For the good of everyone, the AAC really needs to drop “P6”
When the American Athletic Conference dubbed itself “TheAmerican POW6R,” it drew chuckles and raised eyebrows. Now it’s just embarrassing.
When AAC athletic director Mike Aresco began referring to the conference as “Power 6,” the collective eye-roll was nearly enough to tilt the entire planet from its orbit. The snark came from both sides – the Power Five thought it desperate, the Group of Five found it insulting. Yet, Aresco stuck resolutely to his guns.
“We’re never going to accept a silly non-Power Five designation,” Aresco said before the 2018 season opened. Aresco had some bullet points to justify his arrogance. The conference has won three NY6 Bowl appearances and is, currently, the strongest of the “non-Power Five” designates. Its flagship program, UCF was undefeated in 2017, and followed that perfect season with another in 2018.
But the College Football Playoff Committee’s last poll of the season should tell Aresco something: the AAC is not part of the club, and it never will be. Undefeated UCF is ranked 8th in the nation, behind two programs with two losses. The snub revealed what we feared to be true all along: there is absolutely no scenario where anybody other than a Power Five member is invited to the Playoffs.
So why continue this puppy-dog, P6 charade?
They do not want you, Mr. Aresco. I can call myself a Yankee, but I’m never breaking the lineup. Need more evidence? Just take in SEC commissioner Greg Sanky’s advice to UCF, a true masterpiece of condescension:
“We had a similar issue in men’s basketball a couple years ago, when we only had three schools selected for the tournament,” Sankey said according to ASU Sports Law & Biz. “Rather than looking at the committee, the schedule, etc., we need to look inward. How can we do better for ourselves?”
Suck it up, buttercup! Just keep going undefeated, little guy! Maybe you’ll crack the Top 7 next year!
Listen, Mr. Aresco, UCF and Houston aren’t the only programs butt-punted by the Privileged Five. Northern Illinois, Boise State, Marshall and Western Michigan are all recent victims. You didn’t see the MAC calling itself The BIGGER 10 when it was being snubbed in 2012.
I have a radical idea: why not help the Group of Five become stronger? When the Big XII invited Houston and UCF to the prom only to dump a bucket of pig’s blood on their heads, that should have been your cue to marshal your pride and join the rest of the G5 in countering Privileged Five imperialism. Instead, you called us “silly” and allowed the AAC to be embarrassed again.
Rejoin the Group of Five Mr. Aresco. Success is fleeting. UCF will one day lose, Houston will backslide as well Memphis and Temple. Look at USF. Look at East Carolina and Navy. You’re living in the moment. You’re not thinking about the future.
Take our hand, Mr. Aresco. Embrace the Group of Five. The stronger we become, together, the greater the chance you will have your cold revenge on the institutions that currently look over their monocles and laugh at you.
Or hey, go it alone, slugger.
A former notary public, Jeremy Harper is a professional writer and Chief Instigator for Storm the Castle Creative. He spends much of his free time staring blankly into space.