Former Vandy coach to replace Manning on playoff committee
Archie Manning is leaving the College Football Playoff selection committee and will be replaced by former Vanderbilt coach Bobby Johnson.
''I was honored when I was chosen to be on the College Football Playoff Selection Committee,'' Manning said in a statement from the College Football Playoff. ''But as I look ahead to the various commitments I have - to my family, numerous time obligations around the country and to other conflicting demands - I have concluded that I won't be able to return to the committee.''
''I particularly want to watch Peyton and Eli play, in person when I can, and it's hard to do that when weekends are devoted to watching college games,'' he added. ''This is not an easy choice, but it's the right choice for Olivia and me.''
Manning was one of the original 13 members of the committee picked by the FBS conference commissioners who run the playoff. He was expected to serve through the 2016 season.
The former Mississippi quarterback took a leave of absence during last season to deal with undisclosed health issues. CFP executive director Bill Hancock had said this year Manning was expected to return for the 2015 season.
''Everyone on the committee is going to miss Archie,'' Hancock said. ''He is an all-star and he knows college football inside and out. On the other hand, we are delighted to welcome Bobby to the committee. His extensive knowledge of the sport and his notable integrity make him a perfect member of this group.''
Johnson, 64, played at Clemson and coached Furman (1994-2001) and Vanderbilt (2002-2010). He says he is happy to ''serve the game'' as a member of the committee.
''I have tremendous respect for the selection committee and I am honored to join the group,'' Johnson said. ''As a former player and coach, I'm particularly happy about the opportunity to continue to serve the game.''
Earlier this year, Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt was named to the selection committee as a replacement for Oliver Luck, the former West Virginia athletic director who took a job with the NCAA after last season.