# Hypothetical: 4-9 and a Rose Bowl berth

Submitted by Brhino on December 2nd, 2011 at 9:38 PM

The following is inspired by the faint possibility of a 7-6 UCLA team playing in the Rose Bowl (oops, Oregon just scored another touchdown...).

Suppose a Big Ten team (Let's say Indiana just for fun) starts the season with four straight non-conference losses.  Also suppose that Indiana goes 3-5 in conference play but still wins the Leaders division.  This is not impossible - if every Leaders team loses every game against the Legends division, and each team goes either 3-2 or 2-3 in intra-Leaders games, then the division winner will be whichever 3-2 team wins the tiebreaker.

That would make Indiana 3-9 after the regular season but still playing in the championship game.  Suppose they win.  Their record goes to 4-9, and as the winner of the Big Ten championship game, they are awarded a spot in the Rose Bowl.

Or are they?  They don't have six wins, so they're not even bowl eligible.  So what happens?

Zone Left

Yeah, but a 4-9 Indiana team winning the Big 10 title game might be mathematically possible. Your scenario isn't.

JDog72

Thats like hypothetically saying the animated Napolean Dynamite is going to be good...

Keeeeurt

Is that even a thing? I really hope not...

brandanomano

You meant to say "the hypothetical animated Napolean Dynamite", right?

Cville Blue

Great reference. I told my wife that this seems several years late. Seems like a train wreck.

Fuzzy Navel

Hypothetically you have better things to do on a Friday night.

MGoJoe

Yes. The OP is right. The winner of the B1G championship game goes to the rose bowl regardless if they have a losing record.

ForeverVoyaging

Bowl eligibility only applies to bowl invitations. The B1G is automatically given a berth in the Rose Bowl. Imagine if every team in an AQ conference save one was given a bowl ban. Even if that remaining team went winless, they would still take the conference's BCS berth.

jmblue

Hypothetical: a meteor falls into the path of a wide receiver running up the sideline, knocking him out of bounds before he returns and catches the pass.  Is it a valid catch?

BlueDragon

Only if he returns in bound immediately, unless he got knocked 10 feet out of bounds or something ridiculous.  Alternatively, we could call that one a do-over assuming the teams were not vaporized on impact.

LSAClassOf2000

The shift in the Earth's orbit would get called for unsportsmanlike conduct as well, I think. The  gaseous remains of the officiating crew would run out of singed flags on this one.

Seth

According to the replay official, the receiver was clearly wearing maize and blue, therefore the pass is ruled incomplete. The ball will be spotted two yards behind the line of scrimmage. 2nd and 12.

jtmc33

They go to the Rose Bowl as Conference Champs. No 6 wins required.

A more realistic example would be a 5-8 MAC champ. Could happen. If they win the tie breaker in the division at 4-4 and then win the conference champ game they go bowling. Record is irrelevant.

Noleverine

while on the topic. If (when?) UCLA loses, they will dip below .500. Do they lose their bowl eligibility by a loss in the conference championship?

jtmc33

They get to go to a bowl. There is an exception for this very scenario. Sorry no link. Have to trust me on this

orobs

The least likely part of the scenario is Indiana winning 3 games

jethro34

No way that any team could possibly lose all four non-conference and somehow win a division.  There's no way a team could ever be that bad, especially considering how laughable non-conference schedules are, and then somehow be that good.  Neither division has enough cupcakes.

Red is Blue

This year illustrates a possible scenario where it could happen.  A group of starters on a team that otherwise has some talent issuspended for the first 4 games, that return for conference play.

Sugaloaf

Have you not watched college football over the past 25 years??? Anything is possible. And this case could certainly be possible if say, the star qb and rb were suspended/injured for the first 5 games then came back. Nothing impossible about this scenario at all. And did you see the Leaders division this year? what about next year?

JClay

This has actually happened in the Sun Belt. In 2001, North Texas went 0-5 in their out of conference games, went 5-1 in conference and beat the other 5-1 team. The NCAA ruled at 5-6 they had to be allowed into a bowl as conference champion.

Super J

I get it this is the real friday night drinking thread

Doctor Wolverine

This basically sounds like the Big East every year. When will the BCS get smart and require AQs to at least be in the top 20, better yet top 14? If not, the spot should go to a more qualified team.

wildbackdunesman

Theoretically, you don't have to win a single regular season game to win the national title in basketball.

Vasav

Let's also not forget that the Pac 12 South's best team is ineligible for the post-season, hence the silliness of UCLA. Let's say next year's B1G East, Ohio is banned from a bowl but rips through the competition, while everybody else falls off to the 2-3 win level. It's even more plausible once the B1G goes to 9 conference games - you could see someone with as few as 3 wins conceivable going to the title game.

Of course, maybe this is an argument for the B1G's gerrymandered divisions. After all, the biggest disparities between divisions this year are in the SEC and the Pac 12. I am not a fan of "leaders and legends" divisions, but maybe there's something to it.