Talking Point: Home-field disadvantage

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What's the buzz from the world of sports? Here are some items that will have people talking:

1

Columbia River will host a football playoff game today.

But the Chieftains won't be at home.

Since rules now call for all high school football playoff games in Washington to be played on artificial grass, Columbia River will take on Bainbridge at Kiggins Bowl instead of at its own stadium.

We understand why administrators and coaches like to schedule playoff games for fields that aren't caked in mud after a season of wear and tear.

But it can be argued that Columbia River deserves the option of playing at its home stadium. After all, the Chieftains earned their league championship, and with it the chance to host this playoff game.

Simply put: the regular-season should matter more than it does. If Bainbridge had wanted to avoid playing on Columbia River's field, it should have won more of its regular-season games.

2

Speaking of the regular-season mattering … it seems at least one BCS bowl official has seen enough to be convinced that Notre Dame will be in a BCS bowl come January.

"I tend to think right now, there's a lot to be played, but I don't see how they could avoid being in a BCS game somewhere," Fiesta Bowl executive director Robert Shelton said. "They have four games left. Anything can happen, but they're looking so strong. Even if they only win two of those, certainly if they win three or four, they will be in a BCS game."

We aren't shocked or dismayed by this statement. With its national following, Notre Dame would no doubt sell tickets and boost television ratings — two things that make those who run the big bowls giddy.

We have long understood that bowl games are not about rewarding deserving football teams for a successful regular season. We are resigned to the fact that BCS stands for Blatantly Corrupt System.

But that doesn't prevent statements like Mr. Shelton's from turning our stomachs.

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