Iowa State AD says a 10-school Big 12 makes reaching the playoffs easier
Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard says one of the reasons the Big 12 is content with 10 teams is that it'll be easier for a Big 12 team to reach the playoffs without a championship game.
There have been plenty of rumors about schools like Florida State looking to move from the ACC to the Big 12, and possibly bringing Clemson along with them, but at the Big 12 meetings this week the official word from the conference is 10 is enough.
Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard gave us all a glimpse into one of the factors behind the conference's decision. Sure, adding two more teams would allow the Big 12 to once again host a championship game and bring in more revenue, but staying at 10 schools also makes the path to a playoff easier.
“We are committed to 10 (schools) for a multitude of reasons,” Pollard told the Des Moines Register. “One of which is, we think it positions us the best for a four-team playoff, because there will be a Big 12 champion that doesn’t have to play a conference championship game before they get to the playoffs.”
Which is a solid point. Think about it, what would happen if Oklahoma was ranked fourth in the country and played eleventh-ranked Kansas State in a Big 12 title game and lost? Odds are Oklahoma would not only slip out of the top four, but the top six as well. In the current championship plan, a conference champion would have to be ranked in the top six to qualify, or an at large would take it's place.
Well, Kansas State wouldn't leap up to #6 with the win, so the Big 12 would find itself without any team in the playoff.
It's also easier to sneak two teams in, one as champion and one as an at large, if there's no added obstacle of a conference championship in the way.
Now, whether or not this is reason enough for the Big 12 to remain at 10 schools in the long run, I don't know, but at the moment it's somewhat sound logic.
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