Patterson's comments come after TCU missed the inaugural CFP after falling from No. 3 to No. 6 in the rankings despite convincingly winning its final game of the regular season. Patterson says each of the Power 5 conference champions should receive an automatic bid and then one at-large team should be selected.
The caveat of his plan is that conferences would have to eliminate their championship games to keep the current schedule. In place of championship games, the No. 3 seed would play the No. 6 seed and the No. 4 seed would play the No. 5 seed on the first weekend in December, while the rest of the schedule would remain the same after New Year's.
“I think you would probably make more money on the playoff games in December than you would with the conference championship games,” Patterson said. “Other than the SEC, there were a lot of empty seats that I saw at those conference championship games. The teams playing on New Year’s would have basically the same amount of time to get ready, and you wouldn’t take away from everybody’s recruiting or interfere with final exams.”
TCU's fall in the final rankings was attributed to the lack of a conference championship game in the Big 12. The Horned Frogs were co-champions along with Baylor, and both teams were left out of the top four.
Patterson also acknowledged that there will be teams unhappy about missing the cut no matter the size of the field.
- Paul Palladino