Wednesday, March 17, 2010

32 Teams and then Some

The Backbencher is headed for Florida for a weekend of NCAA basketball. Every few years I go with my dad and my brother to the first and second round of the NCAA Tournament. I like college basketball and I love the tournament, and I would hate to see anything change greatest three weeks on the sports calendar.

Sadly, the NCAA is thinking of increasing the field of the tournament from 65 to 96. The reason is money but this is a bad idea.

Due to the NCAA and conference tournaments, the regular season contains very little meaning. Increasing the field would render the regular meaningless and the lack of meaning would cause people to spend less money on regular season games. I also fail to see how increasing the field would increase interest. Since the top teams would get a bye, the interest generated by possible upsets would be non-existent and without the interest in upsets I think the money would gradually shrink.

Many coaches support this idea because they think that more coaches will keep their job by making tournament. Just as many coaches would be fired within and expanded tournament as they today. Just like SEC football coaches can fired if they don't play in New Years Day or BCS bowl games even if they play in bowl games, basketball coaches would be fired if they don't get enough byes.

Sometimes you just shouldn't mess with a good thing, and I am afraid the NCAA is doing just that.

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