College Football: If last decade had a College Football Playoff

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Jan 6, 2014; Pasadena, CA, USA; Florida State Seminoles quarterback Jameis Winston (5) kisses the Coaches Trophy after the 2014 BCS National Championship game against the Auburn Tigers at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With the BCS – and all the controversy and rancor that came with it – slowly fading into the distance in our rear view mirror, and the first College Football Playoff about to arrive at our doorstep, a lot of changes are about to happen in the world of college football.

The idea behind the BCS was noble enough – take the two best teams in the country, regardless of conference affiliation, and pit them in a game against each other to decide who the champion of college football is for that season.

The problem? Make that plural, because there were a multitude of them.

Preseason rankings, computer algorithms, biased voters, polls, emphasis on point differential, strength of schedule not taken enough into consideration….need I continue?

All of this added up to an argument towards the end of practically every season of the BCS era about which two teams truly belonged in the championship game.

The only people who were really (for the most part) happy with the BCS were the suits in charge of the Southeastern Conference, who – by the end of the BCS’s run – pretty much were kings of the roost no matter what happened.

So this begs the question, what if the College Football Playoff had been in place during the last 10 years? Would the results have been even similar?

Here’s a look, year-by-year, at who played in the BCS Championship Game, and who (probably) would have been in the playoffs, with reasonable predictions about the outcome of those games. We’ll assume that in 2004, the rotation would be as it is now, with the Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl hosting the two semifinal games.

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