It has been tacitly accepted that the College Football Playoff will eventually expand. All that’s left is deciding when and how it will happen.
In the coming weeks, a pair of key meetings involving influential college football decision-makers will set the agenda for eventual playoff expansion. Ahead of these sessions, Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel has published an in-depth article that centers around a surprising nugget of info.
According to Thamel, the emerging “favored outcome” for the group of administrators is a 12-team playoff. Compared to the six or eight-team model commonly recommended by analysts, the 12-team bracket has rarely, if at all, been speculated as a potential solution.
“The reason that you go to 12 is because you can develop the road of least resistance toward a good result,” a high-ranking college official told Thamel.
As the College Football Playoff takes shape this month, sources indicate to @YahooSports that a 12-team model is the early favorite to emerge as the next version of the CFP. Here's why: https://t.co/ZBt94PJA2U
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) June 8, 2021
College Football Playoff expansion has seemed inevitable for quite some time. As Thamel explains and the unnamed official implies in the quotes above, a 12-team solution ensures more programs are involved while also potentially eliminating (or at least lessening) accusations that a specific team or conference was left out.
‘A 12-team version would answer a lot of the immediate looming issues with the College Football Playoff — lack of diversity of programs, access for Group of Five and the erosion of the importance of supposed top-tier bowl games outside the CFP thanks to player opt-outs,” Thamel writes.
On the flip side, this could theoretically water down the Playoff by expanding it to include too many programs. In reality, there is no “perfect” model.
We are intrigued to hear about the powers that be thinking somewhat outside the box with this idea though.