The College Football Playoff is close to adjusting its 12-team format next year, moving to a 5+7 model with five automatic bids to conference champions instead of the original 6+6.
The CFP Management Committee, comprised of 10 FBS Commissioners and Notre Dame Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick, has recommended a 5+7 format to the CFP Board for the 2024 and 2025 seasons. said a person briefed on the decision. The Athletic. The Management Board is made up of 11 university presidents and provosts. Yahoo Sports first reported the news.
The steering committee also recommended requiring a conference to have at least eight teams in order to qualify for one of the five automatic qualifying spots. The remaining seven spots will be given to regular teams.
Both changes are a response to the collapse of the Pac-12, which currently has only two teams slated for next season: Oregon State and Washington State. These schools continue to engage in legal battles with the league over control of the Pac-12’s decisions and finances, and it is unclear whether they will join another conference or try to poach teams from elsewhere to rebuild the league. do not have.
Although CFP school principals would have to vote unanimously to change the 5+7, and Washington State President Kirk Schultz represents the Pac-12, it would be surprising if the recommendation was not approved.
Thursday’s Board of Control meeting in Dallas was quite heated, according to people in the room. It was evident in person throughout the day that commissioners seemed less friendly and relaxed than they had left previous meetings.
MAC Commissioner John Steinbrecher said: “We are in a difficult position and are facing difficult questions.” The Athletic At the end of the meeting. “It’s not always fun.”
Asked after the meeting about various changes, SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey simply said, “We’ll see.”
The change eliminates the possibility of Group 5 conferences receiving two automatic bids when the 12-team CFP begins next year, something Sankey had publicly opposed. American Athletic Conference Commissioner Mike Aresco had previously expressed support for moving to a 5+7 model after 2026, when a new television contract and process begins, but plans to move to a 5+7 model in 2024 and 2025. I was against doing that.
The CFP plan, with 12 teams in a 6+6 format, was originally created with 2026 in mind. It was then moved up to 2024, and with the collapse of the Pac-12, the G5 gained unexpected short-term leverage and potentially two slots. However, the commissioners ultimately agreed to change the format to 5+7 for the next two seasons. (6+6 is technically valid until 2026, but is expected to change as the details of the next agreement are finalized.)
The changes are not yet official, and many other issues remain, including revenue sharing between conferences and television contracts for next season. Executive director Bill Hancock said the 12-team CFP does not anticipate having more than one TV partner for the 11 games, but discussions are ongoing. Streaming-only options are also being considered. ESPN has the right to match bids for eight games in the first and second rounds in 2024 and 2025. The entire agreement is valid beyond 2026.
The format change wasn’t the only news. On Friday, the CFP named Air Force Inspector General and Lt. Gen. Richard Clark as its next executive director, replacing Mr. Hancock.
(Photo: Kirby Lee/USA Today)