The college football playoffs are getting closer. Twelve of the most important men in college football just finished two days of meetings at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport today. Those men are the commissioners of the 11 BCS conferences plus the Notre Dame athletic director. They agree in principle that a playoff system in inevitable. It’s those pesky little details that need to be worked out. Their next meeting will be March 26. They hope to have a solution by summer.
The NCAA is not involved. In fact, don’t be surprised if the 110 Division I football schools eventually secede from the NCAA and run their own tournaments, including the basketball tournament which would eclipse the NCAA’s “Big Dance.”
According to my source, the most likely scenario for a football playoff would unfold like this. The top four schools in the BCS rankings would play in the national semifinals, meeting in currently established bowls. The semifinals would have #1 playing #3 and #2 playing #4. The winners would play in the national championship game a week later. In the meantime, the other bowl games would be played as usual.
A rotation system among the bowls would be worked out. There are some rumble strips, of course. For example, the Rose Bowl does not want to disturb the marriage bewteen the PAC 10 and Big 10. This is sacrosanct on many levels — historically, emotionally and financially.
Among other ramifications, the Cotton Bowl will likely become relevant again.
By the way, since all conferences are adding championship games to their calendars, the road to the national championship for all practical purposes will include three straight playoff games.
These changes are coming fast, so stay tuned.