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First Pac-12 Championship Game will be a bad joke

In the new college athletic tradition of keeping up with
the Joneses, the
Pac-10 added two new teams for the 2011 football season,
welcoming
the Utah Utes and Colorado Buffaloes into the fold.

It was the first time the conference had expanded since
1978, when they
added Arizona and Arizona State to the mix to form the
Pac-10. The
new setup worked geographically and allowed commissioner
Larry Scott
to split the conference into two tidy 6-team divisions.
And better yet,
the Pac-12 could add a conference championship game. Cha-
ching! You can hear the cash registers ringing.

Now that we’re two weeks away from said championship game,
allow me
to make one small request: can we just cancel this year’s
game?

It’s a travesty that any team from the awful Pac-12 South
will have an
opportunity to win a conference championship. Nobody in
that 6-team
pod deserves a chance.

In first place right now is USC, but the Trojans were
naughty and got
slapped with a two-year bowl ban. One step down the
pecking order is
UCLA, a team that lost on national television to Arizona
by 36 points. If the Bruins somehow figure out a way to
beat cross-town rival USC on Saturday, the Bruins are in.

Arizona State? The Sun Devils have behaved like teenagers
who beg for
months for the keys to the car, and when they finally get
a chance to
drive, they pull over the side of the road because they’re
afraid of the
traffic. For three straight weeks, Dennis Erickson’s team
has squandered
the inside track to the divisional title with losses to
seemingly inferior
opposition.

And yes, Utah still has a chance to represent the South on
December
2nd, despite the fact that they limped to an 0-4 start in
conference play.

This lot of suspects is about as inspiring to Pac-12
football fans as the current group of G.O.P. presidential
candidates is to concerned American voters.

Any of the three “lucky” winners in this mess will get
their heads stomped by Oregon in Eugene. All the Ducks
will be doing by taking the field on December 2nd is
risking their rightful spot in the Rose Bowl on New Year’s
Day.

There was a collective sigh of relief from BCS defenders
when TCU beat Boise State two weeks ago to eliminate any
chance the Broncos had of crashing college football’s
exclusive party. Why isn’t there more uproar over the
fact that a team with five losses has a chance to steal a
spot from a much more deserving team in Pasadena?

So, Pac-12 powers-that-be, if it’s not too late, please
cancel the upcoming money grab, err, I mean conference
championship game, and instead schedule an Oregon
intrasquad game. The fans will show up, and if you insist
on keeping it on television, it might actually hold
viewers’ interest longer than the blood-letting you’re
about push out on the tube.