Friday July 18th, 2014

The College Football Playoff may be closer to signing contracts with bowl partners after agreeing to scrap a provision that had stalled negotiations.

CBSSports' Dennis Dodd reports that language authorizing evaluations every three years of the Cotton, Peach and Fiesta Bowls, otherwise known as the "host" bowls, has been eliminated.

The host bowls and three "contract" bowls -- Rose, Sugar and Orange -- comprise the New Year's Six Bowls that will host the Playoff semifinals on a rotating bases starting this season. SI.com explained the new bowl system in a column last April.

The Fiesta, Cotton and Chick-fil-A Bowls were formally announced Wednesday as the other three bowls that will host playoff semifinal games four times over 12 years. They join the previously announced Rose, Sugar and Orange.

The Rose and Sugar will host the first-ever semifinals, followed by the Orange and Cotton in Year 2 and the Fiesta and Chick-fil-A in Year 3. The rotation then repeats itself every three years.

The six games will be split into consecutive triple-headers on Dec. 31 and Jan. 1 (except when one of those dates fall on a Sunday, moving them to Dec. 30 or Jan. 2). The Rose and Sugar will always be played on New Year's Day -- the Rose in its traditional 4:30 p.m ET time slot, the Sugar at 8:30 p.m. -- which means that in eight of the 12 years, the semifinals will be played on New Year's Eve. So, for the first season, it's the Chick-fil-A, Orange and Fiesta on Dec. 31, 2014, followed by the Cotton, Rose and Sugar on Jan. 1.

CBSSports reported in May that contracts with those six bowls remain unsigned, with CFP executive director Bill Hancock saying, "We're continuing to discuss the contracts. This is nothing unusual. We're just plugging away and everything will get finished."

MORE COVERAGE: Looking ahead to the inaugural College Football Playoff

The CFP on Monday released its new championship trophy.

- Chris Johnson

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