Why the Proposed College Football Playoff System Is Flawed
However, this new system may be more flawed than the one that was already in place.
For starters, Sports Illustrated's Stewart Mandel reported that the BCS Commissioners have decided that a selection committee will determine the field—exactly like today's college basketball tournament.
Many are weary of the way things are done through polls and computer formulas, but I assure you that this will be no better.
The committee will not require a team to win its conference championship to be eligible for the four-team playoff, meaning a hypotheical Alabama-LSU rematch is still in play.
Last year's national title game sparked much controversy with the Crimson Tide losing to the Tigers earlier in the season and not playing in their conference championship. Many believed Nick Saban's crew didn't belong, regardless of the outcome.
Even though it's not likely to happen again, there's still the possibility that there's a reoccurance of the same sort in the new playoff system, which by itself makes the entire plan irrelevant. The new system is supposed to rid of controversy, not continue it in a new form and fashion.
On another note, why four teams? Why not eight, 10, or 16? Don't get me wrong—I love the idea of a college football playoff system. I think the BCS is dead and that something new and exciting needs to take its place.
But a four-team playoff is almost pointless.
Understand this: There will always be snubs. In every sport, there are a few teams that fail to make the big stage of their respective sport, always believing they were left out.
With a 68-team tournament format like college basketball has, that's okay. No one actually believes the 69th or 70th team will go on to win it all; it's pretty much impossible.
But with a four-team format, you have the fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth-plus teams saying, "Hey, why aren't we playing?" And they could very well beat the field to win the championship, because they're a high-quality, top-10 team.
For example, last year's final Harris Poll right after the conference title games and before the bowl games looked like this:
3. Oklahoma State
6. Boise State
9. South Carolina
10. Kansas State
Could Oregon, Boise State, Arkansas or Wisconsin have defeated LSU, Alabama, Oklahoma State or Stanford? Absolutely. This is why I think an eight-team playoff would be more appropriate, especially since South Carolina and Kansas State (ninth and 10th) weren't at the same level as the 1-8 last season.
Personally, I'd like to see a system where the championship winner from all six power conferences (ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Pac-12, SEC) and two plus-one teams were awarded the opportunity to play each other in an eight-team playoff, allowing Independents like Notre Dame and mid-majors like Boise State a chance to make an appearance.
But unfortunately, it's not up to me and it looks like we're not heading in that direction for the moment.
The BCS presidential oversight committee will choose whether or not to approve the new playoff system at a meeting tomorrow, which seems to be a sure lock.
Although the details of the plan are still being ironed out (which could include a plus-one system), it looks like the four-team idea is nearly set in stone.
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