Football Playoff Details Released

One of the "politically correct" stances taken by many involved in college football (and more frequently by those who cover the sport) is that the polls that have determined or help determine national champions for decades are released too early. Some don't want a pre-season poll; others want the first poll to come at some later point during the season.

They are going to love the first procedure of the new College Football Playoff system.

The College Football Playoff will determine four teams for a playoff to crown a national champion at the end of this season. Although the members of the committee will meet twice a week throughout the season and rank the nation's teams, the first poll of this group will not be released until Oct. 28, the ninth week of the season. There will be weekly polls each Tuesday thereafter through Dec. 2. The final ranking is on Dec. 7.

Although attention is on the four teams that make the playoff for the national championship, the committee will produce a top 25 for inclusion in the playoff and also for assignment to selected bowl games.

Credentials of the committee members are excellent, including Bill Hancock – who headed up the BCS when Alabama won three national championships -- being in charge of the College Football Playoff.

If there is a weakness in the system, it is the vague criteria of the committee members – though possibilities of information available to them is prolific. According to the College Football Playoff office, members may avail themselves of "video, statistics, and their own expertise to guide them in their deliberations. They will emphasize obvious factors like win-loss records, strength of schedule, conference championships won, head-to-head results, and results against common opponents."

Committee members will recuse themselves from participating in votes on team in which they or "an immediate family member" has a possible conflict of interest.

The voting protocal is:

Each member will make a list in no particular order of 25 teams he or she believes to be among the best in the country. Teams listed by three or more will be in consideration.

Each member will then list six teams. The six teams receiving the most votes will be on the next ballot.

The members will then rank those six in order. The top three will be in.

Steps 3 and 4 will be repeated until 25 teams have been seeded.


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