The College Football Playoff recently announced that the tournament will be expanding to a 12-team field beginning in the 2024-25 season. The quarterfinal games will be played at the home stadium of the higher seeded team, and all the games from the semifinals onward will be played at neutral sites in the form of the Rose, Sugar, Cotton, Orange, Citrus, and Peach Bowls. The national title game for the ‘24-’25 season is set to take place in Atlanta.
The new format will add a slew of new playoff contenders into the mix, giving schools outside the regular group of powerhouses a chance to compete for a national championship. If this format had been implemented in the 2021-2022 season, it’s possible that Wake Forest would have earned a playoff spot if they’d managed to defeat Pitt in the ACC Championship game.
If the 12-team format were in effect this season, here’s who would be in position to earn a playoff berth according to the most recent CFP rankings:
- Ohio State
- Penn State
- Kansas State
This change will elongate the college football season and place an even greater emphasis on conference championship games. For example, a team like LSU who sits at 9-3 and is ranked No. 14 could sneak back into the top-12 and earn a playoff bid if they were to beat Georgia in the SEC Championship game this weekend. The new system allows teams a clearer path to recover from bad losses and retain the chance to compete for a national title.
The entire college football landscape is set to change over the next few years. With any luck, we’ll be able to see Wake Forest competing for one of those 12 coveted CFP spots come November and December of the 2024-2025 season.
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