1. If there's one single thing about the Bowl Championship Series that wasn't at best a spark of controversy and at worst an abject failure, it's the crystal ball. Representing simplicity, uniqueness and elegance at once, you knew exactly what it was without being told, that it could only go to the greatest football team in the land.
So, naturally, the College Football Playoff powers that be are canning it. The crystal ball is getting thrown out with the rest of the toxic BCS trash, as Playoff executive director Bill Hancock confirmed Tuesday at Big 12 Media Days. Good luck to those tasked involved finding a replacement college football can wrap its hands around (literally and figuratively) as the crystal.
2. While a new trophy may or may not have been needed, the game needs a new term to define the College Football Playoff and the games surrounding it. The new item for the college football lexicon to define the major bowl games - Rose, Sugar, Orange, Cotton, Fiesta and Peach - will be.... the New Year's Six, according to Hancock. Now the source of fans' braggadocio, and the target for bonuses for coaches, will be for reaching a New Year's Six game instead of a BCS game.
3. Earlier this month we highlighted the 56 schools launching football programs from 2008-16, including 12 this year. Of those 56, nine hail from the Football Championship Subdivision, though we believe many more programs at that level would follow suit if they could be guaranteed the type of start Mercer will enjoy. The Macon, Ga., school has sold more than 5,000 season tickets for its first football season since dropping the sport back in the 1940's, and its Aug. 31 opener versus Reinhardt will hold a capacity crowd of 10,200. Supporters for the school, whose undergraduate population hovers around 4,500, ate up all available tickets within 30 minutes on Monday morning.
There's obviously a long road ahead for Mercer, but keep in mind that only 29 of FCS's 135 teams were able to draw more than 10,000 fans per game. The Bears are well on their way.