Each year has exposed problems with the playoff rankings but especially the weight of conference championships. While many believe conference champions should get an automatic boost above other teams for playoff positions this year proves to be the most troubling for those arguments.
There is no denying that the Big Ten conference will not be missing just one of its best teams from their conference championship game this year but in fact that game will have the TWO best teams from it’s conference completely absent from that game. It is unfortunate and probably a rare circumstance but that is the way the divisions have fallen and that is why conference divisions should be dissolved.
Here is my submission for the concept of a 12 team playoff.
THE “CHAMPIONSHIP” GAMES
Each power five conference at the end of the regular season will select their two best teams to face off in the first round of the playoffs, the championship games. The conferences will be very determined at deciding on the two best teams because best teams mean best chances on winning games further in playoffs and more money for the conference and we all know everyone wants to follow the money. So, once all the power five conferences have selected their two best teams (by whatever their criteria are) they will play the championship games. The playoff committee still will serve a purpose as they will then rank the selected championship contending teams, this will come into play later. The results of those games will then be the champions of those conferences, but that is only 5 teams. The last team will come from the at large teams. Another role of the playoff committee takes place here as they will be the ones to select the top two independent/non-power five teams to play in their own “championship” game, even though the two teams may not come from the same conference. The winner of that game will then fill the sixth spot.
THE SIX ‘SURVIVORS’
This is where the rankings set by the playoff committee take effect. The 2 highest ranked teams remaining will be rewarded with a bye and the other 4 teams will face off in another round of playoff games. After those games are concluded there will be only 4 teams remaining in total who will then faceoff to decide on the final two teams to play for the national championship.
The whole purpose of a playoff is to give THE best teams a chance at winning the championship. This in fact accomplishes that. Conferences will look to select their best teams and this also eliminates any possibility of a there ever being a chance of a national championship game with two teams from the same conference. This gives the opportunity to more teams and will show who truly has earned the right to play in the championship game. Also this not only adds more teams to the playoff as a whole but it doesn’t add a large amount of extra games to the process, in fact, it only adds 2 extra games.
So this is my submission for the playoff picture moving forward. That sometime soon conference divisions be eliminated, conference championship games will still exist, 12 teams will get a shot at the national championship and a true champion will be decided.
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