College Football has finally decided on a playoff system. As of 2014, the NCAA Football Championship will now be decided between 4 teams, rather than the regular 2. There has been a big push for this in recent years, mostly due to the decision process of choosing the top 2 teams to compete for the National Championship, but also because a playoffs system is just better, isn't it?
This is a great day for College Football fans. We get our playoffs, and maybe now we can agree on who the best team in the nation is at the end of the year. As of now, we will have the 4-team playoff beginning in the 2014 season, and maybe down the road it can grow to 8 teams, or even 16. The only problem with this is that there needs to be at least a week off in between games, which can deter us from ever getting a larger tournament similar to the NCAA Basketball Tournament. I think 4 is just fine, with 8 being perfect. In the 4-team playoff system, we can sometimes get a mid-major school in there to please everyone.
This change will bring in a ton of money to College Football, on top of pleasing the fans. Networks will bid on the rights to the game soon, which itself will bring in boatloads of money to College Football. For example, ESPN signed a deal with College Football in 2011 for a 4-year contract worth $500 million. That $500 million could be the new price of getting the game on your network for a year. And on top of that, ratings are expected to go up for these games which also brings about the questions of rates for ads during the games. Super Bowl ads have been around $3-4 million per 30 second spot recently, which isn't expected for the new College Football Playoffs, but the prices will be steep.
Although they have made the decision to hold a 4-team playoff, a lot of things still need to be ironed out. Such as, who will be a part of the selection committee. It seems to be headed for a change from what it was in the past for the National Championship game. That was part of the whole reason why we wanted a playoff, because a lot of the fans agreed that the former selection committee didn't do a good job of selecting the right teams. Last year for example, they chose Alabama and LSU. Not only did these two teams already play earlier in the year during the regular season, but they are also in the same conference, the SEC. Now, I know the SEC is a superior conference (and that's coming from someone who graduated from an ACC school), but we don't want to see a rematch from the regular season in the National Championship game, unless the first matchup was a great game. But it wasn't, a final score of 9-6 isn't that exciting. A matchup of their field goal kickers doesn't make for an interesting game. And because of this, the Nielson ratings for the game was 14.0, the third lowest ever for a BCS National Championship game. The new playoff system looks to change that, and will.