Commissioners expected to be excluded from selection committee

DESTIN, Fla. -- The men who crafted and shepherded college football’s postseason during the last 16 years probably won’t be eligible to pick its teams in the future.

That was the news after a lunchtime sit-down with College Football Playoff executive director Bill Hancock on Wednesday during the SEC spring meetings. While nothing is concrete -- what is in this ongoing process? -- commissioners probably won’t be eligible to select the 12 teams in the playoff era while athletic directors probably will.

“The working concept is that commissioners would not be eligible,” Hancock said. “Athletic directors could be eligible. If you could emphasize, that’s a working concept.”

As controversial as the BCS has been, it has “worked” most of the time with the consensus top two teams playing for the national championship. By excluding the commissioners, that’s a loss of a lot of institutional knowledge. Now we’re left with pretty much administrators (ADs), retired administrators, retired coaches and politicians/faculty/business leaders (Condoleezza Rice? Jack Ford?) 

"All of the above. Seriously,” said Florida AD Jeremy Foley of the committee composition. "People who know the game of college football. People who are willing to put the time in. This will be to me a very labor-intensive exercise. You're not picking as many teams as you do for the basketball tournament; you're picking four teams." 

The selection committee process is expected to be finalized this fall. Meanwhile, Hancock revealed there is a Friday deadline for all conferences to submit names to be considered for that committee. Hancock expects about 100 names.

“I think we’ve got to have a defined set of criteria,” LSU AD Joe Alleva said during a break in the meetings. “I think it needs to be transparent. It has to pass the eyeball test. I’m on the basketball committee. We have RPI, strength of schedule that we look at. We look at as much data as we can get. I think we’re pretty transparent. I think this committee is going to have to be the same way.”

Perhaps part of the reason for excluding commissioners is balance. Either all 10 have to be on or none. Anything in between creates an imbalance with, say, SEC commissioner Mike Slive on the committee and Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany being excluded.

The possibility of including a retired media member still exists, Hancock reiterated. Twelve to 20 persons will sit on the committee. Other than that, details are sketchy. There has been no decision on using the 2013 season for a mock selection process.

“When that hand grenade is not live, it’s different,” Hancock said. “The bottom line is there is a whole lot that we don’t know.”

In other news, what were once known informally as the BCS commissioners are now the Management Committee, according to Hancock. The presidents with oversight authority are now called the Board of Managers.

The Management Committee will meet next month in Colorado Springs.

CBS Sports Senior Writer

Dennis Dodd has covered college football for CBS Sports since it was CBS SportsLine in 1998. He is one of only seven media members to attend all 16 BCS title games and has chronicled conference realignment... Full Bio

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