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Greetings from "Can't Wait For Saturday," your morning morsel of college football, courtesy of longtime Illini beat writer, AP Top 25 voter and Heisman state rep Bob Asmussen. He'll give you his views each day on the game he loves.
Look up and down the College Football Playoff rankings and you won't find James Madison.
The Dukes are certainly worthy with a 10-0 record. The Associated Press Top 25 lists JMU at No. 18. The coaches' poll puts the Dukes No. 21.
But a silly rule is costing James Madison a deserved spot in the CFP rankings and possibly a bowl bid.
Because the program is its first year of transition from the Football Championship Subdivision, it is deemed ineligble by the NCAA for bowls. Why?
James Madison, recognizing its special season, has petitioned the NCAA to lift the bowl ban and been rejected more than once. Again, why?
The JMU players should be able to enjoy the postseason fun. And certainly there are bowls that will welcome a team with a perfect record.
There is some hope for the Dukes to go bowling. If there are not enough teams to fill the 82 bowl slots then JMU can have one of the openings. Right now, it looks like there won't be enough six-win teams.
The more openings, the better for first-year programs. And a few 5-7 teams might receive invites too.
I've been curious enough about James Madison to check out the team a few times on TV this season. The Dukes are not Alabama or Georgia, but they are moving that way. Who knows, perhaps in a few years, they will be filling one of the 12 playoff spots.