The athletic director at Northern Illinois thinks UCF should tone down its national title rhetoric.
The Golden Knights have spent the weeks after beating Auburn in the Peach Bowl claiming to be college football’s national champions. While that title officially goes to Alabama, who beat Georgia in the National Championship Game, UCF would like you to know that it was the only FBS school that finished the season with an undefeated record.
That undefeated record has led the school to claim the 2017 national title. A parade was held. The school is recognizing it with a banner. It’s a genius marketing ploy, especially for a school that’s looking for continued relevance now that coach Scott Frost is at Nebraska.
When the Knights were left out of the playoff, UCF athletic director Danny White told Yahoo Sports that the AAC was getting a lack of respect with UCF’s exclusion.
NIU AD Sean Frazier thinks that’s a bridge too far. From CBS Sports:
“Don’t try to bully the committee,” Frazier said of UCF. “That’s what these guys are doing now. If you want to put a banner up that says ‘national championship,’ God bless you. You can do that. I’ve got no problem with [White] doing that. But to say they should have been in the final four is an unrealistic expectation.”
Frazier even went as far as to say the the AAC’s push to be part of the “Power Six” in addition to the AAC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC in the Power Five group (because they have more money) “marginalizes” Conference USA, the Mountain West, Mid-American Conference, and Sun Belt.
UCF was the second AAC team to get the Group of Five berth in a New Year’s Six bowl game. Western Michigan (out of the MAC) went to the Cotton Bowl in 2016 and Boise State went to the Fiesta Bowl after the 2014 season.
Frazier is, by the way, the athletic director who proposed a possible playoff among Group of Five teams in addition to the College Football Playoff that has existed for the last four seasons. That idea wasn’t widely-accepted.
One person who thinks UCF should have been in the playoff is former Alabama running back Bo Scarbrough. After he said “Congratulations to them and whatever they think,” Scarbrough had this to say on the idea that UCF should have been involved in the CFP.
“I think they should have had an opportunity in the playoff because they didn’t lose a game just like any of these teams that had one loss,” Scarbrough said at the NFL combine via Al.com. “I still think they should have had an opportunity but it is what it is. They had no control over it.”
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.