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  • Playoff Format

    With a new season of collegiate football fast approaching, I felt it was proper time to bring up an old topic: A college football playoff system. I posted an idea of mine last year and it received some positive reviews but I lost that file so I had to start from scratch and only remember some of what I did.

    Before everything is laid out, here are a few reasons why I have done some of the things that I have.
    - According to my formula, everyone gets a chance to play of the National Championship, not just the major conferences but the mid-majors as well.
    - Notre Dame, although begrudgingly I'm sure, would join the Big-East due to their affiliation with that conference in every sport except football.
    - New Mexico and New Mexico State join Conference USA so that their yearly rivalry will have an impact on their conference standings.
    - Fresno State and Hawaii are two of the most competitive schools on the West Coast not already affiliated with the Pac-10 that play all three major sports. Boise State, while affiliated with the Pac-10 in wrestling, do not have a baseball team.
    - It is not out of the question for a team from a bigger conference to drop down. Rice, Tulsa, SMU, and UTEP all left the WAC for C-USA, so I do not think it is out of the question for New Mexico and New Mexico State to leave the WAC and Mountain West, respectively, to join C-USA.
    - If I had to move teams to new conferences I tried matching them along the current geographic lines of the existing conferences.
    - Temple and Western Kentucky are planning on joining the MAC and Sun Belt respectively in 2009. This was not something of my doing.
    - If I had to move teams to new conferences I tried moving some of the most competitive teams over, although that was difficult while working under geographic lines. The most difficult decision was either to move East Carolina or Northern Illinois to the Big East. In the end I settled on East Carolina because I felt that moving Northern Illinois would have weakened the MAC too much.

    So, without further ado, I present to you my idea:

    --- Sixteen team playoff system.
    --- Winners of the nine conference championship games automatically receive a berth in the NCAA playoff along with the winner of the Sun Belt Conference.
    --- Six teams will be selected as at-large teams. These six teams will be the six highest rated teams according to the BCS formula.
    --- Seeding will be based off of strength of schedule, overall record, and BCS ranking.
    --- Only three teams from the same conference are allowed to participate in the playoff. This is due to parity.
    ---The seedings between the ten conference champions will be placed first, followed by the six at-large teams.
    --- All playoff games will be played in either warm weather or domed environments.
    --- After seeding, the teams will be placed in four brackets. The brackets will then be played in the four BCS cities (Phoenix, New Orleans, Pasadena, and Miami).
    --- The two games that are played to determine who will play for the National Championship will be split with one being played in the city that the championship game was played in the year before and the other in the city that the championship will be played in the following year.
    --- Championship games will be kept on the rotating four city schedule (Phoenix, New Orleans, Pasadena, and Miami).
    --- The playoff games will commence two weeks after the last game of the regular season is played.
    --- Play will continue each week until a champion is crowned.
    --- All other bowl games can be played by teams not participating in the Division 1-A playoffs.

    According to last year's schedules the following championship games would have looked like this:

    *Rankings are the BCS rankings for week 15 of last year.
    ○ Games actually were played last year

    ○ ACC
    No. 14 Wake Forest vs. Georgia Tech (winner: Wake Forest)

    Big East
    No. 6 Louisville vs. No. 16 Rutgers (winner: Louisville)

    Big Ten
    No. 1 Ohio State vs. No. 3 Michigan (winner: Ohio State)

    ○ Big Twelve
    No. 10 Oklahoma vs .No. 23 Nebraska (winner: Oklahoma)

    ○ C-USA
    Houston vs. Southern Mississippi (winner: Houston)

    ○ MAC
    Ohio vs. Central Michigan (winner: Central Michigan)

    MWAC
    No. 8 Boise State vs. No. 20 BYU (winner: Boise State)

    Pacific Twelve
    No. 5 USC vs. No. 18 California (winner: USC)

    ○ SEC
    No. 2 Florida vs. No. 12 Arkansas (winner: Florida)

    Sun Belt Conference - Troy (champion due to having best record in eight team contest)

    Atlantic Coast Conference
    Atlantic
    Boston College
    Clemson
    Florida State
    Maryland
    North Carolina State
    Wake Forest

    Coastal
    Georgia Tech
    Virginia Tech
    Virginia
    Miami (FL)
    North Carolina
    Duke

    Big East Conference
    North
    Cincinnati
    Connecticut
    Pittsburgh
    Rutgers
    Notre Dame (formerly Independent)
    Syracuse

    South
    East Carolina University (formerly of C-USA)
    Louisville
    Marshall (formerly of C-USA)
    South Florida
    University of Central Florida (formerly of C-USA)
    West Virginia

    Big Ten Conference
    North
    Iowa
    Iowa State (formerly of Big Twelve)
    Michigan
    Michigan State
    Minnesota
    Wisconsin

    South
    Illinois
    Indiana
    Northwestern
    Ohio State
    Penn State
    Purdue

    Big Twelve Conference
    North
    Colorado
    Kansas
    Kansas State
    Missouri
    Nebraska
    Oklahoma State

    South
    Baylor
    Oklahoma
    Texas
    Texas A&M
    Texas Christian University (formerly of the Mountain West)
    Texas Tech

    Conference USA
    East
    Louisiana Tech (formerly of the WAC)
    Memphis
    Rice
    Southern Mississippi
    Tulane
    University of Alabama-Birmingham

    West
    Houston
    New Mexico (formerly of the Mountain West)
    New Mexico State (formerly of the WAC)
    Southern Methodist University
    Tulsa
    University of Texas-El Paso

    Mid-American Conference
    East
    Akron
    Bowling Green
    Buffalo
    Kent State
    Miami (OH)
    Ohio
    Temple (formerly Independent)

    West
    Ball State
    Central Michigan
    Eastern Michigan
    Northern Illinois
    Toledo
    Western Michigan

    Mountain West Athletic Conference (Combination of the Mountain West and WAC)
    East
    Air Force (formerly of the Mountain West)
    Brigham Young University (formerly of the Mountain West)
    Colorado State (formerly of the Mountain West)
    Utah (formerly of the Mountain West)
    Utah State (formerly of the WAC)
    Wyoming (formerly of the Mountain West)

    West
    Boise State (formerly of the WAC)
    Idaho (formerly of the WAC)
    Nevada (formerly of the WAC)
    University of Nevada-Las Vegas (formerly of the Mountain West)
    San Jose State (formerly of the WAC)
    San Diego State (formerly of the Mountain West)

    Pac 12
    North
    California
    Oregon
    Oregon State
    Stanford
    Washington
    Washington State

    South
    Arizona
    Arizona State
    Fresno State (formerly of the WAC)
    Hawaii (formerly of the WAC)
    University of California-Los Angeles
    University of Southern California

    Southeastern Conference
    East
    Florida
    Georgia
    Kentucky
    South Carolina
    Tennessee
    Vanderbilt

    West
    Alabama
    Arkansas
    Auburn
    LSU
    Mississippi
    Mississippi State

    Sun Belt Conference
    Arkansas State
    Florida Atlantic
    Florida International
    Middle Tennessee State
    North Texas
    Troy
    University of Louisiana-Lafayette
    University of Louisiana-Monroe
    Western Kentucky (formerly of the Gateway Football Conference)

    So, the 2006 playoffs would have looked like this and included these teams:

    Ohio State, Florida, USC, Louisville, Boise State, Oklahoma, Wake Forest, Central Michigan, Houston, and Troy. The final six teams would have been Michigan, LSU, Wisconsin, Auburn, Notre Dame, and West Virginia.

    Bracket played in the Orange Bowl, Miami, FL
    No. 1 Ohio State vs. No. 16 West Virginia
    No. 5 Boise State vs. No. 12 LSU

    Bracket played in the Fiesta Bowl, Phoenix, AZ
    No. 3 USC vs. No. 14 Auburn
    No. 7 Wake Forest vs. No. 10 Troy

    Bracket played in the Sugar Bowl, New Orleans, LA
    No. 2 Florida vs. No. 15 Notre Dame
    No. 6 Oklahoma vs. No. 11 Michigan

    Bracket played in the Rose Bowl, Pasadena, CA
    No. 4 Louisville vs. No. 13 Wisconsin
    No 8 Central Michigan vs. No 9 Houston

    Final Four Game - University of Phoenix Stadium, Phoenix, AZ
    Ohio State/West Virginia winner will play the winner of the Boise State/LSU and that victor will play the winner of the USC/Auburn victor vs. Wake Forest/Troy game.

    Final Four Game - Dolphin Stadium, Miami, FL
    Florida/Notre Dame winner will play the winner of the Oklahoma/Michigan and that victor will play the winner of the Central Michigan/Houston game.

    National Championship Game - Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, LA
    Last edited by diabsoule; 08-11-2007, 07:46 PM.

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  • #2
    Not all conferences should get an automatic. Maybe they get it if they meet certain qualifications, but I don't like the thought of just giving teams like Troy chance because they were the best of bad teams. Also the automatics chould only control the teams that get in, not the seeding to. A March Madness type set up would work well, how they seed after the teams are chosen from best to worst.

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    • #3
      The second you said "ND to the Big East"....

      You lost me. Never gonna happen, and there's way too much swapping of teams in conferences in your scenario.

      Simplify the whole process. All 11 conference champions plus 5 at large teams to be determined by a combo of SoS, W-L, and poll ranking (with poll ranking being the least factor).

      Any team that doesn't make the playoffs is free to participate in a bowl game. Easy way to make everyone happy.

      And to stop any team like a FSU, Stanford, Illinois, or any other big time conference team from switching their affiliation to an easier conference, rank the conferences according to overall SoS and make any teams that dip to a conference with a lower SoS ineligible for the tourney for 3 years.
      Last edited by JayP; 08-09-2007, 12:44 PM.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by JayP View Post
        You lost me. Never gonna happen, and there's way too much swapping of teams in conferences in your scenario.

        Simplify the whole process. All 11 conference champions plus 5 at large teams to be determined by a combo of SoS, W-L, and poll ranking (with poll ranking being the least factor).

        Any team that doesn't make the playoffs is free to participate in a bowl game. Easy way to make everyone happy.

        And to stop any team like a FSU, Stanford, Illinois, or any other big time conference team from switching their affiliation to an easier conference, rank the conferences according to overall SoS and make any teams that dip to a conference with a lower SoS ineligible for the tourney for 3 years.
        I think that ND to the Big East is entirely feasible considering their affiliation with that conference in every sport other than football.

        Teams swapping conferences is not a big deal considering how quite a few teams had to switch conferences when the Big East expanded which caused C-USA to offer invitations to teams in other conferences.

        Beastly sig by BoneKrusher

        Super Bowl XLIV Champions
        WHO DAT!

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        • #5
          interesting concept...but I feel strongly about the playoff system that Phil Steele has mentioned in his magazine. I wouldn't mind your system at all, and I really like the new conference setups (conferences without championships suck), but Steele's is beeter IMO.

          I also think this would hurt the Sun Belt in terms of recruiting, worse than it already is. Just think, as a recruit, would you rather go to a team that would be able to play in a championship? I would.

          Plus, where are Army and Navy??

          Not a bad idea though
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          • #6
            Originally posted by Canadian_kid16 View Post
            interesting concept...but I feel strongly about the playoff system that Phil Steele has mentioned in his magazine. I wouldn't mind your system at all, and I really like the new conference setups (conferences without championships suck), but Steele's is beeter IMO.

            I also think this would hurt the Sun Belt in terms of recruiting, worse than it already is. Just think, as a recruit, would you rather go to a team that would be able to play in a championship? I would.

            Plus, where are Army and Navy??

            Not a bad idea though
            Army and Navy are independent in my system. I researched both of their programs and found out that Navy has never been affiliated with any program. In a perfect world, both of them could join the Sun Belt in order to strengthen that conference.

            The Sun Belt is a hard conference to figure out what to do with. They have nine teams but only two are competitive (Troy and Middle Tennessee State). Neither of those two teams can really beat a powerhouse. There are also not enough Division I teams in order to give it three more teams so it can have a conference championship.

            What was Phil Steele's playoff proposal?

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            Super Bowl XLIV Champions
            WHO DAT!

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            • #7
              Hampton or Appalachain State (if they met I-A requirments) would be instant boosts to the sun belt, IMO
              Like the idea here alot, but how would we keep the tradition of the rose bowl and such. I dont want crappy teams playing in the rose bowl or anyother former BCS bowl. The only idea i can think of is have the the playoff system be seperated into 4 brackets, the rose,sugar,fiesta, and orange brackets



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              • #8
                Originally posted by neko4 View Post
                Hampton or Appalachain State (if they met I-A requirments) would be instant boosts to the sun belt, IMO
                Like the idea here alot, but how would we keep the tradition of the rose bowl and such. I dont want crappy teams playing in the rose bowl or anyother former BCS bowl. The only idea i can think of is have the the playoff system be seperated into 4 brackets, the rose,sugar,fiesta, and orange brackets
                That's how it would be broken up. The playoffs would be four brackets and I tried showing that.

                I know Appalachian State is vying for Div. I requirements soon so they would be an instant boost to the Sun Belt. I'm not sure who else is vying for Division I.

                Beastly sig by BoneKrusher

                Super Bowl XLIV Champions
                WHO DAT!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by diabsoule View Post
                  I think that ND to the Big East is entirely feasible considering their affiliation with that conference in every sport other than football.

                  Teams swapping conferences is not a big deal considering how quite a few teams had to switch conferences when the Big East expanded which caused C-USA to offer invitations to teams in other conferences.
                  ND being affiliated with the Big East in every sport but football isn't a unheard of concept. Miami had been affiliated with the Big East in ever sport except baseball, so this is concept the Big East is very familiar with.

                  To have any feasible playoff scenario, you have to account for ND being Independent. That's just how it is.

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                  • #10
                    Phil Steele has it so that there are the same amount of Bowl games, but the top 4 (or the #5 team if 1,2,3,4 had 2 losses) play in a playoff system, where the two winning teams play for the NC, then the other two losing teams play in another BCS bowl...You kind have to read the two pages he has on it to get an insight on how it works though
                    Gamertag: OnABoat16 (Games: NCAA 10, NHL 10, Tiger Woods 10)

                    Proud fan of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
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                    Yes, a fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs as well
                    A fan of the USF Bulls

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                    • #11
                      You'll be waiting your whole life before you ever see a real playoff system put in place for D1 football. 4 teams is the ONLY possibility and even that only has a slim chance of ever happening.
                      Just too much money at risk and the NCAA doesn't want to do anything that rocks the hands that feeds it. Any miscalculation and half the D1 NCAA schools would have to give up football altogether for financial reasons. Any playoff format will almost guarantee the end of the Bowl games as they couldn't compete with the playoff games. Secondly, you have the players themselves. Anybody who thinks adding more games doesn't equate to much more serious injuries doesn't understand football. The longer the season, the more susceptible player become to injuries. If it became a serious problem which in all likely-hood it would, you could see the NFL pull the rug from under the NCAA and start drafting freshmen.
                      Finally, the NCAA would probably be tied up endlessly in court suits from players over injuries occurred. The Congress would probably be forced to examine the whole NCAA scholarship program to see if it is legal and whether or not college players have to be paid.
                      It's not that all these problems would be exposed, it's the threat of these problems occurring that keeps the NCAA from even trying a playoff format that requires more games.
                      And proud of it!!!

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                      • #12
                        The only playoff format I would be interested in is the 4 team format.

                        Here is my proposal:
                        Keep the BCS but add in one extra game to determine who plays the the Nat Champ. The only difference from now would be that the top 4 teams play a game before the New Years day bowls. 1 plays 4 and 2 plays 3 the saturday before the first bowl game. The two winning team plays in the Nat Champ game, while the two losing teams get automatic bids to the other BCS games, and play continues as normal.

                        Of course, there will still be controversy over who deserves to be in, but at least it is more than two teams with a true shot at the Nat Champ.
                        I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me.
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                        • #13
                          I am all for the Plus One system. It keeps everything the same, except two teams play in two Bowl games.

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                          • #14
                            Man, just imagine if we'd had a plus one all along....
                            There would have been a lot of great games, and much less debate over who the top team in the land was. I don't see how anybody could be against the idea. Someone needs to slap some sense into Tom Hansen.

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