Give your initial thoughts on the new NCAA football playoff system.
Based on an early understanding of the college football playoff model, there are more pros than cons.
On the pros side, this system is better than the BCS. Anything is better than the BCS and I will be glad to see that system go away. It is always nice to see a champion decided on the field and this playoff format will allow that to happen in a way that I prefer to the BCS. I can make a case for why I think an eight-team playoff is better than a four-team playoff, but I do this think system is progress from what we had before.
I also like the fact that there will be a return of emphasis to a New Year’s Day format which will include the semifinal games. One commissioner acknowledged that it was a mistake to get away from New Year’s Day in recent years and I couldn’t agree with that more. New Year’s Day is a day that’s made for college football and it will be nice to see that again, even if it’s in a slightly different format than what we’ve seen in the past.
As far as the cons, the big one so far is the uncertainty of the selection process in terms of who is on the committee and the details of how teams will be selected. Any time the human element is involved, there is a chance for agendas and biases and those prejudices are certainly present in the world of college football. The good news for USC fans is that the Trojans are one of those programs who should receive plenty of consideration when they are among the top teams at the end of the regular season. It’s not like USC will be a mid-major fighting for a spot at the table.
My final hesitation has to do with the impact on the Rose Bowl. The semifinal games are scheduled to rotate among the bowl sites -- the Rose Bowl is scheduled to be included -- but there is also talk that the Rose Bowl may look to stick with the Pac-12 vs. Big Ten matchup on a regular basis. Those final details have yet to be ironed out and, until they are, I will be casting a watchful eye on the future of the Granddaddy of Them All.