With the Ohio Bobcats just 5 wins away from a perfect regular season, they have yet to garner any real attention from the major media. Should they win these 5 games, and the MAC Championship Game, they would have a legitimate case at a BCS bowl game. Wouldn't that be neat?
As a fan of any MAC school, you should be cheering for their success. Why? Because!
Because a BCS Bowl would be huge for the conference. No MAC team has been to a BCS bowl game. In fact, they are one of 3 conferences to say that they haven't been (Sun Belt and C-USA), and only one of four "conferences" to never win a BCS bowl game (ND is 0-3 as the lone independent representative). In the last season of this system, the Bobcats could buck this trend and put the MAC on the map as a conference that isn't just the Big Ten's shadow.
Because, chances are, your team is already out of the MAC Championship Game race. If you are a directional Michigan fan, Akron, UMass, Buffalo, and probably Ball State fan, your team is in a huge hole that is unlikely to dig out of in your division. And it's ok! Ball St, CMU, and WMU all could still make a bowl with good finishes (CMU vs WMU for an elimination game).
Instead of barely caring about what happens the rest of the way, dual-enroll your fandom! Cheer for the young guys to get experience and for your highest NFL prospects to improve their stock. But also cheer for Ohio to go 13-0 and get into a BCS bowl game.
Because even if your team is still in the MACC race, they aren't in the running for a BCS game. You don't want to be Buffalo and spoil it for the rest of us do you? Granted that BOTH UB and BSU got smoked in their bowl games in 2008, the MAC went 4-1 last season, with the lone loss a 5 point game to Purdue (let's leave it at that). The MAC is improving their bowl performance, and we could see a possible upset in the BCS!
Because if Ohio goes to a BCS bowl game, the Little Caesar's Pizza Bowl still get's first pick of their MAC team! That's right! Instead of going to Idaho or Alabama, you can go to Detroit in the winter in a domed game. Trust me, it is so nice and toasty. This mostly applies to NIU, Toledo, and Kent St. If Kent St can lose a close game to Ohio, and have Ohio blow apart the MAC West champion (preferably NIU due to Toledo's proximity), they could get a really good look.
But I know that you don't want to listen to me, so I'm going to personalize your reasons.
You guys already won a MAC Championship Game last season! I mean, c'mon! You gotta let someone else win it every now and then. Plus, you know what it's like to be ranked and wanting that respect from the rest of the nation. Now Ohio is in your place, and we you have to do your duty as a Big Brother and support these upstarts on their quest.
You don't want Matt Campbell gone as well do you? Too much success early on could lead to him leaving for greener pastures. And by green, I mean money.
Detroit baby! As noted above, the LCPB would have first choice. They want money, and a Toledo team would put the most butts in the seats in Ford Field.
Kent St Fans
Because! You actually have the most against any argument that could be said. Possible East title. Still just 1 loss. However, you have WMU next who is due for a win on their roller-coaster season. You also have Rutgers who is undefeated. But if you are still tied with Ohio on the last week of the season, could you please cheer for a possible BCS bowl? Please?
Because you had your shot. Remember 10 years ago? Yeah, you already were here. Sort of. Either way, now it's Ohio's turn. Plus, you already have lost to Toledo. Even if you get to the MACC, you could lose to them again! Just cheer for Ohio and say they are repeating the magic from your run in the early part of last decade!
So we have all these reasons FOR the Bobcats, but there are reasons against. They include:
Because Ohio may not make a BCS game. The BCS is all about money. Boise State was able to put people in seats. Would Ohio really do that in Miami or Louisiana? What about Arizona? Unlikely. The BCS could very well give Ohio the middle finger and pick ND, Michigan, or Oklahoma/Kansas State/other Big 12 runner-up over the Bobcats.
Why? Because they technically don't have to pick Ohio unless the Bobcats are in the top 12 in the BCS standings. Look at that schedule again. The MAC East (combined record 14-25), Ball State (4-3), EMU (0-6), Norfolk St (FCS), New Mexico State (1-5 w/FCS win), Marshall (2-4), and Penn State (4-2). The only "good" win on that schedule is Penn State, who have now won 4 straight games. Is that a schedule that is good enough to get the computers and the voters to agree they are a top 12 team?
Even if they do make a BCS game, they could get creamed. Case in point, 2007 Hawaii. 12-0 going into a Sugar Bowl game against Georgia, and they come out with a 41-10 loss. June Jones left the program days later, and Hawaii hasn't really been heard from since. That could possibly happen here. Is the embarrassment worth it?
And now for one counter-point!
It doesn't benefit my team! Oh on the contrary bad weather fan! Ohio does get the bigger bump in recruiting pitches, but the entire MAC benefits. The MAC East finally would theoretically gain some much needed credibility in being able to say "You get to play Ohio every year (or so)". Meanwhile the West would continue to say they are the toughest MAC Division until proven otherwise and still get to say that they play Ohio every now and then.