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When word came last Friday that after 827,000 meetings (I exaggerate only slightly), the commissioners who run college football could not agree on a plan to expand the College Football Playoff, I was sad.

Then they told us that no change in the four-team playoff would happen until the current CFP contract was over after the 2025 regular season. That’s FOUR MORE YEARS.

Let me repeat that: FOUR MORE YEARS!

Then I got sadder.

Then I read some of the great reporting on this story that laid out in great detail WHY the commissioners could not unanimously agree on a 12-team plan that was made public back in June. The plan was released, I might add, to great enthusiasm from fans who love the game and know that college football’s post-season can be better—a lot better.

Then I got mad.

I’m still mad.

Now I could sit here and explain in great detail the reasons that the 10 conference commissioners plus Notre Dame athletics director Jack Swarbrick couldn’t get this done. Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic reported that the vote was 8-3 with the ACC (Jim Phillips), Big Ten (Kevin Warren), and Pac-12 (George Kliavkoff) voting no. The vote had to be unanimous in order to change the format with four years remaining on the contract.

That was no surprise. Those commissioners have had their collective noses out of joint since that July afternoon when word leaked that Oklahoma and Texas would be leaving the Big 12 and joining the SEC at some future date.

Oh, the humanity!

Oklahoma and Texas decide they want to enhance their athletic fortunes by joining the conference that has won 12 of the last 16 national championships in football and twice (2017, 2021) has placed TWO teams in the CFP.

Whatever could they be thinking?

Convinced that the SEC was out to take over the world, those three conferences formed an organization that they called “The Alliance.” Now exactly what this Alliance does, or will do, other than form a voting bloc, is not yet clear. They talked about possible schedule alliances but that pretty much got shot down when Ohio State AD Gene Smith said last week that the Big Ten would likely stick with a schedule of nine-conference games.

The bottom line is that every conference is looking out for its own best interests and, frankly, that is what commissioners are paid to do. I get that. What I don’t get is conferences voting against their best interests. And with three Power Five conferences (ACC, Big 12, Pac-12) getting left out of the CFP las season, those leagues need an expanded playoff.

But the thing that is most infuriating is that once again there is no one speaking up for the game as a whole or the fans, who are the ones really getting less than they deserve.

And there is this: a lot of the arguments I read for staying at four teams are just simply bogus. For example:

**--The ACC’s Phillips says now is not the time to expand the playoff because there are larger issues to address like NIL, the transfer portal, and the rebuilding the NCAA.

I would respectfully argue that this is precisely the RIGHT time to expand the playoff. Over the past few days I have spoken to fans and coaches at every level of the sport. And to put it bluntly, they are scared to death about what is going to happen to the game they love. I spoke to people who have devoted their entire lives to football and right now they don’t like what they see.

Expanding the playoff would give them something new to get excited about.

**--A 12-team playoff would require the players to play too many games.

I ain’t buying this one.

Georgia won the 2021 national championship by playing 15 games. There were 12 regular-season games, a conference championship game and two playoff games. There were 27 days between games 13 and 14. There were 10 days between games 14 and 15.

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Under a 12-team playoff most years the winner would play 16 games. If a team seeded five through 12 won it all they would play 17 games. If that’s really too many games then cut out a regular-season game or change the current rules and shorten the game. It has worked for the NFL.

There are a lot of smart people working in this sport and this problem—if it’s really a problem—can be solved. It’s not enough to scrap the entire idea of an expanded playoff.

**--There are not 12 teams deserving to be in the playoffs. This may be the most bogus argument of all.

People assume that if the playoff were to expand to 12 teams that college football would remain static—that nothing will change.

The fact is that expanding the playoff increases the number of teams that can go recruiting and say: “Yeah, we can make the CFP.”

One of the unintended consequences of the four-team playoff is that it has given a substantial recruiting advantage to a handful of teams. And you know who they are.

Consider this: Since the CFP was founded in 2014 a total of 32 teams have earned playoff berths. Of those 32 berths, 25 have gone to only six schools: Alabama (7), Clemson (6), Ohio State (4), Oklahoma (4), Georgia (2), and Notre Dame (2).

Here is my bottom line: I want to expand the playoffs for two reasons (other than the fact that it would be a lot of fun):

With 12 playoff spots available, many more teams would be in the conversation when we get to November. When the first set of the 2021 CFP rankings were released on Nov. 2, 23 of the top 25 teams had two losses or fewer.

All would be in the playoff discussion and would give us more meaningful games in November.

And finally, expanding the CFP would keep more teams—and more players—engaged in the post-season. We know that the future does not look good for some of our friends in the bowl business particularly when it comes to keeping star players in the game. The Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl lost its two marquee players—West Virginia QB Kenny Pickett and Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker III—who opted out.

Now would those players have stuck around if the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl was a quarterfinal playoff game?

I’m saying yes.

Will star players someday walk away from a playoff game? Probably, but it hasn’t happened yet.

I just don’t think this is as hard as some of these commissioners are making it out to be.

CFP expansion would give us more meaningful games from the beginning of the season to the end. A post-season that would get more teams involved and excited.

And everybody would make a boat-load of money. Postponing expansion leaves hundreds of millions of dollars on the table. Some conferences need the money NOW. Hopefully the players will get their share.

SEC Comissioner Greg Sankey, one of four people who created the 12-team playoff format, is not hiding his feelings on this issue and his belief that getting this done won’t be easier in four years. Maybe, just maybe, the SEC needs to go off on its own.

Sankey told the Associated Press that the SEC might have “to rethink our position based on how others have approached the conversation that really they initiated. And I don’t expect that to get any easier.”

What am I missing? And why do we have to wait four years to get it?

“To me this has been a great lost opportunity,” said Mike Aresco, the commissioner of the American Athletic Conference whose member, Cincinnati, became the first Group of Five team to reach the CFP last season. “We could have given our student athletes a tremendous experience. I’m extremely disappointed.”

Me too, Commish. Me too.