While we know that there is a four-team playoff coming to college football, we still don't know exactly what it's going to look like when it's actually implemented. What we do know is that the current conference commissioners will recommend a four-team playoff with the participants decided by a selection committee a lot like the one used for college basketball's NCAA tournament.
On Monday Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott joined Fox Sports Radio with Petros and Money to discuss the playoff. One of his more interesting quotes was an answer to whom would be on the selection committee, and how he came around on the idea.
“I know I wouldn't want to [be on the committee]," said Scott. "There's going to be some pressure on that committee.
"I'm not really a committee guy honestly. I didn't spell it out thinking that would be a good result. I just don't tend to think the sports world needs another committee but as we got into it, we realized the current system was flawed in so many ways. With coaches voting and they are voting without necessarily looking at the games, computers that are not transparent and one of the fundamental challenges we realized is unlike the NFL, there's not enough games where teams from different conferences are playing against each other. You don't have a body of work to look at that gives you a sense of how teams stack up so there's going to be some subjective element to it regardless of what you do. Listening to some of my colleagues that have served on the men's basketball committee and realized we have a better chance as a Pac 12 conference to get a fair shake for the fact that we play a nine game conference schedule, the fact that USC and Stanford play Notre Dame, the fact that we play tough out of conference competition, tougher than the SEC or what the Big 12 is doing, and there's a chance that humans can give us credit for the strength of schedule and credit for what it takes to be the champion of the Pac 12 conference the way that polls and computers cannot.
"I actually came around on this one. Didn't start there but came around thinking this could be a great benefit for our conference.”
I'm sure all SEC and Big 12 fans saw in that quote was Scott's dig at their non-conference schedules. While the Pac-12's non-conference schedule probably is a bit tougher than either the SEC's or Big 12's, I do feel like I should point out to Scott that Oklahoma will be playing Notre Dame this season as well, and Texas will play Notre Dame in 2015.
Where the Pac-12 really separates itself from the Big 12 and SEC is its recent agreement with the Big Ten that will have schools from each conference playing a non-conference game against each other every season.
As for Scott's thoughts on the selection committee, they very much mirror mine. I wasn't a huge fan of the idea when it was first presented either, but as Scott says, given the alternatives, it certainly can't do much worse than what we currently have.
My worry would be who is on that committee. If you'll allow me to raise the Media Flag for a second, I think the sport would be best served to have a few select media members on the committee. I'm pretty confident in my belief that people like me and my colleagues watch a lot more college football on Saturdays than most school presidents and athletic directors.
The truth is, though, that no matter who ends up on the committee, it will not be perfect. That's because in a sport with more than 120 teams it's impossible to know for sure who the top four teams are and there will always be dissenting opinions whether or not those teams are chosen by a committee or a computer.
However, at least with a selection committee we'll all know exactly who to yell at when they leave out a team we think belongs.