College Football Playoff and Big 12 Expansion Rumors: Cincinnati and… Memphis?

Posted: December 8, 2014 in Big Ten, College Football, Illinois Fighting Illini, Sports
Tags: , , , , ,

With our first regular season of the College Football Playoff over, I’ve got to paraphrase the ESPN commercials that have been running all year: I’M IN. It’s not perfect, as I’ve had my issues with the CFP committee and my optimal dream is to have an 8-team playoff with auto-bids for the 5 power conference champions (assuming that they are all “one true champions”), but from a pure unattached sports fan perspective (outside of sweating out whether my 6-6 Illini would actually have a bowl slot), having multiple teams from multiple conferences still legitimately in the hunt on Championship Saturday with a whole slate of games with massive stakes is a huge improvement over the old BCS system. There have been too many years where fans have been left with entrenched teams at #1 and #2  in the BCS rankings and/or several power conferences completely out of the national title chase for the last anticlimactic month of the season from a national viewpoint. That definitely wasn’t a problem this season – it felt as if though there were multiple de facto playoff games every week with a broad cross section of teams from all of the 5 power conferences (although the unrequited love for the SEC West got be suffocating after awhile). This is what I was hoping for when I wrote my “BCS Final Four” proposal four years ago that ended up looking a lot like what the new CFP system turned out to be today. It would have been nice if the Rose Bowl could have still received a traditional Big Ten vs. Pac-12 matchup, but most sports fans aren’t going to be complaining about Oregon vs. Florida State and Alabama vs. Ohio State on New Year’s Day in a survive and advance doubleheader.

Of course, in the blog/Twitter niche that I’ve staked out, the question that I’m getting the most right now is whether the CFP committee’s snub of the Big 12 and its co-champions of Baylor and TCU will spur that conference to finally expand. Indeed, Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby has stated that the league coming up empty in playoff bids “will certainly be catalyst for discussion and [the Big 12 will] have to weight whether this is substantial enough to add institutions.” Now, I have been an advocate of Big 12 expansion (with Cincinnati and BYU as the top two choices) and believe that the conference badly wants two obvious non-power conference teams to rise up on their own as expansion targets (in the way that Utah and TCU had made names for themselves a few years ago in the Mountain West Conference) no matter how much they tout their company line about being happy at 10 members. However, the effect of College Football Playoff bids on conference realignment is a red herring. The Big 12’s weak TV markets, population demographics, and recruiting areas outside of the state of Texas are really what the conference needs to worry about addressing through expansion in the long-term. Conferences don’t expand to get more playoff teams; instead, conferences expand to make more money. Those might be related issues, but they aren’t one and the same. Ohio State completely taking Wisconsin out to the woodshed had more of an effect on Baylor (or TCU or whoever the Big 12 wanted to name its champ)* not getting into the playoff than the lack of a Big 12 conference championship game.

(* To be sure, I’m happy that the CFP committee didn’t end up rewarding the hypocritical and contradictory statements that Bowlsby has made over the last 6 months, whether that snub was intentional or unintentional. The misguided arrogance to have an entire league marketing campaign based on “One True Champion” touting the round-robin schedule and then blatantly backtrack to attempt to get two schools into the playoff by naming co-champions was rightly punished by the karmic sports gods.)

Even when looking at conference realignment through the prism of the new playoff system, most writers and fans have had the Big 12 expansion analysis backwards: The financial value of a conference championship game isn’t tied to how it helps (or hurts) a conference in getting into the new College Football Playoff. Instead, the critical question is how much the new College Football Playoff adds to the financial value of a conference championship game itself. The Big Ten signed a contract with Fox a few years ago that was worth over $24 million per year just in TV rights alone for the conference championship game. Remember that contract was signed in the BCS era where the ratings for conference championship games that didn’t involve a potential national championship game participant were often mediocre. With the top 4 CFP system, though, the chances are vastly increased that every conference championship game will have national title implications every year, which in turn drives up the value of those games significantly. (The SEC, ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 conference championship games all drew great overnight ratings over the weekend, even with the Ohio State-Wisconsin game being completely non-competitive after about the first half-hour.) If consolation Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl games are worth $40 million each to their participating conferences, then the conference championship games are arguably worth even more in this new system. The conference championship games are de facto playoff games that can be guaranteed every single year and easily monetized with 100% of the revenue controlled by the applicable conference. Sure, a league like the Big 12 could regularly end up having an important game on the last weekend of the season, such as the Baylor-Kansas State game this past Saturday, but the Big 12 can’t sell that matchup ahead of time for $50 million or more in the way that the Big Ten will likely be able to do with its conference championship game when it enters into a new TV contract in a couple of years. If/when we start seeing money being thrown around at those levels, then the financial argument for expansion becomes much more compelling for the Big 12 (whether it’s actually helpful for on-the-field playoff bids or not).

Considering all that has transpired over the past few days, it makes some comments last week on a Nashville radio station about the prospect of the Big 12 adding Cincinnati and Memphis (which I also discussed on Twitter on Friday) all the more interesting. I’m pretty cautious about giving too much credence to these types of rumors since sooooooooo many have turned into nothing over the years, but I’ll say this particular scenario is at least one that I’ve heard about separately prior to Friday. So, I’d put it in the plausible category – it might be a bit surprising if the Big 12 heads down that road, but it wouldn’t be shocking. IF the Big 12 decides that it wants/needs to expand (which is really the threshold question above everything else), then the reality is that (a) it’s not realistic at all that the Big 12 is going to poach anyone from the Big Ten, SEC, Pac-12 or ACC and (b) there’s no perfect football power-in-waiting available at the non-power “Group of Five” level. This means that Big 12 expansion candidates are inherently going to have some flaws and aren’t going to make hearts palpitate for the average fan. However, it’s very possible that any two random schools picked off the street could pay for themselves with how much conference championship games can be worth in the new CFP world.

Readers of this blog know that I have quite a bit of respect for Cincinnati and wrote in the Big 12 Expansion Index that it’s the one “obvious” expansion choice for the Big 12 (to the extent that there are any obvious choices at all). Memphis didn’t fare quite as well in that analysis from a year ago and it was mainly based on its historic football ineptitude. That being said, I’ve also always acknowledged that any school with a great basketball fan base (i.e. UConn, Memphis, San Diego State, New Mexico, etc.) could do wonders for its conference realignment prospects if it could merely be competent in football. (I’d also say the same thing about quality academic schools in attractive locations, as well – see how much Tulane and Rice could be worth if they could string a few winning seasons together.) Memphis with a solid football program can certainly be a financially viable addition and it’s in a recruiting rich area for both football and basketball players. While its market is in SEC territory, it’s a split area for football (mainly between Tennessee and Ole Miss), has shown to be unified for Memphis basketball, and it’s a region that isn’t oversaturated with power school competition (much like Cincinnati where it’s a great recruiting region with “only” Ohio State as an in-state competitor and it’s located on the outer geographic band of the flagship’s sphere of influence). In contrast, the states of Texas, Florida and North Carolina are overloaded with power conference schools already, which is a negative for the prospects of schools like UCF, USF, Houston and East Carolina even if they have a lot of other positive conference realignment attributes going for them.

This certainly isn’t a proverbial slam dunk. Like I’ve said, the threshold question is whether the Big 12 wants to expand at all (as they are awaiting feedback on their proposal to the NCAA to allow for leagues with less than 12 schools to hold a conference championship game). At the same time, Memphis isn’t suddenly a no-brainer addition – there are plenty of open issues, particularly whether its academic reputation would satisfy Texas and if its football success this past year is sustainable. Looking at conference realignment in a vacuum, the two most valuable Group of 5 schools are arguably BYU and UConn, so who knows how the Big 12 views either of those schools. I’ll re-state my firm belief that BYU would be a fantastic fit for the Big 12 both on-the-field and financially, but acknowledge that it’s the most unpredictable school that I’ve seen over the past few years of conference realignment both in terms of its own actions and how the rest of the Big 12 perceives the school. If the Big 12 expands and BYU is somehow passed over, then it would be a clear inverse of the Michael Corleone credo: “It’s not business, it’s just personal”. UConn is in a tough spot because it’s not a very good fit at all for the Big 12 culturally or geographically, yet it still needs to push hard for a place in that league since it doesn’t have any other power conference options forthcoming in the near future. It’s all an interesting set of circumstances right now. The last couple of spots in the Big 12 might be the final power conference additions that the college sports world will see in this generation, so the stakes are massive for those schools that have a viable chance.

(Image from Wikipedia)

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Comments
  1. cookiemonster says:

    1st ROCK CHALK

    Like

    • KJ says:

      Colorado State is looking to surprise everyone. They are coming off a 10-2 season, are within 65
      miles of a top 20 tv market (Denver) and just approved a $225 million dollar on campus stadium.
      College officials are remaining quiet when subject of Big 12 comes up but they didn’t push for a new stadium to host teams like New Mexico and San Diego State.

      Like

  2. Mike R says:

    If I’m the Big 12, I’d forget about geography and take the strongest brand names and fanbases. I’m thinking BYU and UConn.

    Liked by 2 people

    • SH says:

      Not sure I understand the appeal to UCONN. Cultural/geographic affinity may not be the overriding concern, but it still must be a factor for the long term success of the conference. Contemplating UT to B10 is a geographic outlier – but culturally there is a lot of similarity with other schools of the B10. I don’t see that with UConn and B12. B12 may still want to sit tight. If playoffs expand to 8 teams, then not having a title game may prove to be a benefit.

      Like

      • urbanleftbehind says:

        From an administrative and fiscal POV, might UCONN also decide to gradually divest of its football program and instead prepare for a football-optional AAC or largely devoid of football A-10 for the 2 basketball teams and other sports?

        I could only see UCONN getting into the ACC with a “trade” – UConn would replace Pitt which would be sent to the Big XII. At this point, Pitt is a shadow of its former football self and does not do much for the football ACC powers. However it does provide a market enhancement (not expansion per se) for the Big XII via a renewed rivalry and a travel partner for WVU. The ACC would become the unquestioned #1 amongst basketball conferences, with only Pitt as a price (a relative break-even from the football POV of Florida St, Clemson, Miami, GT and VaTech). BYU would be the other target in that scenario. If BYU proves hard to work with – Cincy or (but not both) Memphis make sense as the link to Pitt/WVU.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Big 12 Business says:

          Pitt would’ve been a perfect addition to the Big 12 along with Louisville but they screwed the pooch on that, Cincinnati & Memphis are still solid additions in terms of the programs viability as a whole while not screwing with the current TV rights. Cincinnati & Memphis have options for their Tier 3 rights and I think both could get really good TV deals with FOX Sports Regional Networks or a local cable outlet like Time Warner Cable.

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    • frug says:

      BYU would be a great choice, but the conference already has a enough logistical nightmares dealing with WVU (which because of a lack of a major airport nearby requires teams to fly to Pittsburgh and then take a long bus ride to Morgantown) without having to deal with the headaches of a school in a third time zone in a non-contiguous state that refuses to play on Sundays.

      Like

      • BruceMcF says:

        Which is why many suggest that BYU is most realistic as a FB-only addition. But there’s a potential objection there as well from the BBall Big12 schools, since it means that Big12 FB brand equity is effectively subsidizing a big part of the brand equity of WCC BBall.

        Like

        • Big 12 Business says:

          I always thought that if BYU joined as a football only member that they would look for a quality all-sports non-football school. I’ve seen Creighton suggested, and I think that’s a pretty good add if it gets you BYU football with Cincinnati. That would be a nightmare scenario for Memphis right now.

          Like

          • urbanleftbehind says:

            Does Creighton nation crap about a lot of road games now being much farther east than Terre Haute (Indy State from the old MVC)? At least there’d be no mountain driving involved in trips to Austin.

            Like

          • urbanleftbehind says:

            Though if Creighton likes where it is and the BE drags its feet on expansion, would the Billikens of SLU be of interest as the basketball-only?

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    • Tim Barker says:

      BYU and Cincy are the two best

      Like

  3. Wainscott says:

    Tulane really would be a no-brainer but for its generally-terrible on-field football product. Good academics, major market, national alumni, new stadium. Its just been either irrelevant or awful for all but 1 great year 16 years ago. Give Tulane Stanford’s football resume since 2009 and you have, with Cincy, the 2 newest members of the B12. (TCU used similar recent success to get into the B12, so recency matters).

    Like

  4. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    GEAUX Tigers! Beat the Irish!

    Like

  5. I still think the Big 12 is going to push really hard for CCG reform so they can do one with the current 10 team setup. There’s just no need to buy the cow (expansion) and dilute the brand at 12 teams when they can get the milk (CCG) for free with autonomy reform.

    Like

    • vp19 says:

      That isn’t going to happen; the other conferences aren’t about to give the Big 12 a pass.

      Like

      • The ACC supposedly wants this reform as well (since the ACC divisions are a train wreck and would be WAY better off without them). The SEC has been making noise about not liking the fact that matchups like Florida-Bama are only two times in 14 years, and would be able to bump that number by killing divisions and going to 3-5 fixed rivalry games a year instead. The Pac-12 could plausibly benefit from going to a pod structure (NW, CA, AZ/Mtn), though there I suspect that the AZ/Mtn schools would be pissed about losing LA access.

        Honestly, the only P5 league I could see taking any kind of strong stand against it is the B1G, and I really doubt that they even care (plus, at 14 teams they too have the “teams from opposite divisions don’t play each other often enough” problem).

        Like

        • Rich Baxter says:

          The championship games and division standings add flavor to the whole season. It would be crazy to do without them. The B1G does not have an inter-division problem – going to a 9 game conference schedule, they will play inter-division teams roughly every other year (6 intra-division games and 3 of 7 inter-division games every year). The SEC needs to go to a 9-game conference schedule and do away with the guaranteed inter-divisional game.

          Like

        • Big 12 Business says:

          Honestly, the SEC just needs to fix their divisions

          SEC West
          Arkansas
          LSU
          Mississippi
          Mississippi State
          Missouri
          Texas A&M
          Vanderbilt

          SEC East
          Alabama
          Auburn
          Florida
          Georgia
          Kentucky
          South Carolina
          Tennessee

          Permanent Rivals
          Arkansas/Alabama
          LSU/Florida
          Mississippi/Auburn
          Mississippi State/Kentucky
          Missouri/Georgia
          Texas A&M/South Carolina
          Vanderbilt/Tennessee

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      • Brian says:

        We’ll have to see. The ACC supported it because they want to loosen the division restrictions or eliminate them entirely. Will the B10, P12 and SEC say no? I don’t know. Would the G5 schools say no? I don’t know.

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        • DirtyJersey says:

          The ACCs CCG reform doesn’t say you no longer need 12 for a CCG. That rule would stay the same. Their rule change is that you wouldn’t need 2 divisions.

          Like

          • I think the ultimate reform here is “you can do what you want wrt CCG’s”. I just don’t see how any league has a financial interest in preventing another league from offering a CCG.

            Moreover, I don’t think ANY of the other P5 leagues have a financial or political interest in pushing the Big 12 to absorb more mid-majors and expand the P5 club (which is an obvious potential consequence of intransigence here).

            Liked by 1 person

          • Brian says:

            DirtyJersey,

            “The ACCs CCG reform doesn’t say you no longer need 12 for a CCG. That rule would stay the same. Their rule change is that you wouldn’t need 2 divisions.”

            Have we seen the actual wording? They were working together, so I’m guessing it was more general language about deregulating CCGs. The ACC has talked about both not needing divisions and not needing to play a full round robin in each division.

            Everything I’ve seen is more like this:

            http://www.cbssports.com/collegefootball/writer/dennis-dodd/24483893/acc-supports-deregulation-of-conference-championship-games-would-change-postseason-structure

            The ACC has submitted NCAA legislation that would “deregulate” football conference championship games sources told CBSSports.com.

            The intent is to allow leagues their preference in how to determine their conference champion. It would theoretically eliminate the need — per NCAA rules — to split into divisions with the division winners meeting in a conference championship game.

            That would benefit the ACC and other conferences which have expanded to the requisite minimum of 12 teams (and two divisions) to stage a championship game. Theoretically, with passage of the legislation, any of those conferences could play in one division and still stage a championship game.

            If the new legislation is adopted a league could match its two highest-ranked teams. That might enhance a conference’s ability to get as many teams as possible into the new four-team playoff.

            “Theoretically, we could say we’re going to take the two highest in the BCS rankings and have them play at the end of the season,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said.

            ESPN.com first reported last month the league’s intent to forward such legislation that would give the ACC “flexibility” in who plays in its conference title game. The legislation was submitted in collaboration with the Big 12, Bowlsby said Friday night.

            The measure is thought to have wide-ranging support among FBS conferences because it is largely non-controversial. It is known that the 10-team Big 12 would prefer deregulation if it ever decided to play a championship game with its current 10-team alignment. The league staged a championship game from 1996-2010.

            “You wouldn’t any longer have to have 12 (teams),” Bowlsby said. “You wouldn’t any longer have to play a full round-robin in your subdivision. That would actually afford us the opportunity to have a playoff between two selected teams by whatever process we would want to select.

            “I doubt we’re going to do that but we would likely have the prerogative.”

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Matthew Smith,

            “I think the ultimate reform here is “you can do what you want wrt CCG’s”.”

            I think that is what the ACC/B12 legislation is. See my reply to him below.

            “I just don’t see how any league has a financial interest in preventing another league from offering a CCG.”

            CCG = more money. Of course leagues have an interest in not letting their competitors make more money. And certainly the G5 have a financial incentive to prevent any changes that would make it harder for one of them to join a P5 league via expansion.

            “Moreover, I don’t think ANY of the other P5 leagues have a financial or political interest in pushing the Big 12 to absorb more mid-majors and expand the P5 club (which is an obvious potential consequence of intransigence here).”

            Except that expanding the B12 dilutes the B12’s payout of playoff money. That helps the ACC keep up financially. It might also dilute the B12’s TV money a little, again keeping the ACC closer. For the 2 P5 leagues at the greatest risk of losing teams in the next round of expansion if there is a next round, keeping the other guy close financially is important.

            Beyond that, there’s always a slight incentive for the other P5 leagues to restrict the revenues of their competitors. If your schools have a financial edge, that can help on the field/court.

            Like

          • BruceMcF says:

            Brian: “Have we seen the actual wording?”
            As far as I am aware, what we have seen are various media characterizations of the proposal. The characterizations sourced to the ACC focus on what the ACC wants, but that does not imply that there are two different proposals, and if, per the ESPN coverage, “The legislation was submitted in collaboration with the Big 12, Bowlsby said Friday night.”, then it is an ambit claim of total deregulation.

            ACC’s statements seem to suggest that if they can’t get the numbers for the proposal for their ambit claim, then they might accept an amendment that deregulates choice but not the 12 threshold, but with the Big12 behind this one, may as well go for total deregulation first. Even if it fails to get the numbers, the vote itself will define where the opposition lays and who they have to talk to about what amended version would be able to pass.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            And to be clear, I’m not saying anyone will fight this necessarily, only that they have potential reasons to fight it. I doubt the other P5 conferences care all that much, frankly.

            Like

          • ccrider55 says:

            I think every non king member of all power conferences have reason to not give those already advantaged an ability to be ignored for a bigger brand in a CCG invitational. And I see no reason for the B1G, PAC, or SEC to vote for a membership number threshold that they are meeting. The ACC would also not, except as a quid pro quo for support for the inter conference Bowl game preceding the bowl games, instead of a CCG.

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I’m not saying anyone will fight this necessarily, only that they have potential reasons to fight it.

            My sense is that the leagues, commissioners, and ADs are far more collegial with one another than some of these posts suggest. One obvious example is the way the P5 commissioners all treat the Notre Dame athletic director as an equal. Casual fans routinely predict rule changes that will make it harder for ND to survive as an independent. Those changes never happen; if anything, the opposite.

            Clearly, if the ADs and commissioners were ruthless, there a hundred ways they could screw Notre Dame. And with ND’s abundant financial advantages, it would clearly be in their narrow interest to do so. But they don’t.

            If indeed it’s true that the Big XII as currently structure will often be at a disadvantage in playoff seeding, then voting no on the CCG reform rule basically tells them that they have to go out and poach at least one other conference. And as we all know, expansion usually triggers many other events. There are a lot of leagues (other than the P12, B1G, and SEC) who would strongly prefer that that not happen.

            I doubt the other P5 conferences care all that much, frankly.

            If they’re looking ahead, the other P5 conferences just might have use for a de-regulated CCG themselves some day. And if it isn’t that, there’ll probably be something they want, where they can say to the Big XII/ACC, “Rembember when we gave you that CCG rule you needed? Now, here’s something we need…..”

            Like

    • Mike says:

      I would be a little surprised to see the twelve team requirement go. I doubt the other P5 conferences* want to give up their advantage over the Big 12. The G5 membership shouldn’t want it, because that will be another barrier for any of them to join a power conference.

      *I know the ACC is also in favor of deregulation, but they are looking to get rid of divisions.

      Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        I would be a little surprised to see the twelve team requirement go. I doubt the other P5 conferences* want to give up their advantage over the Big 12.

        The power conferences are far more collegial than the casual fan imagines. They really don’t go out of their way to screw each other.

        The atmosphere right now is de-regulatory. :eagues don’t want other leagues telling them what to do, if it’s avoidable. If the other four conferences give the Big 12 what it wants, there will be a vote somewhere along the line where the Big 12 will reciprocate.

        To put it another way, if the other four P5 leagues tell the Big 12 no, the Big 12 will remember that the next time someone needs their vote.

        Like

        • Mike says:

          The power conferences are far more collegial than the casual fan imagines. They really don’t go out of their way to screw each other.

          I agree, but they aren’t beyond protecting their own interests either.

          Like

          • Sure, if this actually hurt the other P5 leagues. But it really doesn’t.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Matthew Smith,

            “Sure, if this actually hurt the other P5 leagues. But it really doesn’t.”

            Of course it does. OSU wouldn’t have gotten in if the B12 had a CCG. The other 4 P5 conferences benefit from the B12 not having a CCG to make a final statement in.

            Like

          • This year Ohio St (probably) wouldn’t have gotten in given a Big 12 CCG. Next year, who knows? Plenty of time there are CCG upsets; if anything, my guess is it generally hurts rather than helps the higher ranked participant. Hell, in 2008 and 2009 Florida and Bama would have both made the CFP if there was no SECCG.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Exactly: when the Big XII had a championship game, the favorite lost on a number of occasions, knocking them out of a major bowl or even the BCS CG. This year, the Big Ten unquestionably was the beneficiary of the Big XII’s lack of a CCG. In another year it could be exactly the opposite.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Matthew Smith,

            “Plenty of time there are CCG upsets;”

            Only in the B12, really. The SEC title game has had relative few upsets. The other 2 are too new to draw a conclusion.

            “if anything, my guess is it generally hurts rather than helps the higher ranked participant.”

            But with larger conferences and a larger playoff, there are greater odds of both teams being in the running for the playoff. This year the TCU/Baylor winner would’ve been locked in. Even the weakest conferences had 2 top 15 teams playing. The ability to boost your resume is more important than the risk of getting beaten.

            “Hell, in 2008 and 2009 Florida and Bama would have both made the CFP if there was no SECCG.”

            They probably would’ve both made it anyway. The committee isn’t going to punish a top 2 team for losing a CCG to another top 2 team. All that would change is their seed. The loser probably would drop to #3 to avoid the instant rematch.

            Like

          • I’m not sure I agree. SEC title game upsets include:

            2009 Bama over Florida
            2008 Florida over Bama
            2005 UGA over LSU
            2001 LSU over Vols
            1999 Bama over Florida
            1994 Florida over Bama

            six out of 23 is a fairly notable ratio. Just because the last five have held to form doesn’t mean that upsets are gone for good.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Matthew Smith,

            “2009 Bama over Florida
            2008 Florida over Bama
            2005 UGA over LSU
            2001 LSU over Vols
            1999 Bama over Florida
            1994 Florida over Bama

            six out of 23 is a fairly notable ratio. Just because the last five have held to form doesn’t mean that upsets are gone for good.”

            You’re including 2 games where #2 beat #1, and in both cases #1 would have stayed in the top 4 most likely. In 2008, AL dropped to #4 in the polls and the BCS. In 2009, UF dropped to #5 but was behind 12-0 TCU and UC. Would the committee have put a MWC and BE team ahead of them? I doubt it, based on FSU being #3.

            Like

    • BruceMcF says:

      Might still could push for CCG reform so they don’t have to go with divisions at 12. They have a serious division problem if they have to split up 6-6.

      Like

  6. greg says:

    First in the CFP.

    Like

  7. UCbearcatsrock says:

    I don’t think the B12 wants to expand either – that said they will have to if it is the only way they can get a conference championship game. What we see has transpired here over the weekend is that 100% of the powers that be in the big12 now feel that the pros of a CCG outweigh any cons.

    If they get their waiver, no expansion at least not at this time. If they do not get their waiver I think UC gets the nod- then the question is BYU, UCF, or Memphis. I think Boise and uconn are out based on geography alone. BYU is even a stretch with geography.

    Like

  8. dtwphx says:

    push for a 5 team playoff, having a play in game.
    Only teams eligible for the play in game are teams who have played less than
    13 games. (ND, Big12, Ole Miss’ MissSt of the world, …the sun belt)

    Like

  9. vp19 says:

    I still prefer an 8-team playoff with five automatic power conference champions (all determined via 12+ member CCG), with three at-large entrants. What happened yesterday shows that the power of “brand names” still holds sway — substitute Purdue for Ohio State, and Oklahoma and Texas for Baylor and Texas Christian, and does anyone think the Big Ten still gets in and the Big 12 left out?

    With five automatic conference champs, you’re in no matter whether you’re Florida State or Wake Forest, Michigan State or Indiana, Southern Cal or Washington State, Texas or Iowa State; for the power 5, it would at least invalidate the power of brand names. IIf ESPN doesn’t like that, tough.

    And I’m all for Big 12 expansion (sorry, Texas). Cincinnati and Memphis (while I’m not entirely sold on the Tigers) make reasonably good “bridges” to West Virginia in the Big 12. Brigham Young puts you in three time zones, rather unwieldy for a conference (and I haven’t even considered its other baggage), while Connecticut simply is too far away.

    Like

    • anthony london says:

      vp19,

      In this scenario, would you stipulate a spot for the best Group of 5 champion?

      Like

      • I think the G5 teams would demand it (if it could happen without giving them an auto spot, then it might be functional… but politically that’s likely a non-starter). And yet, that would be a major problem. Just look at this year, where the top G5 team is probably the same Boise squad that lost by 22 against Ole Miss, lost by 14 at Air Force, and their best win was… Colorado State? This year is a bit of an outlier where there aren’t any particularly good non-P5 teams, but it’s not like there always is a G5 squad that deserves a playoff bid.

        Like

        • anthony london says:

          Matthew,

          That is my concern too. I think you need to include them, but you just never know if a team will be worthy of inclusion and I would hate to take a spot away from a much better team. I don’t know how you reconcile inclusion and “worth.”

          Like

          • bullet says:

            #8 doesn’t deserve a spot. So why not reserve one for a G5 champ?

            Probably because TV doesn’t want it. So they probably get 1 of 12 and have to be one of the top 3 wildcards.

            Like

          • vp19 says:

            Add criteria for G5 candidates — either an unbeaten record or a top 10 ranking.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            anthony london,

            “That is my concern too. I think you need to include them, but you just never know if a team will be worthy of inclusion and I would hate to take a spot away from a much better team. I don’t know how you reconcile inclusion and “worth.””

            The easiest method is to set a minimum ranking for an autobid to apply and use that cutoff for everyone. So say any conference champ must be in the top 15 (or 20 or whatever) to get the autobid, and if they aren’t then they get a major bowl slot instead. That way a terrible B10 champ won’t get in either, so it’s fair.

            Like

          • BruceMcF says:

            Top 10 is a step backward from BCS “bowl buster” of top 12 or top 16 and better than an AQ.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            But the cutoff gets you back to subjectivity.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Humans will be involved at some point, so every selection process is subjective.

            Like

    • Mike R says:

      I think the CFP committee very deliberately set some precedents this weekend:

      First, 1-loss teams that win a P5 CCG are very likely to be taken ahead of 1-loss teams that are champions of a P5 conference without a CCG. The CCG victory, in other words, is going to be valued very highly as a neutral-site win over a highly-credentialed team.

      The other key precedent, set throughout the season with regard to TCU and Baylor, was that the committee would value out-of-conference P5 wins, and conversely ignore non-P5 wins. TCU hammered a pretty fair Minnesota team and Baylor had no comparable win.

      So would a one-loss OU or UT be vaulted over a hypothetical one-loss Purdue B1G CCG champion? Maybe, but in so doing I suspect the committee have to consciously would look to the out-of-conference schedules to make their case. In 2015, e.g., UT has two P5 OOC games, Notre Dame and Cal. OU keeps its Tennessee date, this time at Neyland.

      I don’t think school brand-name is enough to affect the choices materially, The gold is in the CFP brand itself, and it won’t mess with what has been a runaway success this year, where the playoff has really animated all discussion of the sport on the field.

      Like

      • “The other key precedent, set throughout the season with regard to TCU and Baylor, was that the committee would value out-of-conference P5 wins, and conversely ignore non-P5 wins. TCU hammered a pretty fair Minnesota team and Baylor had no comparable win.”

        I don’t see that at all. That’s what it appeared they were doing all season, but then in the final poll they jumped Baylor over TCU. At this point I honestly have no idea what the committee was thinking. The logic of dropping the #3 team to #6 in a week where they won by 52 points (against a team that Baylor beat by only 21) is beyond me.

        Mind you, I’m not advocating TCU over Baylor (or tOSU for that matter). I just don’t understand the logic. It’s as if the committee suddenly realized on the last weekend that Baylor won head-to-head two months earlier.

        I also don’t understand the logic of dropping Florida State from 3 to 4 in the next-to-last week. Yes, they had another close win, but they beat an SEC team, and that same week three other ACC teams beat SEC schools. The ACC’s relative worth should have risen that week, yet FSU dropped in the rankings (and then magically jumped back up the next week).

        Like

        • Richard says:

          If you remember that the committee is looking at a school’s whole body of work up to that point each week, then the decisions make sense.

          Before the last week of the season, I can see how they can see TCU having a better body of work than OSU or Baylor up to that point in time. However, in the last week, Baylor added to their body of work and tOSU really added tot heir body of work, while TCU didn’t really have the chance to.

          So the final rankings at the top look fair.

          Like

        • bullet says:

          There is no logic and they had to discard several things they had said previously. FSU did not look better than TCU in that last week, yet they jumped over them. They said this wasn’t a resume test, yet TCU dominated ISU as much as could be (the same ISU who beat Iowa) and still fell behind 3 teams who had better last week adds to their resume.

          Like

          • FrankTheAg says:

            They dominated a 2 win team. Well then.

            Look, the #3 ranking was media fodder only. The only ranking that mattered was last Sunday and tOSU was the correct choice. They won more games, had the tougher over all SOS, finished the best (10 straight Ws) and got the bid. BU tried to back into it with an easy OOC and the committee rightfully said, “Hell no”. TCU was not the B12 champ to any rationale viewer despite Bowlsby’s ridiculous comments.

            Like

          • Richard says:

            It’s not so much about “looking good” but accomplishing more, and beating a good GTech team is more of an accomplishment and adds more to your body of work than beating a bad ISU team.

            Like

        • Brian says:

          singlewhitealcoholicseekssame,

          “I don’t see that at all. That’s what it appeared they were doing all season, but then in the final poll they jumped Baylor over TCU. At this point I honestly have no idea what the committee was thinking. The logic of dropping the #3 team to #6 in a week where they won by 52 points (against a team that Baylor beat by only 21) is beyond me.”

          You have to stop thinking of this like the polls. TCU was #3 at the end of that previous meeting, but at the next meeting everyone comes in unranked. TCU didn’t get dropped, FSU, OSU and Baylor got elevated. All 3 beat top 15 teams (impressively in OSU’s case) and became conference champs that Saturday. TCU added nothing to their resume in beating ISU except getting a minority slice of the B12 title. And once Baylor and TCU’s resumes got so similar, the head to head result between them elevated Baylor.

          “Mind you, I’m not advocating TCU over Baylor (or tOSU for that matter). I just don’t understand the logic. It’s as if the committee suddenly realized on the last weekend that Baylor won head-to-head two months earlier.”

          TCU had already beaten KSU and Baylor hadn’t. Add in TCU’s win over MN and their resume was sufficiently better than Baylor’s for the H2H result not to apply before this weekend.

          “I also don’t understand the logic of dropping Florida State from 3 to 4 in the next-to-last week.”

          The committee thought TCU looked better and had a better resume at that point.

          Like

        • BruceMcF says:

          The logic they stated seems like the actual logic of that … the resume to date of TCU was better, simply because TCU had a weakling in the last week and Baylor had a contender. Mind, if there was no regular season FB allowed in the CCG week, that result would have been in that week’s rankings.

          Given Baylor’s opportunity to rectify that in the last week, prudence should have dictated not putting TCU in the 3rd spot

          Like

          • Brian says:

            The committee isn’t supposed to look ahead.

            Like

          • BruceMcF says:

            Yes, it isn’t supposed to, and in an ideal world it wouldn’t. But in an ideal world all of the regular season games would finish on the same weekend, so four contenders with their regular season schedule finished and two with their round robin regular season left to complete, with the inherent factor that one will be playing stronger competition than the other in finishing the round robin, wouldn’t be an issue in the last “dummy” CFP ranking.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            BruceMcF,

            “Yes, it isn’t supposed to, and in an ideal world it wouldn’t.”

            And from the few comments they’ve made, they didn’t look ahead. That’s why TCU went ahead and then dropped behind at the end. They can’t take a win for granted and SOS only applies to teams you’ve actually played.

            “But in an ideal world all of the regular season games would finish on the same weekend,”

            Why is that ideal? That would definitely punish independents and the B12 for not having a shot at a CCG because out of sight is out of mind.

            “so four contenders with their regular season schedule finished and two with their round robin regular season left to complete, with the inherent factor that one will be playing stronger competition than the other in finishing the round robin, wouldn’t be an issue in the last “dummy” CFP ranking.”

            The level of competition is a factor every week of the season. It’s impossible to give everyone an equally difficult schedule each week. This is why we have a committee. It’s also why people will eventually further ruin CFB by forcing a larger playoff so the subjectivity is reduced.

            Like

        • m(Ag) says:

          It’s pretty easy to see why Baylor was able to move past TCU the last week, but you have to believe the two teams were close the week before (and I see no reason they weren’t) When you look at the committee’s own rankings, Baylor had only played # 3 & # 20; while it went 2-0 in those games, it also had a loss to a team that would probably be in their 25-35 range (West Virginia). TCU, meanwhile, had victories over # 9, #20, and two teams in their 25-35 range (West Virginia & Minnesota); of course, it also had a loss to #6.

          So TCU had a worse best win, but a better loss (especially since it was a close road loss), and 2 more wins in the 25-35 range. That’s 2 close resume’s, but TCU had played 2 more games against good competition than Baylor and had the same number of wins.

          After the last weekend, Baylor had wins over #6 & #11, and went 1-1 over teams in the 25-35 range (OU & WVU), while TCU had a win over #11, a loss to #5, and went 3-0 over teams in the 25-35 range. TCU’s resume over ‘top’ teams got worse (not because it beat ISU, but because OU fell), while Baylor’s got better despite OU’s fall.

          Like

          • m(Ag) says:

            First, looking at the standings again, I forgot Minnesota had snuck back into the top 25 in the last poll. So TCU gets 1 more (barely) top 25 win and 1 fewer 25-35 win.

            I also should say I don’t think the committee cares about ‘punishing’ teams for their non-conference schedule. Baylor finished #5 & Mississippi State at #7 despite neither team having a quality non-conference game. The committee did seem to judge teams on overall schedule (a game against Oregon is a game against Oregon, whether or not they’re in your conference).

            By not having any strong non-conference games on its schedule, Baylor cost itself a chance to add one more quality win to its schedule, but it still would have made the playoffs if some of the other Big 12 teams had won their non-conference games. If the Longhorns had beaten BYU & UCLA it would have significantly improved its resume, as well as all the Big 12 teams that played it. If KSU had beaten Auburn, that would have made Baylor’s win over them more impressive (as well as reducing the resume of the SEC schools that played Auburn). If Oklahoma State had beaten FSU or WVU had beaten Alabama, the Big 12 might very well have finished the year with 2 teams in the top 4, as the resumes of both Baylor & TCU might have been viewed as superior to Ohio State’s.

            I don’t think the committee thought quite as highly of the middle teams in the Big 12 as some computer rankings did. With this schedule I think Baylor either needed to finish the season undefeated or finish 11-1 with a blowout win over TCU (rather than a 3 point last-second home win) to edge past Ohio State. I don’t think the committee cared much whether you blew out middling teams, but it gave bonus points for dominant wins over good teams, like OSU’s win over Wisconsin.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            m(Ag),

            “I also should say I don’t think the committee cares about ‘punishing’ teams for their non-conference schedule. Baylor finished #5 & Mississippi State at #7 despite neither team having a quality non-conference game. The committee did seem to judge teams on overall schedule (a game against Oregon is a game against Oregon, whether or not they’re in your conference).

            By not having any strong non-conference games on its schedule, Baylor cost itself a chance to add one more quality win to its schedule, but it still would have made the playoffs if some of the other Big 12 teams had won their non-conference games. If the Longhorns had beaten BYU & UCLA it would have significantly improved its resume, as well as all the Big 12 teams that played it. If KSU had beaten Auburn, that would have made Baylor’s win over them more impressive (as well as reducing the resume of the SEC schools that played Auburn). If Oklahoma State had beaten FSU or WVU had beaten Alabama, the Big 12 might very well have finished the year with 2 teams in the top 4, as the resumes of both Baylor & TCU might have been viewed as superior to Ohio State’s.

            I don’t think the committee thought quite as highly of the middle teams in the Big 12 as some computer rankings did. With this schedule I think Baylor either needed to finish the season undefeated or finish 11-1 with a blowout win over TCU (rather than a 3 point last-second home win) to edge past Ohio State. I don’t think the committee cared much whether you blew out middling teams, but it gave bonus points for dominant wins over good teams, like OSU’s win over Wisconsin.”

            I largely agree with you. I think they rewarded tough wins, OOC or not. That’s slightly different from punishing weak OOC schedules. I do think they took OOC schedule intent into consideration, though. Just as a late tiebreaker for close teams, though. I think the message was that you better play 10 P5 teams to make sure you have enough tough games. We’ll see if the SEC continues to get away with only 9 since their reputation is so strong. The P12 and B10 (soon) will be fine, and the B12 should be if they just schedule 1 decent OOC game like TCU did.

            As for the middle of the B12, I think the problem is the lack of OOC games. With only 3, and at least 2 of those being cupcakes for most of the teams, there aren’t many external measuring sticks. The P12 avoids that by having tough OOC games. The B10 is headed that way. Some B12 schools already do it, but Baylor has been notorious for their OOC scheduling of patsies.

            Like

      • bullet says:

        And yet Baylor ended up ahead of TCU despite no good ooc wins.
        Ohio St. ended up ahead of TCU with ooc wins vs. Cincinnati, Kent St. and Navy, the loss to Virginia Tech and a closer game vs. TCU’s big ooc opponent.

        I think the one thing the committee proved is that it will use any measure it wants to justify what it wants to do. And it will discard those measures when they want to. Best example is jumping Alabama from #5 to #1 with a “controlling” win over Mississippi St. Conversely Mississippi St. only dropped to #4 because they stayed close to Alabama.

        There was no consistency.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          bullet,

          “And yet Baylor ended up ahead of TCU despite no good ooc wins.”

          Baylor beat #6 and TCU didn’t. Baylor had the tiebreaker to be B12 champion and TCU didn’t.

          “Ohio St. ended up ahead of TCU with ooc wins vs. Cincinnati, Kent St. and Navy, the loss to Virginia Tech and a closer game vs. TCU’s big ooc opponent.”

          OSU played and beat more teams, more I-A teams, more bowl eligible teams, more teams with a winning record, more ranked teams and more ranked teams away from home. OSU had road wins over #8 and #25 and a neutral site win over #18. TCU had no wins over ranked teams away from home (#11 and #25 were their ranked wins). OSU ended up a true conference champ, too.

          Like

          • bullet says:

            I’m not arguing TCU or Baylor vs. Ohio St. here. We could do that ad nauseum. There are cases for all 3. I was responding to his comments about the committees criteria and the consistency of application. Note that Long avoided the question on ESPN about how FSU jumped TCU. He had a justification for OSU.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            I’m just showing there is clear logic behind all the changes in the final rankings. People have to get out of this poll mentality that once you are #3 you own that spot forever. Some of the criteria couldn’t apply until this weekend (championships). Others didn’t apply because of disparate resumes (H2H wins). Yet other criteria got a whole new set of data (resumes received major wins added to them).

            Why shouldn’t Baylor beating KSU, OSU beating WI and FSU beating GT while TCU beat ISU impact the rankings? TCU was only #3 because they played their tough games earlier.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            They said it WASN’T based on “resumes” or “deserving.” It wasn’t some computer formula. They weren’t going to use an RPI type formula. I don’t see any way without those you jump FSU or Baylor over TCU based on the last week. TCU did beat KSU 41-20, dominating them, while Baylor won 38-27 in a tough game. In fact, TCU did have common opponents with 4 of the 5 contenders. They won at WVU 31-30 while Baylor lost 41-27 and Alabama won 33-23 in Atlanta. They beat Minnesota at home 30-7 while tOSU won 35-28 on the road. And they had 10 common opponents with Baylor.

            I can see the argument for jumping Ohio St. ahead of TCU (now I think you need to look at the whole season and not over-emphasize one game-you need to look at how mediocre Ohio St. looked the 3 games before WI), but there just isn’t an argument where you can say FSU or Baylor was behind TCU one week and ahead of them based on the last week–unless you are using metrics like resumes that the committee said it wasn’t using.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “They said it WASN’T based on “resumes” or “deserving.””

            They said a lot of things. They were supposed to pick the 4 best teams. Looking at resumes and stats and using the eye test are how they did that. Having more good wins builds confidence that you’re a really good team. Otherwise all you’d get is the eye test and 4 SEC West teams in the playoff because they looked fast.

            “It wasn’t some computer formula. They weren’t going to use an RPI type formula.”

            They didn’t use any computer formulas or any SOS metric. They gauged that for themselves based on basic numbers like the number of ranked teams they beat, the number of winning teams they beat, etc.

            “I don’t see any way without those you jump FSU or Baylor over TCU based on the last week.”

            I do. Anybody can look good against 2-10 ISU (except Iowa, apparently). That game showed me nothing. Winning under pressure at a neutral site against a top 15 team shows me a lot. If the teams were really close last week, and the committee said they were, that’s enough to jump teams up. In addition, the KSU game made the resumes even enough to compare Baylor and TCU and so the head to head win came into play. Before beating KSU, TCU had shown more on the field than Baylor so they were ahead of them. After that game, Baylor deserved to be ahead based on the tiebreaker. In addition, the previous rankings couldn’t account for conference championships and those were explicitly listed as a tiebreaker for similar teams.

            I think the problem is that people see the ordinal rankings and forget that doesn’t mean the teams are equally spaced in the committees eyes. Just like the polls, some ranks are closer to each other. The committee may have felt this:

            1. AL 100
            2. OR 97
            3. FSU 91
            4. OSU 90
            5. Baylor 89
            6. TCU 89
            7. MS St 83

            While the previous week, maybe it was this:

            3. TCU 89
            4. FSU 88
            5. OSU 86
            6. Baylor 85

            “I can see the argument for jumping Ohio St. ahead of TCU (now I think you need to look at the whole season and not over-emphasize one game-you need to look at how mediocre Ohio St. looked the 3 games before WI),”

            OSU beat 3 ranked teams in November and December, none of them at home. OSU also crushed one mediocre team, beat another mediocre team by 14 and a bad team by 15 points in November.

            TCU beat 1 ranked team at home in November. They also beat a mediocre team by 1 and a bad team by 4 in addition to blowing out a mediocre and a bad team.

            OSU crushed 4 teams in September and October plus dominated the 1st half of another before winning in OT. TCU blew out some mediocre/bad teams plus had a close win over a solid team.

            I don’t see where looking at the whole season really changes anything. Both teams looked really good quite often, but each had some off weeks, too.

            “but there just isn’t an argument where you can say FSU or Baylor was behind TCU one week and ahead of them based on the last week–unless you are using metrics like resumes that the committee said it wasn’t using.”

            Resumes aren’t really a metric. They give you an idea of what each team has done without becoming too numerical.

            The committee never said it wasn’t looking at resumes. They explicitly have talked about valuing certain games. They said TCU had a better resume so their head to head loss to Baylor hadn’t been a factor yet.

            http://sports.yahoo.com/news/oregon-2-playoff-rankings-tcu-4th-010201326–ncaaf.html

            TCU still has Baylor beat in the College Football Playoff rankings – even though the Bears got the better of the Horned Frogs on the field.

            The Horned Frogs moved up to fourth in the rankings released Tuesday night, while the Bears were up to seventh, closing the gap between themselves and their Big 12 rivals.

            ”For the third consecutive week, the committee looked at the overall body of work, their strength of schedule, and looked at the number of top 25 wins,” committee chairman Jeff Long said. ”TCU has two top 25 wins and Baylor has one. And TCU’s loss is a top-10 loss. When you put all those factors together, we still think at this time TCU has a better resume and was voted that way ahead of Baylor. ”

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Brian
            Using Massey’s composite computer ratings, here are TCU and Ohio St.:
            TCU #3
            6 L 58-61
            13 W 41-20
            22 W 37-33
            31 W 31-30
            32 W 30-7
            42 W 48-10
            54 W 42-9
            78 W 82-27
            93 W 34-30
            97 W 55-3
            124 W 56-0
            FCS W 48-14

            Ohio St. #4
            9 W 49-37
            17 W 59-0
            32 W 28-21 (note that OSU’s 3rd best opponent was TCU’s 5th and TCU
            beat them worse)
            40 W 50-28
            50 W 52-24
            55 L 21-35
            56 W 56-17
            63 W 31-24 OT
            65 W 42-28
            66 W 34-17
            70 W 55-14
            86 W 42-27
            120 W 66-0

            Overall TCU was 2nd in offense and 16th in defense. Ohio St. was 4th and 23rd. TCU had 5 70+ schools vs. 3 for Ohio St., but had stronger opponents at the top, the ones who really can challenge you. Ohio St. struggled with 63 PSU, 66 Navy, and 86 Indiana. Only KU gave TCU fits below #31 WVU. You call WVU mediocre as they were 7-5, but they only lost to TCU by 1, beat Baylor by 14, lost by only 6 to Kansas St. and by only 10 to Alabama in Atlanta. Their other losses were to Oklahoma (by 12) and Texas (by 17). TCU also won 42-9 over Oklahoma St (#54) who only lost by 6 to FSU. TCU crushed KSU. Ohio St. destroyed Wisconsin.

            IMO, a lot of bowl eligible Big 10 teams wouldn’t have been in the Big 12 so your metric of bowl eligible doesn’t mean much. The Big 12 was 3-0 vs. Big 10-mid pack WVU beating mid-pack Maryland, Top team TCU beating top half Minnesota and Winless ISU beating top half Iowa.

            People can view things differently, but I see TCU’s work much more impressive than Ohio St.’s. All those mediocre results vs. teams ranked in the 60s doesn’t say top 4 to me. I think TCU stands toe to toe with Alabama and Oregon. I think Ohio St. and FSU will get crushed (but FSU could be like that MNC Ohio St. team that always found a way to win).

            We’ll get to see how Ohio St. does. Unfortunately we won’t get to see how TCU does against them. TCU does play Ole Miss, but in that type of bowl you don’t know if both, one or neither team is really ready to play. TCU winning 50-7 or losing 50-7 doesn’t tell you as much as the results of the playoff games.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Here’s TCU and Baylor
            vs. each other 58-61 61-58
            Kansas St. 41-20 38-27
            Oklahoma 37-33 48-14
            W. Virginia 31-30 27-41
            Texas 48-10 28-7
            Oklahoma St. 42-9 49-28
            Texas Tech 82-27 48-46
            Kansas 34-40 60-14
            Iowa St. 55-3 49-28
            SMU 56-0 45-0
            FCS 48-14 70-6
            Minnesota 30-7
            Buffalo 63-21

            Baylor was #1 in scoring but #43 in defense (TCU was 2 and 16). Baylor just looked a lot more vulnerable on defense. Baylor won head to head, but TCU won by more against 7 of the 9 opponents and Baylor won by only 3 at home with good breaks on the calls at the end. The resumes are close, but it looks like there is enough of a delineation that a win by the amount of the home field advantage doesn’t convince me. And while I think TCU stands toe to toe with Alabama and Oregon, I think Baylor would get rolled like Ohio St. and Florida St. FSU deserves to be in the playoff, but I really don’t think they are a top 6 team. Baylor and Ohio St. are close.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Didn’t format well. TCU played Minnesota and Baylor played Buffalo.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            TCU lost by only 3 at Baylor.
            Baylor lost by 14 at WVU (#31) who gave lots of good teams fits.
            Ohio St. lost by 14 at home to #55.

            Huge advantage for those two on the worst loss category.

            Like

          • BruceMcF says:

            bullet: “but there just isn’t an argument where you can say FSU or Baylor was behind TCU one week and ahead of them based on the last week–unless you are using metrics like resumes that the committee said it wasn’t using.”

            Resume isn’t a metric, even if its a thing that some metrics attempt to measure. That is, saying you are not going to use those metrics that claim to rank the strength of each team’s resume is not the same as saying you are not going to evaluate the resume for yourself, independent of any resume metric.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            You’re complaining about the use of metrics to evaluate resumes and then you quote computer rankings?

            “(note that OSU’s 3rd best opponent was TCU’s 5th and TCU
            beat them worse)”

            TCU played them at home in the TX heat in September while OSU played at MN in the snow in November. Not exactly the same environment.

            OSU’s 11th > TCU’s 8th
            OSU’s 12th > TCU’s 9th

            TCU’s was tougher at the top but OSU’s was much deeper.

            “Overall TCU was 2nd in offense and 16th in defense. Ohio St. was 4th and 23rd.”

            They were within less than 1 ppg of each other in both stats. Considering that MOV is explicitly not a factor and that this easily can come down to when coaches choose to pull the starters, I’d call them roughly even.

            “Ohio St. struggled with 63 PSU, 66 Navy, and 86 Indiana.”

            OSU beat Navy by 17 and IN by 15 and led PSU 17-0 before letting down after the QB sprained his knee.

            “Only KU gave TCU fits below #31 WVU.”

            TCU only won by 4 against #92.

            “You call WVU mediocre as they were 7-5”

            Yes, I do. And they looked mediocre when I watched them, too.

            “IMO, a lot of bowl eligible Big 10 teams wouldn’t have been in the Big 12”

            With 3 cupcakes OOC, how tough is it to beat ISU, KU and TT? The B10 didn’t have 3 teams with less than 5 wins and we have 4 more teams (3/10 vs 2/14 = 30% vs 14%).

            “so your metric of bowl eligible doesn’t mean much.”

            It’s not my metric, it’s one I saw mentioned by the media and maybe Long.

            “The Big 12 was 3-0 vs. Big 10-mid pack WVU beating mid-pack Maryland, Top team TCU beating top half Minnesota and Winless ISU beating top half Iowa.”

            And cellar dweller IN beat the SEC East champ MO.

            “People can view things differently, but I see TCU’s work much more impressive than Ohio St.’s.”

            That’s fine, but much of the nation agrees with me. That doesn’t make me right, but it shows a lot of people from different parts of the country and supporting different teams think the same way.

            “I think TCU stands toe to toe with Alabama and Oregon.”

            On any given day, I think any of AL, OR, FSU, OSU, Baylor and TCU could beat each other.

            “(but FSU could be like that MNC Ohio St. team that always found a way to win).”

            There’s nothing mythical about it. The only two undefeated teams in the country played and OSU won. Everyone was convinced Miami was the best team, so you can’t claim OSU had a lucky path like BYU did back in the 80s.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “Baylor won head to head, but TCU won by more against 7 of the 9 opponents and Baylor won by only 3 at home with good breaks on the calls at the end. The resumes are close, but it looks like there is enough of a delineation that a win by the amount of the home field advantage doesn’t convince me.”

            Unfortunately, head to head is an official tiebreaker for similar teams in the playoff race. I don’t think Baylor is better than TCU, but I think by the rules the committee is supposed to follow they had to put Baylor ahead of TCU.

            And since you wanted to spout numbers, here’s F/+:
            1. AL
            2. OSU (O – 4, D – 7)
            3. OR
            5. TCU (O – 20, D – 6)
            8. FSU
            9. Baylor

            The teams are close no matter how you look at it. My point is that your claims that no logic can explain the changes are just wrong. You may disagree with the result, but that doesn’t make it illogical.

            Like

        • Big 12 Business says:

          Head to Head win should always be the tie-breaker for these sort of things, TCU blew the lead & game to Baylor, how is that Baylor’s fault? It’s almost a playoff game with-in itself and that’s how it should be.

          Like

          • bullet says:

            Head to head is valuable. But there are degrees of its value. Winning on the road means more than winning at home. Winning by 14 or even 7 at home means more than winning by 3. So Baylor gets a benefit of a doubt, but its slim. And I think the rest of the record and watching the teams gives TCU a bigger margin than Baylor’s head to head.

            Briles’ talking points point out the weakness of his case. He talks about leading Texas 28-0 at a point midway through the 4th when TCU lead 34-10. TCU dominated Texas the whole game. Baylor lead 7-0 midway through the 3rd. They added TDs with about 11 minutes to go and 6 minutes to go.

            Don’t know the context, but I heard Bowlsby said he would have voted for TCU over Baylor.

            Now if we had an 8 team playoff with 5 autobids, then yes, Baylor should have gotten the autobid. If we only had conference champs and there had to be a single choice, then yes, it s/b Baylor. But that’s not the system we have.

            Like

    • Brian says:

      vp19,

      “What happened yesterday shows that the power of “brand names” still holds sway”

      No, it doesn’t. That’s one possible interpretation of yesterday’s events, but there is absolutely no evidence to support it.

      “substitute Purdue for Ohio State, and Oklahoma and Texas for Baylor and Texas Christian, and does anyone think the Big Ten still gets in and the Big 12 left out?”

      Yes. Purdue would have the better resume, and it was already ahead of Oklahoma. Texas’s B12 schedule was front-loaded with the harder games but ended with a whimper (2-10, 0-9 ISU). Meanwhile, FSU, Purdue and Oklahoma all played top 15 teams so they bolstered their resumes significantly. The committee has been saying for weeks how close 3-6 are, and 3 of the 4 teams got a major victory on Saturday. Only on this last vote could conference champion status be applied, too.

      The brand power conspiracy theory would make more sense to me if ESPN got to pick the top 4. The committee has nothing to gain by favoring one team or conference over another. They don’t care what the ratings are.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        I think there is definitely an argument for bias. Not conspiratorial bias, but simply familiarity bias. As Art Briles said, Rice was the only one born in the south (she’s a Bama fan). Someone else pointed out the age of the members and their possible bias against high flying offenses. Of the 12 members, you had the Air Force Commandant, the former Big East commissioner as the AAC rep, Oliver Luck of WV representing the Big 12 and everyone else had Pac 12/Big 10 or SEC ties (Clemson’s AD spent a dozen years at LSU and S. Carolina before moving to GT and then Clemson).

        Long said the committee listened very closely to the former coaches. Who were they? Alvarez and Osborne from current Big 10 schools and Willingham from ND and Pac 12 schools. Rick Neuheisel (UCLA ex) commented that the Pac 12 got a lot of respect from the committee (which included Willingham, Rice-Stanford, Haden-USC and Jernstedt-NCAA but an Oregon grad-so fully 1/3 of the committee).

        Like

        • bullet says:

          Briles:
          https://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/11995404/college-football-playoff-art-briles-baylor-bears-says-playoff-committee-no-big-12-voice

          During a Sunday morning appearance on “SportsCenter,” Briles suggested ex-coaches R.C. Slocum, Mack Brown or Spike Dykes would be more qualified to evaluate programs in the state and region. He argued that Archie Manning stepping down from the committee in October because of health reasons might have ultimately hurt Baylor’s chances.

          “When Archie Manning went off, I said we’re in trouble,” Briles said. “I know Archie. He’s a friend. He understands football down here. When he went off that committee, we were in trouble. We need a voice. We need a voice.”

          (my comments-while Luck is from WV and his son played for Stanford, Luck did get a law degree from Texas (and his son went to HS in Austin), and played for the Oilers and lived and worked many years in Houston before taking the WV AD job).

          Like

        • Brian says:

          bullet,

          “I think there is definitely an argument for bias.”

          Unless you actually look at their history of rankings. TCU didn’t get to #3 because the committee was biased against the B12 or TCU.

          “As Art Briles said, Rice was the only one born in the south (she’s a Bama fan). Someone else pointed out the age of the members and their possible bias against high flying offenses. Of the 12 members, you had the Air Force Commandant, the former Big East commissioner as the AAC rep, Oliver Luck of WV representing the Big 12 and everyone else had Pac 12/Big 10 or SEC ties (Clemson’s AD spent a dozen years at LSU and S. Carolina before moving to GT and then Clemson).”

          Maybe the problem is that they weren’t biased and TCU and Baylor just didn’t quite deserve to get in. Is the goal really to try to find biased people to add to the committee?

          “Alvarez and Osborne from current Big 10 schools and Willingham from ND and Pac 12 schools.”

          And Osborne is unfamiliar with the B12? Willingham has a pro-OSU bias?

          Funny how we didn’t hear any of these bias complaints until OSU passed TCU. When the B10 looked like the odd man out the B12 seemed just fine with the committee.

          Like

          • bullet says:

            Bowlsby isn’t complaining. But I know a lot of us Longhorns were pretty nervous seeing Osborne and the Arkansas AD on there and the heavy MW/West Coast flavor of the committee. Osborne just hates Texas. Texas didn’t let him fill his team with illiterates and they beat Nebraska 9 of 10 times they played in the Big 12.

            And you are missing the point. When you ask someone from the southeast who is better, Alabama or Oregon, how many do you think will say Oregon? Conversely, ask the same question in Oregon. You see the regional voting in the Heisman race every year. That doesn’t mean they are unethical. They truly believe in their opinions and they have the most familiarity with those in their area. We all have biases.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “Bowlsby isn’t complaining.”

            I didn’t say he was. But Briles is, and the committee composition hasn’t changed. Where were his complaints when TCU was #3?

            “But I know a lot of us Longhorns were pretty nervous seeing Osborne and the Arkansas AD on there and the heavy MW/West Coast flavor of the committee. Osborne just hates Texas. Texas didn’t let him fill his team with illiterates and they beat Nebraska 9 of 10 times they played in the Big 12.”

            Fans see bias everywhere and expect it all the time. There is zero actual evidence that Osborne voted in a biased manner. Fans worrying about it doesn’t make it real.

            “And you are missing the point.”

            No, I’m disagreeing with your point.

            “When you ask someone from the southeast who is better, Alabama or Oregon, how many do you think will say Oregon? Conversely, ask the same question in Oregon. You see the regional voting in the Heisman race every year. That doesn’t mean they are unethical. They truly believe in their opinions and they have the most familiarity with those in their area. We all have biases.”

            Fans don’t watch all the games from major teams in edited form to remove broadcaster bias. Fans aren’t asked to specialize in certain conferences that they don’t have ties to. Fans aren’t former coaches, ADs, Secretaries of State, etc. These people agreed to put alot of time and effort into an objective attempt to rank these teams. Comparing them to people who drink more beers than they watch games is demeaning.

            The committee has access to the edited video for all the games and each conference had specialists. Barry Alvarez and Mike Tranghese were the point people for the B12.

            http://www.collegefootballplayoff.com/selection-committee-protocol

            The committee has assigned two members to be the “point persons” to gather material about the teams in each conference and the independent teams. The process will assure that each team is fully reviewed and that no information is overlooked. The point persons will ensure that (1) the committee has complete, detailed information about each team, and (2) the conferences and independent institutions have an effective and efficient channel for providing facts to the committee. The committee wishes to be clear about the role of the point persons. They are not and will not be advocates for teams in any conference or for any independent institution. They will not speak on behalf of any conference or institution during the committee’s deliberations or represent any conference’s or independent institution’s interests during those deliberations. Their function is to gather information and ensure that it is available to the committee. Their role as a liaison to a particular conference or independent institution is purely for the purpose of objective fact-gathering. The point persons will communicate with conference staff members on three teleconferences during the regular season. The point persons will accept objective factual information from a conference and may actively seek such information from a conference during a teleconference. They may take subjective viewpoints provided by a conference comparing the performance of one conference institution to another. They will ensure that all information provided by a conference is presented to the committee for its consideration. Outside of the three teleconferences, there will be no contact between the point persons and any conference staff member, or vice-versa; all information will be relayed through the CFP staff. Following are the point persons for 2014-15:

            American – Mike Gould and Pat Haden
            Atlantic Coast – Tom Jernstedt and Steve Wieberg
            Big Ten – Pat Haden and Condoleezza Rice
            Big 12 – Barry Alvarez and Mike Tranghese
            Conference-USA – Tom Osborne and Condoleezza Rice
            Mid-American – Barry Alvarez and Tyrone Willingham
            Mountain West – Oliver Luck and Mike Tranghese
            Pac-12 – Mike Gould and Tom Osborne
            Southeastern – Oliver Luck and Steve Wieberg
            Sun Belt – Dan Radakovich and Tyrone Willingham
            Independents – Dan Radakovich and Steve Wieberg

            Like

          • bullet says:

            You ignored my point about the Heisman voting and its regional nature.
            I think part of the Big 12’s problem may have been a basketball guy from Providence who destroyed a football conference was one of their point people. Another was a guy who doesn’t like spread offenses.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            No, I just find the comparison of Heisman voters to the CFP committee silly. The voters have no obligation to be objective or to watch anyone other than their favorite team/conference. That is so far removed from what the committee is doing that it’s like comparing kindergarten to graduate school.

            Think what you like, but there is zero evidence to suggest there was a problem beyond the B12 teams not having the merits of the top 4. They played fewer games, weaker OOC games and no CCG. Why is there a need to assign bias or ineptitude or antipathy to the committee just because you disagree with the results?

            If OSU didn’t get in, I wouldn’t be blaming Alvarez for being angry about OSU crushing WI in the CCG. I wouldn’t claim Osborne didn’t want the East to get a leg up on the West. I wouldn’t look at anyone else on the committee and assume they hated OSU or the B10 for some arcane reason. I’d look at the VT loss and shake my head about what a shame it was.

            Maybe Baylor should schedule someone OOC tougher than Buffalo next time. Maybe both of them should drop I-AA teams, especially if they insist on playing SMU.

            Like

          • Mack says:

            Briles has been complaining about the committee from the start since Baylor was ranked behind TCU after winning head to head due to its WV loss. His rants have gotten worse and more media attention since the KSU post-game, and the latest one is really over the edge. Patterson (TCU coach) has not been complaining.

            Like

  10. anthony london says:

    Frank,

    Let’s say an 8-team playoff is eventually adopted. How would you change the logistics of the current season? I think schools would have to sacrifice a non-conference game and the first four games would have to be played on campus. I don’t know how hard a sell that would be for the “powers that be.” I actually think hosting that initial round on campus would lend itself to the tradition of college football and enhance the sentiment around the CFP, but that’s just me…

    I am a BIG guy, so congrats to all of the BIG schools going to bowl games. Having said that, let’s try to win them and, if we can’t win them, let’s be competitive (talking to you right now Wisconsin, that was a terrible performance in the BIG Championship game…)

    Like

    • @anthony london – I don’t think the logistics would change at all. The way I’d do it simply the following:

      Rose Bowl: Big Ten champ vs. Pac-12 champ
      Sugar Bowl: SEC champ vs. at-large
      Fiesta Bowl: Big 12 champ vs. at-large
      Orange Bowl: ACC champ vs. at-large

      I’ve seen plenty of debate on whether on-campus sites would be viable, but I’m 99% certain that the factors of (a) preserving the bowl system, (b) maximizing TV ratings and revenue (both of which greatly favor playing more games in January instead of December), (c) maximizing corporate suite and luxury seat ticket sales (which are unfortunately much more important than the tickets sold to plebeian fans) all favor neutral sites and (d) avoiding final exams in December (which, when push comes to shove, I believe that the university presidents would be much more concerned about interfering finals for 8 schools in December than having 2 schools play a title game one week later than they do now). Under my proposal, it would actually be a throwback (i.e. traditional Rose Bowl matchup) while still expanding the playoff.

      The way to push through change in college football is to make it as easy as possible. The less that you disrupt the current system, the better.

      Liked by 1 person

      • anthony london says:

        Frank,

        Under your scenario, you still have three games to play at least two weeks into January, not just one week. I remember reading somewhere that University Presidents are trying to limit football bleeding into the second semester. Not to mention the fact that this scenario bumps up against the NFL playoffs. That’s not a good option, even if it means playing games during the week.

        With regard to December, I think if games are at the schools early enough, tickets will be sold. Most school stadiums have corporate and luxury seat options. Those options don’t exist to the level of neutral sites, but the atmosphere at neutral sites isn’t the same either. While this does not immediately impact revenue, over time I believe it will. I am repping the plebes…. Yo!!!

        Change is inevitable. I never thought I would see a CFP in my lifetime, yet here it is. I think you incorporate the bowl system as long as you can, but it should not get in the way of an expanded CFP.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          Bleeding into the second semester for 2 schools just isn’t a real issue. I suspect it is primarily an excuse. If not, they just haven’t thought through it much.

          Finding time slots for the semi-finals where you don’t compete with the NFL, is however, an issue.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “Bleeding into the second semester for 2 schools just isn’t a real issue.”

            For fans. The presidents seem to disagree.

            Like

    • Big 12 Business says:

      I almost think, they could’ve kept the BCS system and had the AP Poll back in the Harris Poll out and no Coache’s Poll but CFB Committee Poll. That way if a Group of 5 conference champion ended up in the Top 8 they get an Automatic qualifying bid. In the end I suspect they’ll go to 8.

      The Power 5 Conference Champions get automatic-bids, the highest-ranked Group of 5 Conference Champion gets an automatic-bid and have 2 at-large bids and allow the CFB Committee to seed however they like.

      Like

  11. dtwphx says:

    can they trade West Virginia for Louisville, and cash considerations?

    Like

  12. Rich Baxter says:

    The Big 12 should fold with Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma and Oklahoma St going to the Pac 12/16 and the SEC absorbing Kansas (Mizzou’s historic rival and perennial BB power) and West Virginia. With 6 out of 10 members voting to disband and return the grant of rights to member schools, why not? Texas is playing second fiddle to A&M now that the Aggies are in the SEC and Big 12 is down to 2 majors and 8 minor powers. The average quality of Big 12 member schools will only deteriorate with the additions of mid-major programs such a Cincinnati, Memphis and/or BYU. Even Boise State, which has cache on the field, only has 33,500 seats in their stadium. They would be one of the smallest markets in any power conference.

    So – don’t dilute the membership any more. Jus give it up, get us down to 4 power conferences where the B1G and Pac can meet in the Rose Bowl while the SEC and ACC mix it up at the Sugar Bowl. The winners meet in the NCG. Whats not to like with that?

    Like

    • I’m sure that Baylor, the Kansas schools and Iowa State would be totally cool with this approach and not launch a major lawsuit or take advantage of the bylaws that prevent anyone from leaving for about a decade.

      Like

      • Rich Baxter says:

        Baylor, TCU, Iowa State and K State can all go to the Mountain West. I don’t know how 4 schools can force 6 schools to stick to the status quo if they don’t want to. Would they sue? Maybe. Would they win? Not if league rules allow for a majority vote to make such a change.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          This is kind of funny. You wish to kick out of the P5 the #5, #6 and #11 schools in the nation.

          Like

          • Rich Baxter says:

            They are good at the moment, not long term, and their respective fan bases couldn’t fill a Wal-Mart parking lot.

            Like

          • vp19 says:

            You’re not kicking out teams from playing in a power conference. Want to dissolve the Big 12? Do it this way:

            To Pac: Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Okie State — the only realistic expansion choices for the Pac.

            To Big Ten: Iowa State, Kansas — the only other AAU Big 12 members aside from Texas. Yes, both are lackluster in football, but no more so than Purdue or Indiana…and both are solid in basketball.

            To SEC: West Virginia, Kansas State. Both border SEC member states.

            To ACC: Baylor, Texas Christian. They fit the private school angle of much of the ACC, while giving the conference a foothold in Texas.

            Like

          • The basic problem is that no other P5 league wants most of the Big 12 membership. Texas and Oklahoma don’t want to split, and whatever leagues don’t get those two would have zero interest in getting stuck with the rest of the league. If you presume TX/OK to pac-16, then B1G/SEC/ACC basically get junk. If you presume TX/OK to SEC, then P12/B1G/ACC basically get junk. etc.

            At some point a league has to actually WANT the teams that are on the table. And no one wants the rest of the Big 12. And just to be clear, adding two out of BYU/Cincy/SMU/Memphis/ECU/UConn/etc. does not in any way shape or form solve that problem.

            Like

          • Rich Baxter says:

            @MatthewSmith – I agree with you, except that the Pac would take Oklahoma State and Texas Tech in a red hot second to get Oklahoma and Texas. The package deal would be accretive to Pac coffers and it would be a win for all Pac players – especially Okie State and Tech.

            Like

          • Right, the Pac-12 would probably take that set of 4 (rhetoric aside, I really do think they’d be very happy at a Pac-16 including the Red River pair and 2 of whoever). But if the idea is finding everyone in the Big 12 a home (i.e. vp19’s post), then whoever doesn’t get the TX/OK set is clearly going to say no. At which point you’re back to blowing up the Big 12 and having a bunch of unhappy people plus probably lawsuits and/or shenanigans from the Texas legislature.

            Like

          • vp19 says:

            Matthew: If Baylor and TCU were guaranteed spots in a P5 conference (the ACC, in my scenario) with the ensuing money, why would they sue? Remember, in 2003 Virginia Tech bumped Syracuse from the #12 slot in ACC expansion because Tech officials feared that if it remained in the Big East, the conference (at least for football) would go under, leaving the Gobblers’ football program homeless. Under your scenarios, schools such as Iowa State (which draws better for football than many in the ACC, and rates among the nation’s attendance leaders in both men’s and women’s basketball) would be set adrift, whereas Wake Forest and Boston College would survive.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            TCU was 3rd in win % in the last decade. They probably are still top 3 going back to 2000. KSU has been good for the last quarter century.

            As for the fan bases, KSU averaged over 50k from 2010-2013, Baylor 42k and TCU 42k. All 3 are undoubtedly higher if you included this year.
            That puts TCU and Baylor ahead of Maryland, Syracuse, BC and Northwestern, among others. KSU is also ahead of Arizona, Cal, Illinois, ECU, Minnesota, Pitt, Georgia Tech, Virginia, Purdue, Rutgers, Stanford, Colorado, Utah, Oregon St. and Indiana, who is just ahead of Baylor.

            So if KSU can’t fill a WalMart parking lot, what does that say about the bottom 7 in the Big 10 in attendance? And the 7/12 of the Pac 12 and 7/14 of the ACC who KSU also outdraws.

            Like

          • Mike says:

            @bullet –

            TCU was 3rd in win % in the last decade. They probably are still top 3 going back to 2000. KSU has been good for the last quarter century.

            TCU had a huge amount of empty seats for their game against Iowa St. They should be very concerned that their fans are not showing up when they are good.

            Like

          • Rich Baxter says:

            @Bullet – With all of their “success,” TCU and KSU’s attendance looks all the worse. Kansas is a small state and adding a piece of Kansas City, MO still doesn’t provide sufficient viewers when it comes time for TV contracts. TCU is probably the third favorite team in Fort Worth, behind the ‘Horns and Aggies. Baylor (and Iowa state) are dilutive to any P5 deal that relies on viewers or fans.

            Do you think the Big Ten would offer Northwestern a spot today if they didn’t already have one? Or Purdue? Maryland and Rutgers were added due to the TV markets of NYC, DC, and Baltimore and the idea that a B1G platform in the east will grow the fan bases in such rich markets, along with viewership. I expect that to be borne out.

            Essentially small market teams with little potential for organic growth, KSU, ISU, TCU and Baylor are all very well suited for the Mountain West. None of their names was ever seriously mentioned in the expansion rush of the past five years, save for TCU to B12, which shows the #5 conferences desperation. Now they are talking Cinnci and Memphis, really? Would the SEC, B1G or Pac 12 ever consider the Bearcats or Tigers for membership? Please.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            vp19,

            “You’re not kicking out teams from playing in a power conference. Want to dissolve the Big 12? Do it this way:

            To Big Ten: Iowa State, Kansas — the only other AAU Big 12 members aside from Texas. Yes, both are lackluster in football, but no more so than Purdue or Indiana…and both are solid in basketball.

            To SEC: West Virginia, Kansas State. Both border SEC member states.

            To ACC: Baylor, Texas Christian. They fit the private school angle of much of the ACC, while giving the conference a foothold in Texas.”

            Why on earth would these 3 conferences do this? It makes zero sense for them.

            Like

          • FrankTheAg says:

            TCU has played in a P5 conference for 3 years. Record so far? 22-15. That’s solid but only solid.

            What they did in the MWC isn’t really relevant.

            Like

          • Mark says:

            Northwestern and Purdue to the Big 12, Virginia and North Carolina to the B1G.

            Like

          • Rich Baxter says:

            If I had my druthers, Mark, I’d send Northwestern and Purdue to the SEC in exchange for Mizzou and Kansas (that they picked up from the B12). Then, the SEC could send Northwestern and Vandy to the ACC – the biggest winner in the B12’s demise – for Virginia Tech and NC St. Every school just mentioned may well support the move (and would have to, perhaps requiring a few bucks for the Wildcats and Commodores). The ACC and B1G would remain the same size while the SEC would go to 16 teams.

            Like

          • Richard says:

            Um, no, Northwestern would not support leaving the B10 (unless it’s for the Ivy League), regardless of the money.

            Dream on.

            Like

          • Andy says:

            The only Big 12 teams the SEC would want are Oklahoma and Texas. *maybe* Kansas, but probably not.

            The B1G would probably only want Texas.

            If the Pac 12 took UT/TT/OU/OSU, then the Big 12 would live on. It would just backfill from the AAC and MWC.

            Maybe:

            Big 12 East:

            UConn, Cincinnati, WVU, ISU, Kansas, KSU

            West:

            Baylor, TCU, Houston, SMU, Colorado State, BYU or San Diego State

            Like

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Baylor, TCU, Iowa State and K State can all go to the Mountain West. I don’t know how 4 schools can force 6 schools to stick to the status quo if they don’t want to. Would they sue? Maybe. Would they win? Not if league rules allow for a majority vote to make such a change.

          I’m sure it’s on the Internet somewhere….but I think you’ll find it takes a strong super-majority, like 70%, to disband the league. Obviously, the rest of the schools wouldn’t agree to that. And as others have noted, the other leagues aren’t going to pitch in, and take programs that UT and OU decide they no longer want.

          Until the 2020s, any school leaving would be bound by the grant of rights, which pretty much eliminates the realistic possibility of any kind of move before that time.

          Like

    • urbanleftbehind says:

      Iowa State obviously would be screwed (MAC? as a good rival for NIU as I predicted back in the mid-00s) as would K-State (MWC?). I think Baylor could make a good case for being in the SEC as well as the ACC, TCU a little less so (maybe also a drop back into MWC, unless the ACC wanted to make a larger play for the Texas market).

      Like

      • Rich Baxter says:

        Remember what Frank the Tank says. Think like a university president. Baylor may be good on the field, but they bring NOTHING to the SEC. No fan base, no market (Waco, TX!), and A&M already puts Texas in the SEC Network footprint.

        Like

        • urbanleftbehind says:

          That’s a lot of Baptist. Enough to buy their way in, if need be.

          Like

        • greg says:

          “Remember what Frank the Tank says. Think like a university president.”

          University presidents don’t think “those four schools can go screw, I don’t care about them.”

          B12 dissolution is very unlikely.

          Like

    • Dennis Flowstein says:

      It’s sad when people are talking about disbanding a Power 3 football conference. Big 12 already has the product, they just need perception to change. This is a marketing and leadership problem.

      Like

      • @Dennis Flowstein – I definitely don’t believe that the Big 12 will be disbanding, but this isn’t just a marketing and/or leadership problem for the Big 12. The conference has been masking its severe demographic deficiencies because of the strength of the state of Texas (which in turn is the reason why the University of Texas is able to maintain such outsized power over the league). When you look beyond the state of Texas, though, the Big 12 has the worst long-term demographic outlook of any power conference BY FAR. That’s the real long-term issue for the Big 12 (much more so than whether teams make it into the top 4 playoff) and why expansion can’t be just looked at through the lens of the playoff structure or even the current TV money split.

        Like

        • The other problem is, there simply aren’t any reasonable expansion candidates that would solve the Big 12’s demographic issues. Cincy is a hugely far behind 2nd fiddle in Ohio (not to mention a poor geographic fit)… and that may very well be their BEST option at this point.

          Like

          • BruceMcF says:

            And not a demographic growth area, either … the growth in Ohio is IN Central Ohio, right at the heart of OSU’s regional dominance.

            Like

        • gregalthoff says:

          To that point, if I were Santa Ono, the first person I send a direct message tweet after receiving a Big 12 invite is John Swofford.

          Like

        • vp19 says:

          Frank, why does everyone here want to screw Iowa State, whose fan base is larger (and more loyal considering the product, particularly in football, over the years) than the likes of Wake Forest and Boston College? No one is throwing out ISU (or anyone else) from the P5.

          Like

          • Rich Baxter says:

            It’s just business, vp19, nothing personal. It’s a relatively small school in a small state that does not attract sufficient viewers to move the needle in a TV contract. Save for the Hawkeyes, no one is clamoring to travel to Ames for a game or to see the Cyclones come play in their stadium. It might not seem fair, but it’s just business.

            Like

          • Wake/BC are in a stronger position because they’re in a more stable league that’s in much less danger of imploding than the Big 12 is (though it’s notable that both the Big 12 and ACC have been raided, so it’s not like the ACC is super-stable either). If everything blew up and league compositions started from scratch, Wake would probably be the first cut, as there’s no way that NC even needs three much less four P5 teams, and Wake is the blatantly obvious cut.

            Like

          • Rich Baxter says:

            @Matthew Smith I agree completely about Wake Forest’s position along with the ACC as compared to the Big 12. I’m not sure what the problem is with a 25% upset ratio in the SEC championship games. Isn’t that part of the game? If you can’t win your conference championship game, you shouldn’t be able play in the national championship game – or even the semifinal. If ‘Bama or FSU lost last Saturday, they wouldn’t be semi-finalists for good reason.

            Like

        • acaffrey says:

          Frank… this is why I say the Big XII should go after USF and UCF. You get two teams on an island… and that is less of an island for West Virginia. Two good sized markets… Tampa and Orlando. Two good recruiting areas. You then have Texas/Florida areas for the conference to recruit. You can zipper the league pretty nicely with:

          #1 Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Iowa State, Kansas, USF
          #2 Texas Tech, TCU, Baylor, West Virginia, Kansas State, UCF

          Teams play 5 in-conference, one permanent rival (above/below in #1/#2 list~~~West Virginia getting Iowa State is a coup, but they are also on their own island and deserve something), plus three more schools, for a total of 9 conference games. TCU and Baylor would play Texas at least 1/2 the time, everyone gets a Florida team~~at least one trip to Florida every other year. Everyone gets at least one trip to Texas every year. #1 is brand top heavy with Texas and Oklahoma, but #2 would be able to have someone rise up and challenge most years. You could flip around a lot of the teams too and still come up with ways to keep people mostly happy.

          As an ACC guy, I would MUCH rather the Big XII stay out of Florida and focus on Cincinnati (a distant #2 in Ohio), BYU (Utah), Memphis (#3 in Tennessee), etc. Doesn’t that mean something?

          I think BYU and UConn are the best brands.

          Cincinnati and Memphis have had success… but BYU more success at football historically and UConn far more success at basketball over the past 25 years.

          Like

          • acaffrey says:

            And, really, you could rotate the cross-divisional rivalry between the teams not involving Texas/Texas Tech… Kansas/Kansas State…. and USF/UCF. If you had to.

            And I am SURE that USF and UCF would split a Big XII check for the first several years. Doing so happily and with a significant boost in revenue.

            Like

    • Carstairs says:

      I think the likelier evolution will be the slow musical chairs we’ve witnessed over the last few decades. Most likely scenario is a few years down the road, whether or not the Big XII has expanded or not, UT and OU choose status and money and head out to the PAC, taking along Tech and OSU for political and on-field reasons.

      At that point, SEC and B1G decide to go to 16 as well — maybe for no other good reason than another of the big conferences went to 16, maybe because the money is there — with the former snagging a couple of ACC schools and the latter KU and another ACC school (I’m in the camp that believes the Notre Dame ship has sailed, but who knows). Which ACC schools go where depends on who moves first, and doesn’t make all that much difference in the end, but just for the sake of argument let’s say B1G goes first with UVA and KU, and SEC takes UNC and another NC school. Or if the politics of that don’t work, VaTech and FSU…who goes really doesn’t matter to dynamics at play.

      Then, probably very quickly, the remaining 11 ACC schools would at least go back to 12 with WVU/UCONN, take your pick. If the ACC sees a need to keep up with the Joneses, MAYBE make a splash to 16 with the leftover of UCONN/WVU, a pair of Texas schools (in the likely event TCU and Baylor are still relevant in football and baseball), and some wildcard for half-academics, half-football reasons…maybe ISU if they’re REALLY lucky

      Like

      • Rich Baxter says:

        Ideally there would be four power conferences, not five. The Big 12 will likely be the one left standing when the music stops. I do not envision ACC raids once the B12 is gone and the ACC grant of rights isn’t going away. I suggested that the B12 will end with a vote of (at least) 6 member schools out of 10, which solves the B12 grant of rights problem (which is a serious obstacle left unaddressed).

        The ACC would be the biggest winner of a B12 collapse, since they are somewhat on the bubble with B12. I can see all 4 conferences pitching in to an orderly unwinding of the B12. Perhaps, the ACC would need to allow Virginia Tech & NC State to go to the SEC if they agree to take Kansas and WVU, which provides the deciding 2 “yes” votes to a B12 dissolution (the 4 to the Pac being the other yes” votes). That would take the SEC to 16 teams, along with the Pac, and both could implement a pod system that would greatly improve scheduling.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Rich Baxter,

          “Ideally there would be four power conferences, not five.”

          I disagree. CFB was much better to me when there seven power conferences (ACC, BE, B8, B10, P10, SEC, SWC), multiple independents and a multitude of decent mid-majors.

          Four power conferences isn’t ideal for anything. A 4-team playoff still has to leave room for independents, so you can’t give autobids. An 8-team playoff is no better off with 4 conferences than 5, either.

          The Big 12 will likely be the one left standing when the music stops. I do not envision ACC raids once the B12 is gone and the ACC grant of rights isn’t going away. I suggested that the B12 will end with a vote of (at least) 6 member schools out of 10, which solves the B12 grant of rights problem (which is a serious obstacle left unaddressed).

          “I can see all 4 conferences pitching in to an orderly unwinding of the B12.”

          Why would they agree to do that? Nobody wants to get stuck with most of the B12 teams.

          “Perhaps, the ACC would need to allow Virginia Tech & NC State to go to the SEC if they agree to take Kansas and WVU, which provides the deciding 2 “yes” votes to a B12 dissolution (the 4 to the Pac being the other yes” votes).”

          There is zero chance the ACC “allows” any such thing to happen.

          “That would take the SEC to 16 teams, along with the Pac, and both could implement a pod system that would greatly improve scheduling.”

          Pods are more problematic than you think, especially in the SEC. The P16 would also have LA issues.

          Like

  13. Jon says:

    how would the big 12 align divisions? seems like a big problem with expansion.

    Like

  14. KSbugeater says:

    What about UC and Nebraska? While Nebraska officials make like all is well with the Big Ten, many fans yearn for the old geographical rivals of the Big 8 and the steamy love-to-hate relationship with Texas. A few important things have changed since 2011:
    1. The Longhorn Network went over like a lead balloon. Does Texas really consider 3rd tier TV rights important enough to forgo regaining some national cache by pulling Nebraska back?
    2. After seeing the other conferences go with more equitable revenue sharing, the little 9 might be willing to stand up to Texas.
    3. The Big Ten, after its dramatic reach west to get Nebraska, doubled down on its eastern front, picking up Rutgers and Maryland, two schools Nebraska shares no history with. The B1G basketball tournament will be held in NYC, a reach for most Nebraska fans to attend. The best conference tourney (Big 12), held 3 hours from Lincoln in Kansas City, seems like a really fond memory.
    Yes, the Big 12 can regain a championship game with any two marginal schools, but mending fences with Nebraska, while not likely, would actually re-elevate the conference image and provide some comeuppance to Czar Delany.

    Like

    • urbanleftbehind says:

      Or how about Nebraska and _ _ _ _n _ _ _ , had the bowl placement stars not aligned to FranktheTank’s liking?

      I think we saw the imbalance inherent in an E-W split of the B1G on full display last Saturday night. It would be enough to make me panic and sweat, were I a Cornhusker partisan. I dont know how much pull Nebraska would have, but I think that’s the school, plus their west division partners, that may be begging for an all out push by the B1G for Texas and OU for talent access.

      Like

    • @KSbugbeater – University presidents make these decisions. The only school in the Big 12 that wouldn’t accept an invite to the Big Ten on-the-spot is Texas (and that’s because UT craves control even more than money). There is absolutely no sane administrator at Nebraska or any other school in the other 4 power conferences that would go to the Big 12. In the conference realignment landscape, the Big Ten and SEC share the top of the totem pole while the Big 12 is clearly at the bottom. (Note that this doesn’t have anything to do whatsoever with the results on-the-field, as the Big 12 can still produce good-to-great football teams leveraging Texas-based recruits.)

      Like

      • bullet says:

        I’m not sure any of the Texoma schools would go to the Big 10. I’m pretty sure TCU, Baylor and Texas wouldn’t. Texas Tech would be idiotic to do it w/o Texas or Texas A&M going with them, but an egotistical president might make the mistake that he can recruit Texas from Lubbock playing Big 10 schools.

        Geography matters in many ways-student-athlete travel time, travel $, alumni base.

        Like

        • Except that the B1G really doesn’t want Tech or really anyone from the Big 12 other than Texas and MAYBE Oklahoma (and the B1G probably feels like this would be a semi-acceptable reach… I’m not saying they’re necessarily right, but I think this is how they feel about it). Remember, this was the whole “Tech problem” discussion back when Texas to B1G was being discussed.

          Like

        • Wow, totally off. Every school in Big 12 would join Big Ten for the athletic contracts they hold with ESPN, Fox, and their ownership of BTN; plus the added academic prestige that would come for being involved with AAU schools and the CIC. Texas is only one that wouldnt need the bump in prestige and as mentioned before, they have money and yearn for control.

          Like

        • scoochpooch says:

          Every school in Big 12 would join Big Ten for the athletic contracts they hold with ESPN, Fox, and their ownership of BTN; plus the added academic prestige that would come for being involved with AAU schools and the CIC. Texas is only one that wouldnt need the bump in prestige and as mentioned before, they have money and yearn for control.

          Like

        • Richard says:

          Don’t kid yourself. TCU and Baylor would jump to the B10 in a heartbeat.

          Remember that TCU was willing to fly their volleyball, soccer, and swimming teams all over the western half of the US (none close to them) just for a slight conference upgrade back in the day (and they were leaving a conference with nearby schools Houston, Tulane, and Memphis).

          Like

        • frug says:

          Given the chance every Big XII schools outside of Texas and, possibly, Oklahoma would join the Big 10 immediately. They wouldn’t a choice. Insuring themselves a permanent seat at the power conference level supersedes any of the other concerns you listed (especially since the extra tens of millions of extra $’s in conference distributions would more than cover the last revenue from higher travel expenses and lost donations).

          Like

          • frug says:

            And its not just the Big 10. All the non-UT/OU schools would also jump at SEC or PAC invites (ok maybe, WVU would turn down the PAC, but the others wouldn’t think twice about it)

            Like

    • Mike says:

      @KSbugeater

      In addition to what Frank said…

      The Longhorn Network went over like a lead balloon. Does Texas really consider 3rd tier TV rights important enough to forgo regaining some national cache by pulling Nebraska back?

      The LHN just got carriage, its going to make money. Texas didn’t go through all of that just to give up the LHN just to get Nebraska back. Nebraska is great and all, but no one is worth that.

      2. After seeing the other conferences go with more equitable revenue sharing, the little 9 might be willing to stand up to Texas.

      Outside of third tier, the Big 12 already has equitable sharing.

      3. The Big Ten, after its dramatic reach west to get Nebraska, doubled down on its eastern front, picking up Rutgers and Maryland, two schools Nebraska shares no history with. The B1G basketball tournament will be held in NYC, a reach for most Nebraska fans to attend. The best conference tourney (Big 12), held 3 hours from Lincoln in Kansas City, seems like a really fond memory.

      I doubt most Nebraska fans care where the basketball tournament is played unless it is in Omaha. The three hour drive to KC is nice, but NY is just a three hour flight away.

      Like

    • Texas has guaranteed control over their 3rd tier rights, and that control is explicitly why they didn’t abandon the league when they had that option. How do the other nine schools “stand up to Texas” when the obvious consequence of seizing 3rd tier rights (if indeed bylaws even allowed such a move) would be Texas (and very likely Oklahoma as well) bailing on the league and dooming it to becoming an afterthought?

      Like

    • Brian says:

      KSbugeater,

      “What about UC and Nebraska?”

      They’re both happier where they are. CO had been wanting to join the P12 for decades. NE wanted into the B10 for quite a while, too. Besides, NE is about to get paid when the new TV deal starts.

      “While Nebraska officials make like all is well with the Big Ten, many fans yearn for the old geographical rivals of the Big 8 and the steamy love-to-hate relationship with Texas.”

      Fans don’t matter. You’d have to pry B10 membership out of any NE president’s cold, dead hands.

      “A few important things have changed since 2011:
      1. The Longhorn Network went over like a lead balloon. Does Texas really consider 3rd tier TV rights important enough to forgo regaining some national cache by pulling Nebraska back?”

      Yes. You’re talking about over $10M per year and UT never cared much about NE.

      “2. After seeing the other conferences go with more equitable revenue sharing, the little 9 might be willing to stand up to Texas.”

      They have equal sharing now. The conference chose not to lump 3rd tier rights in.

      “3. The Big Ten, after its dramatic reach west to get Nebraska, doubled down on its eastern front, picking up Rutgers and Maryland, two schools Nebraska shares no history with. The B1G basketball tournament will be held in NYC, a reach for most Nebraska fans to attend. The best conference tourney (Big 12), held 3 hours from Lincoln in Kansas City, seems like a really fond memory.”

      Hoops will not drive any decisions for NE.

      Like

      • KSbugeater says:

        By UC, I meant Cincinnati. I agree that Colorado probably isn’t going back to the Big 12.

        As a Nebraska alumnus and fan, I was pretty happy with the move to the Big Ten because it meant solid financial footing and more big market exposure for our teams (setting academic perks aside, since that facet has since been revealed to be secondary). That hasn’t completely changed for me. However, if the Big 12 could promise the same amount of revenue as the Big Ten and a guarantee of rights from all members, the Nebraska chancellor following Perlman would have to consider the offer. A new UN system president will be named soon, and he or she might have different priorities, such as reducing air travel for nonrevenue sports to shrink the university carbon footprint.

        Big Ten folks should be proud, but I think some of you are dismissing the idea of Nebraska leaving too quickly out of an inflated sense of conference gravity. I know it’s far-fetched, but more home schedules like this year (Purdue, Illinois, Minnesota, Rutgers) would have any Nebraska administrator wondering what they signed up for. At least when KU came to Lincoln for their biennial beating we had some familiarity and shared tradition.

        Like

        • Richard says:

          Well it looks like your school signed up for annual beatings by the Gophers to me . . .

          Maybe if you actually had a winning record (conference or all-time) over Minnesota, you can dismiss games against them as not worth your while.

          Like

        • Brian says:

          KSbugeater,

          “By UC, I meant Cincinnati.”

          Sorry.

          “However, if the Big 12 could promise the same amount of revenue as the Big Ten”

          If they could do that, they wouldn’t need to expand.

          “and a guarantee of rights from all members,”

          If they could get that, they wouldn’t need to expand.

          “the Nebraska chancellor following Perlman would have to consider the offer.”

          Why? Why would they change again for no net gain and a worse academic environment?

          “A new UN system president will be named soon, and he or she might have different priorities, such as reducing air travel for nonrevenue sports to shrink the university carbon footprint.”

          Academics will always trump air travel for Olympic sports.

          “Big Ten folks should be proud, but I think some of you are dismissing the idea of Nebraska leaving too quickly out of an inflated sense of conference gravity.”

          I think the idea of any school leaving a major conference right after joining it is unlikely, and even less likely for no monetary gain.

          “I know it’s far-fetched, but more home schedules like this year (Purdue, Illinois, Minnesota, Rutgers) would have any Nebraska administrator wondering what they signed up for.”

          You forgot 2011 and 2012 already?

          2011 – OSU, MSU, NW, IA
          2012 – MI, PSU, WI, MN

          2014-2015 are the makeup years for teams that haven’t played NE much lately before the 9 game season starts.

          2015 – WI, NW, MSU, IA

          That seems okay.

          2016 – IL, PU, MN, UMD
          2017 – OSU, WI, IA, NW, RU
          2018 – IL, PU, MN, MSU
          2019 – OSU, WI, IA, NW, IN

          Looks like the odd years are great and the even years need a strong OOC game.

          2016 – OR
          2018 – CO

          Like

        • vp19 says:

          You’re willing to give up all the sundry academic beneifts of the B1G (the CiC, etc.) over football home scheduling? Leaving the Big Ten for an altered Big 12 (where there’s no guarantee you wouldn’t again be under the thumb of Texas) would be the dumbest conference move a big-time school has made since South Carolina petulantly left the ACC in 1971 without a landing spot for any of its teams.

          Like

    • Nostradamus says:

      Nebraska doesn’t want to go back…

      1) And Nebraska was right there with Texas and IMG Exploring NU’s options before ultimately going to the big ten.

      2) revenue sharing was never an issue for Nebraska in the Big XII.

      3) Until the past 2 years, your average Nebraska fan didn’t care much about conference basketball tournaments and still overall football drives the bus there.

      Like

      • dtwphx says:

        has Nebraska become the permanent host for the B1G baseball tournament?

        Like

        • Arch Stanton says:

          No, they will likely have to share Omaha with the Big East Conference for baseball.
          The Big Ten will sell way more tickets, but Creighton plays their home games there so MECA (the organization that runs the stadium) has a good working relationship there already and wouldn’t shut them out every year.

          Like

  15. Mike R says:

    I think the CFP is incredibly well-led and rational, but I do wish that in creating compelling semifinals that would have honored the Rose Bowl tradition in a situation where they were handed the opportunity to do so. Oregon-Ohio State in Pasadena on New Year’s afternoon just has a “rightness” about it that should not have been ignored. I think one could also make a very good case for Oregon as No. 1 after the weekend’s games. As a side benefit, Alabama-FSU in the Sugar would also be extremely fan-friendly and help generate a great atmosphere in the stadium that would translate over TV.

    Like

    • vp19 says:

      Have you heard any Buckeye fans or people in Pasadena complain? Get over it.

      Like

    • SH says:

      Agreed. It would have been nice to preserve or see tradition where it could be preserved. I think it would create better atmosphere too. I’m real curious to see how the Rose Bowl atmosphere will be this year. And that matters for a made for TV product. The Sugar Bowl will be fine and would have been fine with AL – FSU.

      There is nothing to get over vp19 – just would have been nice to see.

      Like

      • greg says:

        My guess it that the committee felt putting OSU in top four was enough of a stretch, and jumping them up to 3rd, and avoiding top-seeded Alabama, was too much. As much as I’d like to see a traditional Rose Bowl lineup, I can understand why OSU wasn’t sent to Pasadena. It would also be difficult to justify the lone undefeated FSU facing the #1 seed in a near home game.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Some would argue that OR is the better team and deserved to be #1 instead of AL, also solving the problem.

          Like

          • Richard says:

            Yep. I definitely believe that UO should have been seeded #1. So does the Badger fan at work.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            That would have been a pretty easy change if they wanted. Also easy to justify since Oregon beat #7 badly and it was the one team who beat them.

            Like

          • Andy says:

            The computers have Alabama at #1.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Massey’s composite of about 40 computer ratings has them this way:
            1. Alabama 1.88
            2. Oregon 2.70
            3. TCU 4.38
            4. Ohio St. 4.75
            5. Baylor 6.76
            6. FSU 6.78
            7. Ole Miss 7.70
            8. MS St. 8.28
            9. Michigan St. 9.64
            10. UGA 11.70

            A fair number of people and computers put Oregon at #1.

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            This goes to show why the folks in charge would not be comfortable relying on computers entirely. No one would tolerate a playoff that left out an undefeated power conference champion.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Agreed. I think its fair where they rate FSU, but until someone beats them you can’t say they aren’t just saving it until it is necessary. FSU has to be in.

            Like

  16. john galt says:

    BYU would provide quality program instantly. no growing needed.

    Like

  17. john galt says:

    How many of candidates have a national title, heisman winner, and a stadium that fills 64k each week? just one: byu

    Like

  18. Jim Fletcher says:

    I see one of four scenarios happening with the Big 12. The most likely one involves Cincinnati and Memphis joining the conference, in which case West Virginia would no longer be a geographic outlier, and the Big 12 could have a conference championship game in football. The second most likely scenario would be Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State joining an east division of the Pac 16. The third one would involve Texas and Oklahoma joining the west division of the Big 10, while the last (and least likely) scenario would have Texas becoming independent yet attached in football and joining the ACC in all other sports (just like Notre Dame). I hope they keep the Big 12 together by adding Cincinnati and Memphis. It seems better to have more conferences and teams with a realistic chance to win a football national title. Breaking up the Big 12 would reduce the number of teams with any realistic shot, because virtually no additional expansion would occur, and some of the current Big 12 teams would not be able to join one of the remaining four power conferences. Hook ’em Horns, and long live the Longhorn Network!

    Like

  19. bEEEEERme says:

    Uconn was passed over by the ACC for Cuse and pitt, then Lville later. Each time we heard stories about getting blocked by Bc or FSU wanted the better current fball team or whatever. Think about this for a second, if uconn was in contention each time but kept getting passed over, they must have been worth the $20mil to the ACC each time to be in the convo.

    All we heard about was how the b12 needs schools who can bring value equal or above and only a few could. Even though it seems uconn football is a huge rebuild right now, we wvu fans know they care($) and will be competitive again.

    I think uconn brings equal to or positive value to the TV contract. The question is can we get them and Cincy in quickly. Cincy will take anything and uconn will not say know to a upgrade league and money wise vs where they are now, but we need to be careful the b1g doesn’t grab uconn earlier then planned to block the b12 from gaining value like the ACC dud with Lville. That’s what I’m worried about.

    My second option is BYU and BSU for fball only.

    3rd option is to make a rule that all 10 members can not schedule FCS teams and only one non BCS school per year. Basically boost SOS/RPI major league.

    Like

    • Jersey Bernie says:

      I just do not understand what UConn would bring to any conference (other than the ACC, which passed). Hartford-New Haven is the number 30 TV market. There is no impact in Boston and no impact in New York City. While UConn has been winning men’s and women’s basketball championships, those have not been major stories in NYC. A few years ago, when RU played a regular season game against Louisville, the Empire State Building was lit up in red (scarlet?). Nothing like that has ever happened for UConn national bball championships.

      Connecticut also is not a major recruiting area. There are very few D-1 players out CT on an annual basis.

      So, no major TV market and no recruiting advantage.

      We all know the rumor that BC claims some sort of informal veto keeping UConn out of the ACC. That makes sense, not just because of bitterness between the schools, but I could see BC wanting to keep all of New England.

      No AAU and nothing special (in football) – no B1G.

      As to the Big 12, why would they want a major geographical outlier that does not add to the picture in major ways? Both BYU and UCF make more sense if geography is irrelevant. In addition, as other posters have said, the culture of Connecticut is completely out of tune with any other team in the Big 12. I mean Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa, WVa – Connecticut?

      There has been enough discussion regarding whether RU and UMd actually fit in the mid-western culture of the B1G. UConn to the Big 12 is real culture shock.

      UConn has to hope to someday, somehow, get into the ACC – or else understand that the football program exists at a secondary level.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      bEEEEERme,

      “Think about this for a second, if uconn was in contention each time but kept getting passed over, they must have been worth the $20mil to the ACC each time to be in the convo.”

      No, that doesn’t have to be true. It means the schools they did pick were worth that. UConn may have been passed over because it was worth less than the others to the ACC.

      And remember, a school’s value is different to each conference. The travel for adding UConn makes them an almost impossible choice for the B12.

      “Even though it seems uconn football is a huge rebuild right now, we wvu fans know they care($) and will be competitive again.”

      When were they competitive before? They were co-champs of the BE twice and have never won 10 games in I-A. If that’s their ceiling, they don’t add much in FB.

      “but we need to be careful the b1g doesn’t grab uconn earlier then planned to block the b12 from gaining value like the ACC dud with Lville. That’s what I’m worried about.”

      You can stop worrying. The B10 has zero interest in UConn in the foreseeable future. If UConn gets an AAU invitation that might change, but that would be decades from now if ever.

      Like

      • Nathan says:

        UConn was passed over for very smart reasons: other than the ACC they’re not a great fit with anyone else. The ACC can grab them if and when they’re ready to. Louisville, on the other hand, was on the Big 12’s radar, has great athletics (they spend some serious cash there), and isn’t horrible academically. Better to grab them (and deprive the BigXII another expansion target) while they’re still able to be grabbed.

        Like

  20. loki_the_bubba says:

    “see how much … Rice could be worth if they could string a few winning seasons together.”

    Three in a row, now. We’re working on it.

    Like

  21. gregalthoff says:

    I get a feeling about the Big 12 like I got about the Big East five years ago: that it’s dead in the water, and about to be picked apart by the other conferences.

    Like

    • @gregalthoff – The main difference between the old Big East and Big 12 is that Texas alone can keep the Big 12 alive and the Longhorns currently have the financial and control incentives to stay put. At the same time, the two other most valuable brands in the league (Oklahoma and Kansas) have their “little brothers” that they may be politically forced to protect (Oklahoma State and Kansas State, respectively). Any school besides Texas with multiple power conference options would choose any of those other leagues over the Big 12, but that doesn’t mean that the Big 12 can’t hold on if only because it’s a marriage of convenience.

      Like

  22. […] College Football Playoff and Big 12 Expansion Rumors: Cincinnati and… Memphis? – Frank the Tank’s Slant, December 8, 2014 “I have been an advocate of Big 12 expansion (with Cincinnati and BYU as the top two choices) and believe that the conference badly wants two obvious non-power conference teams to rise up on their own as expansion targets (in the way that Utah and TCU had made names for themselves a few years ago in the Mountain West Conference) no matter how much they tout their company line about being happy at 10 members. Looking at conference realignment in a vacuum, the two most valuable Group of 5 schools are arguably BYU and UConn, so who knows how the Big 12 views either of those schools. I’ll re-state my firm belief that BYU would be a fantastic fit for the Big 12 both on-the-field and financially, but acknowledge that it’s the most unpredictable school that I’ve seen over the past few years of conference realignment both in terms of its own actions and how the rest of the Big 12 perceives the school. If the Big 12 expands and BYU is somehow passed over, then it would be a clear inverse of the Michael Corleone credo: “It’s not business, it’s just personal”. […]

    Like

  23. Colin Meyer says:

    Cincy and Memphis??? How about BYU and UNLV? Might hear some guff about Saints and Sinners but both schools have a lot more to offer than incy and Memphis.

    Like

  24. Mike says:

    http://www.sportingnews.com/ncaa-basketball/story/2014-12-08/college-football-playoff-big-12-expansion-champions-bob-bowlsby-cincinnati-memphis-byu

    Big 12 officials recently met with administrators from the University of Cincinnati, a source close to the university told Sporting News. That is not an indication membership will be offered to the Bearcats in the immediate future — only that they would be a candidate were such an expansion to be undertaken.

    Like

  25. Wainscott says:

    Let’s not forget about Boise State. http://www.idahostatesman.com/2014/12/08/3530388_boise-state-bowl-notebook-could.html?rh=1

    BSU & Oklahoma could be a fun rivalry

    Like

  26. SH says:

    Texas and OK must both like being the kings of their conference (present play excepted) but I doubt they like being tethered to their junior state schools. But both can kind of buy their time until something more favorable pops up. Between the costs of playing, the concussion issue, the separation of the haves and have nots, and just overall academic reforms, the college football landscape in 10 years may look markedly different. But so long as college football is still being played, there will always be a place for UT and OK. And so long as college basketball is still being played and each state gets two senators – KN will be ok.

    For all the other schools in the B12 – who knows what the future holds.

    Like

  27. Huan says:

    Screw geography
    the Big XII should take the best available 2-4 teams out there and just share travel cost in a zippered conference.
    BYU, UCF (or Cincinnatti),
    Rice & Tulane (for AAU) if Big XIV

    Once back at 12, Big XII divisions should be zippered to allow “equivalent” access, exposure and travel. Each division should be anchored by OU and UT. There should be one to two annual cross division games to maintain rivalries. Each team will then play 5 division games, 2 annual cross division games, and 2 rotating cross division games. Listed are first annual cross division games.

    WEST : EAST

    KSU : KU (2nd cross division game versus ISU to allow regional play for ISU)
    OU: OSU
    TTU: UT (2nd cross division game versus OU to maintain the Red River game)
    TCU: Baylor (2nd cross division game versus BYU so all the religious schools play each other)
    ISU : UCF
    BYU : WVU

    Should the Big XII go to Big XIV (the Big XII already owns the rights to “Big XIV”), then it should be Rice and Tulane. Firstly why 14? The only reason would be to generate a dramatic increase in conference athletic volume and inventory for sales rather than just an incremental increase to 12 from 10. Rice and Tulane because they are both AAU programs and academics do matter to University Presidents. As #11 and #12 were taken based on competitiveness, there won’t be a need to go to 14 for strength of schedule, but it will generate an opportunity to improve on academics. Never the less, a Big XIV is very unlikely.

    KSU : KU (2nd cross division game versus ISU to allow regional play for ISU)
    OU: OSU (2nd cross division game versus TCU?)
    TTU: UT (2nd cross division game versus OU to maintain the Red River game)
    TCU: Baylor (2nd cross division game versus BYU so all the religious schools play each other)
    ISU : UCF (2nd cross division game versus Rice)
    BYU : WVU (2nd cross division game versus TTU?)
    Rice : Tulane (2nd cross division game versus KSU?)
    Each team would then play 6 division games, 2 annual cross division games and one rotating cross division games to keep conference games at 9 total.

    Like

  28. bullet says:

    Great line by Bryce Petty (Baylor QB) in this:
    http://www.newsweek.com/manifest-destiny-and-college-football-playoff-why-big-12-got-left-behind-290156

    Entering last weekend Long’s Selection Committee had TCU ranked third, Ohio State fifth and TCU sixth (unbeaten but otherwise unimpressive Florida State was fourth). By Sunday afternoon TCU had beaten hapless Iowa State by 52 points, but found itself having plummeted from top to bottom, behind both the Buckeyes and Bears in the final rankings.

    The Bears, who had wondered last week why they were three spots behind a conference opponent they had beaten two months earlier, i.e. TCU, leap-frogged the Horned Frogs. And so did Ohio State, a team that had the least impressive resume of the three entering Saturday’s play. Asked to explain the logic of all three teams winning and yet all three of them reversing positions relative to one another, Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty provided the sport’s quote of the year. “That’s above my paygrade,” said the fifth-year senior. “All I’m not paid to do is play.”

    His truth is marching on.

    Like

    • scoochpooch says:

      Funny line if not pathetically wrong. Isn’t Petty on a scholarship and receiving a free education at Baylor? For his sakes he better pay attention in class because I can foresee him struggling mightily in the NFL like RGme and all other Big 12 QBs before him.

      Like

  29. wallyhorse says:

    Still think BYU has the inside track, mainly because of what they bring:

    1. Name recognition as the best-known school not in a “Power Five” Conference.

    2. A Worldwide audience of Mormons the Big 12 would love to have.

    3. BYU having their own TV network.

    4. Giving the Big 12 a Mountain Time Zone team that makes for more flexible scheduling, including the occasional 10:30 PM ET game on FOX or 11:30 PM ET game on ABC if either decided to do a late night game.

    That is why BYU becomes very attractive.to the Big 12.

    One other longshot I can see for the Big 12 is Temple. While Temple doesn’t have the fan support, they are the one FBS school in the northeast that does not have a major conference tie-in and with Rutgers now in the Big 10, they are the closest to New York that isn’t the case. Bringing in Temple gives the Big 12 the Philadelphia and possibly New York TV markets, Nos. 5 & 1 respectively. That’s why Temple would be attractive to the Big 12.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      wallyhorse,

      “4. Giving the Big 12 a Mountain Time Zone team that makes for more flexible scheduling, including the occasional 10:30 PM ET game on FOX or 11:30 PM ET game on ABC if either decided to do a late night game.”

      The P12 spent the entire off-season fighting with the networks to reduce the number of late games. Nobody watches them and they’re hard on the teams and the fans.

      Like

      • wallyhorse says:

        Maybe, but there are a lot of Millennials (whom ad buyers crave) on the east coast who are often up at that hour and will watch those games.

        The schools have to realize the days of controlling time slots are over. If FOX/ESPN/ABC want games in the 11:30 PM ET time slot, they will get them even if the conferences object (and that even includes the Big 10 down the road occasionally having to do a 10:00 PM CT/11:00 PM ET game for basketball if the networks want).

        Like

        • Brian says:

          wallyhorse,

          “Maybe, but there are a lot of Millennials (whom ad buyers crave) on the east coast who are often up at that hour and will watch those games.”

          They may be up, but the ratings say they don’t watch the games.

          “The schools have to realize the days of controlling time slots are over.”

          No, they aren’t. Schools will take less money to have decent start times. The G5 schools may cave, but the P5 schools know better.

          “If FOX/ESPN/ABC want games in the 11:30 PM ET time slot, they will get them even if the conferences object (and that even includes the Big 10 down the road occasionally having to do a 10:00 PM CT/11:00 PM ET game for basketball if the networks want).”

          They’ll get them from west coast teams that don’t care if the east coast watches, like they do now. The B12 doesn’t want most of their own fans to not watch their games.

          Like

  30. bullet says:

    Frank;
    Heard anything related to Notre Dame news? On Sirius College sports radio this morning they said they had heard some news out of Notre Dame but couldn’t say what. They said stay tuned to ESPN or Sirius XM or CNNSI. They used the word “disturbing” so I doubt its realignment related.

    Like

  31. Carl says:

    Pinn Stripe

    Like

  32. Eric says:

    Thoughts:

    1. The talk of a lack of a CCG hurting the Big 12 is very short sighted. Let’s not forget that if Alabama or Florida State lost their CCGs, then the SEC/ACC would have lost their represenatives and we’d be saying how a CCG hurt them. Also if one of those two is out and Ohio State wins a close one instead of dominating, then the Big 12 could also have had 2 teams in. The Big 12 lost far more teams to the BCS title bowl than it gained in the BCS era (a stat that would look a lot worse if the ending forumla had been used the first few years as the computers kept a couple CCG loosers in when they had more influence).

    2. I agree with Frank that the Big 12 wants to good candidates to emerge.

    3. I really don’t think there is any harm in waiting. If they want a CCG a petition will probably now work given the goverence restructure. Even without one, it’s a bad idea to expand unless you are sure on the candidates. Maybe Cincinnati has emerged to place they want it combined with BYU and that makes expansion viable. If they aren’t to that place though just wait. You can always expand later, but choosing the wrong teams now is a lot bigger issue.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      Eric,

      “1. The talk of a lack of a CCG hurting the Big 12 is very short sighted. Let’s not forget that if Alabama or Florida State lost their CCGs, then the SEC/ACC would have lost their represenatives and we’d be saying how a CCG hurt them. Also if one of those two is out and Ohio State wins a close one instead of dominating, then the Big 12 could also have had 2 teams in.”

      It’s a double-edged sword, but it’s always better to have a chance to move up. You’re more likely to have your top team not in the top 4 than to have a top 4 team lose the CCG and drop out of the playoff.

      The B12 had 5 upsets in 15 years.
      1996 – NR > #3
      1998 – #10 > #2
      2001 – #9 > #3 – B12 still made the NCG
      2003 – #15 > #1 – #1 still made the NCG
      2007 – #9 > #1

      But 6 times a top 7 team won (all top 4 actually – the B12 never had a team #5-7 in their CCG).

      The B12 had some bad luck, but the SECCG has had fewer upsets proportionately.

      1994 – #6 > #3
      1999 – #7 > #5
      2001 – #21 > #2
      2005 – #13 > #3
      2008 – #2 > #1
      2009 – #2 > #1

      Out of 23 games, that’s 6 upsets (2 real ones and 4 minor ones) – 26%. I doubt the 2008 and 2009 losers would even have dropped below #4. On the other hand, 19 times (73%) a top 7 team won the game. 4 times a team #5-7 won the game. That means the SEC would have gained under the playoff rules.

      “The Big 12 lost far more teams to the BCS title bowl than it gained in the BCS era”

      #1 won once, #2 won 4 times and #3 won once and made the NCG.

      Like

      • Eric says:

        The risk/reward still seems a lot greater to me without a CCG. Baylor and/or TCU winning a CCG would not have guaranteed either a spot, but loosing certainly would have kicked them out. The co-champ status didn’t end up helping this year, but that co-champ status would have looked great if you were comparing either Big 12 co-champ vs. a non-champ of a different conference or if the one who would lose a tie-breaker was far and away the more impressive one (saying for example you have Texas at 11-1 with a loss to Oklahoma State and Oklahoma State at 10-2 with a loss to West Virginia and out of conference to UCLA, Texas is a lot better off being co-champs than being outside the CCG entirely).

        The ability to get a 2nd team in also needs to be considered.

        Like

        • BruceMcF says:

          The risk/reward leans the most positive if it is the two highest ranked schools playing, since the winner benefits. What would have knocked the SEC out if Bama had been upset would have been the fact that the SEC West dominated the rankings, and the boost that Mizzou would have received would have been from too far back. Which means that the first order of business is for the Big12 to get behind the ACC proposal to regulate the *choice* of CCG participants.

          Like

          • Eric says:

            But at the end of the day, it didn’t matter who was playing in the SEC, ACC, or PAC-12 championships. In all 3 cases, one team would be in with a win and out with a loss and the other was likely out either way. Mississippi State would have been unlikely to move back up either at that point. I’ll grant that usually won’t be the case in all of the CCGs, but I think it will hurt just as much as help as it will mean more favorites loosing (although partially offset by more underdogs in the CCG making it in).

            Regardless, I don’t think having a CCG or not having one is a huge advantage (which means adding one or not adding one for playoff purposes is pointless), but I’m definitely in the camp that says not having one is a small advantage in the long run.

            Like

        • Brian says:

          Eric,

          “Baylor and/or TCU winning a CCG would not have guaranteed either a spot, but loosing certainly would have kicked them out.”

          They would’ve played each other (no divisions), so the winner most likely would’ve been #4.

          “The ability to get a 2nd team in also needs to be considered.”

          Usually that’s a divisional runner-up.

          Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      To refer to the “risk/reward” of a CCG, seems to me misguided. Under current rules, the Big XII cannot play a CCG. They would need to expand, which means more mouths to feed.

      It also means some portion of the conference would need to tolerate a worse regular-season football schedule (i.e., less access to Texas/Oklahoma) every single year. As FtT has pointed out in the past, university presidents tend to prefer predictable things (a good schedule every year) over lumpy and unpredictable things (a playoff bid every few years or so).

      On top of that, there are other fixes besides expanding. Baylor could stop playing such a joke of a non-conference schedule.

      Expanding is a permanent decision. By the mid-2020s, we could very well have an 8-team playoff, and then the whole problem goes away. Had such a system existed this year, the Big XII would have placed two teams, and then we would’ve been talking about what a genius Bob Bowlsby was.

      Anyhow, the decision whether to expand could take a while, and by this time next year we’ll have another playoff data point. It could easily be another league that gets “screwed” next year, and that will take some of the pressure off the Big XII.

      Like

  33. Eric says:

    Thoughts:

    1. The talk of a lack of a CCG hurting the Big 12 is very short sighted. Let’s not forget that if Alabama or Florida State lost their CCGs, then the SEC/ACC would have lost their represenatives and we’d be saying how a CCG hurt them. Also if one of those two is out and Ohio State wins a close one instead of dominating, then the Big 12 could also have had 2 teams in. The Big 12 lost far more teams to the BCS title bowl than it gained in the BCS era (a stat that would look a lot worse if the ending forumla had been used the first few years as the computers kept a couple CCG loosers in when they had more influence).

    2. I agree with Frank that the Big 12 wants to good candidates to emerge.

    3. I really don’t think there is any harm in waiting. If they want a CCG a petition will probably now work given the goverence restructure. Even without one, it’s a bad idea to expand unless you are sure on the candidates. Maybe Cincinnati has emerged to place they want it combined with BYU and that makes expansion viable. If they aren’t to that place though just wait. You can always expand later, but choosing the wrong teams now is a lot bigger issue.

    Like

  34. Smoove says:

    That being said, I’ve also always acknowledged that any school with a great basketball fan base (i.e. UConn, Memphis, San Diego State, New Mexico, etc.) could do wonders for its conference realignment prospects if it could merely be competent in football.

    To that end, San Diego State will make its fifth consecutive bowl game. The football programs has had at least 8 wins in each of the past five years. Geographically speaking, San Diego is closer to Austin than Morgantown (I $h*t you not. Google map it) with the SDSU campus just a short 20 minute from Lindbergh field.

    Like

    • urbanleftbehind says:

      If the PAC did stay within its current footprint for expansion, SDSU would be a nobrainer. However I think that usc/ucla’s desire to block the so cal market for themselves plus the uc system’s social justice leanings probably mean Fresno State gets an invite first.

      Like

      • ccrider55 says:

        No Cal State school will be anything but an affiliate member in a non revenue sport, at least as long as the U C schools are members. And the U C schools were apoplectic about allowing even that.

        Like

      • The odds of the Pac-12 expanding in the next decade are basically zero. The have basically the same set of crappy expansion options as the Big 12, and also don’t have any financial reason at all to expand.

        Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        If the PAC did stay within its current footprint for expansion, SDSU would be a nobrainer.

        Except for the Big XII adding TCU, no conference has expanded within its footprint. The whole point of expansion, if you expand, is to add territory. TCU was an exception not likely to be replicated. SDSU has had some decent success, but it didn’t win a Rose Bowl, or finish in the top 10 in three consecutive years from 2008-2010, as TCU did.

        Like

    • m(Ag) says:

      There is an argument that the Big 12 should go west, not east, and add 2 California schools (San Diego State & Fresno?) instead of looking to UCF & USF. Rather than fighting the ACC, SEC, and everyone else in Florida for attention & recruits, they would only be fighting the Pac 12, which is locked into 2 metro areas in the state of California. This would probably be their best chance to reverse the drop off in recruiting that has happened to the Big 12 since realignment.

      There’s two main problems, however. It’s very, very far from West Virginia, and Fox (which shares the rights to both the Big 12 & Pac 12 with ESPN) would be unenthusiastic about trying to divide the West Coast football fans.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        Most of the Big 12 is doing better in recruiting, notably Baylor, Oklahoma St. and TCU. Texas and OU aren’t doing as well, but Texas and OU aren’t winning as much as they did, especially Texas.

        I tend to agree that USF and UCF are fool’s gold. Its a pretty saturated market for media attention and recruiting. And in reality, I don’t think any Big 12 teams other than WVU or ISU would do significant Florida recruiting even with them in the conference. #4 or #5 in any state, like USF and UCF are, is not a good position to be in.

        Like

      • Brian says:

        I’d add the spread to 4 time zones as a major problem.

        Like

  35. urbanleftbehind says:

    The potential entry of BYU into the P5 also poses an additional concern regarding player compensation costs. As a result of campus conduct codes, BYU has many players with spouses plus dependents. As a condition for entry, could BYU insist compensation elements be expanded into areas such as disability/surviving spouse payouts, partial financial/housing and tuition aid. ?

    Like

  36. Chris says:

    From both a long-term and short-term perspective I like BYU and Colorado State for the Big 12. Clearly CSU has to make a good hire to replace McElwain (although a Big12 bid would help that) and they need to get the on-campus stadium built (and readily expandable to 50k+). Cincinnati and UCF are next on the list, with schools like New Mexico, UNLV, Memphis, USF after that and needing to show they can build and sustain success in football (and basketball in USF’s case).

    Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Colorado State has some huge negatives that I don’t think it can overcome. CSU’s new on-campus stadium is probably several years away, and as now conceived, would be the smallest stadium in the league. They’ve had a great year under Jim McElwain, but it remains to be seen if their success can be sustained under the next coach.

      I think it’s a practical certainty that the Big XII’s next expansion will include a school in the Eastern time zone, to give West Virginia a nearby rival. In FtT’s Big XII Expansion Index, he gave Cincinnati 90 out of 100 possible points, to 43 points to Colorado State. Now, some of the merits are arguable, but not when they are that far apart. Cincinnati is the better choice in just about every dimension, and obviously there’s no question the Bearcats would accept in a heartbeat.

      Like

  37. jog267 says:

    The serial devaluation of unbeaten FSU*, TCU outranking Baylor and the selection of OSU for the final spot all serve to establish the fact that the committee values accomplishment above all else. Which means that all else being equal a 12-1/11-2 P5 conference champ trumps an 11-1/10-2 Big 12 team every time. Is this something the Big 12 (especially UT and OU) can live with? My guess is no, and with the value of a championship game greater than before (and sort of ridiculous if staged after a playing a round robin schedule) the Big 12 expands sooner rather than later.

    * I can’t ever recall an undefeated major conference king falling in both esteem and (especially) rank the way FSU did this year. I was surprised the public seemed to accept it as well as it did.

    Like

    • bullet says:

      Bowlsby, after talking to Luck, said it “had a bearing.”

      Like

    • Brian says:

      jog267,

      “* I can’t ever recall an undefeated major conference king falling in both esteem and (especially) rank the way FSU did this year. I was surprised the public seemed to accept it as well as it did.”

      Just because the polls always worked that way doesn’t mean that the fans agreed with it. We just accepted that was the way they worked. If undefeated G5 schools can practically be ignored, why should a P5 school automatically be #1 just for being undefeated. Who you beat and how you win matter to most people.

      Like

  38. Big 12 Business says:

    T. Boone Pickens has been quoted about saying SMU & Memphis are fits. With McMurphy getting news that the B12 will add Cincinnati & Memphis, I think SMU & Rice would be good fits, as Rice will give the Big 12 the athletes that Stanford, Notre Dame & Northwestern along with adding good universities.

    Big 12 North
    Cincinnati
    Iowa State
    Kansas
    Kansas State
    Oklahoma
    Oklahoma State
    West Virginia

    Big 12 South
    Baylor
    Memphis
    Rice
    SMU
    TCU
    Texas
    Texas Tech

    It pretty guarantees a trip to Texas every year and they could sign a 5-game scheduling agreement with BYU and start a Big 12 vs. WCC scheduling agreement in other sports if they wanted. But I’ve been an advocate for Cincinnati & Memphis once Louisville was off the table. I think it’s two solid additions and once they get the Big 12 money flowing in, I think they can be breakout star programs.

    I also suspect when the contracts for the CFB Playoff can be looked at in 5 years, they’ll move to a 8-team playoff. The Power 5 Conference Champions will get an Automatic bid, along with the top-ranked Group of 5 Conference Champion getting an Automatic bid and 2 at-large bids. It would most likely force the remaining independents to join a conference as well.

    Like

    • Eric says:

      I think McMurphy actually said the opposite and there was no expansion planned according to anyone he talked to.

      Regardless, I’d say there is about a 0.1% that SMU or Rice would be invited to the Big 12. They don’t need more Texas schools, adding them now does not make the conference sound more appealing, and all in all there are little chance they wouldn’t subtract from the average payouts rather add to it.

      Like

      • urbanleftbehind says:

        SMU, Rice, Tulane are on a collision course with Wake Forest for a “Magnolia League” G5 or FCS conference. Other members might be fcs private schools in the carolinas and stetson. Schools like Emory, Rhodes, Spring Hill might move up divisions for that.

        Like

      • loki_the_bubba says:

        “Regardless, I’d say there is about a 0.1% that SMU or Rice would be invited to the Big 12. ”

        So, you’re saying there’s a chance.

        Like

  39. Arch Stanton says:

    Frank, et al:

    What are the odds that the Big 12 looks to add two teams in football only?
    BYU would be the obvious candidate for a football only add since they already have a home for non-football sports in the WCC. Plus the We-Won’t-Play-on-Sunday edict won’t be an issue for football. The geography drawback with BYU would be lessoned as well for a football only setup.

    Not sure who would be paired with BYU in a football only capacity though. Boise State, if they can find a home for their other sports? Air Force?

    Or could they add one school in all sports (Cincinnati, Memphis, whoever) and BYU in football only? 11 members isn’t bad for basketball or non-revenue sports.

    I think the Big is battling perception right now as much as anything. They don’t want to be thought of as the “5th” power conference league. It could hurt them in recruiting, in contracts and at the polls.

    Like

    • dtwphx says:

      I wonder if Cinci could get admitted into the new bigEast, if football was invited to the big 12 football only along with BYU? (WV would want the same arrangement)

      Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        I wonder if Cinci could get admitted into the new bigEast, if football was invited to the big 12 football only along with BYU? (WV would want the same arrangement)

        As Arch Stanton noted, the Big XII has no reason not to invite Cincinnati in all sports, if they get invited at all. Odd numbers aren’t a problem in the other sports.

        I doubt that the new Big East wants anything to do with schools that play FBS football, given that conference’s history, and Cincinnati is not a cultural fit.

        And if WV dropped down to football-only, where would its other sports go? (The Big East doesn’t want them either.)

        Like

  40. greg says:

    One thing I find amusing is that margin of victory is the basis of all the CFP arguments, but everyone cried that “the BCS computers” shouldn’t use MOV as it encourages running up the score. TCU and OSU sure ran it up this week.

    ESPN cfb podcast reported that “the BCS computers” would have come up with the same top 4, but in different order. FSU would have been #1.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      Technically the committee wasn’t allowed to consider MOV either. They could use relative scoring stats, though.

      As for running it up this week, I think both TCU and OSU could’ve scored more if they wanted to do so. OSU only attempted 6 passes in the second half and was using it’s 3rd string RB in the second half of the 4th quarter. We were already on our 3rd string QB, so we couldn’t really pull him. TCU called off the dogs in the 4th quarter and pulled their starters. They made no attempt to score when they got deep in the red zone late in the 4th.

      Like

  41. urbanleftbehind says:

    One poster above referenced having a play-in game. I thought of a having a mandatory Big XII champ versus NonP5 qualifier in the same schedule spot as the CCGs – the preposterous (Pre-Postseason) game.

    Yesterday, a certain school might have interest in such a concept, in light of it not being in a conference, much less having a conference championship game.

    Down the road, Notre Dame could find themselves in the same predicament as TCU and Baylor if the Irish are in contention. Notre Dame has no opportunity for a 13th game since they are unaffiliated with a conference. While Notre Dame typically plays a tough schedule, they must hope those teams are strong in the years they meet the Irish. Also, Notre Dame will need the ACC to bolster their play on the field since the Irish will play five ACC teams per year.

    If Notre Dame goes undefeated, they should be in the playoff no questions asked. However, where the Irish should be worried is what if they are 11-1? For instance, a Notre Dame team that was 11-1 with their only loss being to a six-loss team would probably not make the playoff this year.

    Head coach Brian Kelly mentioned in his bowl press conference how this is a “fluid situation” and he will talk with athletics director Jack Swarbrick to make sure Notre Dame is making the right decisions with regards to scheduling. After the first year of the selection committee process, the Irish should be worried about what it will take for them to reach the playoff in the upcoming years.

    Like

  42. Jim Fletcher says:

    If the Big 12 were to add Cincinnati and Memphis, they could split into north and south divisions with Oklahoma State going to the north and Memphis in the south. Stillwater is actually further north than Memphis. Of course, in order to keep the Bedlam rivalry going, a team would be required to play the same respective inter-divisional opponent each season (i.e. – SEC). For example, Texas would play West Virginia each year, Oklahoma would play Oklahoma State every year, and so on. We could even have the two perennial basketball powers (Kansas and Memphis) play each year on the gridiron. The conference would actually be somewhat competitively balanced if it looked like this:

    North Division South Division

    West Virginia……………………………Texas
    Oklahoma State……………………….Oklahoma
    Kansas State……………………………Baylor
    Cincinnati………………………………..TCU
    Iowa State……………………………….Texas Tech
    Kansas……………………………………Memphis

    Any thoughts? Frank the Tank — what do you think?

    Like

    • urbanleftbehind says:

      I’d swap out K-State and I-A state for TCU and Memphis, becoming more E-W, so that the eastern schools have a recruting touchstone in both the Dallas and Mississippi/Memphis metro areas.

      Like

    • Arch Stanton says:

      Under the hypothetical situation that those two teams were added and the divisions were divided as such, there is no reason to have any of those cross-over rivalry games each year other than OU-OSU.
      Not one of them is compelling or preserves any tradition.

      The Big Ten protects the Indiana-Purdue cross-over only, the Big 12 could do the same with Okie and Okie State.

      Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I don’t know how many Big XII members have to approve an expansion. If I’m OKSt, KState, Kansas, or ISU, I am very unhappy with those divisions, with the implied loss of access to the state of Texas.

      Like

    • Wainscott says:

      Maybe Bullet can opine as to having all Texas schools in one conference and if the non-TX schools would vote for that. Might be hard to do.

      I would assume Cincy, Memphis, and West Va. would be in the same division, and possibly Iowa State in that division, too.

      Maybe this (which would right now be rather unbalanced):
      WV
      Cincy
      Memphis
      Iowa State
      Kansas State (rival with ISU)
      Okie State

      Texas
      Oklahoma
      Baylor
      TCU
      Tx Tech
      Kansas

      If Texas schools get split up, Id expect Texas and TCU to be in separate divisions (to guarantee other schools one game against a bigger market Texas school)

      Like

      • Tom says:

        I’d actually go with the following set up assuming Cincinnati and Memphis are added:

        EAST
        Texas
        Oklahoma
        Oklahoma State
        Memphis
        Cincinnati
        West Virginia

        WEST
        Iowa State
        Kansas State
        Kansas
        Texas Tech
        TCU
        Baylor

        Texas and Oklahoma will want to be in the same division so any scenario where they are split isn’t going to happen. Oklahoma State will also have to be in the same division as Oklahoma. An all southwest division will lead to imbalanced divisions, so you have to split up the Texas teams. I think you have to keep Iowa State, Kansas, and Kansas State in one division since they share a long history together. At the same time, having three Texas teams in their division increases their ability to recruit Texas and overcome their respective lack of in state talent, which is the weakest of any team in the league. (West Virginia doesn’t produce much talent, but they can also go into neighboring Ohio, Maryland, and Virginia). On the other side, UC, WVU, and Memphis would not need Texas as much for recruiting. They also have no history with the rest of the league and are in relatively close proximity to each other. All of the primary rivalries are preserved without the need for locked cross over games, so you could have an 8 game schedule and play everyone home and home 50% of the time. Or you could go to 9 and play everyone more frequently. You could argue that Texas would want to play Tech, TCU, and Baylor every year, but for UT these are all secondary rivals at best. Both divisions are balanced. OU and UT are the power brands and ratings drivers, but the WEST has TCU, Baylor, and Kansas State to counterbalance and offer up a potential championship game with highly ranked teams.

        Like

      • Eric says:

        I just don’t think you can put Texas and Oklahoma in the same division, especially with all the Texas schools too. That’s both kings and the best recruiting ground all together. There would be a few years the other division was better, the but the Texas/Oklahoma division would recieve far more media attention even when they were equal and would have a lot easier time thriving. This is magnified much more for the Big 12 now than it is in the Big Ten West now or was in the Big 12 North (which at least still had Nebraska).

        Like

  43. loki_the_bubba says:

    Bowl swag list. Never thought of the tax implications in the new Bahamas Bowl

    http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Daily/Issues/2014/12/05/Colleges/Bowl-gifts.aspx

    Like

  44. bullet says:

    To follow up on Alan’s posts, someone on ShaggyBevo compiled TV ratings through the end of November using Sports Media Watch. His numbers by conference for games on major networks (don’t know his definition of that term):
    Conf. Avg rating /viewers/#games/Avg. viewers
    SEC / 2.6 / 211.0 / 50 / 4.2
    ACC / 2.1 / 120.5 / 36 / 3.3
    B10 / 2.0 / 154.0 / 48 / 3.2
    B12 / 2.0 / 85.1 / 27 / 3.2
    PAC / 1.6 / 98.2 / 38 / 2.6

    I’m guessing he included the late night Pac games on ESPN which didn’t have good ratings. FSU was the school that topped viewership.

    Like

  45. Wainscott says:

    @Frank:

    Completely agree that basketball schools with established fan bases have potential to use football success to improve realignment prospects. However, it takes not mere “competence” for schools like Memphis/UConn/New Mex, etc…, it would take TCU levels of sustained success and some major bowl/playoff wins and some luck to move up. TCU, since 1998, is 156-55. It has produced superstar players, major bowl wins (including the Rose)–and still only got into the B12 by sheer dumb luck (conference needed a Texas team, it was the best one available). Utah got in to the Pac primarily due to its market location in SLC, and its serious football success (the original BCS Buster I believe, 2 total BCS bowls).

    Those basketball schools you mentioned have serious potential (as well as the second state school in some growing states, like Colorado State), but they would normally need more than one-off winning seasons and appearances in minor bowls to get it done. Memphis may get lucky if the B12 decides expansion is immediately necessary, but we’re only talking about Cincy as a lock because of the school’s football run (and back to back BCS bowl appearances) a few years back. Memphis, if it gets invited to the B12 would be an exception to the rule requiring major football success to get a promotion. Indeed this was Memphis’ first 9 win season since 2004, and first winning seasons since like 2007 (a 7 win season).Indeed, if Memphis wins its bowl game this year, it will be its FIRST EVER double digit win season.

    Memphis’ wild card is Fred Smith, FedEx CEO, multi-billionaire, Memphis resident. If he wants to go all T Boone Pickens on the school and promise the conference millions in generous sponsorships and such, that could very well trump Memphis’ pedestrian football program.

    Like

    • urbanleftbehind says:

      Using that logic, following Cincinnati, then it is

      Boise State (1.75* BCS since 2006), though maybe Shea McLellin should count against them somehow.

      followed by BYU; the Cougars would be higher, but their MNC was 30 years ago, cemented against a then 6-5 mediocre Michigan team, steady if not spectular winning since then, decent collegegiate star power and NFL output at QB, DL, LB, OL (give them a demographic pass for skill positions, if you will).

      Like

      • Wainscott says:

        Yes, and if you look, Boise was Big East bound before the league died on the basis of its football success, and managed to get a special deal from the MWC to return. BYU got a tv deal from ESPN that allowed it to go independent in football. Boise on the strength of recent football success, BYU the bigger name based on a national title in the ESPN era, a Heisman winner, and overall consistent success since then.

        Strictly in terms of football success, setting all other factors aside, the strongest candidates are probably Cincy and Boise. Factoring in things like markets, geography, basketball, academics, etc., Boise probably gets dropped a few notches, definitely below BYU.

        Like

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          BYU has a fanatical national following based on religious affiliation that is absolutely, positively, guaranteed never to disappear. If Boise has a few 6-6 seasons, their popularity would tank.

          Like

  46. Wainscott says:

    Just think, if it were an 8 team playoff, we’d be debating the merits of Michigan State, Ole Miss, and Mississippi State for the 7 and 8 seed.

    Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      That’s absolutely true, but the stakes are a lot lower when you’re debating “Who’s #8?” than “Who’s #4?”

      Like

      • Wainscott says:

        Oh, totally agree. I was going for “faux-excitement”, which does not translate well on message boards.

        Like

      • @Marc Shepherd – Yes, that’s correct. That has always been tension in college football – how many teams “deserve” to be in the championship discussion and what the heck does “deserve” even mean? As long as there aren’t auto-bids for at least the 5 power conference champs (which inherently means that we would need a playoff field larger than 4 teams), the latter question will invariably come up every single year. I understand some of the romanticism of retaining this model and the focus on the horse race starting from week one of the season, but for most people, there’s a much larger crime when a “deserving” team is locked out of a playoff field that is structurally too small compared to allowing in an “undeserving team” for the last spot or two in a larger playoff.

        Like

        • acaffrey says:

          In an 8-team playoff, the rankings might matter a lot more. Then you would have the “unfairness” of Alabama being #1 and playing Gof5 team, while whomever is #2 gets to play an 11-1 P5 team that dropped to #7.

          Like

        • ccrider55 says:

          A playoff should have qualifiers, not auto bids. Yes, I realize that 5+ doesn’t go into four. And some “feel” they “deserve” more than one entrant, but conference champ as a requirement would reduce much of the unquantifiable arguments to which conference champ gets left out.

          Like

          • @ccrider55 – I guess that’s my core issue: why should any power conference champ get left out due to unquantifiable arguments? The ONLY thing that schools (outside of independents) can 100% control on-the-field is whether it wins its conference championship. That’s it. It can’t control the rankings. It can’t control the strength of its conference. Even further, it can’t really control its non-conference strength of schedule (or at least guarantee that it has a good slate from year-to-year). Football isn’t like basketball where schools can fairly easily adjust their non-conference strength of schedule from year-to-year. Florida State got criticized for supposedly “not playing anybody” and they had a non-conference schedule of Notre Dame, Florida and Oklahoma State! There’s no one on this planet that could have predicted several years ago when this year’s schedule was coming together that Florida State would have been better off playing Mississippi State and Minnesota! Now, you can guarantee yourself a *weak* non-conference schedule like Baylor did this year, but it was clear that FSU had every intent to have an insanely difficult non-conference schedule this past year and look what happened.

            I’m not a proponent of an NCAA Tournament-style open access football playoff, but I’ve never bought the argument that an 8-team playoff was anything close to that. There should be some mechanism where at least some of the field objectively gets into the playoff purely based on what was done on-the-field as opposed to style points, how the strength of schedule happened to turn out this past season, etc. The unquantifiable arguments should be left to decipher among those few schools that didn’t win their conference or independents.

            At the same time, though, if you’re only going to have a 4-team playoff, then all that people are doing by attempting to impose a conference champ qualifier in that system is trying to be a “little bit pregnant”. Either all power champs should be in or there shouldn’t be a mandate for them because schools like Notre Dame (whether we like it or not) still exist and the powers that be (which includes the power conference commissioners and ESPN) would rather have 1000 Notre Dames in the playoff than a Group of 5 school that gets in because of a conference champion rule. Once you go down that road, then Notre Dame also shouldn’t actually get *preference* over a school like Mississippi State that happened to be stuck in the toughest division in the country. The only way that you can treat everyone equally in a 4-team playoff is to remove any mandates for conference champions (even though they should certainly receive preferential treatment). The analysis shifts quite a bit in an 8-team playoff since that means all 5 power conference champs can be automatically accommodated.

            Like

          • dtwphx says:

            but how many games is too many for college kids to play each season?
            15 games? 16 games? 17 games? Where does it stop?

            Like

          • Wainscott says:

            But automatic qualification does not necessarily reward a body of work as much as a body of one game. If Mizzou had knocked off Alabama, it deserves the SEC spot in a playoff simply because of its division? (Mizzou chosen because its the lowest ranked division winner–not trying to troll anyone)?

            Automatic qualifiers will create situations where wholly undeserving teams will get a shot at the title. Its not exactly working in the NFL this year (potential 6-10 NFC South winner hosting a playoff game? yikes.) In an 8 team playoff, the stakes of that undeserving team competing are far greater than when an otherwise unqualified MBB team gets hot and wins a conference tourney.

            Like

          • @Wainscott – To answer your question in the first paragraph, YES. The conference championship game in and of itself IS a playoff game in that scenario (just as the NCAA Tournament rewards conference tournament champions but not regular season champs). That’s why I don’t understand a lot of consternation of an “undeserving” team winning a conference championship game where people have this fear about a survive-and-advance playoff game letting an “undeserving” team into… more survive-and-advance playoff games.

            Look – my whole view on an 8-team playoff is that it’s not a zero sum proposition. There should be auto slots where every power conference team (whether it’s Alabama or Wake Forest) has 100% control on-the-field whether it gets into the playoff. Then there should also be a small less-than-a-handful of slots for those “deserving” teams that aren’t conference champs. Sure, having a crappy NFC South-type division winner sneak in might cause some heartburn on some level, but the thing is that it was still 100% determined on-the-field with 100% objective criteria that everyone agreed to and isn’t dependent upon the opinions of how 12 random people sitting in a room in Irving, Texas are swaying on a particular day.

            There are two countervailing interests in any postseason format (or even if we were in an old school poll system without any championship game): (1) the transparency of the system to determine a champion and (2) the desirability of the outcome of that determination. A lot of new school fans value the former over the latter (“If it’s not determined on-the-field with every single possible conference champ involved, then it’s a complete sham”), whereas many traditional fans believe the latter takes precedence over the former (“All I care about is seeing the best team being crowned using whatever criteria that I deem to be most important”). You can have a 100% transparent system, yet have undesirable outcomes (i.e. the NFC South example that you gave). You can also have a completely non-transparent system and have desirable outcomes (i.e. many national champions crowned by pollsters in the pre-BCS era).

            So, what’s more important? Transparency of the system or the outcome of such system? Being the measured person that I like to believe that I am, I think that there’s got to be a balance between the two, which is why I feel an 8-team playoff with auto-bids for the 5 power conference champs has been the optimal model for a long time. That would balance transparency (where 5 teams that would get into the playoff completely on-the-field without any types of rankings or opinions involved) with a reasonably desirable outcome (i.e. we’re not trying to pretend that the Sun Belt champ has any business automatically having a chance at the national championship). A 16-team playoff with auto-bids for all conference champs would actually be more transparent, but the outcome is so much less desirable (at least IMHO) that it ought to be rejected. By the same token, if all that someone values is the outcome, then he/she is willing to shift criteria from year-to-year (or even week-to-week) in order to implement a self-fulfilling prophecy, which (once again, IMHO) isn’t should be how a champion ought to be determined, either.

            Like

          • Further to my last point, when push comes to shove, I believe that transparency ultimately has to be valued over the outcome. The college football power structure has complete control over how transparent it wants its postseason system to be (or not be). Ultimately, though, it can’t try to force certain outcomes because it’s impossible to predict what might transpire in a given season. The whole reason why so many fans have gotten angry about the college football postseason system over the years is that there were too many seasons where the process was BOTH non-transparent AND had an undesirable outcome (i.e. multiple teams with an argument for the national title). You can’t control an undesirable outcome, but shame on the powers that be if they can’t put into place a transparent system.

            Like

          • vp19 says:

            Right on, Frank, If you win one of the Power 5 conferences, you should be in the playoff, even if you’re not one of the “brand names.” (However, I would not lock in conferences for the first round; if an 8-4 team somehow wins its conference, seed it eighth, no matter which conference it represents.) I sense most of the opposition for this 8-game playoff format comes from fans of the teams of the “usual suspects.”

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Frank the Tank,

            “Further to my last point, when push comes to shove, I believe that transparency ultimately has to be valued over the outcome.”

            I’d argue the exact opposite. Transparency is nice, but getting the correct outcome is paramount. If you get the outcome wrong, no amount of transparency remedies that. If you get the outcome correct, the transparency doesn’t matter all that much.

            I’ll agree that it’s easier to control transparency than outcome, but that doesn’t make transparency more valuable than the outcome.

            Like

    • Brian says:

      http://espn.go.com/college-football/bowls14/story/_/id/12003942/picturing-year-college-football-playoff-eight-teams

      1. AL vs 8. MSU – Saban’s current school versus his old one. First coach to smile loses.
      4. OSU vs 5. Baylor – first one to 70 wins

      2. OR vs 7. MS St – P12 vs SEC, but not the match-up the fans really want.
      3. FSU vs 6. TCU – let’s see what FSU’s D can do against a real offense

      I’d predict:
      AL > MSU, but close
      OSU > Baylor, because OSU plays some D
      OR > MS St, because Mariota > Prescott
      TCU > FSU, because FSU hasn’t faced many top teams and you can’t fall behind TCU and win without a lot of luck

      Semis:
      OSU > AL, because I’m biased (and AL’s D isn’t quite as elite as usual against the top offenses)
      OR > TCU, because Mariota is that good

      OSU > OR, because I’m biased

      Like

  47. cookiemonster says:

    1: everyone in the big12 leadership is being roasted for the lack of the Louisville invite last time around. UL, UC, and WVU would have been great for B12, but “the state of Texas” got in the way.

    2. Everyone in the B12 leadership knows one super member is leaving in 4-7 years. So there is a big push to 14 members, but the problem is besides cincy there arent any good targets.

    3. I believe that Cincy would take a entry plans ala UNL but a couple years longer. But what other targets are there? Memphis is out of the question even though it is in the perfect territory. so BSU, NIU, UCF, and Arkansas. Maybe if you were desperate UCONN.

    Conclusion: Take the two best now for the B12, Cincy and wildcard. Then pick up any G5 team that comes up in the next 5 years because either OU or KU is going to be picked up by SEC/B1G soonish. Tulane becoming the next Stanford is the best case scenario, and BYU is the best national option.

    Like

    • Brian says:

      cookiemonster,

      “2. Everyone in the B12 leadership knows one super member is leaving in 4-7 years.”

      They do? Despite a GoR that lasts longer than that? OU will willing leave UT behind? KU can leave KSU behind (because nobody wants KSU)? These schools are willing to risk being responsible for the collapse of the B12?

      Like

  48. urbanleftbehind says:

    “Then pick up any G5 team that comes up in the next 5 years because either OU or KU is going to be picked up by SEC/B1G soonish.”

    Are you saying that there will be a “have it your way” CCG format in the near future, hence the SEC or B1G need only 1 and not 2 expansion target(s) – perhaps 3 “5-paks” for scheduling purposes?

    Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I think a “have it your way” CCG format is pretty likely. But I don’t think it’s driving expansion. As it is, the B1G’s last two additions have been greeted with a lot of skepticism. Any team you add means that more of the traditional pairings can’t happen as often (e.g., OSU/Illinois, Little Brown Jug).

      At this point, it would need to be pretty compelling for the B1G to add another team. Obviously, CCG de-regulation would create the opportunity to add just one, which right now they’re highly unlikely to do. (I won’t say it’s impossible, since the MAC has differently-sized divisions, but it’s awkward.)

      Like

  49. dtwphx says:

    Frank should do some monday morning reallignment quarterbacking one of these posts.
    What if the ACC had brought in UCF and USF instead of Louisville, Pitt, Syracuse and BC?
    What is C-USA thinking with such a geographically dispersed league?
    What is the benefit for G5 teams of a more spread out 12 or 14 team league as opposed to a geographically compact 8 or 10 team league?

    Like

    • dtwphx says:

      Why would the B1G have any desire to expand beyond 14?
      At 14 with a 9 game schedule, we still meet out of division opponents fairly often.
      At 16 you may as well be two separate conferences with an out of conference
      scheduling arrangement.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Unless you use pod scheduling, in which case 16 works fine.

        Like

        • z33k says:

          Pods would work much more easily if the ACC/Big 12 get their wish for no restrictions on the CCG.

          Instead of having to create 2 divisions every year by locking up 2 pods into a division, you could instead just treat each pod as 3 locked teams that each school in the pod has to play while liberating the remainder of the schedule. Then just take the top 2 pod winners for the CCG.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            But making up 2 divisions works fine with pods. It only has to last for 1 season. The problem with treating pods as divisions is the inequity in scheduling making the selection of the top 2 pod champs unfair.

            If you don’t need divisions, then you don’t need pods. Just lock 2 or 3 or 4 rivals for each team and rotate the rest every year.

            Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        Why would the B1G have any desire to expand beyond 14?

        Any further expansion would need to be extremely compelling, either a geographical win (UVA+UNC) or adding at least one king program, preferably two (Texas/Oklahoma). As Brian has noted, the scheduling gets a lot easier if you can play a CCG without divisions or pods.

        Mind you, I am not suggesting that UNC would be the one to detonate the ACC, or that the Big Ten presidents would accept a non-AAU king like Oklahoma. I’m just suggesting that they are not likely to take another “project” like Rutgers. They’re not interested in any more ground-rule doubles.

        Like

        • Brian says:

          Marc Shepherd,

          “Any further expansion would need to be extremely compelling, either a geographical win (UVA+UNC) or adding at least one king program, preferably two (Texas/Oklahoma).”

          Agreed, the acceptable pool is rapidly shrinking. Once the new TV deal starts, very few schools will bring sufficient value to justify expansion. 14 is too many, anyway.

          “Mind you, I am not suggesting that UNC would be the one to detonate the ACC, or that the Big Ten presidents would accept a non-AAU king like Oklahoma. I’m just suggesting that they are not likely to take another “project” like Rutgers. They’re not interested in any more ground-rule doubles.”

          It would be interesting to see Frank do another expansion index for the B10 and see how various schools score now. Having gotten an east coast foothold for demographics and markets, have UVA and UNC lost or gained luster as choices? What about UT, KU and OU since the B10 moved east?

          Like

    • Jersey Bernie says:

      The ACC has two Florida schools. No way that FSU and Miami would ever allow the addition of more FL schools. Considering how important FSU is to the ACC, I would imagine that they would have a total veto over UCF or USF

      Like

  50. Craig Z says:

    Go Bucks. Beat Bama.

    Like

  51. mdahmus says:

    BYU has always been ridiculous and is ridiculous still. They aren’t Texas, and even Texas doesn’t get to declare they won’t play one day a week. (Think about future years’ bowl games or playoffs – I could see networks want to use both Saturday and Sunday if the playoffs expand to 8).

    Like

    • Wainscott says:

      “I could see networks want to use both Saturday and Sunday if the playoffs expand to 8).”

      Sunday, against the NFL (either regular season or playoffs)? No.

      Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Seriously? It’s a religious objection. I’m willing to give them that.

      For the rare occasion that BYU is in the top eight (you can check, it hasn’t happened all that often), I think they could find a way to schedule them without using Sundays.

      Like

      • loki_the_bubba says:

        It’s not football on Sundays that’s the issue. It’s all the other sports. B12 won’t change baseball, basketball, tennis, track, swimming, etc, etc, schedules for a single school.

        Like

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          BYU is one of the best expansion candidates the Big XII could hope to attract. If they accept an invite, you figure out a way around Sunday scheduling. BYU has been in conferences before. It is not that hard to solve.

          Like

          • ccrider55 says:

            BYU’s conference has accepted their requirements in the past. Would the B12? Could BYU retain all the rights they currently are granted by ESPN?

            Like

          • @ccrider55 – I never really bought the belief that BYU isn’t in the Big 12 due to TV rights issues. Out of anyone that could understand having a school TV network, it would be Texas. Believe me – BYU wants to get into the Big 12 *badly* and TV rights won’t get in the way. They aren’t in the Big 12 today only because the conference chose not to expand to 12 outright.

            Like

  52. mushroomgod says:

    To change the subject a little……..what do you guys think of Neb’s hiring of Mike Riley? To me, it seems like a rather odd choice. 93-80 overall at OSU, 40-32 in the CFL, 14-34 in the NFL….and 61 years old…….Seems to me to be the old tactic of hiring a coach who’s not like the one you just fired….that is, if the O sucks, hire a D coach. If the D sucks, hire an O coach. In this case, hire Mr. Nice Guy because Bo was an asshole. Just don’t see a huge upside with this guy. And I understand that Tom Osborne wasn’t even consulted…..which seems dumb even if you don’t REALLY want his input….at least make a show of seeking it……

    Now I understand Nebraska is not Michigan, OSU, Florida, or Alabama as far as potential HCs are concerned……..but this looks more like an Illinois or Iowa level hire……I don’t understand hiring a 61 year old at a “destination” job…..hire the brightest young-and-upcoming 40 year old you can find, and hope he’s there 20 yrs, imo. Thoughts?

    Like

    • urbanleftbehind says:

      Nebraska without its built in links to Texas and years away from its storied past is not a destination job anymore. I would add the caveat “with solid recruiting links to football-rich areas” to your particular set of qualifications. It may have been worth it to wait a week. Dan Mullen would have been worth a swing and miss. Too bad Arizona didnt upset the Ducks, you would have had a better shot at Scott Frost. And though he’s a MAC head coach, NIU’s Rod Carey may have been worth a look too. I think Nebraska panicked and went with the nice guy who could maybe recruit California and some lower star Alabamians.

      Like

      • bullet says:

        Nebraska was better before they had all the Texas links. That’s not essential for them, just nice.

        Like

      • Arch Stanton says:

        Scott Frost would take the Nebraska job any time it was offered. I don’t think he was considered by the AD as it again goes back to “hire the opposite of the guy we just fired”. Pelini was a DC with no head coaching experience when he was hired at Nebraska. They wanted someone who had been a head coach already.
        I don’t know how they ended up with Riley, but he must have been pretty high up on the list considering that Pelini was fired Sunday and the Chancellor gave an interview in which he stated that he and the AD met with Riley on Tuesday in San Francisco.

        Like

      • Richard says:

        Pelini was actually assembling a good recruiting class (easily the best in the B10 West) before he was canned. So no, UNL isn’t going to get in to the top 10 in recruiting; but they virtually never did even when they were winning national titles under Osborne either.

        Like

    • z33k says:

      I agree with your line of thinking in terms of questioning whether Mike Riley can really bring Nebraska to the point where they can challenge Ohio State perennially. He’s basically been a lesser Bill Snyder for Oregon State.

      As far as overall upside goes when compared to Bo Pelini, I don’t think he has much in terms of the average expected wins he can achieve at Nebraska by comparison.

      But it’s worth taking a chance on seeing whether he can at least bring them to the point where they can put together a 12 win campaign every 3 or 4 years, which was something Bo Pelini couldn’t do. That’s really the kind of program that Nebraska should be. I don’t think they have the recruiting ability that Ohio State (or Penn State/Michigan with the right coach) has where they can put together rosters that should win 11+ games every single year without exception.

      The problem with Bo is you knew exactly what you were getting from him: 3rd or 4th best team in the conference, 9-10 wins a year, 3-4 losses per year; 2+ embarrassing blowouts every year, but almost always beating the <0.500 teams on the schedule.

      Beyond the obvious temperament issues which Riley won't have, it's worth taking a shot and seeing if Riley's results won't be so consistently average. I'm sure Nebraska fans would be okay with 3 <11 win years if it came with a 12 win year every 4th year.

      To me, that's my take on this situation, Riley is probably going to average a similar # of overall wins to Bo, but it'll come without the sideline behavior and possibly might include the odd year or two with a real playoff push.

      Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      It’s an interesting argument whether Nebraska is a “destination job”. My sense is that it’s: A) More of a destination than most non-Nebraska fans think; but, B) Less of one than most Huskers think.

      Brand names in sports are extremely durable, and I think there are plenty of up-and-comers who’d consider the Nebraska job a step up, even if they’d struggle to reproduce the heyday of the 1970s, 80s, and 90s.

      They chose Riley in something like four days, which suggests their search didn’t go very deep. Riley’s not a bad coach, but he’s 61, which means even in the best possible case you’re going to be doing this again ina few years. I could imagine choosing him as a credible last resort, but not after four days.

      Like

  53. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/12000860/big-12-commissioner-bob-bowlsby-says-no-big-12-title-game-had-bearing-cfp-exclusion

    The B12 isn’t going to expand just to add a CCG. They might require a P5 OOC game, though.

    Bowlsby said his recent remark that he would have voted for TCU for the playoff was more about believing the Horned Frogs were better positioned to stay ahead of Ohio State in the rankings and not a slight at Baylor.

    Like

  54. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/12002638/an-oral-history-college-football-playoff

    An oral history of how we got to a playoff in CFB according to the men that should know.

    Like

    • bullet says:

      Good article.

      Noone outside Alabama thought Auburn was one of the top two in 2004. Despite all the talk about Auburn, maybe it got the SEC on board, but nothing changed until Scott and Neinas took over their conferences, the BE fell apart and ESPN pushed the disastrous (for ratings and credibility) LSU/Alabama rematch in 2011.

      Delany fought the playoff tooth and nail, but his expansion that changed the leadership of the Big 12 and eventually destroyed the Big East provided the votes for the playoff.

      Like

  55. mushroomgod says:

    5/6 big 10 volleyball teams advance past first round. Only MSU lost, to #1 Stanford. OSU beat #13 UK.

    Like

  56. Brian says:

    OSU’s OC Tom Herman won the Broyle’s award as the best assistant coach. Not too surprising considering what he did with Barrett replacing Miller and then Jones replacing Barrett.

    Like

  57. Brian says:

    http://www.vegasinsider.com/college-football/odds/las-vegas/?s=61

    The B10 is officially the underdog in all 10 of its bowl games. In other words, don’t expect a strong bowl record. Still, every win will be an upset.

    Like

    • bullet says:

      SEC is favorite in 9 of 12 and all but 1 of those by at least 5 points. They are slight dogs in WVU/A&M, TCU/Ole Miss and Miami/SC.

      Interesting how big an underdog the Big 10 is in most of those games.

      Like

  58. z33k says:

    I’ve gone back and forth over the past couple days over whether the Big 12 should do anything… and I think the status quo is the safest option for them in the near-term.

    There’s no reason to make any knee-jerk reaction to year 1 of this 12 year 4-team playoff cycle, especially given how stable the current conference configurations are at the moment with grants of rights and such.

    In another 3-4 years, we’ll have enough results to paint a picture of where this is going and what if anything the Big 12 lacks vis-a-vis the other conferences with respect to the playoff picture.

    Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      When you have five major conferences and four playoff spots, someone is going to lose every year. I see no reason to think it will always be the Big XII. What’s more, even if they expand, there would still be one conference left out every year.

      And in some scenarios, the Big XII benefits by not having a championship game. There’s an element of luck in sports. If FSU had lost any of the games they only just barely won, and Michigan had not collapsed in the 4th quarter vs. Ohio State, the Big XII might have put two teams into the playoff. Bowlsby would’ve looked like a genius; Swofford and Delaney would be facing the tough questions this week.

      Beyond that, I think revenue and scheduling issues would dominate the expansion issue for the Big XII.

      Like

  59. bullet says:

    Detroit writer makes the case against Ohio St.

    http://www.freep.com/story/sports/columnists/drew-sharp/2014/12/07/college-football-playoff-ohio-state-baylor-tcu-drew-sharp/20064369/

    Its interesting. Should Alabama run over Ohio St., Baylor run over Michigan St. and TCU beat Ole Miss (Alabama’s only loss), it could make the committee look bad. I imagine they are holding their breath hoping Ohio St. looks good. I don’t think its a good matchup for them and I think its the best matchup Alabama could hope for. A 3rd string QB is not what you prefer to expose Alabama’s secondary. You aren’t going to run through their line.

    Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I disagree with the Detroit writer on quite a few counts.

      The writer believes that if you relied on football metrics alone, OSU should not have been in the top four. Therefore, he concludes that the committee must have selected OSU for TV ratings and fan travel.

      This is simply wrong. Although it is a close call, there are plenty of metrics by which OSU had the better resume. Granted, there were decent arguments for Baylor and TCU, too. But OSU’s credentials are strong enough that there is no reason to believe anything shady went on.

      The committee can’t be expected to predict the outcome of games that haven’t happened yet. If all the favorites win their bowl games (i.e., Alabama, Baylor, and TCU), it will not mean that the committee made the wrong choice.

      Like

    • z33k says:

      Well, Drew Sharp is probably one of the most (if not actually #1) anti-Big Ten guys in the country even though he’s based out of Detroit. It’s his schtick.

      He has Ohio State 7th and Michigan State 13th with Wisconsin/Nebraska unranked in his final ballot.

      He’s pretty much known for being more anti-Big Ten than writers stationed outside of the Big Ten footprint that are anti-Big Ten.

      Any Michigan/Michigan State fan can tell you that. It’s hard to really take anything he says seriously considering that he’s basically been saying the same things since 2006.

      Like

    • Brian says:

      Yes, and he isn’t biased at all working for a Detroit paper. He’s self-avowed anti-B10 too. From his twitter bio: Author of the hit tune, Ohhhhhhhhh…The Big Ten Sucks.

      Let’s examine his logic:
      The 12-person College Football Playoff selection committee ultimately caved to the pressures of promoting television ratings and priming the pump for more advertising dollars.

      Pressure from whom? Nobody else was in the room. And I’m supposed to believe people like Osborne, Alvarez and Condi Rice worried about a little pressure? It’s not like they get paid to be on the committee and nobody is going to take their jobs away based on their CFP vote. And why would they care about the money? They don’t get any of it.

      The committee didn’t care that most of the available performance metrics ranked the 12-1 Buckeyes’ overall body of work lower than 11-1 Big 12 cochampions TCU and Baylor. The Buckeyes didn’t have as many quality wins as TCU and Baylor and were burdened with the worst loss of the three.

      There’s no argument about the worst loss, but 7-5 WV isn’t that much better than 6-6 VT.

      “Most” of the available metrics? Is there a complete list of them somewhere? I’ve seen several on each side. And how is he weighing championship status in this, since that was an explicit metric they were supposed to use when ranking similar teams?

      Quality wins? What qualifies for that?

      Ranked teams:
      OSU – @ #8, neutral vs #18, @ #25
      TCU – home vs #11, home vs #25
      Baylor – home vs #5, home vs #11

      3 > 2, correct?

      I showed the numbers for total games, I-A games, teams with winning records and bowl eligible teams, and OSU leads in all of those as well.

      8 win teams (I-AA don’t count)?
      OSU – 4
      TCU – 3
      Baylor – 3

      As far as I can tell, he’s factually wrong here or he has an idiosyncratic definition of quality win.

      Ohio State is in because of its name. That’s all.

      Even you have to admit that a solid case can be made for OSU. That’s more than Sharp can manage here.

      Selection committee chairman Jeff Long lauded the strength of the Buckeyes’ schedule for having beaten nine bowl-eligible teams. But if those wins are against Big Ten teams incapable of regularly winning bowl games (Did I mention that .298 bowl winning percentage?), then how impressive is that accomplishment?

      Not all bowl games are equal. Look at the match-ups the B10 regularly has. Most other conferences don’t try to challenge themselves as much as the B10 has historically. As I noted earlier, the B10 is the underdog in all 10 of its bowl games this year. The B10 team is often lower ranked and/or has a worse record than its opponent in a bowl because B10 teams bring attendance and TV ratings. And losing a bowl game doesn’t change the fact that you won at least 6 games that year. Besides, since the bowls haven’t been played yet this year I don’t see how bowl history is relevant to deciding how good teams are this season.

      Long also credited Ohio State’s 59-point annihilation of Wisconsin in the Big Ten championship game with third-string quarterback Cardale Jones making his first start as a testament to its overall strength. But shouldn’t that have made the Buckeyes’ home loss to barely bowl-eligible Virginia Tech even worse because now you can’t use second-string quarterback J.T. Barrett’s inexperience as an excuse?

      And the new RB and the 4 new OL? Game 2 is different than game 13 for them.

      But the biggest sham was that Long blatantly rewarded the Big Ten over the Big 12 for a 13th game that the Big 12 didn’t have and was apparently told last year that it didn’t need.

      He may not like it, but that doesn’t change the fact that OSU played and won that game. The committee was charged with evaluating their entire resumes, not just the parts Drew Sharp wants them to consider.

      Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby told ESPN today that playoff officials assured him that the lack of an extra conference championship game wouldn’t devalue the league champion’s overall body of work. As a result, Bowlsby said the conference didn’t petition the NCAA for a special waiver from the rule prohibiting stand-alone championship games in conferences with fewer than 12 teams.

      The lack of the game didn’t devalue their work. The CCG did increase the value of OSU’s body of work, though. It gave OSU another quality win away from home. If they want to blame something, blame their OOC schedules:

      OSU – UC, VT, @Navy, Kent St
      TCU – MN, SMU, I-AA
      Baylor – Buffalo, SMU, I-AA

      Those games are part of what made the difference.

      Like

    • mushroomgod says:

      I can make a better case against OSU in just one sentence: Late in the season, at OSU, Indiana played OSU to a standstill for 3 quarters.

      Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        I can make a better case against OSU in just one sentence: Late in the season, at OSU, Indiana played OSU to a standstill for 3 quarters.

        Well, this is the age-old question of whether style points count. FSU repeatedly just barely won over mediocre opposition, but the bottom line was 13-0. By most so-called “advanced football” measures, FSU was not a top-four team. But no one in their right minds would have advocated omitting them from the playoff.

        Like

      • Brian says:

        And then lost by 15. You can’t omit that part. It is, after all, a 60 minute game. If you stop after 45 minutes, TCU is undefeated and #3.

        Like

  60. Brian says:

    http://www.bigten.org/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/120914aab.html

    The official B10 announcement about MBB at MSG.

    The Big Ten Conference announced today an extensive agreement with Madison Square Garden to feature the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament in New York City for the first time in 2018, along with men’s basketball and hockey doubleheaders hosted by the legendary arena from 2016 through 2019 and a significant branding presence both inside and outside the building.

    The 2018 Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament will be held at Madison Square Garden from Wednesday, Feb. 28, through Sunday, March 4, with all 14 conference programs competing for the Big Ten’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament. The 2018 event will be held one week earlier than previous tournaments, ending seven days before NCAA Tournament Selection Sunday.

    Big Ten men’s basketball and hockey programs will also be featured at Madison Square Garden during the regular season, with four consecutive doubleheaders featuring conference competition held in late January or early February from 2016 through 2019. The first doubleheader will feature the Michigan and Penn State basketball and hockey teams playing at The Mecca on Jan. 30, 2016.

    In addition, the Big Ten will receive year-round branding opportunities at Madison Square Garden, including signage inside and outside of the facility and select promotion through print, television and social media outlets affiliated with the arena and its tenants.

    The double-headers are interesting.

    Like

    • Jersey Bernie says:

      With the relatively vigorous move into NYC, maybe we will find out if Rutgers was really a double as Marc Shepherd wrote, or will turn out to be a long home run. It is really quite strange to believe that the B1G is the football conference with the strongest presence in the NY metro area. Lots of happy B1G alumni. I know that my oldest son who is a Wisconsin alum is thrilled to be able to go to games at RU. He will absolutely go to the Garden if his Badgers are there.

      Like

    • Wainscott says:

      I do wonder what impact having a conference championship tourney a week early will have on conference seeding and bubble teams. Will the recency effect hurt B1G teams (like it may have in the BCS era in football when the conference was off in the first week in December?)

      Like

      • Brian says:

        On the other hand, if an underdog makes a deep run through the B10 tourney they’ll have time to recover before the NCAA or NIT starts. I suppose that’s a silver lining.

        Like

      • @Wainscott – I’ve never been opposed to the Big Ten playing in NYC (as that is critical for the conference’s long-term plans) and the annual basketball/hockey doubleheaders are a great idea, but I’m a bit miffed that we decided to hold the tourney a week before the other power conferences. Seeing that it’s a one-year deal, I guess that it’s workable and will live with it as a special event. We can’t be doing this every time that we want to go to MSG, though.

        Like

        • vp19 says:

          Most of the top conference’s for women’s basketball finish their tourneys about a week before its selection Monday so they don’t conflict with the men’s tourneys, causing teams such as Maryland when it was in the ACC to have a two-week layoff before the women’s NCAA began. Given the dominance by a handful of schools in the women’s tourney, it hasn’t seemed to affect them all that much — though I will concede the gap between power conferences and the rest of the field in the men’s game is much, much narrower.

          Like

        • Wainscott says:

          @Frank:

          Completely agree on all fronts. Its great exposure to play at MSG, but a week earlier than other major conferences is a problem.

          I think Delany is more planting a flag in the event MSG boots the Big East in the future, or will watch how the ACC does at Barclays. I definitely believe this is not the last time the MBB tourney goes to either Manhattan or Brooklyn (ain’t never going to Newark or Long Island).

          Like

          • dtwphx says:

            I’d agree. It’s probably a test run for a contract at MSG orBarclay’s starting in the 2020’s.
            In the future, I could see the the ACC alternating between Barclays and Greensboro,
            and B1G alternating between Balclays and Chicago/Indianapolis.

            Like

          • Jersey Bernie says:

            Long Island is out of the question for all conferences. No one is going there for anything. Even the Islanders are gone to Brooklyn. The Prudential Center in Newark may well be in the future for the B1G. Why not? The Pru Center is the home bball stadium for Seton Hall, as the Garden is the home for St Johns.

            Like

          • Wainscott says:

            “he Prudential Center in Newark may well be in the future for the B1G. Why not? The Pru Center is the home bball stadium for Seton Hall, as the Garden is the home for St Johns.”

            Because its not in NYC. That simple.

            Like

  61. Brian says:

    http://footballscoop.com/news/bo-pelini-youngstown/

    Bo Pelini headed for YSU apparently. It’s always nice to go home, but I can’t imagine he plans to stay for long.

    Like

  62. Brian says:

    The fun thing for an OSU fan – we only have 7 SR starters versus 11 SO and FR starters.

    Like

    • bullet says:

      2 years ago ESPN had a graphic. The largest number of true freshmen played was at Ohio St. Think the number was 15. Tied for second only 1 back were TCU and Texas. Ohio St. and TCU have done pretty well with those groups. Texas, not so much.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Yes, with Meyer coming in we had a lot of turnover. We’re also just getting past the sanctions so we have extra slots to fill. He recruits a different type of athlete and wanted to replace a lot of the Tressel leftovers. It’s also meant more players transferring since he doesn’t let seniority trump talent like Tressel did. I hope to see things settle down a little soon as he’s about to sign his fourth recruiting class.

        Like

  63. Richard says:

    So one big problem I have with the 8-team playoff is that a team that wins its division will likely have a tougher road than a team that loses its division. For example, if tOSU had lost the B10 CCG, they likely would have been out while MSU would have been in. Besides the obvious bad incentives, that doesn’t strike me as right.

    That’s why I’m more inclined to support a 6 or 7 team playoff with 5 auto-berths. Yes, only 1-2 at-large spots and being #1 or #2 vs. #3 or #4 would be a really big deal, but I think that would award winning.

    Or a 12 team playoff with a Round of 6:
    SEC, B10, Pac, and ACC CCG winners go automatically to the Round of 6. The 4 best teams that do not play in a CCG (including the B12 and ND) round out the rest of the first round (played during Army-Navy weekend) with the 2 winners heading to the Round of 6. Seed those 6 #1->#6. 3 Round of 6 games on NYE/NYD. Top seed gets a bye while the other 2 play the following week. National title game the week after that.

    Like

    • Richard says:

      The 2 games of at-large teams could be a doubleheader at one site. As a sop to the B12, it could always be in Jerryworld (though as a B10 partisan, personally, I’d like to see it in StL or the East Coast sites of NYC/DC occasionally).

      This year, that doubleheader would be Baylor-MSU and TCU-MissSt.

      The Round of 6 games would always be the Rose (B10 champ vs. Pac champ), Sugar (SEC champ vs. at-large), and Orange (ACC champ vs. at-large).
      This year, since ‘Bama is the #1 seed, they play the #2-#3 at-large winner, or TCU-MissSt. in the Sugar. FSU faces the Baylor-MSU winner in the Orange.

      This year, if ‘Bama wins they get a bye to the title game. If they lose and UO wins, they get a bye. If both ‘Bama & UO lose and FSU wins, they get a bye. If all 3 higher seeds lose, OSU gets the bye.

      The play-in semifinal game rotates between the Fiesta, Peach, and Cotton. Takes place the 2nd Monday of the year (when the title game does now).

      Title game takes place on MLK Day.

      Like

      • Wainscott says:

        “The play-in semifinal game rotates between the Fiesta, Peach, and Cotton. Takes place the 2nd Monday of the year (when the title game does now).”

        Odd night bowl games worked so well in the BCS era that the meaningful bowls have now been clustered on NYE/NYD. They’ll magically now decide to have two bowl games on a random weeknight at the same time, cannibalizing TV viewers and suffering the same failings as BCS era bowls? Sure.

        Like

        • Richard says:

          One bowl game. Who ever said two? You’d have 2 games the same night (and I don’t see why they would have to be at the same time) if you go to a 8 team playoff, though.

          Like

          • Wainscott says:

            I read in an “s” in “the play-in semifinal game” that was not there. My bad.

            Still don’t think that CFB will willingly move games off of NYE/NYD absent the actual NCG. I also do not think the presidents will stretch football that deep into January, especially with multiple weeknight games (semifinal or semifinals and also a NCG).

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Bowlsby said going any later into January was a non-starter in Brian’s article about the history of the playoff.

            He didn’t explain why.

            When they examine the 2 semester argument, they will realize it is silly. Nothing much goes on at the start of the semester.

            Conflicting with the NFL is an issue.

            Some schools still don’t have indoor practice facilities and maybe that is an issue.

            Like

          • ccrider55 says:

            How would the committee be able to evaluate the potential risk of ineligibilities? First semester grades could effect team mand up. Happens every fall, but teams have more time to develop, change, overcome that attrition throughout the season.

            Like

      • vp19 says:

        You’re just reviving the beauty contest, and making it impossible for any underdog champion from a P5 conference to compete for a national champioship. I don’t want any team that wins an ACC, B1G, Big 12, Pac-12 or SEC title to be denied because it isn’t a “brand name” — and realistically, years with more than one underdog conference champ are few and far between, which is why I back an 8-team playoff. I consider it better to put Iowa State or Wake Forest into a playoff if it wins its conference– something each school would achieve once every 35 years or so — than to gripe about one of the “usual suspects” not making the playoff because it couldn’t win its conference or gain an at-large bid.

        Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I do not think they will ever approve a format with first-round byes. TV money is one of the biggest drivers in college sports. Once you’ve agreed in principle to add another weekend to the schedule, you might as well do an 8-team playoff with four quarterfinal games.

      On top of that, the advantage of being #2 (and having a bye) vs. #3 (with an extra game to play) is too huge to entrust to a committee of bureaucrats. I know the NFL has byes, but the criteria for earning them are entirely objective, and don’t depend on “eye tests” or a show of hands.

      Anyhow, you might be worrying about a non-existent problem. If Ohio State loses to Wisconsin, I think the Buckeyes should still be ranked above Michigan State. After all, in that situation they’d both be two-loss teams, but OSU would have the head-to-head advantage and one extra game in the win column.

      Like

    • bullet says:

      That’s true now. Look at how many times a division runnerup made BCS bowls and the division winner got sent down. Kansas St. 98 and Missouri 07 were classic examples of that-from a chance at the 2 team playoffs to the Alamo and Cotton.

      Like

      • Richard says:

        Getting to go a BCS bowl is quite different from getting to make the playoff, IMO. One is, while great fun and great for bragging rights, still a glorified exhibition game. Making the playoffs gives you the opportunity to win the national title.

        If you like, that’s an argument to stay at a 4-team playoff.

        Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        That’s true now. Look at how many times a division runnerup made BCS bowls and the division winner got sent down.

        In the BCS era, the bowls chose teams based on TV and travel value. There were minimum criteria to be BCS-eligible; as long as those criteria were met, the bowls could choose whomever they wanted.

        The playoff committee need not have the same rules. Unless they are stone-cold liars, TV and travel value are not among their criteria at all. (I know that some in the media think the fix was in for Ohio State, because they bring more fans to the game, but I do not believe that.)

        Like

        • bullet says:

          Yes, but ccg losers drop in their standings. Arizona almost dropped out. KSU in a defacto ccg dropped out.

          Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Yes, as a general rule, you should drop if you lose your game. But the Committee certainly could adopt a rule that a team won’t be penalized for winning its division, which was Richard’s concern.

            Like

  64. MyopicRaiderfan says:

    Everyone is overthinking this. If I was the Big12 I would offer associate football membership to the championship game only to BYU and ND. Both BYU and ND keep their independence and their tv contracts while the Big12 keeps their own revenue. The two highest ranked teams in the B12 including BYU and ND play in the championship for the B12 title. That TV contract gets to be split among the 12.

    Like

    • @MyopicRaiderfan – Notre Dame’s setup in the ACC is *exactly* what they want and they very clearly prefer the ACC compared to the Big 12 geographically, culturally and academically. They aren’t driven by access to a conference championship game at all (and in fact, that’s explicitly what they’re attempting to avoid through independence). Notre Dame is an independent 100% by choice. In contrast, BYU would take a full membership in the Big 12 in a heartbeat. At the same time, why would anyone in the Big 12 allow access to a conference championship game to quasi-conference members in a playoff world where such conference championship game is going to have outsized importance? Your proposal also assumes numerous conference championship game rule changes where (a) conferences can simply take the two highest ranked teams (which I would agree is a plausible change) and (b) partial members can participate (which I don’t believe is a plausible change at all).

      About 99.9% of proposals that start with “We’ll just offer Notre Dame [insert XYZ] and everything will work out” isn’t ever going to work out. The Big 12’s only viable expansion options (whether full or partial) are non-power schools.

      Like

      • ccrider55 says:

        “…BYU would take a full membership in the Big 12 in a heartbeat.”

        Have you heard they have had a change of heart since going Indy? Yes, the athletic department would jump at it. But they would have before, too. The church leaders (and their goals through independence need to be measured) are the ones who need to be polled, and I doubt they’ll participate.

        Like

      • MyopicRaiderfan says:

        I don’t disagree at all that the ACC gives ND all it wants, but if conference champions are what the committee wants then ND could find itself on the outside looking in. In this arrangement ND stays independent with access to the playoffs through B12 while still having access to ACC bowls if they are not part of it. If we looked at recent history I think it would be safe for the B12 to offer access to the championship game to ND and BYU as they would likely have a minimum of one team in, with the ability to have a championship without adding full members. Assuming that the B12 could get the same deal as the B10, 24 million a year for the championship(reasonable as ND and Texas as the largest national teams), split evenly that is an extra 2 million per team. Adding from the group of 5 costs the B12 money as there isn’t a single team, let alone one that would move the needle as far as revenue is concerned. You have stated multiple times the B12 is held together because of money. Why would they weaken their bond by sharing?

        Like

        • Richard says:

          It’s a nice idea and all, but your setup is still not allowed by current NCAA rules.

          Like

        • urbanleftbehind says:

          Aside from not being allowed by current NCAA rules, what if ND and BYU both have woeful losing seasons – does the slot open up to an exceptional G5 team or a 3rd place (assuming the CCG rules have been amended not to necessitate division champs) P5 conference team? A locked game with a say 4-8 BYU team (because ND finished 3-9 that same year) might hurt and not help a lone BXII champions’ argument in a still 4-team playoff.

          Like

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          …if conference champions are what the committee wants then ND could find itself on the outside looking in.

          Year after year, the casual fan thinks the Powers are going to screw Notre Dame, and it never happens. Frank has it right: Notre Dame is getting all it wants (and needs) from the ACC.

          As Richard pointed out, current NCAA rules do not allow Notre Dame to qualify for the Big XII championship game without actually being IN the Big XII. But assuming the rules allowed this, why would the Big XII agree to that deal? What does the Big XII gain by allowing ND to supplant one of its own members in the championship game, when ND has given the Big XII nothing in return?

          And how would ND’s qualification for that game be determined? It’s easy if they’re in the league, because then they’d play common opponents within their division. If they’re independent, there’s no comparison. Imagine for a moment that Oklahoma, KState, and ND are all 11-1. Would the Big XII agree to a system whereby one of OU/KState misses their own championship game, while ND plays an independent schedule and takes their place?

          There lies insanity.

          Like

          • Redwood86 says:

            And why do you think ND never gets screwed? You proclaim that ND need not worry about not playing in a CCG, while not denying that the Big-12 must. Why is that? You are talking out of both sides of your mouth. If it had been Texas, and not TCU or Baylor, that was 11-1, even if Texas played TCU or Baylor’s schedule, the Buckeyes would not be in the playoff. As an aside, when ND gets in, the ACC & Pac-12 will be most at risk of being left out due to the number of games those conferences play each season against ND.

            Despite the protestations on this board, especially from Buckeye fans like Brian, a committee (and for those who prefer the BCS system, a system of computer rankings designed by people who don’t have to disclose their models is effectively a committee) is inherently political. As such, the natural constituency of each committee member will be a huge influence on that person’s vote(s). Only a fool believes that the decisions ultimately are based solely on the stated criteria – and the movements in the rankings during the last week support that view.

            Despite what the committee says, I will bet anyone here that we will never see two teams from a single conference in the playoffs unless at least two conferences have champions with 2+ losses, and even then it may not happen. Why? Because the committee is geographically diversified, and thus alliances will be created to make sure the playoffs participants are also geographically diversified.

            I also predict that, eventually, SEC teams that play Baylor-like OOC schedules (e.g. – A&M, the Mississippis, etc.) will be punished by the committee – especially if the SEC does not add a 9th conference game. Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, LSU, South Carolina, and Tennessee either have rivalry games to protect them and/or seem to have already figured this out.

            Don’t get me wrong. I think this new system is FAR superior to the BCS and the goofiness before the BCS. If the BCS system was in place right now, we would be looking at a title game between Alabama and FSU. There is no way that FSU would have been left out as an unbeaten defending national champion. And Alabama would beat out Oregon, for example, simply because of the hype associated with the SEC West. This year, unlike in the past, we will find out just how much of that hype was warranted. We will also find out if the Pac-12 was over-rated (which, despite my being a Pac-12 fan, I suspect may be the case). And, we will find out just how bad the BiG really was. This will be great!

            Like

          • MyopicRaiderfan says:

            Why wouldn’t the P5 allow the B12 to do this? It would bring the two independents into similar control as the rest of the P5. Effectively, this would be the start of their own march madness.

            What would the B12 get out of this? Money. First they wouldn’t have to bring in two extra mouths which would take revenue from the existing members. Also, they would get an extra 2 mil or so per school for the championship tv rights.

            Qualification for title game would be based on CFP poll. One, it makes for a better game as there wouldn’t be Alabama vs Missouri games. Two, better for TV audiences which means more money. Three, its how the CFP are set up.

            The ideal for the B12 would be a championship game with 10 teams. If it doesn’t happen and the P5 require 12 then why not try to do this? Best case is that neither BYU or ND would be ranked higher than the top two B12 teams, but if ND is ranked higher than K-State and is left out of the game vs Oklahoma then yes Kstate players would be upset, but also it would be exactly as it is now.

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            And why do you think ND never gets screwed? You proclaim that ND need not worry about not playing in a CCG, while not denying that the Big-12 must. Why is that? You are talking out of both sides of your mouth.

            You have grossly misstated my position. You could certainly construct a hypothetical season in which Notre Dame misses the playoff for the same reason Baylor and TCU did. You could also construct a season in which they benefit from not putting themselves at risk in that extra game.

            All I am saying is that the system as designed does not require them to play a CCG, just as it does not require the Big XII to play one either. I am not talking out of both sides of my mouth; my position on both is consistent.

            As an aside, when ND gets in, the ACC & Pac-12 will be most at risk of being left out due to the number of games those conferences play each season against ND.

            What you are saying is that football is a zero-sum game. For every winner, there must be a loser. Do you think no one else realizes that? No one is being forced at gunpoint to play ND. Teams want to play them.

            Despite the protestations on this board, especially from Buckeye fans like Brian, a committee (and for those who prefer the BCS system, a system of computer rankings designed by people who don’t have to disclose their models is effectively a committee) is inherently political.

            Well, I am a Michigan fan who has often disagreed with Brian in this forum, but he’s got this one exactly right.

            Now, I’m not going to deny that people cannot entirely escape their biases (a statement that applies to both of us, as well). But I do think the committee is attempting, to the best of its human ability, to follow the announced rules, and their decision was entirely consistent with them.

            FSU is an historically elite program that should have benefited from the committee’s biases, if your hypothesis is correct. Yet, the committee ranked them third, below both of the traditional polls. That tells me this committee is really doing what it says, and looking beneath the record to each team’s actual acccompishments.

            Like

        • JokerCircus says:

          Why doesn’t the Big 12 add Air Force & BYU as football only members? Air Force could move all its other sports the Big Sky Conference & Mountain West Sports Federation and the AD doesn’t have to worry about his student athletes competing against the Big 12 except the football team which can hang with the Big 12. They also add prestige to the conference.

          BYU as a football only members solves the no-play on Sunday issues. It allows the Big 12 to move to 12 teams and have a conference championship game along with the added revenue from it. The best thing about this for the Big 12 is that they can do a round-robin schedule in basketball with 10 teams and make them one of the strongest RPI conferences.

          Big 12 North
          Air Force
          BYU
          Iowa State
          Kansas
          Kansas State
          West Virginia

          Big 12 South
          Baylor
          Oklahoma
          Oklahoma State
          TCU
          Texas
          Texas Tech

          I also think ESPN would be willing to renegotiate its contract with the Big 12 as they could fuse BYU’s deal for additional money to the current Big 12 deal. I doubt that FOX Sports would add to the current TV deal since they are not pulling big ratings for FOX Sports 1, but I do think FOX would be interested in the Big 12 Championship Game. Also, Air Force & BYU would love to keep their Tier-3 rights as Air Force uses ROOT Sports Mountain & BYU uses BYUtv.

          Like

          • BruceMcF says:

            I would be skeptical whether AF Commandant wants his cadets playing a P5 football schedule, if if they may be able to hang with many of the P5 schools.

            Like

          • Wainscott says:

            The Air Force powers that be have actually stated publicly that they don’t think it would be fair to its players to have them play the likes of Texas and Oklahoma yearly.

            Like

          • Air Force adds prestige to a P5 league? You must have been watching a different Air Force team than I over the last decade plus.

            Like

  65. Brian says:

    http://www.bigten.org/genrel/120814aab.html

    The B10 is instituting new concussion protocols as of 2015.

    The concussion protocols will move from best practices and minimum requirements for schools to regulatory standards by the conference. In addition, the COP/C unilaterally adopted the establishment of an independent neutral athletic trainer in the replay booth with their own monitor and the ability to directly contact officials on the field. The independent neutral athletic trainer will be in addition to the continued presence of on-field doctors and athletic trainers from each institution.

    The enhanced concussion protocols will be incorporated by reference into the existing conference-wide concussion management policy and will include reporting requirements, disciplinary action for non-compliance and a higher level of accountability for conference member institutions.

    Like

  66. Brian says:

    Wow. Gary Andersen is leaving WI to coach OrSU. ESPN is saying WI’s academic policies have been frustrating him.

    Like

    • z33k says:

      Wisconsin losing coaches to Arkansas (explainable given how stingy they are with $) and now Oregon State (???) is a stunner after all the success that they’ve had the past 6-8 years.

      It’s pretty clear the problem is either Barry Alvarez and/or Wisconsin’s policies ($, academic requirements, etc.) are causing this.

      Completely out of left field to leave Wisconsin for Oregon State (2nd hardest job in Pac-12 by far).

      Like

      • Tom says:

        It is very surprising but keep in mind Anderson was born and raised in Utah and had spent his entire coaching career in the western United States before his two year stint at Wisconsin. Maybe he saw a better fit at Oregon State? Will be interesting to see who the Badgers turn to. When Bielema left, I thought they could have done better than Anderson.

        Like

        • z33k says:

          True, hopefully they find a better fit this time. It’s hard to see who that is. There aren’t obvious candidates like Gary Andersen was 2 years ago.

          Like

          • Tom says:

            I will say that the Barry Alvarez as AD situation is worth looking at. From a distance it seems that Alvarez is too involved with the football program, both unintentionally and intentionally. He essentially built the Wisconsin program so naturally he will carry a certain amount of reverence. Andersen was a spread coach before coming to Wisconsin. Alvarez was obviously a pro style guy. Did Andersen feel he could do things his way or was there pressure to continue in Alvarez’s footsteps? Alvarez also named himself interim coach for the Rose Bowl after Bielema left and it appears that he will do the same this year for the Outback Bowl. How many ADs would name themselves coach even it was just for one game? None, because a Dvision I AD job isn’t a job for ex football coaches anymore. Yet, that’s the situation in Wisconsin and it has to create an interesting and in my opinion negative work environment for the head football coach.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            Frank Broyles created some problems at Arkansas as AD. He had some really good coaches-Lou Holtz followed by Ken Hatfield.

            Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        When you consider all the factors involved, I’d say that Wisconsin to Arkansas is no worse than a lateral move, and is arguably a step up. Arkansas is ahead of Wisconsin in both all-time wins and winning percentage. The SEC is a stronger league, and the Razorbacks play a sexier schedule.

        However, it’s easier to play in high-profile post-season games at Wisconsin, because the B1G overall is so mediocre, and they’re in the weaker of the two divisions. The Badgers have won their division in four of the last five years and went to three consecutive Rose Bowls from 2010-12. No SEC West coach is likely to do that, unless perhaps he’s Nick Saban.

        But Wisconsin to Oregon State is a clear step down. The Beavers haven’t been to a Rose Bowl since 1965. Since the BCS era, their only major bowl was the 2001 Fiesta Bowl. They’ve had just one first-place finish in the last fifty years. Yes, you can recruit to Oregon State without Wisconsin’s academic requirements, but who wants to go there?

        Like

        • z33k says:

          I agree with you for the most part.

          For someone in Bielema’s specific position though, leaving a school that you’ve gone to 3 straight Rose Bowls to go to a situation in Arkansas where it’s unlikely that he’ll get to coach 1 big bowl in his first 5 years is a pretty obvious downgrade.

          If you take that out of the equation, it’s a lot more of a lateral move.

          Regardless, the Oregon State one is really only explained by the fact that he was at Utah and wants to go back out West along with the academic issues.

          Still, Oregon State got blown out by Washington and Oregon in its final games; those kinds of results (that they’re going to be undermanned against a lot of the Pac-12) won’t be changing regardless of who their coach is.

          Like

          • Richard says:

            Well, the Biels got more money for himself and his staff at Arkansas.

            Going to OrSt. is a bit of a shocker.

            If I was Wisconsin, I’d go for Kill. Dunno if he’s spring for Wisconsin, though. He turned down UNL. Then again, Bucky is less likely to have unrealistic expectations than UNL, and Wisconsin is probably the school best set up to do the best in the B10 West (at least sharing the top of the heap with UNL). If not Kill, one of the ex-Badger coaches who have left (Chryst or Doeren).

            Like

      • gfunk says:

        Not a shock, I actually predicted he would leave Wisky to a friend after the CCG. “Academic issues” – I call bs – it’s recruiting & his heart is out west. Throw in that Alvarez is a bit more intrusive than we may realize. Silver lining for Wisky – he lost most of the BIG games, lost at least twice a year to inferior opponents & the never adjusted well after half time and late game in these losses.

        The BIG can go national all it wants, but the footprint’s football talent has been so average to poor for so long, at least back to the 80s – that coaches have to bust their asses off to get 2nd tier talent in the Sun Belt then coach the kids up. The Midwestern high schools simply refuse to do their part as a whole & this region just loves their NFL football more.

        Moreover, it also doesn’t help that the new divisional alignment still sucks because the power is too concentrated in the East. I don’t want to hear that these things are cyclical – PSU, OSU, Mi have been great for as long as Neb – that’s a 3-1 advantage & Neb’s huge stadium is smaller than the other 3. MSU is on par with Wisky now and has a better upside in part because of divisional alignment. The media markets of the BIG West are simply smaller outside Ill & therein lies the state of Illinois problem – NW & Illinois don’t have enough tradition in football to bring parity – neither. In fact neither brings it in hoops, and that’s not only sad due to the incredible prep talent in that state, but further proof Chicago leans pro sports & I’ve said this before, I think a a lot of Black Americans are discontent in Chicago & have been for a long, long time. which partially explains the annual talent drain. It’s a bit delusional to think Chicago is a good for Black Americans. Could it improve? Sure, I really hope it does. Is a good part of the problem accountable to Black Americans? Yes, but not exclusively, & I’d say less than 50%.

        Like

        • urbanleftbehind says:

          At least Chicago has a quantity of black football talent somewhat commensurate with its percentage of the population. Wisconsin-Madison recruiting is hamstrung by the seeming lack of football participation (and basketball program interest) in north/NW (black) Milwaukee. The in-state black talent tends to be in Kenosha/Racine and in metro Madison. Metro St. Louis though small in relative population did serve as a recruiting touch stone for the west Big10 schools, but the SEC is surely gaining; at least Mizzou is keeping more kids than in years past. This as much as TV markets and academic prestige would have me begging for UT in the B1g.

          On another note, it sadly would not surprise me to see near-septugenarians Barry Alvarez and Lloyd Carr on the sidelines as opposing head coaches next time Wisky plays Michigan, due to lack of interest by up and comers.

          Like

        • Eric says:

          I have to agree completely on the divisions. I don’t hate them the same way I hated Legends and Leaders (not being in a division with Michigan was a big no-no for me personally), but I think the issues are greater in this for the long haul. Don’t get me wrong, the west will be better than the east several years, but the east will receive far more media attention, has better access to recruits (more in the footprint), and more kings. In the long run, that’s going to lead to a disparity the same way the Big 12 North was bound to fall behind the Big 12 South despite the initial strength of the north. I still maintain the inner/outer (sandwich approach was the best bet).

          All that said, you will have western teams emerge very strong. I don’t want to push these point too hard.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            If the rule changes, dropping divisions would be the smart move. Lock 3-5 schools for each team and rotate the rest. That fixes the east/west issues while keeping many/most of the local games annual.

            Lock 3 = 3 * 100% + 10 * 60%
            Lock 4 = 4 * 100% + 9 * 56%
            Lock 5 = 5 * 100% + 8 * 50%

            I like locking 5 for the symmetry and because it lets the B10 keep all the things they have said they want (rivalries, geography and parity-based scheduling). It locks games that don’t need to be locked, though.

            NE – PSU, MI, WI, IA, MN
            WI – NE, IA, MN, UMD, NW
            IA – NE, WI, MN, IL, OSU
            MN – NE, WI, IA, PU, RU
            NW – IL, MI, MSU, WI, UMD
            IL – OSU, NW, PU, IN, IA
            PU – IN, MI, IL, MN, RU
            IN – PU, OSU, IL, MSU, UMD
            MI – OSU, NE, MSU, PU, NW
            MSU – MI, PSU, NW, RU, IN
            OSU – MI, PSU, IA, IL, IN
            PSU – OSU, NE, UMD, RU, MSU
            UMD – PSU, RU, WI, NW, IN
            RU – PSU, UMD, MSU, MN, PU

            Liked by 1 person

          • Eric says:

            Like it a lot Brian. I’d probably vote for 3 just to play everyone a little more (and because I think they’d mess up 5 by locking extra king vs. king games).

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Brian’s proposal has the virtue of transparency: every team locks five games, and that is easy to understand. On the other hand, Wisconsin fans someday will say, “Remind me again why we play Maryland every year?”

            I’ve always preferred to “lock what makes sense,” which could lead to a different number of locked games per team. There is no perceptible mutual desire for Indiana and Maryland to play each other annually…so don’t do it.

            I’d lock the intra-state games, the trophy games, and the obvious adjacent-state games. Spread out the remainder. This means that some teams have more locks than others.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Eric,

            “Like it a lot Brian. I’d probably vote for 3 just to play everyone a little more (and because I think they’d mess up 5 by locking extra king vs. king games).”

            Thanks. I think 3 is more likely, I just prefer the symmetry of playing the other teams 50% of the time. Besides, 5 lets them lock some of those extra king-king games like I showed (kings each play 2 other kings and 1 prince at least, others play fewer brand names). It’s easy enough to go through the list and trim 2 games from each team. You lose a few games like the LBJ, though.

            NE – WI, IA, MN
            WI – NE, IA, MN
            IA – NE, WI, MN
            MN – NE, WI, IA
            NW – IL, PU, IN
            IL – OSU, NW, PU
            PU – IN, IL, NW
            IN – PU, NW, MSU
            MI – OSU, MSU, RU
            MSU – MI, IN, UMD
            OSU – MI, PSU, IL
            PSU – OSU, UMD, RU
            UMD – PSU, RU, MSU
            RU – PSU, UMD, MI

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “Brian’s proposal has the virtue of transparency: every team locks five games, and that is easy to understand.”

            KISS has its uses.

            “On the other hand, Wisconsin fans someday will say, “Remind me again why we play Maryland every year?””

            It brings a brand into DC and helps WI access eastern recruiting.

            “I’ve always preferred to “lock what makes sense,” which could lead to a different number of locked games per team. There is no perceptible mutual desire for Indiana and Maryland to play each other annually…so don’t do it.”

            I know, and I threw in the caveat about locking unnecessary games just for you. But the history of the B10 shows that they really prefer to lock the same number of games for everyone. It also makes life much easier for the scheduler.

            Like

        • metatron says:

          What? The best talents in the region head to other conferences.

          Mark Ingram is from Flint, MI and he chose Alabama. A number SEC coaches are from or worked in the Midwest too, so their old high school contacts are funneling talent to an all-star conference instead of the dumpster fire that is Big Ten football.

          They need stability and success to get recruits. Simply trumpeting tradition isn’t going to cut it.

          Like

    • Arch Stanton says:

      And the Pelini to Youngstown State rumors seems to be cooling off a bit…

      Hmmm….

      Pelini to Wisconsin!?

      Like

    • frug says:

      So Dave Doeren as the new Wiscy coach?

      Like

  67. JokerCircus says:

    Why doesn’t the Big 12 add Air Force & BYU as football only members? Air Force could move all its other sports the Big Sky Conference & Mountain West Sports Federation and the AD doesn’t have to worry about his student athletes competing against the Big 12 except the football team which can hang with the Big 12. They also add prestige to the conference.

    BYU as a football only members solves the no-play on Sunday issues. It allows the Big 12 to move to 12 teams and have a conference championship game along with the added revenue from it. The best thing about this for the Big 12 is that they can do a round-robin schedule in basketball with 10 teams and make them one of the strongest RPI conferences.

    Big 12 North
    Air Force
    BYU
    Iowa State
    Kansas
    Kansas State
    West Virginia

    Big 12 South
    Baylor
    Oklahoma
    Oklahoma State
    TCU
    Texas
    Texas Tech

    I also think ESPN would be willing to renegotiate its contract with the Big 12 as they could fuse BYU’s deal for additional money to the current Big 12 deal. I doubt that FOX Sports would add to the current TV deal since they are not pulling big ratings for FOX Sports 1, but I do think FOX would be interested in the Big 12 Championship Game. Also, Air Force & BYU would love to keep their Tier-3 rights as Air Force uses ROOT Sports Mountain & BYU uses BYUtv.

    Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      There are numerous problems with this proposal.

      The divisions are highly unbalanced. I suspect that in most years, the eventual champion would come from the South, and indeed, there would be multiple South teams better than any North team. This could lead to unexciting CCG match-ups in which the South team has everything to lose, and very little to gain.

      The prospective North teams are not going to like this either, as they’ll be playing fewer games in the recruiting-rich states of Texas and Oklahoma, and will have fewer games against the league’s sexier opponents.

      West Virginia wants the Big XII to add at least one team in the Eastern time zone (e.g., Cincinnati), so they’re a sure no vote.

      Like

      • JokerCircus says:

        To even out the balance have 2 permanent out-of-division rivals while rotating 2 out-of-division foes each season & a 9-game conference schedule.

        Big 12 West
        Air Force
        BYU
        Oklahoma
        Oklahoma State
        Texas
        Texas Tech

        Big 12 East
        Baylor
        Iowa State
        Kansas
        Kansas State
        TCU
        West Virginia

        Permanent Rivals
        Air Force & BYU/Iowa State & West Virginia

        Oklahoma & Oklahoma State/Kansas & Kansas State

        Texas & Texas Tech/Baylor & TCU

        Like

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          There’s no way they’re doing that, but go ahead and keep throwing imaginary divisions at the wall, and perhaps eventually one of them will stick.

          Like

  68. Andy says:

    How about these divisions?

    Texas
    Texas Tech
    Oklahoma State
    Kansas
    BYU
    San Diego State

    Oklahoma
    KSU
    Baylor
    TCU
    ISU
    WVU

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      There is no way they’re going to sacrifice the Red River Rivalry (OK-TX) or the Bedlam Series (OK-OKSt). In your model, the Sooners would have two locked rivals in the opposite division, which means the remaining teams in that division would play Oklahoma a lot less frequently.

      It would be interesting to know whether the Texas teams would agree to no longer play each other every year. I’ve no insight as to whether that is do-able; I only know they didn’t do that last time.

      As I noted upthread, I am pretty sure the next Big XII expansion will include an Eastern time zone school for proximity to WVU.

      Like

      • Andy says:

        SDSU has a pretty big market, and if you put them in a P5 conference they’d probably draw a lot of viewers. Also they’re in a fertile recruiting area. BYU has a large fan following. Both bring more to the table than anyone out east.

        I see what you’re saying about spliting up the Oklahoma schools though.

        Like

  69. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    As most long time readers know, I’ve advocated for adding two football-only members in the Big XII since they dropped down to ten schools. The added money from a championship game would easily pay for these football-only members. If the two members were BYU and Boise St., their TV contracts with ESPN would have to be modified to only include non-conference home games, but both schools would still come out way ahead. The ten current members wouldn’t have to take a pay cut either.

    I would make their membership term only concurrent with the current TV contract and GoR. That way, if the ACC implodes, nothing stands in the way of snagging FSU, Clemson, GA Tech, and/or Miami, although I feel those schools are all unlikely to join the B-12, ever.

    I’d do the divisions along the line of Tech/States and U ofs.

    Division A: OK State, K-State, Iowa State, Boise State, Texas Tech and BYU
    Division B: Oklahoma, Kansas, West VA, TCU, Texas and Baylor.

    They could play a 9 game conference schedule with one permanent crossover (OK State/Okla, TX Tech/Texas, K-State/Kansas, Iowa State/West VA, Boise State/TCU, BYU/Baylor). The schedule could be arranged so that every school gets at least one game in the state of Texas each season.

    Division B is tougher than Division A, but its not that significant. I doubt that Texas, Oklahoma, TCU, Baylor and West VA will ever all be good at the same time.

    Like

  70. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/bowls14/story/_/id/12015248/ad-barry-alvarez-coach-wisconsin-badgers-outback-bowl

    This may be symptomatic of the problem at WI, but Alvarez is coaching in the bowl again. Other ADs just name an assistance the interim HC and let them do it, but Barry feels the need to insert himself. You’ve been retired for 9 seasons, Barry. Accept it.

    Like

  71. Brian says:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2014/12/10/college-football-playoff-jeff-long-jim-delany-selection-committee-rank/20216233/

    The committee will gather in April to discuss if and how to tweak the process for next season.

    Among the suggestions that might be considered when the selection committee reconvenes in April:

    — Scrap the weekly rankings altogether. Just wait until the end of the season, get together for a couple of days and then emerge with the bracket.

    — Wait at least a few more weeks before starting, which would provide the committee with more games with which to evaluate teams.

    — If they’re going to continue the weekly updates, Delany suggested a possible change: Rank teams where it’s clear. Where it’s not, group them in a “cluster,” and explain that it’s too close to differentiate. Last week, for example, the committee might have ranked No. 1 Alabama and No. 2 Oregon, and then listed Baylor, Florida State, Ohio State and TCU alphabetically in “Tier 2.”

    “Maybe where there’s unequivocal (consensus), you do the ranking,” Delany said. “Where there’s a cluster, you cluster.”

    That might have helped quench some of the confusion — if not the controversy — of what happened last weekend.

    I’d suggest that rather than simply rank teams, they also use some sort of points system. That would give people an idea of the separation the committee sees between various teams. It’s similar to Delany’s idea of clustering, but shows how far the cluster is from the teams above and below.

    I think we’re stuck with the weekly rankings because they make money for ESPN. But otherwise, I’d suggest going to only 3 rankings. Do the first one after 8 weeks (the week before Halloween), the second 3 weeks later and the final one after the CCGs. That allows time for several games to change the thinking of the committee and the gap makes it harder to feel as beholden to your previous rankings.

    Like

  72. bullet says:

    Interesting poll on who you think will win the playoff on ESPN. There had been 909,000 votes when I looked:
    Oregon 39%
    Alabama 35%
    Ohio St. 14%
    FSU 12%

    Alabama carried all the SEC states except Texas and also carried North Carolina. OSU carried Ohio. Oregon carried all the rest except that they were tied with Alabama in Texas, Virginia and Maryland.

    Like

  73. aFrankAngle says:

    Reading the official statements makes me believe that the conference may prefer the status quo and become the permanent host team for the Cotton Bowl.

    Like

  74. Wainscott says:

    Bob Bowlsby seems to rule out expansion, pursuing a deregulated title game instead.

    http://www.dallasnews.com/sports/college-sports/columnists/chuck-carlton/20141211-carlton-why-big-12-still-isn-t-looking-at-expansion-to-solve-playoff-problem-following-meetings.ece

    Though, I thought the joint ACC-B12 proposal was just to regulate the need for divisions. I didn’t realize it would remove the 12 team minimum.

    Bonus points: if you go look on Chuck Carlton’s twitter feed, he has a back and forth with The Dude. Yes, that The Dude.

    Like

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I thought the joint ACC-B12 proposal was just to regulate the need for divisions. I didn’t realize it would remove the 12 team minimum.

      I had always understood it would remove the 12-team minimum, as the Big XII was a co-sponsor, and they had steadfastly maintained that they weren’t planning to expand.

      Like

      • Wainscott says:

        It would, as the deregulation would apply to all rules relating to CCG;s. http://www.cbssports.com/collegefootball/writer/dennis-dodd/24483893/acc-supports-deregulation-of-conference-championship-games-would-change-postseason-structure

        My favorite quote, however:

        Bowlsby said he doubted all 10 FBS conferences would be forced to stage a championship game for uniformity purposes in the College Football Playoff era.

        “Theoretically, that could happen. It never would,” Bowlsby said, “because of the way this organization has been put together. That just isn’t going to happen.”

        Like

        • bullet says:

          He was quoted as saying they were told it wouldn’t matter.

          What happened is that the process changed. In the past, 2/3 was usually not close enough that a ccg mattered. 4/5 wasn’t really either. But now they are looking at it all subjectively, diminishing or throwing out what used to be disqualifiers (when you lost, how you were ranked preseason, bad loss) and the gaps between the teams have thinned. Under this process, I suspect a lot of the “easy” decisions in the BCS era wouldn’t have been so easy.

          I think its good that they are looking at it differently. But the subjectiveness has increased. Who is on the committee really matters as to what they value.

          They need to go to 8 and eliminate most of the nonsense.

          Like

          • Wainscott says:

            “They need to go to 8 and eliminate most of the nonsense.”

            Going to 8 merely pushes the “nonsense” further down. Does not eliminate it.

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            They need to go to 8 and eliminate most of the nonsense.

            There’s a lot of inertia around keeping it at four. Contracts would need to be torn up, and I don’t see that happening. Although there are a lot of problems with the current set-up, none of those problems are surprising.

            I believe it’ll stay at four through the 12-year contract cycle. Somewhere around the 8th year, they’ll start the serious discussions around whether they want to expand.

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Going to 8 merely pushes the “nonsense” further down. Does not eliminate it.

            But the farther you push it down, the less the “nonsense” matters. The debate over “Who’s #8?” is a lot less important than “Who’s #4?”

            By the time you get down to #8, you’re almost certainly looking at teams with multiple losses, and therefore, multiple obvious flaws.

            Like

          • greg says:

            Going to 8 would damage the regular season. Given how much the presidents are fearful of that outcome, I think it may be a long time at 4.

            Like

          • Redwood86 says:

            The Big-12 must share blame in this. Baylor earned the Big-12 Championship title, but was not recognized as such because its egregiously weak OOC schedule left it ranked behind TCU. The solution is to beef up the OOC schedules and to crown a single Conference champion in accordance with its own rules. Had Baylor played beaten a half-legitimate school in OOC play, tOSU loss to VTech would have been a killer for the Buckeyes.

            8-team playoff is not a student-athlete friendly option.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            I would argue 8 would enhance the regular season. A conference title means a shot at a national championship (I’m presuming the P5 get autobids). Noone who won a title in a major conference would get left out. So there is none of that nonsense, having to arbitrarily exclude teams who won something using very limited information.

            8 means only 1 in 16 teams gets in (1 in 8 if you only count P5). Contrast that to the NCAA bb tourney where 1 in 5 gets in and half the P5. It will still be very hard to get in the tournament.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “He was quoted as saying they were told it wouldn’t matter.”

            Which I think was always a misunderstanding. Of course a season-ending game against a top team is going to impact how a team is ranked. And of course 13 games versus 12 will provide more opportunities for quality wins.

            I think the committee told the B12 that they wouldn’t inherently hold the lack of a CCG and only playing 12 games against them, just like they wouldn’t hold it against ND. They still only have 12 games to pack in the quality that other teams get 13 games to provide, though.

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            8-team playoff is not a student-athlete friendly option.

            The length of the season has grown repeatedly over the last half-century, and each time there were people who said, “Think of the children!” It never stopped them before, so I doubt it’ll stop them now.

            FCS has a 24-team playoff, so it’s hard for me to believe there is an inherent problem with eight.

            Like

          • Wainscott says:

            “By the time you get down to #8, you’re almost certainly looking at teams with multiple losses, and therefore, multiple obvious flaws.”

            So? ESPN devotes shows and significant airtime to voices who debate which MBB teams were screwed out of being in a field of 68. That the teams are less deserving doesn’t change that there will be the same level of “debate” because it fills programming/generates pageviews/listeners. The “nonsense” will exist in same force and effect, and if anything, will be bigger due to the larger concentration of teams who could in an average year claim to be #8 will be at least the same number who can claim to be #4.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “FCS has a 24-team playoff, so it’s hard for me to believe there is an inherent problem with eight.”

            1. I-AA generally plays a shorter season.

            2. Smaller and/or slower players means less energy in each collision, reducing the on the body.

            3. I-AA’s season ends earlier, letting the playoff start in November with the semifinals before Christmas and only the NCG in January. The I-A playoff doesn’t start until NYE.

            Like

          • Wainscott says:

            “1. I-AA generally plays a shorter season.

            2. Smaller and/or slower players means less energy in each collision, reducing the on the body.

            3. I-AA’s season ends earlier, letting the playoff start in November with the semifinals before Christmas and only the NCG in January. The I-A playoff doesn’t start until NYE.”

            1-AA played 12 games this year. Usually its 11. Teams advancing to the finals can play 16 or 17. That’s a long season. (Sam Houston State is currently 10-4, will play 17 games if they advance to finals.)

            2. FCS players are not as good, and are just as likely to suffer small and big injuries as any other football player. Also, smaller schools with smaller budgets will have lesser medical staffs. We can all agree, for example, the high school players are nowhere as big and strong as any college player, yet high schools players this past year have been suffering major injuries, some of them resulting in death.

            3. Starting playoff in November also means less rest between regular season and playoff games for FCS players. CFB playoff teams will get at least 3 weeks between a conf title game and NYE/NYD bowl. In BCS era, one year there was a 50 or so day break between the CCG and the NCG.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Wainscott,

            “1-AA played 12 games this year. Usually its 11.”

            As I said. They usually play a shorter season. They play 12 games in double-bye years now.

            “2. FCS players are not as good,”

            Right. The tend to be slower and/or smaller. As I said.

            “and are just as likely to suffer small and big injuries as any other football player.”

            1. Proof?

            2. I didn’t mention the number of injuries. I mentioned the energy in collisions and the impact on the body. E = 1/2 * m * v^2. Lower mass and/or lower velocity means less kinetic energy for the body to absorb.

            “We can all agree, for example, the high school players are nowhere as big and strong as any college player, yet high schools players this past year have been suffering major injuries, some of them resulting in death.”

            There are many, many more HS players than I-AA players. Of course some will suffer major injuries. It’s not relevant, but it’s true. It’s also unfair to compare 14-17 year-olds with 18-21 year-olds. They are very different in terms of physical development.

            “3. Starting playoff in November also means less rest between regular season and playoff games for FCS players. CFB playoff teams will get at least 3 weeks between a conf title game and NYE/NYD bowl. In BCS era, one year there was a 50 or so day break between the CCG and the NCG.”

            1. How is that relevant to me pointing out that I-AA can finish their playoff by 1/10 because of when it starts?

            2. Are long layoffs definitively a good thing? Many people have noticed how poorly played those BCS games often were because everyone was so rusty.

            Like

          • Wainscott says:

            “As I said. They usually play a shorter season. They play 12 games in double-bye years now.”

            Except when teams make the playoffs, which I pointed out. Smaller regular season, longer postseason.

            “The tend to be slower and/or smaller.”

            Also less skilled and less likely to have good form when tackling/blocking. Bad form can and does lead to injuries.

            “Proof?”

            Football is a violent game. Injuries happen at all levels. Don’t need any proof as its common sense. If you want to find some for me, go ahead. Though, at lower levels, injuries are less likely to be reported. (again, going back to training staff and such).

            “I didn’t mention the number of injuries. I mentioned the energy in collisions and the impact on the body. E = 1/2 * m * v^2. Lower mass and/or lower velocity means less kinetic energy for the body to absorb.”

            That’s great, but less force on a smaller person will have similar actual impact as larger force on a larger person. Lower mass and means body can adsorb less energy.

            “There are many, many more HS players than I-AA players. Of course some will suffer major injuries. It’s not relevant, but it’s true. It’s also unfair to compare 14-17 year-olds with 18-21 year-olds. They are very different in terms of physical development.”

            Medical care on the sidelines matters, too.

            “How is that relevant to me pointing out that I-AA can finish their playoff by 1/10 because of when it starts?”

            Context was, appearing below comment re: number of games and injuries to be health related. If it wasn’t, then ignore the comment.

            “Are long layoffs definitively a good thing? Many people have noticed how poorly played those BCS games often were because everyone was so rusty.”

            Was only talking about rest for players regarding health- a nice bye to rest and recoup after the regular season. No position on quality of gameplay resulting from layoff.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Wainscott,

            “Except when teams make the playoffs, which I pointed out. Smaller regular season, longer postseason.”

            The postseason isn’t the season. That’s why it’s called “post.”

            “Also less skilled and less likely to have good form when tackling/blocking.”

            Their tackling form really can’t be worse than many I-A players. The I-A guys are the former HS studs who think they can knock anyone over without wrapping up.

            “Football is a violent game. Injuries happen at all levels. Don’t need any proof as its common sense.”

            You made a claim about the frequency of injuries at one level versus another. That’s not common sense and requires evidence to be more than pure speculation.

            “That’s great, but less force on a smaller person will have similar actual impact as larger force on a larger person. Lower mass and means body can adsorb less energy.”

            Smaller people are stronger pound for pound since muscle mass (x^3) grows exponentially faster than strength (x^2). And slower people reduce energy (v^2) exponentially faster than they slow down (v). So no, you can’t just say everything is the same without evidence.

            “Medical care on the sidelines matters, too.”

            Not to whether or not the injuries happen.

            Like

        • ccrider55 says:

          Setting up a straw man. No one ever has suggested that the conference’s as currently constituted would be explicitly required to have a CCG. The advantage/disadvantage of getting eligible, and then actually holding one, are what the conference’s measure regarding it. But a couple want their cake and eat it too.

          Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            But a couple want their cake and eat it too.

            That might be a tad unfair to the Big XII. They didn’t lose four of their original twelve members by choice.

            Like

          • ccrider55 says:

            The dwarves aren’t at fault directly, but the conference as a whole didn’t take the steps to make leaving seem far less attractive. There were decisions made over time, and options rejected. But both were choices that contributed.

            Like

          • bullet says:

            The only ones who opposed the decisions being made were the 5 who nearly got left behind. And then Nebraska was on the wrong side of a few 11-1 votes.

            Given the opportunities, Colorado would have still gone to the Pac 12 and A&M would still have gone to the SEC. That would have happened even if neither of them knew the other was leaving. The instability got Nebraska to thinking, but given the opportunity to go to the Big 10, they would have moved to. Even if they had that annual game with OU (which it was OU who didn’t want that game-for competitive reasons-they didn’t want Nebraska AND Texas).

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Obviously, the Big XII made decisions years ago that they may regret. But it’s a fairly tenuous connection from those decisions to @ccrider55’s “having their cake and eating it too” comment as it applies to conference championship games. Even those voting “no” couldn’t have had the foresight to imagine that because of these decisions, Ohio State would jump two spots almost twenty years later and leapfrog TCU for a playoff that didn’t even exist at the time.

            Like

          • ccrider55 says:

            Marc:

            I agree that this particular year couldn’t have been foreseen, and see how had FSU and tOSU been beaten there would have been an outcry that the B12 got two in by not having a CCG. The point of cake and eating is not tenuous at all. Group one knows that to do X they need to satisfy Y. Now that Y is no longer satisfied they move to remove/alter Y in order, if they were to so chose, to do X again. How is that tenuous?

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            All I am saying, as that the Big XII could not reasonably have foreseen that decisions 20 years ago would lead to the dilemma they currently face, which is either:

            A) A schedule structure that disadvantages them in the playoff; or,
            B) Expanding to 12 with teams they really do not want.

            Contrast this situation to the ACC, which also has a schedule structure that they find awkward. But the ACC had this problem as soon as they expanded. To have foreseen it would not have required them to forecast 20 years into the future.

            The ACC wants the benefits of expansion, without having to abide by a well-known rule they supported in the past, but now find inconvenient. This is a classic “have your cake and eat it too” scenario. The Big XII is facing the possibility of an undesirable expansion, in order to put themselves on an equal footing for a playoff that was on no one’s radar when the league was founded almost two decades ago. They didn’t choose to be in this position.

            Surely you see the difference.

            (FYI, I’m taking it as given that the Big XII’s structure will disadvantage them over the long term. As you correctly pointed out, with a bit of luck they could have had two teams in the playoff, and Bowlsby would have looked like a genius. It will take a few years before we know whether the purported disadvantage even exists. For sake of discussion, I am assuming that it does.)

            Like

      • jog267 says:

        Should the CG rule be adjusted, the 12 school requirement removed and assuming (as is likely) a CG would at least cover the addition of one school, why wouldn’t the Big 12 add Cincinnati, institute an 8 game conference schedule and stage a CG at Jerryworld?

        Like

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          With an 8-game conference schedule, some of the schools would relinquish marquee games they now play annually against the Texas and Oklahoma schools. What are they gaining that would make this desirable?

          Like

          • jog267 says:

            An expansion to 12 with a 9 game schedule would necessitate the same thing; instead revenues are split 11 ways. The benefits are that a CG has an 80% chance (rather than a ridiculous 100% with a 10 school round robin) of being a rematch, schools (esp UT and OU) get more scheduling flexibility and West Va gets a travel partner. As Frank notes Cincinnati is the one obvious choice; there isn’t a suitable 12th school.

            Like

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The benefits of a “travel partner” for WV are much over-stated. It amounts to one football game every other year, certainly not enough to drive the expansion bus if the other benefits are not there.

            Like

  75. urbanleftbehind says:

    Hopefully this dude is like his South Suburban Conference counterpart Tevin Coleman :

    http://www.crimsonandcreammachine.com/2014/12/11/7379117/oklahoma-sooners-football-running-back-soonerdave-heading-to-illinois

    Like

  76. Brian says:

    http://www.si.com/college-football/2014/12/10/college-football-playoff-first-year-review

    Long also addressed the other big question that arose Sunday. Were committee members swayed by Ohio State’s brand? Did the Buckeyes get in because they have a bigger name than Baylor or TCU? “The Ohio State brand had nothing to do with it,” Long said. “It was never discussed in the committee. It was focused on that football team.”

    Like

    • Wainscott says:

      Would that even need to be discussed? Wouldn’t everyone in that room have an innate understanding that OSU is a bigger brand than TCU or Baylor, and possibly bigger than TCU AND Baylor?

      Like

      • Brian says:

        It would need to be discussed if people were trying to leverage TV ratings as a reason to pick OSU. If all they talked about were the facts of the resumes, then brand had no conscious impact on the result.

        Like

        • Wainscott says:

          ” If all they talked about were the facts of the resumes, then brand had no conscious impact on the result.”

          If all that was publicly talked about were facts and resumes, committee members could very easily think of but not vocalize a desire to maximize brand power in the first ever CFB playoff. Not vocalizing those thoughts does not mean they has no conscious impact on the result, just that they had no stated or documented impact on the result.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            So multiple people separately thought they wanted to promote OSU because it’s such a big brand? What about people wanting to support the B12 because it’s a big brand? What about the large number of people who hate OSU and/or the B10? How do we know those people aren’t on the committee? Why wouldn’t that be a concern for the ratings?

            Remind me, why would the committee care about brands? They have zero financial incentive. Plus, the ratings will be ridiculous anyway. AL versus anybody in a playoff game would pull a huge number.

            “If all that was publicly talked about were facts and resumes, committee members could very easily think of but not vocalize a desire to maximize brand power in the first ever CFB playoff.”

            That only works if the brand supports the factual argument, at which point I’d argue that the brand didn’t matter.

            If the brand argument opposes the factual argument, then that will show up in the voting and have to be discussed by those not favoring brands over facts. Several people in a room using facts to show why Baylor is better and then voting for OSU instead would be noted and thus the issue would be discussed. Or are you now saying all 12 were thinking this same way. OSU is so beloved that the entire committee chose it despite thinking Baylor was better?

            If the factual argument was so close that nobody noticed votes going against it, then the brand didn’t necessarily matter either. Anything could’ve been the deciding factor and the decision might be different if you polled them again tomorrow.

            Like

          • Wainscott says:

            “So multiple people separately thought they wanted to promote OSU because it’s such a big brand?

            Yes.

            What about people wanting to support the B12 because it’s a big brand?

            Is the B12 a team?

            What about the large number of people who hate OSU and/or the B10?

            What about them?

            How do we know those people aren’t on the committee?

            They could be.

            Why wouldn’t that be a concern for the ratings?

            Haters tune in. Its why the Dallas Cowboys have numerous prime time games annually.

            “Remind me, why would the committee care about brands?”

            They might not. Was only presenting a situation where brand can be a conscious and silent reason for wanting OSU.

            “They have zero financial incentive.”

            So?

            “Plus, the ratings will be ridiculous anyway. AL versus anybody in a playoff game would pull a huge number.”

            Two big brands are better than one.

            “If the brand argument opposes the factual argument, then that will show up in the voting and have to be discussed by those not favoring brands over facts. Several people in a room using facts to show why Baylor is better and then voting for OSU instead would be noted and thus the issue would be discussed. Or are you now saying all 12 were thinking this same way. OSU is so beloved that the entire committee chose it despite thinking Baylor was better?

            If the factual argument was so close that nobody noticed votes going against it, then the brand didn’t necessarily matter either. Anything could’ve been the deciding factor and the decision might be different if you polled them again tomorrow.”

            It could have been a factor. Did I say it absolutely was or was not? I stated that OSU is a bigger brand than TCU and/or Baylor. It could have had an impact; it could not have.I have no idea.

            Like

          • Brian says:

            Wainscott,

            “Yes.”

            Evidence?

            “Is the B12 a team?”

            Is it a brand? I presume the committee knows which conference these teams each belong to.

            “They might not. Was only presenting a situation where brand can be a conscious and silent reason for wanting OSU.”

            Which is also impugning the integrity of many or most of the members of the committee, saying they would intentionally vote in a team they didn’t think actually deserved to be in the top 4.

            “So?”

            So what incentive do they have to favor a brand to the point they are willing to override the factual evidence?

            “Two big brands are better than one.”

            Better for what? The committee isn’t ESPN. They have no stake in the ratings.

            “It could have been a factor. Did I say it absolutely was or was not?”

            You claimed they could have consciously chosen to vote against their actual beliefs in favor of picking a bigger brand without ever saying a word about branding. That’s a pretty broad accusation to level as pure speculation.

            Like

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        If the committee was focused on brands, then why did they keep downgrading a Florida State team that was winning its games? In the committee’s second-to-last update, they demoted FSU to 4th, with TCU 3rd.

        Now, subsequent events pushed TCU back to 6th, but the committee couldn’t have known for sure how the last weekend of games would play out.

        Like

        • bullet says:

          There’s a subconscious bias toward established “brands.” I think that was still there, but at a lower level than you usually get in the polls. The biggest thing that helped Ohio St. was recency bias. Their best game was their last one, playing as the committee was starting to meet. The committee talked about that.

          Like

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “There’s a subconscious bias toward established “brands.””

            There probably is, though I think it impacts fans and media more than some of these committee members. Several have ties to non-brands so they should sympathize with the plight of the little guy. I also think the sheer amount of football the committee watched, and seeing it minus much of the commentary from ESPN or CBS or whomever, overwhelms most bias.

            It’s why I was careful to talk about conscious impact above.

            “The biggest thing that helped Ohio St. was recency bias. Their best game was their last one, playing as the committee was starting to meet. The committee talked about that.”

            I agree, and it’s one reason why they might want to move the final vote back to Tuesday. It was hard not to be impressed with OSU in that game and that was the last thing they saw before voting. Taking a day or two to cool off and approach the final vote with a clear head might lead to better results long term.

            Like

  77. Brian says:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2014/12/12/ole-miss-freeze-to-earn-4-3-million-next-season/20305197/

    Hugh Freeze is getting a raise to $4.3M per year. Meanwhile, WI keeps losing HCs because they won’t pay competitive rates for ACs.

    Like

    • z33k says:

      Well the good news I guess is that Wisconsin is going for a coach who will never leave on his own unless it’s to retire… I guess that’s the silver lining here?

      FWIW, it makes sense for Alvarez to do that, he’s signaled that he doesn’t want to be filling the HC spot after this hire, so going with the Wisconsin guy is the right idea.

      Like

      • Brian says:

        Chryst has hardly been a superstar at Pitt, though. Is this picking the most familiar over the best available? Is Alvarez so impressed with his own style that he didn’t consider a HC that won’t basically run his old schemes? This seems similar to MI insisting on hiring Bo disciples.

        Like

        • z33k says:

          True, maybe they’re hoping it’s sort of like Dantonio at Cincinnati? Like Chryst was doing a lot of setup/rebuilding work (or so I’ve seen Pitt/Wisconsin fans claim) so the records aren’t that impressive until you see what Brian Kelly did with those teams that Dantonio put together…?

          Although that comparison isn’t really perfect, I guess