Cleat Geeks

College Football: Is Playoff Expansion Worth It?

After years of the BCS snubbing teams for a chance to play in the National Championship Game, College Football reached a four team playoff format a few seasons ago. Now they have a system in place with fans and critics alike debating about how the system should be changed and modified for the sport. Most are on the side of adding more teams to the playoffs, but this can lead to scheduling issues with Bowl Games and leaving teams out of a Bowl Game completely. So, what are the hiccups with expanding the playoffs?

Right now the playoffs consist of four teams while rotating each season between six Bowl Games. It is a small fix for the time being, makings sure a team who might lose a conference title game are not left out for a chance to play for the National Title. One of the biggest pros to adding more teams is extending the playoffs to shadow more of an NFL format for the players. The downside of this would be determining which Bowl Games are delegated for the playoffs, or if they split off into their own postseason format and leave the Bowl Games for non-playoff bound teams.

Do you take a non “BCS” Bowl game earlier in the Bowl Season and delegate it as a playoff game and save bigger named games such as the Rose or Sugar Bowl as semi-final game? The problem with this is kicking some teams out that are Bowl Eligible, but now have to yield to the large schools in more prominent bowl games.

This leads some to talk about a branch off and making the playoff games their own separate entity. It would become, and eventually mold, into a NFL style format with the National Title game becoming like the Super Bowl. Again, many logistical issues arise with this. Where do you place these games within the Bowl Season? You can’t push it off until after the first weekend in January and try to compete with the NFL Playoffs. If more games are added, with people complain more with the already exhaustive Bowl Game Schedule?

Image result for 2016-17 college football bowl games


The 2017-2018 season will have 40 Bowl Games alone, another long list much like the 16-17′ season and people already complain about this being too many. Add the issue of finding enough Bowl Eligible teams to fill the slots right now, and it becomes one big headache for the NCAA.

So, we have a laundry list of problems that would face the NCAA in looking at expanding the playoffs, and the question comes down to would it be worth it? Long run for the NCAA, yes. Players, Coaches, and Fans alike have been wanting something like this format for years. It adds another dynamic to the sport in the postseason. If they can continue to figure out how to schedule the games when the field is expanded, it could become a staple for the sport.

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For now it will stick the the four team playoff format using the six game rotation until expansion can be figured out. With the ever changing landscape of NCAA Football look for an expansion to come sooner, rather then later.


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