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College Football Playoff Expansion


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Since 2014 we’ve had the College Football Playoff (CFP) in order to determine a National Champion. While I preferably love the idea of a playoff at the collegiate level, I still don’t feel the NCAA has executed it correctly. It is inevitable that the CFP will eventually expand but the question is: how soon, how many, and what will the format look like. 

There has been talks of 8, 12, or even 16 teams that may eventually compete for the coveted “College Football Playoff National Championship Trophy” in time. 

I feel expansion is a need in order for the game and College Football as a whole to grow. Most schools at the division 1 level set there goals towards making a bowl game, but why not more. 4 teams isn’t enough, there are no upsets, no Cinderella stories, and basically the same matchups year in and year out. 
So now it’s up to the boards, if you were in charge or on the CFP Committee how would you do it?

 

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CFB isn't meant to be competitive, not in the same sense as the pros. Few colleges dominate in recruiting while most may barely manage to get more than a top player. It's a good reason why we have divisions. Expanding the playoffs should happen, but at the same time, it will hardly make a difference. You'll still see the same teams in it more often than not.

 

I would say depending on the amount of power conferences we have in the future, have the winners of those conferences earn a bid while the other spots go to best GO5 school, along with the rest being determined by record and strength of schedule. With the B1G and SEC practically being Gods as of now, they'll likely be near-guaranteed to have an extra school in there.

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The Big 3 conferences will make sure that only they get a foot in the door. Even if it expanded or 8 or 16, they'll make sure that any outside team will have to be perfect that year. 

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12 hours ago, MJWalker45 said:

The Big 3 conferences will make sure that only they get a foot in the door. Even if it expanded or 8 or 16, they'll make sure that any outside team will have to be perfect that year. 

That’s a great point. And they would have to be almost perfect that year. Expanding the playoff even to 8 or 12 teams opens the doors so that the little guys can say “hey we might be able to make a run at this” and that’s all that matters. Anyone who’s not a big football fan looks at division 1 FBS Football and thinks every team has a shot to bring the championship trophy home but as you get a closer look it’s all broken down into tiers. But instead of it being something like a promotion and relegation we are stuck with the same 50 or so teams on national television and in playoff/bowl contention whether they are above .500 or not. With an expansion we will probably be watching the same teams over and over again but what really matters to me as a fan is giving Cinderella schools a shot to control their own destiny.

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If the point of the playoff was to include every team that had a legitimate claim to being #1 by season's end, 4 teams would be fine. Even with such a limited field, the semifinals routinely suck. I can think of two competitive games in the 8 years they've been played. The non-exhibition post season games should be geared towards crowning a champion, not serving as a reward in themselves for every team that managed a decent season.

 

However, the point is to make money. I imagine that a 59-3 playoff game between #16 Coastal Carolina and  #1 Alabama will pull in more ad revenue/ratings than the Gasparilla Bowl or whatever.  Since ESPN owns damn near every bowl and the playoff itself, that's what'll happen. 

 

It's honestly a shame that CFB finally got a playoff in an era when a handful of teams happen to have a vice grip on their respective conferences and their playoff bids. I'm interested to see what the next couple of years has in store for Clemson and Oklahoma in particular. Throw in a Saban retirement, and 75% of our playoff regulars may fade very quickly. In that scenario, 4 teams will continue to be just fine.

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1 hour ago, alxy8s said:

If the point of the playoff was to include every team that had a legitimate claim to being #1 by season's end, 4 teams would be fine. Even with such a limited field, the semifinals routinely suck. I can think of two competitive games in the 8 years they've been played. The non-exhibition post season games should be geared towards crowning a champion, not serving as a reward in themselves for every team that managed a decent season.

 

However, the point is to make money. I imagine that a 59-3 playoff game between #16 Coastal Carolina and  #1 Alabama will pull in more ad revenue/ratings than the Gasparilla Bowl or whatever.  Since ESPN owns damn near every bowl and the playoff itself, that's what'll happen. 

As much control as ESPN has, I'm surprised we didn't get that decision last year. IT's cool to see a couple 0f 7-5 teams play in the Bahamas, especially when people can get there en masse again, but who really thinks a packed Ohio Stadium or LA Coliseum won't bring in more money than the Humanitarian Bowl in Boise, both on TV and at the gate. As much as they complain about the players playing too many games, they keep adding more. If FCS, D2 and D3 can handle players playing up to 15 games, so can the FBS schools. And the argument about them being bigger and thus the games take more out of them is also BS when some of those school have better facilities than the Cincinnati Bengals, who don't have an indoor facility. 

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Good news is of course if there is no B1G-SEC seceding from the NCAA and it gets expanded to 16 or even more, more teams will have a chance at a playoff, especially teams outside the current P5. More teams like last year's Bearcats can dance.

 

Bad news... well.. That 16 game playoff might happen under a breakaway B1G-SEC league so a nightmare scenario for those who love tradition and seeing underdog schools make noise like March Madness.

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Don't believe your gonna see a 16-team or more playoff. The 12-team proposal was interesting because it took the top 6 conference winners + the top 6 ranked teams that weren't conference winners. But you're also not gonna see the situation of MAC and Sun Belt teams getting a shot at 'Bama and Ohio State in the playoff. I still believe the best case scenario is to split the power schools away into either their own NCAA division or separate from the NCAA altogether. Bump up some FCS schools (North Dakota State, for example) into the "New FBS" or mid-tier division and let them have a similar playoff system to FCS.

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