Mock Selection Committee: How a Four-Team Playoff Would Look Now

November 29, 2012 at 1:50p    by Jason Priestas    
31 Comments

Comments

cplunk's picture

Glad you posted this- its a good read.
Wayyyy too many people, both on the 11W boards and elsewhere on the web, seem to be forgetting that the BCS standings mean nothing once playoffs begin. The fact that Alabama-Georgia-Florida are 2, 3 and 4 right now in the BCS would NOT mean they would all be in the playoff if there were one this year.
It is going to be brutal on the committee each season. Absolutely brutal. People who though the BCS was bad are going to be surprised by how controversial the playoff selection is every year. In this mock two teams (Georgia and Stanford) were left out in favor of teams they beat- and in Stanford's case they were presumed to be the conference champ and were still left out.
I'm glad to see OSU stepping up our out of conference scheduling because, frankly, we're going to have to compensate for the pile of shit that is the B1G.

penult's picture

Aren't you forgetting the head BCS guy was put in charge of the faux playoff system?

BED's picture

...And this is why there should be a conference champs only rule.

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

cplunk's picture

Notice three BCS conference champs- B1G, ACC, and Big 12- never even made it into serious discussion.
There are going to be some really, really ticked off people when they see how playoff selections works once the playoffs start up.

hodge's picture

But should they, really?  Definitely not B1G or ACC.  I'd say that--excluding Ohio State--the only teams I'd realistically suggest letting into a four seed playoff are ND, 'Bama, Georgia, Florida, Oregon, and K-State.  
I'd have a harder time leaving out K-State, though.

cplunk's picture

Poor Stanford- not only a left out as a conference champ, but the beat Oregon head to head and lost to Notre Dame only on a controversial call. 

hodge's picture

Ehhh, they left out Kansas State--who played and lost one bad game to a middling (but explosive) Baylor squad--so why shouldn't they leave out a two loss Stanford who lost to a middling Washington squad along  with losing an ugly game to ND. In that game, ND fumbled five times, and lost three; while Stanford's QB was 12/25 for 125 yards, 2 picks, and 0 touchdowns.  I'd hardly say that Stanford merely lost on a controversial call.
In good faith, I cannot call a 9-2 (10-2, if they win the PAC 12) Stanford team a top four contender.  Oregon has been the most impressive team in the PAC 12 this year, and if they had a kicker they'd have won that game before overtime.

BED's picture

The SEC is not better than the PAC12 or Big XII this year.  It's just a fact.  All of their one loss teams have looked bad in their losses, and not played much better in some wins.  This year you'd take ND, SEC champ, Big XII champ, and PAC12 Champ.

So it'd be something like:

1) Notre Dame                           2) Alabama/Georgia

4) Stanford/UCLA                       3) Kansas State

That's a good playoff, by any measure.  Certianly much better than an SEC circlejerk where no team is better than any other up there.

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

BED's picture

And, ND should only be eligible for the playoff if they win out or have a better record than at least 3 conference champs (including the MAC, MWC, etc.).

To me, Kent State/NIU winner is a bubble team this year, maybe supplanting the PAC12 Champ.

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

BED's picture

Which is why we need a 16 team playoff with all 11 conference champs + 5 at large.

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

hodge's picture

Please God no.  The last thing I want is to see college football's regular season diluted.  The fact that it's so important is about the only thing that makes its brevity tolerable.

Oyster's picture

Really HODGE?  You wouldn't want a playoff?  It would be easy to do and still keep all the bowls in tact.  The first round starts next week, losers get a later bowl which is fenced for first round losers and so on for the 2nd and 3rd. 

May you R.I.P. Otsego, but know this. Gaylord Rocks!

hodge's picture

No, I didn't say that.  I don't want a sixteen team playoff.  
I outlined my point in a response to BuckeyeJason earlier today.  I love the idea of a playoff, I just don't want it to include a field larger than my preferred number of six (first round byes for top two seeds, home-site games until the championship).

Oyster's picture

I think it should include every conference.  You win your conference, you get to play.  Think about the upsets we have with the hoops.  Besides, we could all do another bracket and not have to wait until March!
(not that I condone gambling)

May you R.I.P. Otsego, but know this. Gaylord Rocks!

hodge's picture

See, I just don't.  I loathe the fact that I couldn't give a good goddamn about Ohio State losing to Duke the other night, because the regular season in college basketball is a joke--conference championships in basketball are a joke, too.
I get the "conference winners only" camp (I used to be a part of it); but wouldn't it be dumb is OSU went 12-1, lost to Nebraska by a point in the B1G Championship, and was passed up in favor of a possibly 10-3, PAC 12-champion UCLA squad?  
My preferred model has been six teams, comprised first of conference champions ranked in the top 10, and then comprised of a selection committee's at-large bids to round out the field.  The at-large bids will always be seeded lower than the champions, and will therefore have virtually no shot at homefield advantage in the playoff.
This year, it would look like this:

  1. #1 (BCS)Notre Dame (BYE)
  2. #2 Bama/Georgia (BYE)
  3. #6 Kansas State
  4. #8 Stanford (if they win; if UCLA wins and breaks the top ten--they're in)
  5. #4 Florida (at-large)
  6. #5 Oregon (at-large)
cplunk's picture

I like that method.

BED's picture

The idea that a conf. champs + 5 at large dilutes the regular season is laughable.  YOU STILL HAVE TO WIN ALMOST EVERY GAME TO MAKE THAT CUT.  The 5 at-larges will all be 11-1 or 10-2 most years.  Sure, your WAC or Conf. USA champ may be 9-3 or something, but who cares?  They won their league, they deserve a shot.  Let's not forget the Utahs or Boises or TCUs who run the table, and then get shut out because they played a "weak" schedule.  

Even teams like Ohio State will have that "weak" schedule sometimes, since you schedule your OOC opponents 5-10 years prior to the game.   Wazzu was a power when we scheduled them, when we completed the home-home, not so much.  Same with Cal, when it was scheduled they would've been a "quality" OOC opponent.  You can't penalize a conf. champ for beating everyone (or even almost everyone) they play and winning their league.  Conversely, the sports media's constant dick-sucking of the SEC shouldn't let that league have 3/4 playoff slots, because they all have 1 loss and ZOMG the SEC's so hard you guys.  If you don't win your conference, the best you should get is an at large AFTER ALL CONF. CHAMPS HAVE BEEN GIVEN A SPOT.  If you're going to have less than 12 slots, there should be NO AT LARGE BIDS (and I mean 0--I'm not in favor of giving ND a spot unless they run the table).

/rant

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

yrro's picture

I completely agree.
A selection committee is better than the current "oh I haven't actually watched any games outside of my conference" approach, but it's still too nondeterministic. Teams need a set of rules that lets them know if they're getting in or not.
Conference champions only. The national championship is about picking the best team in football. Not the second or fourth best. If you didn't win your conference, by definition you cannot be the best team in football.
Have the selection committee there so a 11-1 TCU gets in over a 7-5 Wisconsin team that got lucky in their championship game if you must limit things to four teams, but that should be their only job.

ODEEZ330's picture

I'm all for the conference champ rule. Would make things so much simpler n quiet the debate. I think this will be worse than the bcs. Conference champs only in playoff sorry florida n oregon ur not the best team in ur conference or ur divisions scree off

O'Deez330
stark county football

shortbus20's picture

I agree...champs only

  • shortbus20
Earle's picture

But, but, but, what about Florida this year?  Aren't they the second best team in the country?  Why should SEC teams be punished for having to play each other?

Italics are for emphasis.

BED's picture

Excellent use of the sarcasm font.

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

IBLEEDSCARLETANDGRAY's picture

"Among the biggest challenges: a finite number of teams that are difficult to compare; multi-million dollar stakes; lack of relative data; and potential conflicts of interest. "Wow, is this committee going to have pressure," Livengood said. "The thing that jumps out at me is that there are just four teams, it's not enough of a sample. I was not a proponent of going larger than four, and this changed my mind totally."

I think THIS is the first indication they will eventually have no choice but to expand the playoff field to at least 8 teams. Someone good and someone with powerful connections is going to get left out of the Final Four and the poop is going to hit the fan, especially on the heads of the selection committee members. I'd be surprised if anyone will truly want to be part of that commitee. Imagine how bad it will be the first time they get it wrong.
 
 
 

"Sherman ran an option play right through the south" - Greatest Civil War analogy EVER.

BucksfanXC's picture

I like this. It still gives more teams a shot. There will always be who should and shouldn't be left out arguments, you just move it down the list farther. And I think this model is done a little early as if Georgia beats Bama this weekend, maybe the results here would be different.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Maestro's picture

K-State = screwed

vacuuming sucks

IBLEEDSCARLETANDGRAY's picture

It screws anyone not in the SEC who lose late in the season. Their teams lose late they still get an undeserved shot.

"Sherman ran an option play right through the south" - Greatest Civil War analogy EVER.

Buckeyejason's picture

Ehhh, they left out Kansas State--who played and lost one bad game to a middling (but explosive) Baylor squad--so why shouldn't they leave out a two loss Stanford who lost to a middling Washington squad along  with losing an ugly game to ND.

This is why college football will always be flawed and why the NFL rules all.

BUCKEYES BABY!

hodge's picture

I dunno, teams like the New York Giants are part of the reason I hate the NFL's postseason.  There's no question that the Giants were not the best team in the NFL last year; but they got hot at the end of the season, and won four straight postseason games to capture the championship.  You take eight teams out of 32, so an entire quarter of the league gets a shake in the postseason--especially when you look at the relative parity that the NFL enjoys compared to other sports.
That's what I love about college football; it really embraces the idea of perfection.  You don't just have to be the "hottest team" once you get into the playoffs, you have to be the best (or one of the best) team(s) all season long to get the right to play.  No sport has regular-season drama like college football, and that's why I'm not a fan of a field of anything past six for the playoff (full disclosure: six teams is my preference, with first round byes for #1 and #2, and homefield semis until the championship).  In my opinion, being in the top-six at the end of the year is a pretty rough task; especially when you're #6 out of 120, which is 5% of the total field.  This makes college football unique in this way: while its champion may be disputed (because it didn't prove it on the field in a playoff), its champion is truly the best of the year.  
I guess it's a matter of preference, but I love the fact that every week of following my Buckeyes is fraught with suspense; because even lowly teams like Indiana can torpedo your title hopes.

acBuckeye's picture

Well said Hodge. The NFL blows. However, i'd still prefer the old bowl system over ANY playoff structure.... but i'm weird like that, and in the miniscule minority.

acBuckeye's picture

I hope all you playoff proponents are looking forward to this future disaster. I'd pay money NOT to be on that selection commitee. Talk about pressure. I've been trying to say that this playoff format will further tarnish this sport that we all love so much, even moreso than the BCS already has. There's a reason why the old conference tie-in bowl system was around for so long..... b/c a playoff scenario in major college football is extremely difficult to concoct.
Having said that, I do realize that as an Ohio State fan, the Buckeyes have benefitted greatly from the BCS system. And as long as they continue to win, I would like to think the Bucks would be annually considered for the playoff. But everything we currently know and love about college football: the debates about who's better, the rankings, the Rose Bowl (pre-BCS), New Year's Day (pre-BCS), etc. will all become even more moot if the fates of every team are left in the hands of a committee. Basically it will become college basketball on a smaller scale.
But at the end of the day, my main concern is the Buckeyes winning all their games. Screw all the other teams. If we're undefeated at the end of the season, whatever happens after that happens. We just finished a 12-0 season and I'm still in euphoria.

Dougger's picture

3 things.
1) i was going to say 'just run the table and you'll be alright' but i feel like this still won't matter in some cases
2) im happy we have a guy like UFM who would lobby the sh.t out of that committee if we were a fringe team
3) if it does get any larger, i really dislike keeping all the regular season games and adding more playoff games. the chances of going 12-0,13-0,14-0 is seemingly impossible... have 12/13 reg season games, add champ. game, two playoff games.. its just asking for more people to get hurt IMO. and if it expands they'll have to play at least 16 games. that would be complete trash if you run the table in the regular season then don't get in because 'the team's not as hot as another team' or 'the conference they play in is weak this year'. 
bonus!) i'm not sure if it's sad/right/wrong that more prestigious teams like ND get the benefit of the doubt for playing a terrible pitt team and almost losing to them, while oregon loses a close one to stanford and that lone loss very nearly keeps them out of the playoff. 
i think my head would explode if i was on that committee.

I like football