Four months. It took the NCAA four months to complete an investigation that was blatantly clear from the get-go.
Back in the summer I criticized Ohio State for their self-imposed punishment, saying the NCAA was going to come down much harder on them.
I got plenty of debate for it. I got even more debate at the subsequent articles stating the NCAA told Ohio State it wouldn't slap them with the "failure to monitor" charge.
What do they do Tuesday? Slap them with a "failure to monitor" charge.
I get it came because of the findings which occurred after the initial tattoo scandal, but what I don't get is why it took four months to come to a decision and why this year's Ohio State team isn't the one sitting at home.
Presumably next season the Buckeyes are going to be a much better team with a much better chance of a marquee bowl game. That's the team that's going to be punished. Not this year's team which still sports players who were involved in these messes.
I agree with the punishment, but I don't agree with when it's going to be imposed.
It's no secret I'm not a big Ohio State football fan. I've made that pretty clear over the years.
But I love college football, and the single thing that bothers me most about college football, aside from the BCS of course, is when a team is not eligible for the post-season when they have a shot at being a legitimate contender not only for their conference, but quite possibly for the national title.
I love it when the Big Ten and SEC have to play the so-called "smaller" schools or the "mid-majors" like TCU and Boise State and Utah. It makes for fun games and great debates.
If you're a college football fan around Ohio, this takes the wind out of everyone's sails, even for those who don't like Ohio State. It makes it seem as if the 2012 season will be irrelevant, because in a way it will be. The team can't compete for the national title.
They can go unbeaten, which I never thought was something I would actually root for, but in a way now I want it to happen because it would muck up the system and make a mockery of the NCAA, the BCS and the whole process.
I could really care less about the Gator Bowl and watching two teams who are a shell of what they once were play a re-match of an old title contest. This year's Buckeye squad is far from perfect, and Florida eked its way through the season much in the same fashion.
Take OSU out of that game. That's the one that's meaningless. Stick a bowl-eligible school that got snubbed in like Western Kentucky (7-5) or Ball State (6-6). Those are the only two teams who were bowl eligible that got left out. You don't think that if the NCAA hadn't drug its feet getting to these finding that the Hilltoppers or the Cardinals would love to go play Florida to finish their seasons?
It's discouraging the sport I love the most is the one seemingly handled by the most incompetent people. This is just another example of the inefficiency and hypocrisy of the NCAA.
What a joke.
E-mail B.J. Lisko at firstname.lastname@example.org