Follow us:

Pac-12 Confidential

Bud Withers offers an inside look at the Pac-12 Conference and the national college scene.

June 20, 2012 at 8:00 PM

A momentous day for college football

It had long been apparent that college football was going to go to a limited form of playoff beginning with the 2014 season, but Wednesday came very close to making that official: Meeting in Chicago, the BCS commissioners agreed on a four-team playoff within the current BCS bowls, and the proposal will go before the presidents oversight committee next week.

There will be an “emphasis” on conference champions — whatever that means — and the teams will be named by a selection committee.

I’m guessing the reaction of fans isn’t a full-on hallelujah, but it has to be at least a small sigh of relief.

You can’t help but recall the struggle to get to this day. Not so long ago, the college presidents were seen as intransigent in clinging to the bowl system and the notion that a football playoff would cause a system critics see as already out of control to spin even more crazily out of kilter.

Then there was a crack of support from Florida president Bernie Machen about five years ago, and not long after that, a playoff proposal from SEC commish Mike Slive and his ACC counterpart, John Swofford. That got nowhere.

But the public outcry no doubt eventually began to matter, especially when it included President Obama. And not the least important factor in this is the money involved, which will be far greater than in the bowls-only system.

Lots of details remain, and don’t think there’s an end to controversy. The jockeying and campaigning to be that No. 4 team instead of No. 5 will be fierce.

It appears the Pac-12 had to give on the deal. Commissioner Larry Scott had reheated the possibility of a plus-one format recently, but it appears that train had left the station. It remains to be seen whether the Rose Bowl will retain ties to the Pac-12 and Big Ten when it’s not hosting a semifinal. The assumption is, it will.

Comments

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►