Tuesday, November 25, 2008

How to do a College Football Playoff

With all the hype over a college football playoff spouting up again because of the perpetually fucked-up BCS, I will dust off my own proposal.

Right now, there are 11 conferences and the Independents:

ACC, BigEast, Big12, Big10, C-USA, MAC, MWC, Pac10, SEC, Sun Belt, WAC, Independents (Notre Dame, Army, Navy, Western Kentucky).

That means 12 berths, assuming one from each is eligible with at least a 7-5 record. No 6-6 teams allowed. (Independents, that means you!).

Here’s how you do it:

The 11 conference champions and the best of the Independents get berths into the playoffs. Each conference can determine its own champion its own way, and the Independents will do whatever it is they will do.

Use a Power Ranking, or some sort of ranking among the 12 teams to determine seeds.

The top four seeds get first-round byes.

If a conference winner is not eligible, the 2nd-place conference team gets the berth. If no Independents are eligible, then the #5 team gets a first-round bye. The same would be true in the occurrence of the bizarre case of a conference having no eligible teams.

The 11 games are played elimination-style, each one at a bowl, and each one except the championship has to be at a neutral site if possible. No Miami in the second round in the Orange Bowl, or USC in the national semifinals at the Rose Bowl, thank you.

First round starts the week after the conference championships, meaning the second week in December, and one round is played per weekend. Each round has a pot of cash attached to it, and the pot is guaranteed to each team in each round, doubling each time, starting with $1M in the first round.

The semifinals and final will rotate between the Rose, Sugar and Fiesta Bowls. Orange, Cotton, Gator, and Holiday get the second round games, and the first round games are at locations TBD. The other 23 bowls can be for the also-rans, provided they all finish at least 7-5. No 6-6 teams allowed in the postseason.

EXAMPLE: Based on this season, if it ended today, and based on strength of schedule to determine ranks, it would look like this:

Big12: Texas, SOS 1, Seed 1
SEC: Florida, SOS 6, Seed 2
ACC: Florida St., SOS 12, Seed 3
BigEast: Cincinnati, SOS 29, Seed 4
Pac10: Oregon St, SOS 36, Seed 5
Big10: Penn St, SOS 44, Seed 6
MWC: Utah, SOS 54, Seed 7
Independents: Navy, SOS 56, Seed 8
MAC: Buffalo, SOS 75, Seed 9
WAC: Boise St., SOS 90, Seed 10
C-USA: Houston, SOS 92, Seed 11
Sun Belt: Troy, SOS 102, Seed 12

So the first round of games on Dec 13 with $1M to each team would be these:

8 Navy vs. 9 Buffalo
7 Utah vs. 10 Boise St.
6 Penn St. vs. 11 Houston
5 Oregon St. vs. 12 Troy

The second round of games on Dec 20 with $2M to each team would be these:

1 Texas vs. lowest remaining seed, Orange Bowl
2 Florida St. vs. 2nd-lowest remaining seed, Holiday Bowl
3 Cincinnati vs. 2nd highest remaining seed, Gator Bowl
4 Florida vs. highest remaining seed, Cotton Bowl

The semifinals on Dec 27 with $4M to each team:

Lowest seed vs. highest seed, Fiesta Bowl
2nd lowest seed vs. 2nd highest seed, Sugar Bowl

The championship on Jan 3 with $8M to each team:

Last 2 remaining, Rose Bowl.

Now THIS makes Sense!

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