Friday, May 13, 2011

Presenting The Same Argument Twice Prevents it From Being "Point/Counterpoint"

Today I stumbled across an article from some obscure publication in West Virginia. It's entitled "Point-Counterpoint: Big East Expansion."

After the jump is the article in its entirety.

The Big East has already added Texas Christian University to create a nine-team football conference and is still considering adding Villanova. Should they add more teams? Chip Fontanazza and Garrett Cullen debate.
CHIP: Let’s be honest: If the Big East wants to survive in this uncertain time in college football and keep its BCS status, it has to make more money and I feel the only way for them to do that is to add more teams. The Big East is currently making the least amount of money out of all of the BCS conferences, according to BusinessofCollegeFootball.com. Of course, the Big East is going to need a new TV contract after the 2013 football season. The new PAC-12 just signed a TV contract that will reportedly make the conference close to $3 billion over the next 12 seasons.
GARRETT: You can’t exactly compare the new PAC-12 deal to a potential Big East deal – that’s just not realistic. Sure, the league should hopefully be getting a much larger deal than what it has now, but competing with the money the PAC-12 gets would be a little far fetched.  
I’m all for Big East expansion if you’re actually going to add consistent top-20 teams, but that isn’t exactly realistic at this point either. The best the league could do is grab TCU away from the Mountain West, which it did. That move gives the league nine teams, a balance of four home games and four away games per year. No need to get greedy and add a bunch of teams that only clutter up conference play.
CHIP: It’s true the Big East grabbed the best team available in TCU, but there are still other very good teams out there for the league. A bigger conference will draw more football players to the Big East and the conference will grow and become more competitive.
Central Florida, Houston and Memphis come to mind. That would guarantee a trip to Florida and Texas every year and three more Top-50 television markets.
I think Villanova needs to be completely dropped. They don’t have the facilities to become a Big East school and the conference extended an invitation to them well before they knew TCU was going to. That changed a lot.
GARRETT: I’m with you about Villanova, and the league didn’t do them any favors by giving the initial invite and then saying ‘well, maybe we’re not so sure after all,' but that’s for another day. 
As far as the schools you would add, I like both UCF and Houston, but I just don’t think it’s a move the league needs to make at this point. It would give the Big East a couple of larger TV markets, but would that really make enough difference in the potential new TV contract with three or four more schools getting a split of that money?
I understand the idea that adding teams helps the league be better prepared in case a bigger conference comes in and snags a team or two. If you had to go to 10 to feel secure, then add UCF or Houston. But bringing in both, plus Memphis would just water things down a bit.  
CHIP: Hear me out on this one G-Man. Here’s how I would split things up:
Red:
WVU
Memphis
TCU
Central Florida
Syracuse
Louisville
Blue:
Pitt
Rutgers
South Florida
Houston
Cincinnati
UConn 
The “Backyard Brawl” would still be alive because the conference would have crossover games and there is a chance the Mountaineers and the Panthers would meet in the conference championship game. Also, the conference championship game would be held at the higher seed’s home field. I think there’s a better chance to fill the stands at a Big East stadium than in a professional venue in, say, New York.  It would save people money on traveling and it would be more appealing for fans to watch the game at a field they’ve traveled to all season.
I find it hard to believe that a 12-team BCS conference with established football schools won’t succeed in this time of uncertainty in college football. It will also be the most widespread BCS Conference in the nation.
GARRETT: That’s the problem, though. Adding in Memphis, UCF and Houston to get to 12 teams doesn’t exactly give you established football schools. Sure, UCF and Houston have both have had some success of late, but are they established top 25 programs? No. There’s potential there, but I don’t see the necessity to take that chance right now.
And as for Memphis?
2010 Record: 1-11
2009 Record: 2-10
2008 Record: 6-7
2007 Record: 7-6
2006 Record: 2-10
Yikes.
Point being, adding TCU was an excellent move by the league that certainly adds more competition and one more large TV market. Adding more than that, however, just doesn’t do much to significantly help the league from either a financial or perception standpoint.
The problem with the article? BOTH OF THEM ARE ARGUING THE EXACT SAME THING! Aside from disagreeing about Memphis, which absolutely isn't a worthy choice for Big East expansion, both of these men disagree about nothing.

Let me direct you to The Onion for an example of how it's done. In a (fake) piece entitled "Gov. Palin Has No Foreign Policy Experience, Refuses To Acknowledge Global Warming, And Supports The War In Iraq vs. Please Keep Your Voice Down, My Poor Retarded Child Is Sleeping," a guy sounds off about how Sarah Palin shouldn't be president because she lacks experience, and (fake) Palin sounds off with a clear, counterargument, even if it's just casting the guy making the argument as someone who is ignorant to the mother of a retarded child.

Maybe I'm missing something, and these guys generally disagree about everything, BUT..


  1. They both agree that the Big East should be expanded if it makes things better.
  2. They both agree on dropping Villanova.
  3. They both think adding TCU was a good move by the conference.
I don't understand any of this. What am I missing? Are people in West Virginia really this mentally deficient?

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