If you've read CFR for awhile, you're well familiar with the whole scheduling and SEC myth argument coming out of here.
I won't dig too deeply into any of it again, but I will be up-to-date and post a few links here of the argument being extended into 2006
- THRB-The SEC's obsessive quest for all games to be played within a minute's walk of their homes and to beat up on the area undercard equivalent instead of taking the game on the road against foes who can hit back.
- EDSBS-The money, the money, the money, it's all about the money.
The "money" argument is a crutch. The SEC is isolated as the most committed conference to a scheduling scheme that involves little travel, regional cupcakes and great hype. It's made the conference rich but is also doing the game a severe injustice and reaping greater than deserved rewards.
If money was everything, all the other major conferences would have followed suit. Instead, the Pac-10 and the Big Ten have (with some exceptions) continued their rigorous beyond-the-borders scheduling approach, along with the ACC and Big East to a lesser degree. The Pac-10 is considered a weak sister, but historically the Big Ten is neck-and-neck with the SEC for college football wealth and prominence.
In other words, something's amiss.
EDSBS's justification is that teams like Notre Dame historically had to barnstorm to get respect, as did USC, but that's no longer the case and both programs are much more regarded in both the present and historical context than all but one SEC team: Alabama (forming college football's Holy Trinity).
That argument fell apart in the 30's for both Notre Dame and USC as both won several mythical national championships and jumpstarted the nearly eight-decade rise to prominence for both programs. At this point both continue to schedule aggressively because their athletic departments seek competitive football games, the rewards of which extend beyond the short-term monetary gain. Both programs have left championships on the table by taking on their schedules over the years, but here's guessing that neither feels to bad about that.
To incorporate MGoBlog's Heisman logic linked to earlier, it's like the slave has become the master with the scheduling gimmicks inherent in the SEC:
Faced with a game of stark military aggression, Nietzsche would probably see two kinds of players: those who respond out of fear and those who impose their will on things. Meatheads call the latter "swagger." Nietzche would see masters and slaves
Ohio State taking on Texas, Notre Dame taking on USC, etc. is certain teams not responding out of fear, but imposing their will on things. They were attempting to become master. Someone is bound to lose those games, but there's always the next year for the loser, another opportunity to break those shackles and convert from slave to master.
The problem with the SEC way is that it's an end-around to becoming master without the necessary personal bloodshed. It's the sniper's bullet instead of the concussed slugfest with the neighborhood bully.