After the league changed the tie-breaker rule this week there was a little feedback from the twitter fans. The rule change went from “team that hasn’t been in the title game recently” to “computer ranking”.
The straw poll of online fans suggests that this rule change is favorable, but two things happened: the league made the change without an announcement, simply updating the news release on the site. They had previously announced the tie breaker procedure via an email to the league’s writers.
CUSAReport contacted the league communication office and various people in the know to find out the process.
The big questions are these: why the late change in the season? What was the process like? We know the athletic directors voted on the change but how did they vote on it? Who planned the (non-existent) announcement for the second release?
We got some responses but no one willing to go on the record.
Based on background conversation we know the following: Monday the league organized a call for the athletic directors to discuss and presumably vote on the rule change. The previous rule was in place since about 2005 and when the league realized the conference title game host tie breaker and the division tie breaks were different, they wanted to discuss it.
From what we can ascertain, commisioner Judy McLeod is not permitted by the bylaws to veto the vote, but can make suggestions or possibly raise the issue up to the board of governors— the school presidents.
Whatever criticism there is should be directed at those who voted to change the rule at this time. Obviously the USM AD voted “no” but the majority of the league went the other way.
The league staff were involved with setting up the meeting so that would seemingly involve Commissioner McLeod and other higher-ups but it was the directors who voted on the change for this season.