Monday, December 3, 2007

All I Want for Christmas is a Playoff System

I woke up this morning and had a vision of something beautiful: a playoff system for college football. It was so simple, a solution that would keep the bowl system, but still determine a national champion on the field instead of on a computer. Here's how it works. The BCS computers actually do a decent job of synthesizing the major polls into one, so they will determine the top 12 teams in the country, with the top 4 teams getting byes. Teams 5-12 would match up in bowl games the December 21st and 22nd in the Cotton Bowl, Capital One Bowl, Gator Bowl, and Holiday Bowl (bowls chosen based on prestige and location). So this year the match-ups would be:
  • (5) Georgia vs. (12) Florida in the Gator Bowl
  • (6) Missouri vs. (11) Arizona State in the Cotton Bowl
  • (7) USC vs. (10) Hawaii in the Holiday Bowl
  • (8) Kansas vs. (9) West Virginia in the Capital One Bowl
The winners of those games would advance to the quarterfinals, which would be held on December 28th and 29th in the Orange Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, and the Rose Bowl. Those match-ups would be:
  • (1) Ohio State vs Kansas/West Virginia winner in the Rose Bowl
  • (2) LSU vs USC/Hawaii winner in the Sugar Bowl
  • (3) Virginia Tech vs. Missouri/Arizona State winner in the Orange Bowl
  • (4) Oklahoma vs. Georgia/Florida winner int he Fiesta Bowl
The semifinals would be held the following week with the national championship taking place on January 14th. In addition, all the other bowl games not taken up by this playoff system would remain unchanged. To sum it all up, here is what the bracket would look like:

This setup would create a ton of excitement and give us more games between the top teams in college football during the bowl season. Just look at some of the games and possible games, how can you not be excited? These are all very good teams at the top of their conferences. Plus, we'll get to see how the coaches prepare for a different opponent every week, instead of having over a month to gameplan for only one team. How will the sweater-vest prepare for an explosive spread attack one week, and then have to deal with a completely different offense the next week? I'm getting goosebumps just thinking about all the possibilities.

Now if only I could convince the presidents of all the major conferences, the representatives from the affected bowl games, and the TV executives who hold broadcasting rights to those games to adopt my system. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted. I guess I'll just have to sit back and watch the bowl games, only to wonder what could have been.


Anonymous said...

Playoff System = Good.

Implementation = Bad.

I don't like the idea of reducing the number of teams in bowl games (Capital One, Gator, Cotton, Holiday bowls can no longer field non-BCS teams) but I do think we need a playoff system. I think you have 14 teams - the winner of each of the 11 conferences, plus three at-large teams (incl the golden domers), and set up new bowls to go from there.

jwalk said...

Too much money would flow into the main conferences. Even the BCS couldn't convince people this was okay. Secondly, going to a bowl game is a pretty big ordeal for a fan. I'm not saying that people wouldn't keep going, but it would be a lot more time consuming and expensive.

The Voice of Reason said...

I like your idea overall and there is no reason why it shouldn't work, but most likely the powers that be won't go for it. I would personally have the same teams start their play off on the third week in November. That would mean that some schools would have to start maybe a week or two earlier in the season, however, it would give you your two finalist the first weekend of December. Then the championship game and the other bowl can still select their participants for the New Years Day and have a National Champion the same day.

The Voice of Reason said...

...What I forgot to add was, I would have the teams host their games on their home fields, somewhat like the NIT in basketball. The higher ranked teams would host the lower ranked teams. That would save the bowl games for New Years day.