COLLEGE FOOTBALL IS CHANGING. You can watch Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany speak about Big Ten bowl tie-ins and the possibility of college football playoffs. Right now, it's about the "what" and the "where." According to Adam Rittenberg, Delany said "there's a very strong consensus among the league's athletic directors that the bowl-eligibility requirement should increase from six wins to seven wins." Those new requirements could mean new bowl tie-ins for the Big Ten. The contracts for the current lineup of Big Ten bowl tie-ins expires after 2013.
For the Big Ten meetings the issue of a playoff isn't a matter of if but how. Delany's previous stance was for semi- final games to be played on college campuses. That issue appears to be dead now. According to Delany,
"I had a conference call with our football coaches about a week ago. What they said to me was the 'how' is even more important than the 'what.' They were in favor of the Rose Bowl, the bowl system. They felt it was the least slippery slope. They understood on-campus events could be competitively favorable to them, but they were very clear that the events ought to occur in the context of the bowl system."
Another issue for Delany, besides the Rose Bowl tie-in, is how teams will be selected for a "Final Four" playoff. There's been a proposal for a selection committee or using a formula similar to the old BCS formula that gathers numerous polls and computer rankings. However teams are selected will be controversial. Delany wants transperency in how the system works. What's the formula, who is involved, etc.
While conference champions would be ideal Delany backed off his previous stance that was interpreted by some as a shot at Alabama. Delany says there could be a "hybrid model" for teams that don't win their conference championship. They'd have a pool of teams to select the four final teams. Six was the number floated previously.
The Big Ten will offer two playoff proposals. Conference commissioners will meet next month and Delany hopes to have something formalized by then. July 1st is the date conference commissioners hope to have a playoff format finalized for 2014. The meeting of Big Ten ADs will continue today in Chicago.
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