Thursday, September 08, 2011

My Thoughts on College Football Realignment and Playoffs


So with all the talk of conference realignment, here is my best guess, based on what I have read and heard on what the SEC might look like in the near future (and the rest is my best guess on what the other conferences might do to keep up with the Pac 10 and SEC):
SEC
ACC
Big 10
Big 12
Pac12
East
Florida
Georgia
Tennessee
Kentucky
South Carolina
Vanderbilt
West Virginia*
VaTech*
West
Alabama
Auburn
Miss St
Ole Miss
LSU
Arkansas
TAMU*
Missouri*
Clemson
FSU
North Carolina
Duke
NCST
UVA
Boston College
Georgia Tech
Maryland
Miami
Wake Forest
ECU*
USF*
Louisville*
Cincinnati*
Memphis*
Michigan
Michigan St.
Iowa
Illinois
Indiana
Wisconsin
Minnesota
Nebraska
Northwestern
Ohio St.
Penn St.
Purdue
Pittsburgh*
Rutgers*
Connecticut*
Syracuse*
Baylor
Iowa State
Kansas
Kansas State
Texas
Texas Tech
Houston*
SMU*
Tulsa*
UTEP*
Rice*
USC
UCLA
Utah
Oregon
Oregon St.
Washington
Washington St.
Arizona
Arizona St.
Colorado
California
Stanford
Oklahoma*
Ok St.*
TCU*
BYU*
MWC
Sun Belt
MAC
Independent
Dissolve
Big East
WAC
C-USA
Boise State*
Fresno St.*
Nevada*
Hawai’i*
New Mexico
UNLV
Air Force
Colorado St.
San Diego St.
Wyoming
Idaho*
Utah State*
San Jose State*
NMSU*
UTSA*
Texas State*
Troy
WKU
Arkansas St.
MTSU
USA
FIU
Florida Atlantic
UL-La
UL-Monroe
North Texas
La Tech*
Tulane*
UCF*
Southern Miss*
Marshall*
UAB*
Akron
Ball St.
Bowling Green
Buffalo
EMU
CMU
WMU
Kent State
Miami OH
Northern IL
Ohio
Temple*
Toledo
UMASS*
Notre Dame
Army
Navy
These are just guesses and speculation for your entertainment pleasure.
Next are my thoughts on what I think the conferences should do. These would be conference mergers and expansions and extinctions.
South & Eastern Conference (SEC)
20 teams
Big Atlantic
Conference
16 teams
Big Legends Conference
18 teams
Big Western Conference
20 teams
Pac 20 Conference
20 teams
Sun Belt Conference
16 teams
Mid-American Conference
14 teams
Florida
Georgia
Tennessee
Kentucky
South Carolina
Vanderbilt
Alabama
Auburn
Miss St
Ole Miss
LSU
Arkansas
Louisville
Clemson
FSU
Ga Tech
UVA
Va Tech
Missouri
TAMU*
North Carolina
Duke
NCST
Maryland
Miami
Wake Forest USF
West Virginia
Cincinnati
Connecticut
Syracuse
Temple
UMASS*
UCF
ECU
Memphis
Michigan
Michigan St.
Iowa
Illinois
Indiana
Wisconsin
Minnesota
Nebraska
Northwestern
Ohio St.
Penn St.
Purdue
Notre Dame*
Army*
Navy*
Pittsburgh*
Boston College*
Rutgers*
Baylor
Iowa State
Kansas
Kansas State
Texas
Texas Tech
Oklahoma
Ok St.
TCU*
Rice
SMU
UTEP
Houston
New Mexico
Air Force
Wyoming
Utah State
Idaho
NMSU
Fresno St.*
USC
UCLA
Utah
Oregon
Oregon St.
Washington
Washington St.
Arizona
Arizona St.
Colorado
California
Stanford
Boise State*
Nevada*
Hawai’i*
BYU*
Colorado St.*
UNLV*
San Jose State
San Diego St.*
Troy
Arkansas St.
USA
FIU
Florida Atlantic
UL-La
UL-Monroe
North Texas
UAB
Southern Miss
Tulane
UTSA*
Texas State*
La Tech
Tulsa
MTSU
Akron
Ball St.
Bowling Green
Buffalo
EMU
CMU
WMU
Kent State
Miami OH
Northern IL
Ohio
Toledo
WKU
Marshall
The conference names are what I would suggest based on mergers and past naming history. Realignments are based partly on regions, culture, football philosophy, basketball philosophy, history, and a variety of other thoughts. With all of the conferences required to have a championship game, this would cut down on the need for a long playoff. Conference Champions could be seeded like so in a 6 team playoff:
SEC Champion, Big Atlantic Champion, Big Legends Champion, Big Western Champion, Pac 20 Champion, Sunbelt Champ/MAC Champ (These two conferences would share a Birth. Higher Ranked team gets the Bid).
The 6-team playoff would be Seeded based on BCS ranking. The 2 Highest ranked teams at the end of Conference Championship week would get a bye. The four lowest ranked teams would play with the winners each meeting #1 and #2 the following week. Winners of those match-ups then play to determine the National Champion. Like this:
Playoff Week 1
Playoff Week 2
Championship Game
#1 Team – Bye
#1 Team vs. (#4v#5 Winner) A
Winner A vs. Winner B
#3 vs. #6
#4 vs. #5
#2 Team vs. (#3v#6 Winner) B
#2 Team – Bye
This would add only one extra game for the #1 and #2 teams. And it would give all conferences a shot at winning the championship (almost) evenly. The non-conference champs could still play in the non-BCS bowl games.
Currently there are 4 BCS games other than the Championship Game, which fits my playoff exactly: 4 Playoff/BCS Bowl games, then the Championship game. All the other teams can enjoy their Bowl games just as they do now with nothing changed.
I can’t see many scenarios where this system wouldn’t declare the best football team from all the conferences the National Champion. Sure, if you are a lower seed you have to play an extra game, but I bet if you asked any football player on any team that finished #3-#6 if they would have been willing to play an extra game to play in the National Championship game they would say “Hell Yeah!”
Obviously though, this playoff system wouldn’t declare the true “best team in the land” without the conference realignment and conference championship games.
These are just my thoughts. I welcome any comments from anyone interested in the subject.
-Jason Crowson
9-8-2011

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Yours Truly,
The Crowsons