I don't care for an 8 game playoff either. But I suspect Klatt is right.
- It will be that much more difficult for players, in terms of practice schedule, final exams, travel, and class schedules.
- It will be brutal for fans in terms of traveling to games.
- It will almost completely devalue the rest of the bowls.
- It will accelerate guys sitting out meaningless bowl games and instead preparing for the NFL draft.
Let's use this season as an example. The regular season ends Nov. 30, with the Big 10 Championship game on Dec. 7. With a 3 weekend playoff, you could have one of the following scenarios:
- Opening weekend playoff games Dec. 14, semifinal games Dec. 21, championship Dec. 28;
- Opening weekend playoff games Dec. 21, semifinal games Dec. 28, championship January 4;
- Opening weekend playoff games Dec. 14, semifinal games Dec. 21, championship January 4;
- Opening weekend playoff games Dec. 21, semifinal games Dec. 28, championship January 11.
For Michigan, final exams are scheduled from Dec. 16 - 20th. Classes resume January 8. Players would have to either take exams remotely, or delay them, or not have final exams. You would have to miss the beginning of classes.
For practice schedules, generally with a bowl game, you spend the week prior at the location of the bowl. With a 3 week playoff schedule, do you basically spend 3 weeks on the road?
For fans, you will know the locations of all the playoff games. But think about airfare, or vacation time, for up to 3 weeks in a row. Do you just take a chance and wait until the semifinals or championship game if you are highly ranked, like OSU? What about plane tickets?
I realize that these logistics don't matter for most of us. The reality is that we'll be watching on HD TV's wherever we live. But with 8 teams, the championship game becomes even more like the Superbowl, where a large number of those attending are wealthy, and not particularly tied to one team or another.
I guess I'm just a grumpy old fart ("get off my lawn!"), but I loved the times when I went to Pasadena to see the Rose Bowl, to take in the parade, to go to Malibu and Venice Beach and to tailgate, and somehow, this feels very different from those days of old.