Like everyone else I'll be glad when the BCS is dead and a play-off system has begun. 4, 8 or 16 teams? That's another argument. For now a 4 team system should at least provide us with an almost unquestioned national champion to end all the debates from bar rooms to chat rooms. That may take half the fun out of being a college football fan but it's needed. However, being that it's college football it has to have a downside. That downside is the tradition of the BCS bowls.
The Rose, Orange, Fiesta and Sugar. Up until the National Championship game was created they had been the ultimate stage in college football. Next year 2 of these games will merely be stepping stones to the NC game. Not to mention the parity rules that have created AQ births and Mid-major exceptions. If you're quiet you can hear the legions of AQ fans sigh at bowl announcement time when one of these teams is granted that spot. Screw them, right? On some level they have a point. Screw them just because they're annoying.
The system needs a complete overhaul and I'd suggest this. A 4 team play-off for every BCS bowl. For example the Fiesta could have #19 Wisconsin vs #18 Louisville as well as MWC Fresno vs #17 UCLA. Winners meeting in a more meaningful Fiesta bowl. That's 5 bowls, including the NC game, that involves 20 teams. For parities sake we'll not take the remaining teams ranked 5-20 but will include every conference champion. Being a MAC fan let's not turn our noses up at our mid major brethren because of our recent success. Give the champions from Conference USA, the Sun Belt, The Mountain West and the MAC a spot. Then take the remaining teams by rank. The higher ranked team will host. This also provides a way to force a quality BCS team to come to a venue they'd never come to. Oh, for example, Dekalb!
Take 1 Mid-major champ and slot them in each of the 4 brackets. That way no one can complain about a Mid major not earning a BCS bowl. They will have to beat a top 20 team to get there. The bowls can rotate picks as they currently do. You'll end up with a couple clunkers but you'll also have some very entertaining match ups. For example this year you might get Bowling Green vs Oregon. Isn't it the crazy match ups we love about brackets? But what you'll have is no Major teams being left out of a BCS bowl chance and still have the little guys with a fighting chance. And more importantly it would restore some prominence to the traditional bowls. I'm sure there's plenty of logistical problems and someone will have a complaint. But it's college football. There's always a downside.