Blog Entry

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. 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, 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

Since: Nov 28, 2010
Posted on: October 21, 2011 12:24 am

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

IMO I do not think  it will not happen.

Since: Oct 9, 2006
Posted on: October 20, 2011 11:04 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

This is crazy and how much money will the players make?  This is as close to modern day slavery as there is..these kids bring in all this money and don't get jack for it...It's time to pay players and stop this insane raping of their talents!

Since: Dec 13, 2009
Posted on: October 20, 2011 10:32 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

I could not agree more with your comment, but greed from people making money off the current bowl system will prevent a logical solution from happening.

As far as i can tell, here is the current system;

1.  About 50 teams are not allowed to play for the championship under any circumstance because they are in the wrong conference (MAC, C-USA, MWC, Sun Belt, WAC)

2.  About 40 teams are virtually eliminated at the beginning of the season unless there is a perfect storm where all of the preseason top 25 teams are eliminated with losses.

3.  About 20 teams are allowed to have one loss. provided it is really early in the season

4.  About 10 teams are allowed a loss at any time in the season

5.  About 5 teams are allowed two losses in some circumstances (Alabama, LSU, Florida, Texas, etc)      

Since: Aug 4, 2008
Posted on: October 20, 2011 9:33 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

You  individuals that are yelling and jumping up and down for a playoff in college football are watching football on the wrong day. Your football game is on Sunday. They have a national champions game, the biggest in the world. They have a playoff, equally as big as a playoff would ever be and the money is tremendous. These teams and players are called pros.

Some of the same that are yelling for the college football programs to install this playoff and eventually a college football conference, thus increasing the coffers of these college programs are the same ones that are arguing for the college players not to be paid. The college get richer and the players still do not get paid. I am not in favor of paying the players for playing college sports, I just thought I would throw that in.

Everyone is speaking about all the money a playoff would generate. Have you thought about the cost of  teams traveling across the nation in December? We are not speaking of 12 team players as in basketball with a “T” shirt, shorts, socks and a pair of sneakers. A coaching staff of about 5 along with an equipment manager and 1-2 on the medical staff. That would make approximately 20 people for travel, housing accommodations and meals. I forgot 5-8 members of the cheering squad. So we are  now speaking of 30 travelers. They normally travel about 1-2 days in advance of the game, and at times the day of the game

In football we are speaking of a team of approximately 60-65 player traveling squad perhaps more, 12-15 coaches, 5 or so equipment managers, 5-8 medical staff. Then you would have to add in the amount of equipment the team would need as they play with more than just a “T” shirts, shorts socks and sneakers. In the event there are equipment malfunctions you would have to carry extra equipment. They normally travel 3-5 days before the game to get accumulated to the area, temp and altitude.

Now of course there is the band and cheer squad that would be a lot more than just 5-8 cheer leaders.

 If you win more than one game and go to the championship game you have done a lot of traveling for the team.

16 teams with half traveling at any one time to a site of the game.
The bowl games are a perfect way to end the season for college football sans this stupid BCS crap.

The reason the bowl games work well and generate a good amount of money is the team only travel one time, not a multitude of times during a one month period.

I think we all think that school is important. When do the schools have winter finals? Oh yeah from about mid December to January when the winter term end. School be closed when these games would be played. Most families make plans for when the student would be home. How many students would be at these games from the school?

Playoffs bad idea from the stand point of the school curriculum, students available to attend the away game, probably because they would be like most students “Broke” and wanting to get home to load up on home cooking from mom and being able to borrow cash from pops before heading back to school mid January to early February.

You want these games to be played over the Christmas holidays, multiple trips made by the same team????? Expensive and away from home over Christmas.

Bowl games!!!! Not Playoff games that keep you away from home for an extended period of time.  

Since: Nov 18, 2008
Posted on: October 20, 2011 8:58 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

An 8 team playoff would cause far more controversy than the BCS ever could leaving a four team as the only realistic scenario. Thankfully, a playoff is a pipedream and has no chance. Thankfully, when the BCS falls (and it will) we will return to the old bowl system which was absolutely perfect.

Are you a sports fan?  You must not be, because every other sport (even the obscure one's) settle their championships on the field, not based of a computer/polling system.  Every "National Champion" in the history of college football is illegitimate, because they did not play the best (in a playoff/tournament format) to earn the title. 

The old bowl system was absolutely perfect?  How do you debate someone who that out of touch with reality?  You can't...  If FBS has such a perfect format, we would not be having this discussions, and other college sports and professional leagues would try to mimic it.  But they aren't trying to, because  determining your champion with this Bowl or BCS system is irrational, illogical, and violates every value of competition.

Haven't even started talking about the money and increased interest a playoff would bring.  It's mind boggling to think that university presidents, some very smart and educated people, would continue with the BCS or a bowl system and in some cases defend it.  A travesty for one of America's best sports.

Since: Sep 27, 2011
Posted on: October 20, 2011 7:35 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

There is too much money to be made in a playoff system to not happen.

Since: Dec 30, 2007
Posted on: October 20, 2011 6:47 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Thankfully, when the BCS falls (and it will) we will return to the old bowl system which was absolutely perfect.

I agree with this. We argued about the MNC, but we didn't argue about who went to what bowl. And we still argue about who the "real NC" is even now.

You get invited to a bowl or you don't. I prefer the old bowl system to what we have now.

Since: Sep 15, 2010
Posted on: October 20, 2011 6:44 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

VThokies, I disagree completely.  A Plus 1 format within the existing BCS Bowl is essentially a 4 team playoff.  Aside from it being a mini playoff, a Plus 1 is barely different than what we have now.  It would have little to no impact on the BCS Bowls that are not involved in the NC chase.  Let's say VT finishes #6, and the Fiesta and Orange host the top-4 teams.  Wouldn't Hokie fans still be excited about playing in the Sugar or Rose?  I would think VT would more than sell its allotment.

Now let's shift gears, and look at this Plus-1 as the semi-final and final games of a 16 team playoff.  For starters, the schools that don't crack the playoff will still love going to bowls.  This would be business as usual. 
Plus 1 format means this:
4 BCS bowl games (8 participates) = 4 winners (essentially the quarterfinals, but would act as the semi-finals in the Plus 1 format)
No Semi-Final Round because then the format would be a Plus 2.
BCS NCG which means 2 of 4 will be playing and the other 2 get screwed.

Most fans would not be exciting about spending money to travel to a BCS bowl game when it essentially does not matter.  The Plus 1 format that is being toss around by all the experts is the one I described above because it would keep all 4 BCS bowls relevant.  The problem with this format is it becomes subjective on which 2 of 4 winners (assuming everyone doesn't want a rematch) get to participate in the BCS championship game.  Likewise, most fans would not want to spend money to travel to a bowl game after getting knocked out of the tournament.  It would be no different in basketball---most players and fans would not be exciting about playing in the NIT after getting knocked out of the NCAA tournament.  You are also assuming that enough people can take off from work multiple weeks in the month of December.  Generally, December can be one of the more difficult times to take off from work; either because other co-workers want to take off for the holidays or it is year-end. 

The first two rounds of a 16-team playoff would be held on December 10 and 17 this year.  Let's again use VT as a hypothetical example.  Let's say VT wins on Dec 10 at home, but loses on Dec 17 in Madison, WI.  The Hokies NC dreams are over, but they are invited to play in the Orange Bowl against Stanford or WVU.  I know I would be watching these matchups.  I'm betting plenty of Techies would make their way to Miami.

With your thinking, there would be no college football game to watch after the Rose Bowl (playoff semifinal) on New Year's Day evening...and that would suck.  I agree, there might not be as much money involved for the Orange Bowl participants, but there would still be more than enough money to make it attractive.   Face it, people like watching lots of good football games over the New Year's holiday.  I can't see people being content with just 2 good games on New Year's Day.  That, and you forget the original intent of bowl games.  The whole point is to attract tourism to the host cities.  The TV money just sweetens the pot.
I thinking from a purely business standpoint, which most athletic directors, bowl organizations, city tourist organizations, and sponsors think when it comes to bowl games.  If sponsors know that TV rating will be higher for the BCS tournaments than the bowl games, then why invest money in it?  The payout for the Orange Bowl would probably be reduced to the same level as the Sun Bowl (maybe even the New Orleans Bowl).  What major program would want to play in the Orange Bowl when the payout is only $325,000.00? Most likely it would be a program that is somewhere between 6-6 and 8-4 and wants to use that game for recruiting purposes.  Would you watch the Orange Bowl if the match-up was Rutgers 7-6 vs. Duke 6-6?  If the Orange Bowl is only paying out $300K, then you can expect the other non-BCS bowl to pay proportionally less according to the scale of importance.  Most programs would realize that any money earned from the bowl game would not be worth it, so bowl games would be left scrambling to find anyone willing to accept.  How does a Cotton Bowl match-up between Western Kentucky (7-5) vs. Utah St (8-4) strike your fancy? Or a Capital One Bowl match-up between Western Michigan (9-3) vs. Louisiana Tech (8-4)?  Or a Bowl (I think that its new name) match-up between Arkansas St (5-7) vs. Washington St (5-7)? 

On paper it sounds good to incorporate the bowl games with the playoffs or have both going on at the same time.  However, its application will most likely not according to plan.  Also, if D-IA(FBS) starting having a playoff then the NCAA runs the risk that there might be a movement to re-combine D-IA and D-IAA(FCS) back into 1 D-I again.  Once that happens then it would be tough/impossible for the BCS conferences to maintain the control of the flow of money.  

Since: Dec 7, 2009
Posted on: October 20, 2011 6:26 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

Forgot about MAC

Since: Dec 7, 2009
Posted on: October 20, 2011 6:24 pm

Mountain West proposes 16-team playoff

The only way this can happen without any complaints, or at least legitimate complaints, is to force ND, BYU, and Army into conferences, form 10 or 12 conferences, and ONLY the conference champions proceed to the playoffs.  None of this +1 crap and no at larges.  Win your conference and you're in, lose and you're out.  This is the ONLY way it is going to be fair establishing who get's in and who get's left out.  If we keep using the BCS rankings as standars to justify who gets it; you still have complaining from team #9, #17, #33 or however the heck they structure it.  You do it this way and even teams from CUSA, WAC, MWC, SunBelt, and WCC get to participate.  Recruiting goes up for everyone, payouts are greater for each conference, and it's FAIR.

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