<
>

Bob Bowlsby says Big 12 putting title game talk on hold for now

PHOENIX -- The Big 12 is not moving forward with plans to add a conference title game, commissioner Bob Bowlsby said Tuesday during the conference's spring meetings.

Despite telling reporters last week that he sensed the league "will probably move in that direction," Bowlsby said Big 12 athletic directors believe there isn't enough evidence after one year of the College Football Playoff to justify such a significant move.

"I really have been proud of our athletic directors because they chose to respond to not being in the playoff rather than react," Bowlsby said. "I think they've been very thoughtful about it and continue to be thoughtful about it. We all believe that one year is not a long enough window or trial to draw any conclusions.

"We may find ourselves in better shape than some other conferences as a result of our model, not in spite of our model."

The Big 12 will continue to push for NCAA deregulation that would permit the conference to stage a title game, but that's not a path the conference is ready to go down after Baylor and TCU were left out of the inaugural playoff.

"I just think it's a process," he said. "That isn't to say we won't ever consider those things again or that we won't talk more tomorrow, but I just am not sensing that that's where we're heading."

There is no interest, he added, in expanding the Big 12 in order to fix their postseason problem.

The Big 12 is the only Power 5 conference not to play a title game. TCU and Baylor tied for the title last year but were left out of the CFP.

One issue the conference will address this week is establishing a tiebreaker, but Big 12 ADs and coaches will not finalize those plans until their Wednesday meetings.

"I'm quite comfortable in saying we'll come out with a resolution on that and a plan going forward," Bowlsby said.

Bowlsby said ADs discussed the Big 12's scheduling model - a nine-game round-robin format - and were unanimous that they do not want to change to an eight-game conference schedule.

"We felt that we ought to keep it the way it is," Bowlsby said, "and have it be about who we play and not who we don't play."