Hutton: Hard to imagine unbeaten Notre Dame left out of title game
By MIKE HUTTON firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @MikeHuttonPT November 15, 2012 11:14PM
Updated: December 19, 2012 1:03PM
Oh, how the mighty Notre Dame brand has tumbled.
Impossible and maddening to believe that the Irish, with their mega NBC television contract and their polarizing soul and their long history of excellence, which includes 11 national titles, could possibly not play for a national title if they finish the season undefeated.
That is a distinct and real possibility.
Yes, I know that half the college football world — the half that absolutely despises ND — is overjoyed at the prospect of the Irish losing out here.
Seriously, though, do you believe that an undefeated Kansas State, which has all the sizzle of a shriveled up piece of beef jerky, deserves to play in the title game against Oregon over an undefeated Notre Dame team? I’ve got a Bozo hat for you if you do.
And really, is anybody out there besides Rose Bowl officials, clamoring for a Nebraska-Notre Dame matchup?
In a not-very-small way, Notre Dame has only itself to blame for the problem, assuming all three undefeated teams — Oregon and KSU being the other two — win out.
There have been so many un-BCS worthy (before that national championship worthy) Irish teams for the last 19 years that their reemergence as a major BCS player still isn’t rooted in reality for many of the voters.
The fact that the Irish are 10-0, and likely 11-0 going into the USC game next week, is a shocker to the experts. Notre Dame is a victim of its own excellence this year. Soon enough, this conversation will be over when the BCS goes to a playoff system next year. Thank goodness for that.
Midwest Prep Showcase: The Fieldhouse in Merrillville will host the Midwest Prep Showcase on Saturday and Sunday. Teams from all over the country will play and college coaches from all over the country will be there to watch them play.
John Stroia, the manager at the Fieldhouse, had it set up for some really good local teams like Chesterton, Bishop Noll and Michigan City Marquette to have their one controlled scrimmage there this week.
That would’ve been a triple win for everyone. Players get more eyeballs on them from college coaches, the Fieldhouse has something more to promote than just an event with mostly unknown players and there might be people that want to go to watch this and media outlets that wanted to really cover it.
It was such a good idea, of course, that the IHSAA put the kibosh on it. That’s what they do with good ideas.
Turns out, they really don’t want people, including coaches, to watch these scrimmages. The IHSAA cited an obscure by-law that says these controlled scrimmages essentially can’t be scouted by anyone that is not connected with the teams.
The games start at 5 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday. The cost is $10 at the door. There will be lots of good players there to check out.
Nick Davidson signing: Good news for Bryce Drew and Valparaiso University with the signing of Andrean point guard Nick Davidson. He’s just the type of local player that the Crusaders have struggled to secure in their quest to make inroads into recruiting in Northwest Indiana.
There have been a handful of Lake County recruits — Kenny Harris of Bishop Noll/Griffith and Monte Gordon of Roosevelt are two that have played there since 1998.
In general, though, it won’t necessarily become a trend for the Crusaders. They have to do what any good program does. Go out and find players where they can.
That means casting a wide net for a select group of ballers that fit their system and actually fit the social and academic culture of VU.
Davidson picked VU because he wanted to stay close to home. Lots of kids don’t want to be at home and lots of kids from other parts of the world, literally, like the idea of playing for the Crusaders.
That’s just how recruiting goes. My point is: Don’t expect the Davidson signing to be a break through for VU in terms of recruiting locally.