Thursday, February 03, 2005

You can't call it football, but the soccer boys have a good idea

The soccer boys in Europe have a good idea that, as much as it pains me to write these words, we should emulate. They determine some of their champions by a two game series. If one team sweeps, they are the champs. If the teams split, then they count the aggregate goals to figure a winner. So if A beats B 1-0 in the first game and B beats A 3-1 in the second, then B wins the series 3-2 on aggregate.

Now, imagine how cool that would be if the NFL picked a champion that way. Two games, two different sites, two weeks, two games. Say Philly wins the first game 13-10 in Jacksonville. Then, the whole show up and moves to Waco Floyd Casey Stadium or some other garden spot, and the teams play again. This time, New England wins 41-14 to get a split and wins 51-27 on aggregate. However, if score of the second game was, say, 24-21 New England, the teams would be tied 34-34 on aggregate. In Europe, they have “penalty kicks” to break ties, a method decidedly lacking in testosterone when it comes to deciding a champion. In America, we use “sudden death.”

The pluses to this plan: Fans would get more than one game to decide the champion, TV and advertisers would get 10 hours of programming, and football analysts would actually have something to talk about on ESPN. The downside: the new is scary.

Bring it on!