Jim Phillips details ACC’s opposition to College Football Playoff expansion while calling for reform

ACC Commissioner Jim Phillips detailed the conference’s opposition to the College Football Playoff expansion during a media call on Friday, citing the need for reform in athletics. university business. Phillips has called for a “365-day review” of college football in 2022 to look at what projects are the overall reorganization of the NCAA.

The comments come three days after the ACC and Big Ten emerged as the main obstacles to the proposed expansion to 12 teams before the current TV contract expires after the 2025 season.

“For the ACC, we don’t have College football “We have college football and college athletics/NCAA issues,” Phillips said.

“We don’t feel like this is the right time [to expand]. It doesn’t mean there will be an extended playoff in the future. ”

The ACC president, athletic director and coach “fully supports” delaying the expansion at this time, Phillips said. He specifically pointed out that ACC coaches “agree that this is not the right time.”

He may not have identified his conference as the biggest obstacle to pre-2026 expansion in this regard, but the ACC has made its objections better than any federation to date. this point.

Phillips called for an “overall perspective” in the proposed year-long assessment that takes into account athlete welfare, impact on learning and length of the season. However, those topics are said to have been handled by the CFP Management Committee (director of sport) in several meetings after the 12-team proposal was made in June.

Extension talks broke down on Monday during the Indianapolis meeting before the CFP National Championship. Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby and SEC commissioner Greg Sankey were unhappy with the outcome after months of meetings, as they were on a four-man subcommittee that proposed a 12-team playoff in June.

“I really never thought this would be a rubber stamp,” Sankey said earlier this week. “I also know, when a problem is identified, there must be determination to find a solution. If we can’t do it, we can’t do it. I don’t know if anyone notices, but [the SEC is] is working very well in the current system. I’m ready to keep moving forward [with four teams]. “

Phillips recalled Sankey’s comment while explaining his position in the league.

“The SEC said it, about staying at 4,” Phillips said Friday. “That’s what we feel is the best we can do right now until we work through some of these issues.”

Several meetings have been held since June to decide, essentially, whether to extend the knockout round two years or so after it expires in 2026. Apparently due to a number of issues, the committees membership has been so divided that an expansion in 2026 may not. assured.

The FBS trustees submitted a report Monday to the CFP Board of Trustees (college presidents), but because there was no consensus from the trustees, no action was taken.

To further complicate matters, since the expansion proposal came out in June, the NCAA has decided to rewrite its outdated constitution to account for modern concerns like the NIL and enforcement. Additionally, countering expansion from the ACC’s point of view is the possibility of federal law, the landmark Alston v. NCAA litigation in the U.S. Supreme Court and the possible impact of the National Labor Relations Board on redefining what is student-athlete”.

The ACC’s stance began to crystallize in mid-November as those problems were easing.

“We had much bigger problems than whether to extend the CFP two years earlier,” Phillips said. “There are too many unanswered questions.”

Phillips also became the first Power Five commissioner to suggest that the composition of college football’s top division could be reduced in a constitutional rewrite. The NCAA’s new constitution is expected to be adopted at congress next week and is expected to go into effect August 1.

Then a constitutional conversion committee will work on the details. Among them is expected to be the size of the Rugby Division, CBS Sports reported in November.

“We didn’t know what my Division would look like,” Phillips said. “We don’t know if we’ll have another division. … How can we put together this expansion of the CFP when we don’t know where this transition committee will take us? ”

Under the proposal, a 12-team playoff would create at least the possibility of a 17-game season for national championship game participants. The current maximum in a four-team group is 15 matches. However, from the outset, the commissioners described an average of 12 participating teams playing less than an average of one extra game per season. In fact, for the first four losers, that would be the equivalent of a game of bowls.

Phillips has dismissed speculation that the ACC is delaying the expansion as a way to make space for Notre Dame, who joined as an ACC member in 2020 due to scheduling issues due to COVID-19 cause, to one day join the league on a full-time basis. Staying at four or moving to eight teams will obviously increase the chances of the Irish Fighters being forced into the playoffs.

“It’s absolutely, on the positive side, not true,” Phillips said. “One is not bound to the other.”

The ACC contract with ESPN is designed so that the league has very few additional teams unless Notre Dame participates.

The league entered the first seven College Football Playoff events before Monday with Florida State appearing in the first playoff in 2014, followed by six consecutive appearances – and two national championships. won – by Clemson.

Phillips said Clemson’s multi-player acquisition helped align the ACC to its current stance.

“They don’t want to play any more games,” the commissioner said. “I don’t know how Georgia and Alabama feel after Monday night, but student-athlete Clemson participated, they don’t. [want to play more games]. ”

Last summer, Tigers coach Dabo Swinney spoke out against the expansion, saying: “I don’t think having 12 teams is good enough.”

At this time, there are no future meetings scheduled between the trustees. Monday is seen as a sort of “dead end” for the expansion of the CFP before 2026. However, sources remain optimistic that new negotiations could be scheduled in the future.

https://www.cbssports.com/college-football/news/jim-phillips-details-accs-opposition-to-college-football-playoff-expansion-while-calling-for-reform/ Jim Phillips details ACC’s opposition to College Football Playoff expansion while calling for reform

Charles Jones

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