College football league expansion: Time is running out to widen the pitch ahead of the 2024 season

LAS VEGAS – The College Football Playoff expansion must be decided “within the next month” if the goal is to bring in a new model by 2024, Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson said on Wednesday.

The 11 members of the CFP Management Committee – which must approve a model before sending it to the CFP Management Board for voting purposes – continue to be deadlocked over structure and access to an expanded playoff with Some wonder if it’s worth it or not at all.

The committee, composed mainly of 10 FBS members, will meet next January 10 in Indianapolis. Then uncertainty arose with logistical problems in aligning the bowls and venues in time to play the extended playoffs in 2024.

The current 12-year CFP contract expires after the 2025 season.

“In year 13, there is no College football Playoff, so something needs to be done,” Thompson said during the Learfield Intercollegiate Athletic Forum. If we want to expand the College Football League by 12 years, it will have to be done here pretty easily within the next month or so. “

Thompson’s words carry weight because he was one of the original four administrators who formally referred the 12-team expansion proposal to the board of trustees, including university presidents, in June.

Since then, momentum for expansion has stalled amid competing interests. Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff recently suggested the Power Five could advance on their own with a playoff after their current 12-year contract expires.

A unanimous vote from all 11 stakeholders on the committee will be needed to move forward with expanding playoff structure and access.

“We don’t need 11 people saying ‘yes’ to come to a good solution for college football [after 2025]”, said Kliavkoff. If you look beyond the CFP model, you don’t start by saying we all have to agree [after 2025]. You start by saying… the team needs to agree on a model… then hopefully invite the rest to join us. That’s another model. “

Thompson and at least one Group of Five sporting director have expressed concern that Kliavkoff’s statement could lead to the exclusion of those smaller conferences if his contract expires.

This entire dialogue must be balanced against possible interference by Congress regarding monopolistic activities.

“35 years in Division I, I’ve listened to ‘Division IV’ a couple of times,” Thompson told CBS Sports of the FBS membership drop. “I’m not going to answer that. Be careful what you want in some respects. There’s purpose and value in 130 football schools. If that’s half that number, will the general public have it? excited about 7-5 and 8-4?”

To be fair, CFP stakeholders continue to be disrupted. The Big Ten, Pac-12, and Rose Bowl are standing firm on the game being played January 1 at 5 p.m. ET. That traditional date and time combined with the Rose Bowl Parade that morning, which some believe is more important than the game itself.

It was initially thought that the Rose Bowl might have a permanent spot in the CFP quarterfinals (on or around January 1 as suggested) and be linked to a Pac-12 or Big Ten team. However, there is still a push for the game to be played every year with its traditional counterparts.

That may require the Rose Bowl to be played outside of the CFP structure. This year, that means Oregon (second in the Pac-12) and Iowa (third in the Big Ten) will play in Pasadena, California.

Some combination of ACC, Big Ten, and Pac-12 – possibly all three – support the concept of automatic berths for conference champions. The so-called “AQ model” has the potential to cost a conference a whole lot if a game of conference title goes wrong. According to the proposal, the group of 12 teams would be filled by the six highest ranked and six largest league champions.

Among the reasons time is running out: If the extended playoffs are to launch in 2024, the dates have to be changed for the existing New Year’s Sixth. In 2024, the semi-finals are assigned to the Orange Bowl and Cotton Bowl on December 28. In 2025, the semifinals are played at the Fiesta Bowl and Peach Bowl on December 27.

In a 12-team knockout, two matches will have to be added to that timeframe in the quarterfinals.

There are other potential logistical problems of a significant nature that accompany a date change. For example, some stadiums may be occupied by NFL team (during the regular season or knockout matches) or previously scheduled concerts.

There is still a thought that the first leg games will be played in areas on campus.

According to the proposal, those first-round matches would be played around mid-December with the four quarter-finals taking place on or around January 1. The semi-finals and the CFP National Championship would take place later in the day. January.

The final two championship games in 2024 and 2025 have yet to be awarded. College football league expansion: Time is running out to widen the pitch ahead of the 2024 season

Dustin Huang

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