Roy Exum: Tide Not NCAA Champs

Thursday, January 11, 2018
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

Before 10 a.m. yesterday I found out the University of Alabama is not the 2018 NCAA Champion. Earlier in the morning a copy of my Thursday story, which wasn’t nearly as scathing as it should have been over Kendrick Lamar’s appearance during halftime of Monday night’s championship game, found its way to Stacey Osborn’s office.

Stacey, who does a magnificent job as the head of public relations, immediately wrote: “Good morning. I have an important correction for your column … The NCAA does not run or have a role in the football championship game. You should direct your comments to the CFP (College Football Playoffs), not the NCAA. Will you be correcting your column?”

Yes, absolutely I will, because I can’t imagine the NCAA allowing such a travesty as the vulgar Lamar buying a ticket, much less collecting hundreds of thousands at one of the greatest venues in sports. Not only do I regret the assumption … this probably due to the letters “NCAA” that are splattered on nearly every document. Unfortunately, I cannot speak for the tens of millions who talk about the Crimson Tide’s most recent “NCAA championship” this week but I can apologize for adding to an entire nation’s ignorance.

If you Google “NCAA Football Champions,” there is actually a page that comes up from the NCAA website that listed Alabama in the 2017 season and Clemson in the 2016. It lists the CPF as the “Selecting Organization” but lists the 2017 Crimson Tide team under the heading, “NCAA champions.” Later yesterday, after being assured of a correction, Stacey Osborn sent another note: “I agree that many confuse this fact which is why I wanted to follow up with you.”

Here’s how Wikipedia describes the truth:

* * *

‘THE MYTHICAL NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP’

“Division I FBS football is the only National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) sport for which the NCAA does not sanction a yearly championship event. As such, it is sometimes unofficially referred to as a "mythical national championship".

“Due to the lack of an official NCAA title, determining the nation's top college football team has often engendered controversy. A championship team is independently declared by multiple individuals and organizations, often referred to as "selectors". These choices are not always unanimous. In 1969, even the President of the United States, Richard Nixon, declared a national champion, by announcing, ahead of the season-ending game between #1 Texas and #2 Arkansas, that the winner of that game would receive a plaque, from the President himself, commemorating that team as the year's national champion. Texas went on to win that game,15–14.

“While the NCAA has never officially endorsed a championship team, it has documented the choices of some selectors in its official NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision Records publication. In addition, various analysts have independently published their own choices for each season.”

* * *

The College Football Playoff organization, officially “CFP Administration, LLC,” website states it “manages the administrative operations of the College Football Playoff.” Members of the company are the 10 FBS conferences and the University of Notre Dame.

Further, the website identified its Board of Managers, and its Management Committee.

* * *

THE CFP BOARD OF MANAGERS

The company’s business, property and affairs are governed by the board of managers. The board develops, reviews and approves annual budgets, policies and operating guidelines. It also appoints and removes officers of the company. It has authority over all aspects of the company’s operations.

Eric Barron – President, Penn State University (Big Ten)

Rodney Bennett – President, University of Southern Mississippi (C-USA)

Anthony Frank – President, Colorado State University (Mountain West)

Burns Hargis – President, Oklahoma State University (Big 12)

Jack Hawkins – Chancellor, Troy University (Sun Belt)

Rev. John Jenkins – President, University of Notre Dame (Independent)

Mark Keenum – President, Mississippi State University (SEC)

Max Nikias (chair) – President, University of Southern California (Pac-12)

John Thrasher – President, Florida State University (ACC)

Satish Tripathi – President, University at Buffalo (MAC)

Gerald Turner – President, Southern Methodist University (American Athletic)

- - -

THE CFP MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE

The management committee manages the day-to-day operations of the company. It has authority over those aspects of the company’s operations that are not reserved exclusively for the board, but all of its decisions are subject to review by the board.

Mike Aresco – Commissioner (American Athletic)

Karl Benson – Commissioner (Sun Belt)

Bob Bowlsby – Commissioner (Big 12)

Jim Delany – Commissioner (Big Ten)

Judy MacLeod – Commissioner (C-USA)

Greg Sankey – Commissioner (SEC)

Larry Scott – Commissioner (Pac-12)

Jon Steinbrecher – Commissioner (MAC)

Jack Swarbrick – Athletics Director (Notre Dame)

John Swofford – Commissioner (ACC)

Craig Thompson – Commissioner (Mountain West)

Company Officers (Serving at the direction of the Board of Managers)

The company president, Bill Hancock, and secretary, Michael Kelly, carry out the day-to-day operations of the company.

* * *

While I feel bold enough to claim not one of the above mentioned university and athletic leaders have any stomach to listen to Kendrick Lamar or sing-along with the filth in his hit, “Humble,” I also have no doubt that during the halftime performance two or more of these officers said the name of Lamar’s “critically acclaimed” album without consciously knowing its name: “Damn.”

During Lamar’s halftime fiasco, the rapper also performed two other hits, “DNA” and “Element.” He ended the show in front of the Centennial Park stage – just outside Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium – with -- and I quote – “All the Stars,” his new single from the “Black Panther” soundtrack, which he himself curated. (Most of the lyrics websites on Google can provide the words to all four for those who want to sing-along at home.)

President Donald Trump, constantly criticized and demeaned by Lamar, attended the first half of the game but, according to a pool reporter, did not hear nor see the halftime abomination.

The next day, however, the President did congratulate Alabama on its “NCAA championship.” I, for one, can understand why he misspoke.

royexum@aol.com



Transparency Needed In County Government

On Aug. 29 of last year, Jim Coppinger convened a press conference on the courthouse steps to announce that he was raising property taxes. The mayor and commission gave no notice; the deal was already done. Seven days later County Commission passed the tax hike on its first reading. Citizens were never invited to comment on the matter. Is this any way to run Hamilton County ... (click for more)

Unbelievable Opportunity Thrown Away

As I look at the picture of a graduating West Point cadet displaying his hat with the words "communism will win" inside, smiling as he shows he is wearing a Che Guervera T-shirt under his uniform jacket, and giving "the finger" to a sign with the name of West Point in the background, I get sick to my stomach thinking of how foolish this young man really is, and how he will surely ... (click for more)

Voters May Decide In November On Whether To Eliminate City Court; Paving Fund Also Considered

Chattanooga voters in November may get to vote on whether City Court should be abolished. City Council members indicated during budget talks on Tuesday that may be an upcoming referendum question. Councilman Jerry Mitchell said he, for one, "would vote to eliminate it." However, he said the court would apparently run through 2021 when the eight-year terms of Judges Sherry ... (click for more)

Alexander Calls For Immediate End To Separation Of Families At Border

United States Senator Lamar Alexander Tuesday released the following statement on the separation of children from their parents at the border:  “Illegal immigration is against the law but new enforcement policies have resulted in hundreds of children being separated from their parents. The administration should end that new policy immediately while Congress works with the ... (click for more)

Ooltewah Swimmers Beat Signal Mountain For First Time

The Ooltewah Tidal Waves had another outstanding performance at their pool Monday night. They knocked off Stuart Heights on Thursday in a battle of unbeaten in the Chattanooga Area Swim League’s Blue division and they added another monumental win four days later as they defeated Signal Mountain for the first time ever. The Tidal Waves led from the opening freestyle event and ... (click for more)

The Ups-And-Downs Of Life In The Minor Leagues

Life as a minor league player can be tough. Few players ever get to live out their dream as a regular player at the big league level. For every player who realizes their dream, another player is forced to be released or find another organization to keep his dream alive. Recently the Lookouts have lost T.J.White, one of the most popular players in recent years. Word has come ... (click for more)