had no hard facts or research, but this is the reason why there is not a playoff system already in the works, Money. So what would be the best way to get the most money out of the playoff system to rival the money that it made from the 34 bowl games held each season?
     
  9. lust4life

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    The article goes on to say that the proposed playoff system would provide a more equitable distribution of the wealth generated to schools outside the major conferences (and Notre Dame as the standalone independent) that comprise the current BCS system.

    I think it comes down to, are college sports "business"? While the athletes aren't paid (or at least aren't supposed to be), the schools reap tremendous revenue, but also have high operating costs to maintain athletic programs across the board (e.g., the men's fencing team at UT isn't self-supporting--Longhorn football subsidizes it and many other sports teams within the university).

    I'm all for a playoff system (and I think it can be done without any loss of revenue), but I'm not so sure I want the government regulating it. I'd rather see a commission formed under the NCAA to manage it.
     
  10. McSmallstuff

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    I am all for a playoff system. But as others have said, I would like the government to keep its collective dick out of it, and worrry about things like maybe the economy.

    I have always thought the loss of revenue argument is bullshit. It would seem that more games would generate more money. And as far as I'm concerned they can keep the the other non-BCS bowls as well. If you are going to put college television on my TV, I'm going to watch it, and I think most college fans feel the same way.

    But I digress. To sum up this rambling bullshit. Playoff = Good Playoff controlled by the gov'ment = Bad


    Completely off topic, does anyone know how in the fuck Ole Miss made it to a BCS Bowl game?
     
  11. Crown Royal

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    I don't know if it sure be the boys from Washington stepping in, but College football NEEDS a playoff system. The so-called "rankings", along with the also so-called "National Championship Game" never gives any satisfaction in the end because the suits and not the win-loss record decided who should be there.

    College football is great. With no (legal) salaries, the players are at zero ego and 100% ready to play. That, and the very eay-to-understand gambling formats the NCAA unwillingly provide.

    Hopefully there are other ways around this than the government throwing down the glove, but if they do maybe while they're at they can also attach a bill to it in order to prevent baseball from continuing to be so fucking long and boring.
     
  12. Riggins

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    The Cotton Bowl is not a BCS Bowl. But good god, they are a weird team to figure out.
     
  13. Lakeshow

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    I'm not too caught up with whether the government can do this, but considering that MLB is the only monopoly-ish company allowed (aside from state-owned enterprises), doesn't that mean that the NCAA would be forced to abide by whatever ruling the government comes up with?

    I don't agree with Congress stepping in, I think that the NCAA should be able to do what they want, no matter how many people would like to see a playoff. I include myself in there, I think Boise, TCU and Cincinnati are getting screwed this year. I think some of the matchups this year are crap and it seems like the BCS is trying to cover their asses by having fewer teams end up undefeated.

    Almost forgot, screw USC, glad to see them lose so many games this year.
     
  14. slippingaway

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    The reason that congress can take authority over the BCS is that the schools involved receive a lot of Federal funding. They'll basically pass a funding bill that puts conditions on the funding involving their athletic programs, similar to the way the federal government was able to circumvent the "State's Rights" argument and force a drinking age of 21 on all states by threatening to take away their federal highway funding.