College Football Playoff
Sources say that senior network executives as high up as ESPN President John Skipper are pushing for the change as a way to get better television ratings, but the CFP is unwilling to make such a move because it is committed to the original plan to hold tripleheader bowl games, including the semifinals, on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.
“We’ve started a new tradition and we don’t want to back away from it now,” said Bill Hancock, the CFP’s executive director.
Meanwhile, the CFP is facing pressure on another front. The NFL is considering expanding its playoffs and moving one of the new games to Monday night when it would compete directly with the CFP championship.
Sources say NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell initiated a series of high-level meetings with some of the CFP’s most influential commissioners, including the SEC’s Mike Slive and the Big Ten’s Jim Delany. Goodell approached the commissioners to discuss the potential impact an NFL playoff expansion would have on the CFP championship game.
This was a proposed 16-team college football playoff by The Sporting News in 1990. Michigan would have ended up playing Florida State in the Hancock Bowl, with the winner facing ND or Clemson in the Blockbuster(lol) Bowl.
Michigan's miserable 2014 season depressingly coincided with the advent of the four-team College Football Playoff. Before the events of the last week, we fans probably felt like the possibility of the Wolverines reaching that playoff were a long way off. However, the hiring of Coach Harbaugh certainly gives us renewed hope.
Even then, the Big 10 East is highly competitive and it may take some time for that opportunity to come to fruition. In Harbaugh we trust to return Michigan to prominence, like water finding its level again. So
if when he's successful in doing that, what does that mean in terms of getting playoff-bound? I found a nice "hypothetical" study on this web site...
...that explores what the "Final Four" would have been if the CFB would have been in place since the beginning of the "poll" era in 1936. It seems Michigan would have held their own in the category of "final four appearances." UM would have 15, compared to 20 for Ohio State and 16 for Notre Dame. MSU would have been in 8, including 2013. And these wouldn't have been just 1940's-era or Bo-era appearances from a bygone era. M would have been participants in '86 with Harbaugh at QB, 1989, 1991, 1997 (obviously), 2003, and (again, obviously) 2006.
It goes without saying, but during Bo and Woody's 10 Year War where the winner of The Game consistently went to the Rose Bowl, one or sometimes both teams were virtually ALWAYS in the final four. In 1974 and 2006 it would have been interesting to test the "two teams from the same conference" selection criteria as both teams remained in the top 4 after The Game. It's easy to envision this happening with Harbaugh and Meyer going full-blast in the next decade, with the victor going to the semifinals.
As a comparison, Oklahoma would have been in 27 playoffs, and Alabama 23. Miami (YTM) would have had the longest consecutive streak of 8 years in a row, from 1985-1992.
My point here is that Coach Harbaugh will help Michigan excellence to "find its level" again, and a return to that level will provide UM with the opportunity to play on the biggest stage "as often as anyone" -- This is looking like an average of 3-4 CFP's every 10 years for UM which isn't a bad minimum expectation to shoot for. We have history -- and Harbaugh -- on our side.
Below are the total years for our rivals if you don't want to sift through the entire chart, with asterisks for actual championships won.
1940, 1943, 1947, 1948*, 1964, 1971, 1974, 1976, 1977, 1986, 1989, 1991, 1997*, 2003, 2006
Ohio State (20)
1942*, 1944, 1954*, 1957, 1961, 1968*, 1970, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1979, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2002*, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2014
Notre Dame (16)
1941, 1943*, 1946*, 1947*, 1948, 1949*, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1964, 1966*, 1973*, 1988*, 1989, 1993, 2012
Michigan State (8)
1951, 1952*, 1953, 1955, 1957, 1965, 1966, 2013 ... and apologies for that web page's featured image.
And "guh" that our three rivals would have been featured in 2012, 2013, and 2014. But that's all in the past now, it's 2015 ... Harbaugh ... Go Blue.
"We can't control the committee," Patterson said. “All we can do is try and win.”
That's TCU head coach Gary Patterson after yesterday's win over number 6 Kansas State, a win that shoud elevate his team to number 4 or 5 in the country and the cusp of making the final football four. Yet here we stand, with another coach begging to a committe because his team is out of options to "settle things on the field." At the end of the season, both TCU and Baylor could have one loss, and Kansas State could also be tied for first place in the Big XII with one conference loss. If the playoff committee is going to look at a Big XII team they'll need to choose between these three, who have now all gone 1-1 against each other, and the Big XII does not play a championship game.
The esteemed committee members do not collectively seem the type to say "screw it, too hard to figure out ... just put the B1G Championship Game winner in instead." But this season is shaping up to be the Big XII's worst nightmare. They've been touting their scheduling ability to play nine conference games and have every team play each other, but with their three top teams going 1-1 against each other that has completely backfired. The winner of a TCU-Baylor rematch in a Big XII championship game would surely be chosen over the winner of the weaker B1G, but there is no such opportunity.
This scenario, along with other happenings like Notre Dame being eliminated, have inspired some bold predictions and observations:
Over-arching observation: As long as there are four slots in the bracket and five power conferences, the CFB Playoff will ALWAYS be a referendum on which four conferences were the strongest each year, and those champions will be selected.
Prediction: The Big XII will add two more teams to bring their total to (hey look!) 12 ... and soon. And it doesn't matter much who they are at this point. (By the way, in this "new world" of the Power 5 autonomy and the CFBP, is that "rule" still in place that a conference MUST have 12 teams in order to stage a championship game? Wasn't that a BCS/NCAA thing? Couldn't the Big XII these days just split into two five team divisions? But I digress). This season may already prove without a doubt that they NEED that KSU-Baylor championship game. Grab Cincinnati, Colorado State, BYU, or get the SWC band back together and welcome Houston, Rice and SMU back.
Prediction: Notre Dame will permanently join the ACC. This may not happen right away, but it's clear that the committee will have its hands full already trying to choose among six contenders for four slots -- The power five champions plus the second-best SEC team. Granted, it would have happened in 2012, but the whole landscape has shifted and will continue to shift, especially if the domino of the Big XII adding CCG happens and strengthens their CFBP candidacy. We all know how much of an anomaly that season was for them.
Prediction: The B1G will regret prioritizing TV markets over program strength when expanding. At least where it comes to getting teams into the CFBP, that is. Adding Rutgers and Maryland only weakened the conference and gifted the ACC a slot to add a stronger Louisville program. If the Big XII begins playing a CCG and ND joins the ACC permanently, that makes the B1G's two closest "rival" conferences in the strength-of-schedule battles even stronger. Having Missouri in the B1G West and Notre Dame in the B1G East would have made the conference a lot more compelling.
Long-Term Prediction: In 2025 college football will be NFL-ized anyway. Traditional conferences will be voluntarily dismantled and AFC/NFC-style conferences and divisions will be put in place, allowing for a cleaner 8- or 16-team playoff bracket.
What does this mean for Michigan? Obviously not much right now, we've got our own issues to sort through. Except hey, the more CFB continues to resemble the NFL on a big-time scale, that bodes better for attracting Jim Harbaugh, right?
EDIT: I did not realize that Kansas State and Baylor have not played yet, my error. My point about the possibility of a 2008 Big XII Texas-Oklahoma scenario remains, but I should have done more fact checking than thinking to myself "I'm pretty sure they played each other."
Since the College Football Playoff is starting this year, I thought this article was pretty helpful in understanding exactly what's going on. The recap at the end of the article:
• An elimination round now exists in college football.
• A selection committee will pick the top 25 teams in the country and seed the playoff.
• Six prestigious bowls will take place on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, broadcasted by ESPN.
• This year, the Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl will host the semifinals on New Year's Day.
• This year's National Championship Game will take place in North Texas.
The BCS is dead, as Brian detailed in his most recent post, but here are some things you may not know, or may have forgotten about the playoff
- The six bowls participating in the rotating semifinal and final were not randomly chosen. They are all historic bowl sites in warm weather cities with no state getting more than one game, excluding hte final. (sorry Citrus Bowl).
The six bowls are in Los Angeles, Tempe, Dallas/Arlington, New Orleans, Atlanta and Miami.
2014 New Year's Day Bowl lineup will be drastically changed. It is shaping up to have the Cotton Bowl as the 1 p.m. game followed by the Rose Bowl semifinal in the late afternoon/evening and the Sugar Bowl as the primetime game.
The Rose Bowl always hosts the evening game on New Year's Day and that doesn't appear to change unless NYD falls on a Sunday as it does in 2017. In that case, the Rose Bowl will move to Monday, Jan. 2.
New Year's Eve always has the Peach Bowl at night and that doesn't appear to be changing. Even when it hosts the National Semifinal, the Peach Bowl will be held on Dec. 31 and not Jan. 1. Also, it is the only game in the College Football Playoff that is referred to by it's corporately-sponsored name.
Because of the intracacies of keeping the Rose Bowl in it's Jan. 1 slot and the Peach Bowl in it's NYE slot, there are some scheduling quirks. For example, in 2015, the College Football Playoff semifinal games are on Jan. 1 and will be the last games played before the title game. However, in 2016, the semifinals are held on NYE, followed by the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day. A little weird but not as much as having the games scattered about.
Semifinal contests on NYE means we could in the future have a Michigan game on NYE. That would be one heck of a party. I assume this would also mean Al Borges is coaching at Louisville or the Upstairs Hollywood Beauty College.
The College Football Playoff Championship game will rotate between host cities much like the Super Bowl and Final Four. Texas gets the 2015 game, Arizona will host in 2016 and Tampa Bay in 2017.
While the warm-weather locations are not a great set up for the B1G, it helps remove the New Year's Daybowl logjam out of Florida. (Outback, Citrus, Gator, Orange). I believe they also had Champ's Sports at one time too. Where the F did the Champ's Sports Bowl spawn from?
The layoff between the semifinal and final games will be determined by what day New Year's Day falls on and which game is hosting the semifinal For example, the 2015 semifinals are on New Year's Day, but the championship is 11 days later. In 2016, there is a 10-day layover. In 2017, there is an 8-day layover. Of course, in some years the semifinal is on NYD, such as the case in 2015. But in 2016, the semifinals are hosted on Dec. 31.
ESPN has a 12-year contract to televise and distribute the playoff games and had a previous contract to televise and distribute the Orange Bowl, Sugar Bowl and Rose Bowl games through 2026. They also currently air the Chik-Fil-A Bowl. (I would be surprised if things didn't move to an 8-team playoff before 2026).
The Cotton Bowl contract was held by Fox, but expired this year. I cannot find information on what network has the rights to this game if the game is not part of the official playoff. It may not be ESPN. If the Cotton Bowl is part of the playoff, the game will be on the ESPN family of networks. Live from hospice in 2025 is Brent Musburger.
There was also discussion of a "Champions Bowl" to feature top teams from the SEC/Big12, but I don't know if the College Playoff has changed that and cannot find information on that bowl game. It very well could include top teams from the SEC/Big12 that are left out of the top games. Hypothetically, this could be teams that are around 10-16th in the nation, giving us an 8th, top flight post-season game that won't involve crap-ass teams like Hawaii.
The hypothetical playoff teams will play as many as 15 games, one less than an NFL schedule. (So much for arguments about kids missing class).
The committee to select playoff teams have a strong Big Ten presence including Tom Osborne of Nebraska, Barry Alvarez of Wisconsin and Tyrone Willingham from MSU (before ND).
All other conferences are represented but not necessarily as well as the B1G or the Pac-10 (Condoleeza Rice, Pat Haden, etc.)
- Lastly and most importantly, the College Football Playoff logo looks like a vagina.