There are some really good reasons to leave the playoff system at four.
My household was going crazy as the Oklahoma – Georgia game entered overtime. My youngest, the "rotten son" (who will no longer be called "rotten son" – at least he's learned from attending the University of Minnesota Gopher football games to hate Iowa and the SEC) was even more animated than I as he didn't want to see the exact thing that happened yesterday – an all-SEC national title game.
It seems like fate that this would happen at the moment they allowed two SEC teams into the playoff and now we have Georgia – Alabama in the College Football national title game. I wouldn't blame this on ESPN. It's likely that this will not be one of the most highly watched games and ESPN, suffering from cord cutting , is more about ratings than ever. The fact that both teams are from the SEC is going to turn off a lot of casual college football fans. I’d find something else to do next Monday night, except that I'm expected to run this website and report on this kind of crap. I’d really not looking forward to watching another title game involving Alabama and trying to pretend that it’s great college or enjoyable football.
Scott Frost made his case stating about UCF being in the playoff. It's a valid, rational argument, but nobody outside UCF and Nebraska care. The idea that any Group Of Five team can make the playoff should be put to rest. UCF was good enough to beat a good Auburn team, but it wasn't good enough to join the big boys when it really counted.
There are calls to expand to an eight team playoff.
I hate this idea and there are valid reasons against it.
First, you are asking your unpaid student athlete to put more stress on their body for your entertainment. People don't inherently like having to do more work without increased compensation and that is what you're asking these young people to do. You would not do this at your workplace, please don't make up bullshit excuses about how you would.
That explanation won't appeal to a whole lot of people. It's not popular and nobody really cares about the student athlete anyway. We rationalize whatever happens in our favorite sport. “They’d want to do it”, we say, which is a load of crap as more of them are forgoing playing in bowls to declare for the NFL, where they actually get paid to destroy their bodies for our entertainment.
The most logical explanation for not moving to an eight team playoff is logistics.
I've said this before, many times actually, and it bears repeating. An eight team playoff is not going to ever involve home-field advantage. College football powers that be will not give up the bowl system. If you expand to eight games using the bowl system, any team from a cold-weather conference is going to have to play two games in a row in warm weather stadiums that are essentially home games for the teams in the South (mostly) in order to win a national title. You can come up with scenarios where that doesn’t happen, but none I’ve seen are realistic.
The Georgia – Oklahoma game was one of the more fun games of the year. The College Football Playoff gave us that game, but don’t be under the impression that the College Football Playoff was established to make sense of FBS college football's end of season.
The College Football Playoff system was put in place for money. Nearly everything that is done in college football today is about money. The old white guys in charge are not going to change this system to make an eight team playoff that works for everyone. There will be no home-field advantage games. They are not going to establish a playoff system comparable to FCS football. Chuck that one out the window.
Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso, and Rece Davis are not going to broadcast games from cold weather stadiums - especially given how cold it's been across the nation in the last two weeks. You can point to lack of bowl attendance as an issue, but this is not about attendance. This is about All State giving away money and the PR campaign that goes along with it. Those old men you see in bowl blazers handing out $100,000 checks to prove how benevolent they are are not going to go to Columbus in January to do that, not just because it’s cold, but because the bowl boondoggle is a massive money-making enterprise for the people who run it.
College presidents are not going to look at their wives and say “Well, honey, our free paid vacation where we’re wined and dined to death is happening in Happy Valley this winter. We’ll have to go whale watching and lay on the beach some other time.” College bowl games were invented for the purpose of giving fans a warm place to go on vacation. That isn’t going to change any time soon.
We have a four team playoff. It needs to stay that way for the coming years. It does not need to expand because of the misguided idea that things "will be more fair” because they won’t. It’ll just create a separate set of topics for everyone to scream about.
I hate the idea of an all-SEC title game. I realized yesterday that it really makes me angry. It’s well established that the SEC is about pay for play. It’d be nice if that part of the system would fall apart, but again, everyone is making craploads of money - who wants to change anything (especially the joke that is the NCAA) when that’s the case?
Will an all-SEC title game change anything? Doubtful. It took them decades to establish four teams. They won’t tear down what they have now in favor of fanciful “change” ideas. Perhaps we should all accept where we are - that college football was never created to be rational or make logical sense. And then don’t watch the title game. There will be more college football coming. All we have to do is make it to next season.