ESPN – UCF athletic director Danny White said Wednesday that the program has decided to claim a national championship and will place a championship banner inside Spectrum Stadium to recognize its undefeated 2017 season. The Knights beat Auburn 34-27 in the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl to cap a 13-0 season, finishing as the only undefeated team in college football. But because UCF doesn’t play in a Power 5 conference, it entered the bowl game ranked No. 12 by the College Football Playoff selection committee and was not given an opportunity to play for the national championship. Since the victory on New Year’s Day, UCF football has changed its Twitter display name to “2017 National Champions” with a logo designed to match.
I love this move. Undefeated Season? Check. Big bowl game win? Check. Opportunity to compete for a championship in the College Football Playoffs? Nope. “Welp, fuck this then we’ll just declare ourselves National Champs.”
This is the problem you inevitably run into with College Football. Sure, is the current 4 team playoff format better than the BCS computer ranking system of the AP Polls? Of course. But there will still be teams like this in the top 10, 15, 20 that feel like they got shafted. And going undefeated but not being given a chance to play against the big boys like Bama and Clemson is tough to swallow.
The NCAA commissioner smacked UCF down real quick though basically saying they’re schedule was too soft to rank them in the Top 4 despite their undefeated season. He’s not wrong. You wanna make the playoffs? Play a harder schedule and don’t beat up on teams like Eastern Carolina, Austin Peay, UConn, and Temple. You cannot sit here with a straight face and tell me you could even find AUSTIN PEAY on a map. Murderers Row that is not.
But UCF knew all of this and still said “nope we are the champions.” That is the ultimate George Costanza move and you have to respect it. Its like the time the Jerk Store bombed and it wasn’t until he was driving home later that a killer comeback hit him.
Respect the utter refusal to accept things as they are. Keep doing you, UCF.
*According to ESPN Stats & Information, UCF is the 10th team in the BCS era (since 1998) to finish the season undefeated and not win the national title.