Report: Auto bids for Power 5 champions a major roadblock for College Football Playoff expansion
For the time being, the College Football Playoff system is going to stick with 4 teams. Executive director Bill Hancock released a statement Friday saying that the current format will remain in place through the 2025 season, though more opportunities for expansion beginning in 2026 will be explored.
That means 4 more years of a 4-team format. A majority of fans wanted to see some sort of expansion, whether that meant an 8-team, 12-team or 16-team system. Instead, we’ll have to wait at least a few more years.
College Football Playoff Board chair Mark Keenum told Sports Illustrated’s Ross Dellenger that the final vote on expansion was 8-3 in favor of a 12-team format, but the three naysayers were the ACC, B1G and Pac-12. The 3 leagues formed “The Alliance” in response to Oklahoma and Texas joining the SEC in the summer months of 2021.
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According to Keenum, one of the biggest points of contention was creating an automatic bid for all Power 5 conference champions. That’s not something the 8 leagues in favor of expansion are concerned with, while the B1G is making that a sticking point.
Mark Keenum suggests that the biggest obstacle in expansion is some leagues (namely the B1G) wanting AQs for P5 champions.
Despite representing a P5 conference (SEC), Keenum called that proposal unfair.
“That is a real sticking point. I don’t know how we get it resolved. “
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) February 18, 2022
It was reported in January that B1G commissioner Kevin Warren was adamant about every Power 5 conference champion receiving an automatic bid into the expanded Playoff field. It doesn’t sound like much has changed.
Because of it, there will not be any more expansion talk until at least 2026.