The College Football Playoff is reportedly considering a number of expansion proposals, which would finally increase the size of the field from four. Former Georgia and Miami head coach Mark Richt has a bold proposal for how big they should make the field.
Appearing on The Paul Finebaum Show this past week, Richt said that the college football postseason needs to be revamped, especially bowl games. He believes that bowl games should determine who advances in the Playoff.
Among Richt’s solutions is potential 32-team playoff decided by bowl game winners. He believes that this middle ground would keep players from opting out of bowl games all the time.
“Here’s the thing. You’ve got everybody opting out of bowl games now, and I know COVID had a big part in it. But I think Pandora’s box got opened,” Richt said, via 247Sports. “I think a lot more kids are going to opt out of bowls and you may see more teams opt out of bowl games. So, if people say, ‘These games are not meaningful anymore in the postseason other than the four (playoff) teams, or maybe you go to 32 teams and every game is a playoff game, but the bowl system handles those games, so the bowls can still survive’. But now, every game would be meaningful because it’s part of a playoff. That’s a big chunk of games, but that may be what it takes to make the postseason work again.”
— 247Sports (@247Sports) May 10, 2021
As much as Mark Richt and most football fans in general want to see bowl games return to relevance, a 32-team playoff seems like a bit much right now.
A 32-team playoff means five games to determine the national champion of college football. That’s would increase the length of a season for most winners from 15 games to 18.
Yes, there would be a ton of eyes on college football. And yes, a lot of revenue given to teams that usually wouldn’t get as much attention. But that would be a number of teams where the argument about “watering down the competition” might be justified.
For now, eight or 16 teams is probably the most appropriate number.
Mark Richt has his heart in the right place though.