You might be wondering what the selection of who builds the U.S. Coast Guard’s 300' Offshore Patrol Cutters (OPC) and the crowning of a college football champion have in common. You mean you haven’t wondered about that? Well, no problem, I’ve taken care of that for you.

There are some interesting parallels. Both winners will be teams, not individuals. Both groups of finalists are selected by a specific group of evaluators. Up for grabs are billions — yes, billions — of dollars. In the case of the OPC, 25 vessels over, maybe, 10 years at a cost of $10.5 billion. A college football championship will go on annually a lot longer than 10 years, so the College Football Playoff Selection Committee’s decisions will easily turn into billions for college football.

Let’s compare some of the other particulars to see which one has the advantage:

The stronger entity behind the selection committee: NCAA or USCG — Advantage: NCAA. USCG is part of Homeland Security and that’s just the first layer of red tape. No one has oversight over the NCAA.

Committee member transparency — Advantage: NCAA. We know the 12 members of the College Football Playoff Committee. (The 13th member, Archie Manning, pulled out because of health concerns.) It's not commonly known who chose the winning bidders for the OPC contract.

Selecting finalists — Advantage: USCG. The Coast Guard has already selected its final three — Bollinger Shipyards, Eastern Shipbuilding Group and General Dynamics/Bath Iron Works. The College Football Playoff Selection Committee won’t name its final four until the first week in December.

Selecting winner — Advantage: NCAA. A national champion will be crowned in January 2015. USCG deadlines are fluid, but it's at least a year and a half.

Controversy — Advantage: tie. The Coast Guard’s process was interrupted in February when Huntington Ingalls Industries and VT Halter Marine filed formal protests of the contract awards (the awards were later upheld). When the final four college teams are announced, anything from protests to gnashing of teeth to street rioting will be in play.

More sound financial backers — winner: NCAA. National television networks will throw money at the playoffs in college football. The Coast Guard has already given each finalist $21.95 million but rely on Congress for future funding.

Garner more marine industry interest — Advantage: NCAA. We’re talking about the superbowl of college football.

Ken Hocke has been the senior editor of WorkBoat since 1999. He was the associate editor of WorkBoat from 1997 to 1999. Prior to that, he was the editor of the Daily Shipping Guide, a transportation daily in New Orleans. He has written for other publications including The Times-Picayune. He graduated from Louisiana State University with an arts and sciences degree, with a concentration in English, in 1978.