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Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Posted on: October 20, 2011 11:29 am
Edited on: October 20, 2011 1:04 pm
 

A formal 16-team college football playoff worth at least $650 million has been proposed by Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson.

CBSSports.com obtained information from the document that was distributed to the 10 other Football Bowl Subdivision commissioners. It proposes that a human committee would rank 30 teams at the end of the season to help select the 16-team field. Those rankings would determine the 1-through-16 seedings. At least six Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) conference champions would be in the field. There would be a maximum of three teams per conference.

Thompson had an eight-team playoff proposal rejected by the BCS in 2009. With the current BCS agreement ending after the 2014 bowls, there is an opening for suggestions for new postseason models. BCS executive director Bill Hancock did not immediately comment.

Thompson's proposal was sent to those 10 other FBS commissioners, Notre Dame and Hancock.

Under his proposal, first-round games would be played the week after conference championship games (usually the second week of December).  The games would be played at the home stadium of the top eight seeds. The quarterfinals would follow on Jan. 1 or 2 at the four major bowl sites -- Orange, Sugar, Fiesta and Rose.

The semifinals would be played at the stadium of the two highest-seeded remaining schools. Bowls could bid on hosting the championship game.

Financial bonuses would be awarded to participating conferences based on performance in the NCAA's Academic Performance Rate. There is also a clause that would allocate $50 million "to address issues of integrity in intercollegiate athletics."

Several playoff scenarios have been proposed by commercial entities. The NCAA even explored the possibly in the mid-1990s before dropping the idea.

The Arizona Republic interviewed Thompson about his proposal on Wednesday.However, CBSSports.com was able to obtain specific detailed information about the proposal.

The FBS commissioners were to discuss Thompson's proposal at a previously scheduled meeting Sept. 20 in Chicago. But conference realignment issues forced the meeting to be cancelled.

Information from the document details the revenue windfall long anticipated from a playoff. Under Thompson's plan, a conference would receive $25 million for each top eight seed it had in the field. For seeds 9 through 16, the revenue would decrease by $2 million in descending order. For example, the conference of the No. 9 seed would get $23 million, No. 10 seed, $21 million, etc.

Conferences would then receive $20 million for each team that reaches the quarterfinals (round of eight). The remainder of the revenue from the semifinals and championship would be distributed this way: Two shares for each for each of the semifinal winners. One share for each for the semifinal losers. Each of those shares, according to information in the document would exceed $25 million.

According to a source, Thompson also asked for support from the so-called "group of five" non-BCS conferences to support and promote the proposal. There was no consensus of support from those four other leagues -- Conference USA, WAC, MAC and Sun Belt -- according to the source.

The Mountain West at least is staying in the news. Thompson's league and Conference USA announced an alliance on Friday. The champions of each league -- soon to be a 22-team consortium -- would play each other, the winner of which would theoretically get an automatic BCS bowl bid. Both leagues are currently non-automatic qualifiers for BCS bowls.

They have received no assurance that they would receive an automatic bid under the new arrangement. The current BCS agreement runs through the 2014 bowls (2013 season). The champions of each BCS league (Pac-12, Big 12, Big East, ACC, SEC, Big Ten) are guaranteed a BCS bowl. That leaves four other spots filled by second teams from BCS leagues. Notre Dame and non-BCS league champions can also qualify by meeting certain benchmarks.

 

 

Category: NCAAF
Tags: bcs
 
Comments

Since: Sep 15, 2010
Posted on: October 24, 2011 7:37 pm
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Good God!!  Could you possibly have chosen a more unlikey scenario?  Rutgers is mediocre at best, and Duke stinks.  Neither is even remotely close to deserving a BCS Bowl bid, with or without a playoff format.  But to answer your question, hardly anyone would tune in to watch that completely absurd matchup.
If they win their respective conferences then that would make them deserving.  Right now Rughters is 1/2 games out of first place and control their own destiny.  Duke is probably a few years aways from building a solid program, but you never know what could happen if luck and momentum swing their way.  If only the favorites win conferences, then why bother to have a season?  Likewise, you wouldn't have surprise conference winners like Wake Forest (2006), UConn (2010), Kansas State (2003), Northwestern (1995 and 2000), and Washington State (1997) to name a few. 



Since: Sep 15, 2010
Posted on: October 24, 2011 7:22 pm
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Vthokies, this is a contorted analogy comparing apples to aardvarks.  The NCAA is the alpha dog, and has most of the top-68 teams in the land.  The NIT can't help itself much by expanding, because all it is doing is adding more mediocrity.  In football, the best of the teams that lost in the playoffs in early to mid December would be available for the BCS bowls that are not involved in the semi-final playoff round. 
Not when you factor in the fact that the NCAA owns the NIT tournament.  The NCAA can determine what requirements and automatic bid (i.e. regular season champions not playing the NCAA tournament), which is really no different than the requirements the BCS has established for itself.  You cannot make the assumption that the NCAA tournament has most of the top-68 teams because that does not factor in conference automatic bids and upsets that happen during conference tournaments.  If the NCAA tournament truly did have most of the top-68 teams then there would not be as many marquee or well-known schools participating in the NIT during the past 10 years or so.

2010:  UConn, UNC, Cincinnati, Arizona St, Illinois, and St. John's
2009:  Georgetown, Notre Dame, Kentucky, and Florida
2008:  Ohio St, New Mexico, Arizona St, Florida, Oklahoma St, and Maryland
2007:  West Virginia, Oklahoma St, and Syracuse
2006:  Maryland, Oklahoma St, Notre Dame, Temple, Louisville, BYU, Cincinnati, Wake Forest
2005:  Arizona St, Georgetown, Indiana, Marquette, and Temple
2004:  Iowa, Marquette, Missouri, Notre Dame, Purdue, Temple, and West Virginia

What multiple bowls?  The only two schools that could possibly have 2 "bowls" would be the two teams playing in the championship game.  What if VT won the ACC & then hosted two playoff games but lost the second round playoff game, ending the season at 13-2.  Are you saying that Hokie fans would not support a BCS bowl game?  I believe VT and most other major programs would support the bowl game.  There is no doubt that some schools travel well, and others don't.  There are schools under the current system that lose money on BCS bowl games, but that is due to having apothetic fan bases.  I'm sure that problem will still exist with or without a playoff.  So I don't see as to how I'm making a flawed assumption over something that is already somewhat of a crap-shoot.  From the standpoint of the conferences and schools, the big money is on the TV side of the equation anyway.  That is one reason why we have seen a proliferation of bottom-tier bowls recently.  I'm sure I'm not the only guy to notice that even the smaller stadiums are mostly empty.  Yet they proliferate anyway.
Two bowl games = Semi-finals and Finals.  It is the same criticism that other experts have about the Plus-1 format.  You cannot realistically expect 20,000-30,000 fans to pay roughly $1,000+ to attend the semi-final game and then turnaround pay another $1,000+ a week later to attend the championship game.  Most fans, if they can only attend 1 game will more than likely hold out for the championship game.  Also, as I have said before you cannot assume that those 20,000-30,000 people can get off 2 weeks in a row from work during that time of the year. 

As far as whether a fanbase would be exciting about attending a bowl game after getting knocked out of the tournament.  It would be a crap-shoot.  The flaw in your assumption is that you only assumed the fanbase would be excited about attending the bowl game.  You cannot make that assumption.  Likewise, you cannot assume that a school would get to host the first two rounds.  It is possible both games would be on the road or split.  Plus, you have to consider the location of the bowl game, the bowl opponent, and the travel cost associated with attending the bowl game.  On average, the cost to attend the Orange Bowl for most Hokies is around $1,000-$1500 (depending on flight location, hotel, seat location, etc).  Some would be willing to pay it and others wouldn't, but you can't automatically assume they would be excited to attend after getting knocked out of the tournament.  Likewise, the schools and/or conferences may not be willing to assume the burden of extra travel costs; especially if they played both rounds on the road.  





Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: October 24, 2011 11:11 am
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

That was my whole point because as soon as the BCS Final Four is created then the other bowl games will be relegated to "NIT" status.  Even when the NIT expanded the field to 40 teams that didn't do anything to improve ratings and ultimately financial support.
 

Vthokies, this is a contorted analogy comparing apples to aardvarks.  The NCAA is the alpha dog, and has most of the top-68 teams in the land.  The NIT can't help itself much by expanding, because all it is doing is adding more mediocrity.  In football, the best of the teams that lost in the playoffs in early to mid December would be available for the BCS bowls that are not involved in the semi-final playoff round. 

Don't be so sure that even the schools that travel well would still be able to sell out their allotments.  You assume that everyone wanting to attend multiple bowl games will be able to get off work during that time of the year and that is a flawed assumption to make.

What multiple bowls?  The only two schools that could possibly have 2 "bowls" would be the two teams playing in the championship game.  What if VT won the ACC & then hosted two playoff games but lost the second round playoff game, ending the season at 13-2.  Are you saying that Hokie fans would not support a BCS bowl game?  I believe VT and most other major programs would support the bowl game.  There is no doubt that some schools travel well, and others don't.  There are schools under the current system that lose money on BCS bowl games, but that is due to having apothetic fan bases.  I'm sure that problem will still exist with or without a playoff.  So I don't see as to how I'm making a flawed assumption over something that is already somewhat of a crap-shoot.  From the standpoint of the conferences and schools, the big money is on the TV side of the equation anyway.  That is one reason why we have seen a proliferation of bottom-tier bowls recently.  I'm sure I'm not the only guy to notice that even the smaller stadiums are mostly empty.  Yet they proliferate anyway.




Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: October 24, 2011 10:08 am
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Would you watch a Rose Bowl match-up between Rutgers and Duke?
 

Good God!!  Could you possibly have chosen a more unlikey scenario?  Rutgers is mediocre at best, and Duke stinks.  Neither is even remotely close to deserving a BCS Bowl bid, with or without a playoff format.  But to answer your question, hardly anyone would tune in to watch that completely absurd matchup.







Since: Mar 19, 2008
Posted on: October 23, 2011 9:56 am
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

I would if it were the playoffs.  Just like boring basketball games  (VCU, Butler etc) become amazing in the tournament - football would take on the same excitement, if not more.  A tournament would be amazing!



Since: Oct 6, 2011
Posted on: October 22, 2011 11:57 pm
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Wisconsin not playing michigan State and undefeated is ok, but they are losers now?  And you do not factor that bias in?  The Harris poll figures in bias.  the coaches and fuck that magazine do not have a factor for bias which runs rampet in it and the Coaches of Sec polland big twelve (7) poll do have bias...they consort to help their Sec Squat and OK squat.  Get reAL.  tHIS IS NOT THE DAYS OF OLD...SURE YOU HELPED, BUT SO DID AUGUSTANA IN SIOUX FALLS, SD.   LETS MOVE ON AND GET REAL.   BOISE STATE IS LIKE THE FOUR HORSEMEN OF ARMY TODAY.  I AM AN ARMY VET.  I STOOD UP WHEN AIR FORCE CAME TO PLAY AT BSU.  WE ALL DID.  WE LOVE OUR SERVICE ACADEMIES AND THE USA. 



Since: Apr 5, 2011
Posted on: October 22, 2011 8:01 pm
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

16 team playoff sounds good to me.

We'll see who the real champion is in the end.



Since: Sep 15, 2010
Posted on: October 21, 2011 10:00 pm
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Actually, I agree that attendendence and ratings for the non-playoff BCS bowls may drop some.  I simply don't see any way it would fall enough to cause the BCS to drop their payouts to the $325K you suggested.  Jeeze, if the Sugar & Orange hosted playoff games on the evenings of Jan 2 & 3, why wouldn't people still tune in to watch the Rose and Fiesta on Jan 1?  You know people will.
Would you watch a Rose Bowl match-up between Rutgers and Duke?  Or how about a Fiesta Bowl match-up between Kansas and Oregon State?  As you have said the match-up matter.  Also, you are assuming that there won't come a point where schools lose so much money attending a bowl game that the AD decides it is better for them to stay home.  Under the current system most schools lose money attending a bowl game; mainly because they can't negotiate their own travel rates and have to agree to the rates determined by the local tourist bureau as a condition for playing in a bowl game.  If a city is hurting for money then they generally will pass on some additional cost (usually identified as some sort of "fee") onto the participating universities.  On the flip side, universities are starting to feel pressure from their state governments for how much money they earn in athletics on top of what is given to them by the state.  So, several state governments are starting to cut the amount of financial support they give to the larger universities.  In some cases, the state governments are re-appropriating funds from the larger universities to the smaller universities.  If a university's budget is cut 10-15% then that could mean an even greater loss from attending a bowl game (depending on where the cuts are made).  That doesn't include the possibility of changes in the tax code for universities; especially with the amount of money generated from research and athletics. 



Since: Sep 15, 2010
Posted on: October 21, 2011 9:35 pm
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Yes, I do believe that millions would watch the two non-playoff BCS games.  It is not like the BCS would schedule them at the same time as the playoff games.  People seem to have an amazing capacity to watch football games during the Holidays.  Of course it depends a little bit on who is playing in those games.  I mean, U-Conn was a complete bust in last year's Fiesta Bowl...I don't think they even sold 5,000 tickets.  On the flip side, if Ohio St was in one of the non-playoff BCS games, I'm sure a high proportion of the 3+ million hardcore Buckeye fans would either attend the game or at least tune in.
And what empirical data do you have to support your assumptions?  Any sound business decision isn't made without it.

The NCAA tourney has expanded to the point of rendering the others as irrelevant.  The NIT was much stronger back when the NCAA field was 40.  Now the NCAA is 68.  Oddly enough, it still has not killed the NIT.  In fact, the lesser tournaments have proliferated.  Your analogy would be accurate if we were talking about a 32 team football playoff, with none of them being eligible to participate in a bowl game.  My 16 team format would make the 12 teams that lose in the first two playoff rounds eligible for the bowls.  I'm not saying it would be perfect.  I'm sure it would cut back on some of the bowl attendence.  But schools that travel well now would still sell their allotments.
That was my whole point because as soon as the BCS Final Four is created then the other bowl games will be relegated to "NIT" status.  Even when the NIT expanded the field to 40 teams that didn't do anything to improve ratings and ultimately financial support.  It could be argued that the NIT is now dying a slow death and it is only a matter of time before the NCAA absorbs it.  The same would be true for the bowl games because eventually the bowl games will lose their appeal.  Once ratings start to decline significantly enough, then there will be an even bigger push to expand the BCS playoffs.  One reason there is a push for playoffs now is because bowl games don't matter as much as before the BCS.  Once the BCS playoffs start to expand then it will be the kiss of death for the bowl games.   

Don't be so sure that even the schools that travel well would still be able to sell out their allotments.  You assume that everyone wanting to attend multiple bowl games will be able to get off work during that time of the year and that is a flawed assumption to make.  Also, factor in that the cost of both trips will be almost double because of holiday rates.  The rates would almost triple if you tried scheduling a trip on short notice during that time of the year. 

Also, it would be a logistical nightmare for the stadium and the schools to sell tickets to the NCG on such short notice and still expect the tickets get to the buyers prior to their departure.  The stadium won't want to assume responsibility for selling the tickets because then they will lose out on requiring the participating schools to purchase their allotment of tickets.  Even though schools hate the requirement that they have to buy a certain number of tickets, they don't want to give up control of how their allotment is divided up (Rule:  the more money you give to a university then the better bowl seats you will get).  If stadiums retain control over selling the tickets then seats will be divided up on a first come first serve bases or randomly; either way that kills the incentive for alumni/fan base to continue contributing to the university.       
 
One reason the other levels decided that the higher seed hosts the playoff round is to keep attendence up and travel costs down.  If a fan base is forced to decide between attending the semi-final game or championship game, then they will choose the championship game.  The reason college basketball can get away with this format is because the tournament is not held during a peak travel season and arenas don't need to sell as many tickets in order to turn a profit. 



Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: October 21, 2011 8:26 pm
 

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

I will grant you that the market will dictate how much each bowl will payout.  However, you are making the assumption that people will still show up.  What if they don't show up to bowl games or TV ratings decline dramatically?  Then the market would dictate that payout could drop down to what I suggested.

Actually, I agree that attendendence and ratings for the non-playoff BCS bowls may drop some.  I simply don't see any way it would fall enough to cause the BCS to drop their payouts to the $325K you suggested.  Jeeze, if the Sugar & Orange hosted playoff games on the evenings of Jan 2 & 3, why wouldn't people still tune in to watch the Rose and Fiesta on Jan 1?  You know people will.


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