Utah missing out on the playoff means the Pac-12 won't be represented for the sixth time in eight yearsGETTY IMAGES
The CFP committee yesterday "sent a message to every conference besides the SEC” that the proposed playoff expansion to 12 teams should be accepted or it could be “four more years of getting lapped and left out," according to Dan Wolken of USA TODAY. The four-team field of Alabama, Michigan, Georgia and Cincinnati means the Pac-12 "will not have a team in the playoff" for the sixth time in eight years, while the Big 12 champion “also has been snubbed” for the fourth time. Meanwhile, the ACC was “all but eliminated back in September." Multiple Power 5 conferences have been left out of the CFP four times in the past five years, meaning the system “isn’t working the way its founders hoped." Wolken: “If Sunday doesn’t scare them straight about the need for playoff expansion as soon as humanly possible, they’re only hurting themselves” (USA TODAY, 12/6). SI.com's Pat Forde noted the "majority of the Power 5 conferences were excluded" from the CFP for the first time. If that "doesn’t get the commissioners of the excluded power leagues in high gear to advocate for a 12-team Playoff, nothing will" (SI.com, 12/5).
MORE IN COMMON THAN THOUGHT: In San Jose, Jon Wilner writes with Clemson and Oklahoma "not performing up to their recent standards," the ACC and Big 12 "received the Pac-12 treatment from the selection committee." That proves the “longstanding point that the only difference between the leagues has been the lack of a Pac-12 equivalent to Clemson and Oklahoma." Beyond that "single, elite team," there "isn’t much separating the three in any given season" (San Jose MERCURY NEWS, 12/6).
WHAT COMMISSIONERS THINK: Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby prior to Saturday's Baylor-Oklahoma State conference title game said that prospects of an expanded 12-team CFP by '24 are "in some jeopardy at this point." He added that there is "not much better hope before the current format expires after the 2025 season." Bowlsby remains "committed to the 12-team format." He said it is "the one that’s best for college football." However, the problem in the short term is "simply working out the logistics of hosting additional games." Amid growing talk from inside the Power Five conferences that they should "have the biggest say in the expanded field," Bowlsby reiterated that it "should be a process open to all FBS schools" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 12/5). Meanwhile, Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff prior to Friday's Utah-Oregon conference title matchup said that the CFP management committee was "starting to look beyond the current agreement and at the possibility the next iteration of the playoff would not need approval from the so-called Group of Five conferences." Kliavkoff: "You start by saying, ‘What is the group that needs to agree on a model?’ We can then hopefully invite the rest to join us in. So it’s just a different paradigm about how you think about who gets to make a decision about what the model looks like" (AP, 12/4).