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New Playoff and Postseason Format Needed

ComicalDisaster

Perfectly Unorthodox
2 Year Member
Anyone remember when the Rose, Fiesta, Sugar and Orange Bowls actually mattered? Now they all just seem subpar. Sure two of the New Year's Six Bowls determine the future National Champions but beyond that? Yippee.
Remember BCS busters? TCU, Utah, Boise State, and such. Those games are legends now. Now? UCF beating Auburn is the closest we got, good game but not on par with Boise State vs Oklahoma.

The current format is killing college football. The little guy no longer gets the chance, not a serious one anyway. The four major bowls need to separate from the CFP. No expansion needed. Here's how I would restructure it:

Conference Championship Week-First Weekend of December
Lower Bowls-Second Week of December
Mid Tier Bowls-Third Week of December
First Round of the Playoffs-Last Saturday of December (Reschedule around Christmas and played before New Year's Eve) Played in Non Bowl Games
Major Bowls-Played Around New Years After CFP Semi-Finals (Rose, Orange, Fiesta, Sugar, Peach, Cotton)
National Championship-Second Friday/Saturday in January

All Major Bowls will have traditional conference tie ins and will be able to have At-Large picks. These would separate the Major Bowls from the CFP and provide more meaning to them.

Scenario let's say #5 Oregon would go to the Rose Bowl and would play the Best Big Ten Team. Best B1G team is in the playoff so #2 in the B1G is Penn State. Penn State v Oregon in the Rose. Other Matchups could include Florida State v Cincinnati in the Orange, Notre Dame Georgia Sugar etc...

CFP keeps its own games and the Major Bowls keep to themselves. Classic and old BCS Buster games can still happen. I think it could work. Otherwise we keep getting the same cycle of teams even if more teams get good enough to make the CFP. G5 are pretty much screwed and this year I think COVID had more of an impact than anything. Not discounting what Cincy did but I think it's a big outside factor.

This is somewhat half baked but I'm curious on what others think.
 

HuskerGene

A work in progress
10 Year Member
Go back to the bowls & have a +1 afterward. I'm tired of the BCS (Bama Clemson Series) & the playoff just sucks.
 
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Porkchopexpress

Junior Varsity
5 Year Member
The NY6 games aren't going to break off from the current model. They are guaranteed to be relevant every 3 years by being a semifinal game. Plus, it saves the Playoff Committee the hassle of having to put out bids for separate semifinal games (and let's be honest, those semifinal games will mostly take place at sites that put on the NY6 bowl games).

The current model sucks because it's not a playoff, it's an invitational.
 

DuckTownHusker

Blackshirt Sith Lord
10 Year Member
One of two things needs to happen:
  1. The Power 5 condenses to a Power 4
  2. The CFP expands to 6-8 teams
In every single year of the playoff, at least one Power 5 champion is not even granted access to the playoff. In some years TWO Power 5 champs didn't make the cut. There needs to be a path for every single P5 champion to get into the playoff, like how March Madness gives all conference winners a spot in the Big Dance.

Personally, I'd like to see an 8-team playoff. That allows for the five P5 champs plus 3 additional at-Large teams. That's more than adequate to allow for the "BCS Busters" (Boise State, Cincinnati, etc), also gives a pathway for major independents like Notre Dame or BYU, and finally, also allows for the possibility of having two really good teams from one conference (Bama-LSU, Ohio State-Penn State, etc).

4 teams is just too restrictive and the data thus far points to the fact that Ohio State, Clemson, Alabama and Oklahoma are continuing to load up on talent while everyone else does not. It's created a self-fulfilling prophecy where kids only want to play for championship contenders, so all the best talent goes to about 6 teams. And those teams (specifically Alabama and Clemson) continue to run the table year after year after year.
 

Porkchopexpress

Junior Varsity
5 Year Member
Go back to the bowls & have a +1 afterward. I'm tired of the BCS (Bama Clemson Series) & the playoff just sucks.

I've always like the idea of going back to the old days, and adding a +1. However, I don't think the old days will work in modern college football. Prior to the early 1990's, there were a ton of Independents, which helped create a variety of matchups every bowl season. That's not the case today. Plus, back then, the ACC and eventually the Big East didn't have any guaranteed tie-ins for their conferences champs, and the Independents were all free-agents. Today, there's only one relevant Independent, and the ACC would demand a guaranteed bowl tie-in for its champ. We would be stuck with all the P5 champions playing in separate bowl games, except for the Rose Bowl, and probably struggle to have any sort of agreement on who should play in a +1 game.
 

EastOfEden

Scout Team
10 Year Member
I've posted my wild thoughts on this a few times, but I'll do it again on this post.

The problem is best demonstrated by simply looking at Alabama's roster this year. Ove 80% of its players are 4 or 5 star players. They have 19 5 star and 49 4 star players on its roster -- over 80% of it s total roster are 4 or 5 star players. There are only about 25 5 star players listed a year in the entire country. A few other schools (Ohio State being the most dominant in numbers of the other schools) scoop up the rest of the 5 stars and a slightly lager number get some 4 stars. Until that imbalance is corrected nothing will change. so the effort should be directed to correcting that imbalance..

What is making colllege football less interesting is the imbalance among the schools of the best players, the erratic nature of scheduling, the lack of a governing body with any strength or balance, and the persistence of the myth about conference strengths. But at the nub is who gets the best recruits.

To even out the distribution of the best players you have to create a format that will encourage 5 star players an incentive to go to one of the non-elite 6 or 7 programs. right now, those payers go to a half dozen schools year after year, and mainly they go to Alabama. Why? Because they know Alabama will get into the CFP because they have a raft of 5 star players -- it is a complete loop. Why do they want to be on a team that gets into the CFP? Because they get exposure to NFL personnel that way. (for the really good players, getting an education is not the reason they are in college)

So I say expand the playoff format into a 32 game format, include the first three finishers in each of the CFS schools (thee are 10 of those conferences), and have a consolation bracket. With that approach, kids can get exposure by going to a number of different schools.

Conference gams remain important in this approach. If schools want to play more than the number of games required to fulfill their conference schedules, they may.

And you would have to put a cap on the amount the players could be paid (paying players is just around the corner - college administrators will be forced to recognize what they have created - a semipro activity).

There are other things that would have to be done (including giving the NCAA subpoena power for investigations of violations) but they are secondary.

But this greatly expanded approach would give some incentive to 4 and 5 star kids to go to different schools than the half dozen they now choose.
 
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BigRedAvenger

Poster of Substance
5 Year Member
64 teams, 4 conferences, 16 teams each, 8 per division.
Only divisional games matter for divisional title, eliminating fairness in crossovers issues.
Conference Championships are quarterfinals for the CFP, eliminating fairness in OOC scheduling, and removing the human bias from selection.

Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
 

RedRum

Blackshirt
10 Year Member
I've posted my wild thoughts on this a few times, but I'll do it again on this post.

The problem is best demonstrated by simply looking at Alabama's roster this year. Ove 80% of its players are 4 or 5 star players. They have 19 5 star and 49 4 star players on its roster -- over 80% of it s total roster are 4 or 5 star players. There are only about 25 5 star players listed a year in the entire country. A few other schools (Ohio State being the most dominant in numbers of the other schools) scoop up the rest of the 5 stars and a slightly lager number get some 4 stars. Until that imbalance is corrected nothing will change. so the effort should be directed to correcting that imbalance..

What is making colllege football less interesting is the imbalance among the schools of the best players, the erratic nature of scheduling, the lack of a governing body with any strength or balance, and the persistence of the myth about conference strengths. But at the nub is who gets the best recruits.

To even out the distribution of the best players you have to create a format that will encourage 5 star players an incentive to go to one of the non-elite 6 or 7 programs. right now, those payers go to a half dozen schools year after year, and mainly they go to Alabama. Why? Because they know Alabama will get into the CFP because they have a raft of 5 star players -- it is a complete loop. Why do they want to be on a team that gets into the CFP? Because they get exposure to NFL personnel that way. (for the really good players, getting an education is not the reason they are in college)

So I say expand the playoff format into a 32 game format, include the first three finishers in each of the CFS schools (thee are 10 of those conferences), and have a consolation bracket. With that approach, kids can get exposure by going to a number of different schools.

Conference gams remain important in this approach. If schools want to play more than the number of games required to fulfill their conference schedules, they may.

And you would have to put a cap on the amount the players could be paid (paying players is just around the corner - college administrators will be forced to recognize what they have created - a semipro activity).

There are other things that would have to be done (including giving the NCAA subpoena power for investigations of violations) but they are secondary.

But this greatly expanded approach would give some incentive to 4 and 5 star kids to go to different schools than the half dozen they now choose.
Let's take this a step further.

They have former coaches come in as analysts because it kind of serves as a rehabilitation and the name and exposure gets them other offers. So South Florida is paying Charlie Strong $2.5M/yr while Alabama gets him in as an analyst for under $50k. So now we have the little guy paying for Alabama staff positions.

Butch Jones came in from Tennessee on an $8m buyout while Alabama paid him $35k. Mike Stoops and Major Applewhite have more experience than most coaches.

You don't even need to look at the coaching staff, their group of analysts have more experience than 90% of the teams in CFB and they get them for next to nothing. Those analysts have significant recruiting connections all over the country.

One thing the playoffs and BCS before that created was a second chance program for Alabama. They could lose a game and make the playoffs because of the eye test from the recruited talent. They no longer were required to have a perfect season or not slip up. Maybe expansion extends that to more teams.
 
If you are a 5 star player with dreams of playing in the NFL, of course you are going to go to a program that wins regularly and puts lots of players in the NFL, i.e. Alabama and Ohio State. And Alabama (and Clemson and Ohio State to a lessor degree) has sure figured out how to dominate by looking at all the different ways (number of coaches, recruiting, camps, etc.) it can best benefit within the rules of the game as they are today.

But if the powers that be of college football care about a balance of power, then they will need to address this issue. It isn't drastically different than when scholarships were reduced to 85; it was a move done to balance the playing field. The NFL has a salary cap to help in this manner, but college football needs more help than just limiting scholarships.

One idea is to use a player's ranking the same way the NFL uses the salary cap. For example, maybe a team cannot have more than five 5 star players on its roster at any one time. This would be based on the player's ranking as of a certain time, before he entered college. I think something like this would definitely have an impact on the balance of power, just as the scholarship limit did; it just might take a few years to notice.
 

RedinIowa

3 star walk on
5 Year Member
Expansion would end with the same result. The media is just bored with Alabama and Clemson. I agree to going back to the bowls with a plus one.
 

WestTexasHusker

Starter
10 Year Member
There should never have been a playoff, which is what started this mess.

Before all of this, there was an element of "smoke and mirrors" as to "who" was the best team - and everyone debated it and the AP voted on. It was actually a big part of the fun and interest.

But we couldn't help ourselves and insisted that it be "settled on the field." That opened up the "Plus one" game, and now we are at 4 teams, and no one is happy except Bama and Clemson, because they have used the system to monopolize college football. Unintended consequences.

So now, inevitably, we are now going to expand the playoffs to try to resurrect interest, see if that does it.

Yet college football worked so well for the first 100 years. The goose has been shot.
 
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