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Discussion in 'The Mainboard' started by Sterling A, Aug 20, 2018.
why would they do this......
something something Larry Scott Something something
What's the issue
To be fair to us we have the top 3 teams all on the schedule and on the road (UW, Stanford, and Southern Cal)
Harsh but fair
Second time this fucked me up and made me think CJ Spiller for a second
Hey Pelican, old buddy, old pal, could you post the whole thing?
‘We don’t need to wait another six years’: College football leaders ready to discuss eight-team Playoff
By Nicole Auerbach 25m ago 26
The first four years of the College Football Playoff were considered a success. The four-team format has been more universally accepted than the old BCS system, and it has kept fans engaged throughout the country. But ahead of Year 5’s national semifinals featuring Alabama, Clemson, Notre Dame and Oklahoma, there is a sense of growing discontent with certain aspects of the CFP system, including the selection committee’s deference to the SEC and what some consider unfair treatment of UCF.
Now, a number of influential voices in college football are calling for a serious look at expansion.
There is a groundswell of support to expedite expansion before the end of the CFP’s initial 12-year contract with ESPN in 2026, with many telling The Athletic they support an eight-team format.
“It’s an appropriate thing to begin thinking about,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby told The Athletic this week.
There have been a number of informal conversations involving college football’s most important power brokers in recent weeks and months. The growing concern is that a system designed to nationalize the sport of college football — including a championship game that is played at different venues and will be held in the Bay Area for the first time this season — is being undermined and regionalized with teams from the Southeast regularly playing each other.
“Everyone has the same feeling; expansion is inevitable,” said Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez, who served on the CFP’s selection committee from 2014-2016. “When you can do it, and I think we need to serve more people. I think four was the right way to get started. In my opinion, we need to take a look of adding more teams into the Playoff, giving more opportunities. …
“I don’t know whether we’re serving all of our people now, when you have some leagues — our league (the Big Ten) as an example. Two years in a row, we don’t have anyone represented. The Big 12’s been the same way. The Pac-12’s been the same way.”
The Big Ten champion has been left out of the four-team Playoff each of the past three seasons, and the Pac-12 has missed three of the past four fields. Alabama has participated in each of the five Playoffs, including last year when the Crimson Tide did not win their division.
Some people with direct knowledge of the conversations involving commissioners, athletic directors and presidents declined to speak on the record because they feel they need to publicly support the current four-team model. Others feel they need to speak out in support of expansion to get the ball rolling. The midway point of the Playoff contract with ESPN — the 2020 season — is fast approaching. It would make sense to expand then, after the six semifinal bowls have all hosted an equal number of times.
“Twelve years is a good run if everything was working well,” West Virginia president Gordon Gee told The Athletic. “But it’s always good to take a look at it. We now have five years’ worth of experience. There’s nothing wrong with hitting the button and saying, let’s take a look at what’s working and what’s not working, and we don’t need to wait for another six years to make sure that we live out a contract.”
In a statement to The Athletic on Tuesday, an ESPN spokesperson said, “We have no involvement in the competitive makeup of the CFP.”
Alvarez said the criteria for selection has been confusing, with the weight carried by conference championships and strength of schedule varying year to year or even week to week. The three leagues that have missed the Playoff multiple times all play nine-game conference schedules. Even the rankings have irked those keeping tabs on strength of schedule; Florida finished No. 10, earning a trip to a New Year’s Six bowl, with two of the Gators’ wins this season coming against FCS opponents.
CFP executive director Bill Hancock said Tuesday that “there have not been any conversations in our meetings with commissioners or presidents about expanding or starting to think about a new format. There will come a time for that at some point, as we get toward the end of the 12-year contract.”
For some, that time is now.
An eight-team format with a designated Group of 5 spot also would quell the chorus of those who believe it’s unfair that a team like UCF — with two consecutive undefeated seasons and limited opportunities to schedule Power 5 opponents on an annual basis — does not get a shot at playing for a national championship. The highest the Knights have been ranked in the CFP selection committee’s Top 25 has been No. 8, nowhere near close enough to get consideration for a top-four spot.
“I also want to be very clear: I think that there’s arrogance of us not taking a look at someone like the University of Central Florida, just saying, ‘Well, they’re not worthy of it,’ ” Gee said. “Maybe they are worthy of it based upon a number of considerations that need to be taken into account.”
Said Alvarez: “UCF should have that opportunity.”
Chuck Neinas, a former Big 12 commissioner, has sketched out his preferred plan for an eight-team Playoff. He’s given it to Alvarez, Bowlsby, Hancock and other influential figures in the sport, initially to stoke conversation. Now those conversations are happening.
“The Playoff enjoys a level of support that I think is rather extraordinary,” Bowlsby said. “Would that (approval rating) go up if there are more teams involved? Probably. Does that mean it would avoid controversies? No, because you’ll always have arguments about the ninth and 10th spots. …
“Then, there’s the matter of how you do it. The devil’s always in the details.”
Neinas’ eight-team model would include the five Power 5 conference champions, the top Group of 5 champion and two at-large spots. Conference championship games would be eliminated. The regular season would end the weekend after Thanksgiving, with quarterfinal games played on campuses the following weekend. Winners would advance to New Year’s Six semifinal games at that year’s designated bowl sites, as usual.
Here is how this year’s field would have looked, with conference championship games not included:
“We need to maintain interest in the regular season,” Neinas said. “If you knew that your conference champion in the Pac-12 was going to get into the Playoff, that manages to propel continued interest throughout the season.”
Using Neinas’ preferred template, players on teams that reach the national championship would still play the same number of games in a season that they do now, and the season would end at the same time, on a Monday night about a week into January. There are other proposals and tweaks that could be worth discussing, too, multiple sources said; this is a relatively simple format that can serve as a jumping-off point.
“I do notice, though, that playoffs, generally, in other sports, in the professional sports, are determined on the field, and this is different than that,” Ohio State president Michael Drake told The Athletic.
As one Power 5 athletic director put it, an eight-team Playoff format is not rocket science. It makes sense for many parties. “This sport doesn’t do logical well,” he said.
For expansion to work, compromise would be required, much like it was when the four-team model was created.
The SEC is arguably the conference with the most to lose if a new system abolished conference championship games. It boasts the gold standard for conference championship games in terms of interest.
The SEC also has been the only one of the five power conferences to send multiple teams to the CFP, as it did last year with Alabama and Georgia. The SEC likes the status quo, even though expansion could allow for more than two SEC teams to make the Playoff field.
“(When) people talk about let’s do this and let’s do that as far as a bracket size, you have to remember a few things,” SEC commissioner Greg Sankey told reporters before the SEC title game. “One, this is Year 5, and I think the first four years have worked remarkably well. … I think four is healthy. I think the debate is healthy. And I think the debate is an important part for all of us who are thoughtful looking at our future, without any prediction of outcomes. …
“Would it benefit us (to expand)? This is a year for us that’s been different as far as the high-end success and then the depth of success. I think it looks to the future in a way that creates expectations for this to repeat, but I don’t know that that means we’d be 1, 4, 6. The history indicates there’s others who have a little bit more access than we might in a larger bracket. But I haven’t looked at it that way.”
A number of athletic directors and commissioners of other conferences have a different perspective. They feel that the system is designed to benefit the SEC, and they point to examples from this year’s final rankings as evidence: Florida at No. 10, despite the two FCS games; LSU hovering at No. 7 after its blowout loss to Alabama; the Gators and Tigers making New Year’s Six bowl games ahead of Penn State and Washington State, which both played nine conference games; and a two-loss, non-champion Georgia slotted ahead of Ohio State, a one-loss conference champion.
“It’s very confusing, and you have different explanations and you have 13 different people taking a look and evaluating and then expressing their opinion, then you’re voting,” Alvarez said. “Then, one person has to explain why you came to the conclusion, and I think it’s very inconsistent and confusing.”
The 13-member selection committee works hard and can figure out a way justify the order it comes up with each December — but that doesn’t convince the skeptics who believe that SEC teams get more credit and higher standing in this system than others from other leagues with comparable résumés. For example, Stanford’s four losses this year all came against ranked opponents, but the four-loss Cardinal were not ranked in the final CFP Top 25. Three four-loss SEC teams were, with two in the top 20.
Though coaches are not directly involved in the process, a number have spoken up about the need for change or, at the very least, clearer protocol and principles moving forward. Penn State coach James Franklin spoke just last week about the need for standardization across the board, in terms of strength of scheduling and in measuring the value of a conference champion.
“Either everybody is playing a conference championship or everybody is not,” Franklin said. “Everybody is playing the same number of conference games. You can’t have one team that’s not in a conference and everybody else is in a conference. It’s all gotta be the same. … Everybody either plays I-AA opponents or nobody plays I-AA opponents. I think it starts there. Everybody has divisions or everybody plays round-robin. …
“When one conference who is playing less conference games than we are and has been playing I-AA opponents for a long time, when there’s been discussion the last couple years of them possibly getting two teams in the Playoff and us have been left out the last three years, I think it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to not at least have the discussion. Not to get defensive, not any of those things, just, hey, it’s at least worth a discussion.”
As one Power 5 athletic director said, “Sometimes it feels like they’re deciding based on recruiting rankings and not the games actually played on the field.”
This season’s national championship game will take place Jan. 7, 2019, in Santa Clara, Calif. That morning, the 11 university presidents and chancellors who make up the CFP’s Board of Managers will meet. The Management Committee, which includes the 10 commissioners and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick, also will meet with them that day.
Changes could come from either committee. The commissioners could make a recommendation, or the board could direct them. The board is specifically tasked with developing, reviewing and approving annual budgets, policies and operating guidelines. According to the CFP, it has authority over all aspects of the company’s operations.
Expanding the Playoff would protect conference champions from being disadvantaged by differences in scheduling, and it would guarantee access for teams like UCF to a system that has been built to exclude them.
And support is growing for expansion to happen sooner than many think.
“If you’re going to expand, you go to eight,” Alvarez said. “I initially thought six just as a compromise, and it would be better than four. But the more I think about it, I think eight is probably the answer. You would have opportunities now for everyone to be represented.”
I've always said that you were a gentleman and an underrated poster
5 conference champs and 3 at large bids. Let’s do this.
wow, chuck neinas clearly reads this board
credit to tmb, an agent of #change
death to conference championships!
Some of these teams don't DESERVE to play for a national championship!
Only undefeated teams should be allowed in the playoff. If there aren’t any undefeated teams then no one wins the title.
Gotta make sure we only recognize deserving teams and not ruin the the regular season.
Fuck. No one is going to care about CFB anymore if they do this. Everything is ruined.
CFB Week 1 Bowl schedule
blech...too many bowls
Wow somebody doesn’t like watching football.
Out of that slate??? Las Vegas bowl piques my interest but that's about it
that or Army/Houston
I was giving you shit, but those are all shitty except for Fresno vs the Fighting Herms
Glad I’m out of the country for these
Nice Humble brag traveler
How Craig James went from the voice of college football to TV pariah to seminary graduate
DALLAS – Craig James’ square jaw, perfectly coiffed hair and All-American charisma helped make him one of the most recognizable faces of college football for nearly two decades. From ESPN analyst Lee Corso nicknaming him “Mustang Breath” in the early days of ESPN “College GameDay” to a long analyst stint on ESPN’s “Thursday Night Football” package, James was intertwined with many of the sport’s biggest moments.
After compiling impeccable playing credentials starring at tailback at SMU and for the New England Patriots in the NFL, James made $416,000 for his work at ESPN as recently as 2011. James became such an entrenched part of the media scene that he started the “Craig James School of Broadcasting” in 1993 to train former coaches and players.
“He was Herbie before Herbie,” said James’ old ESPN colleague, NBC’s Mike Tirico, referencing beloved ESPN analyst Kirk Herbstreit.
These days, the most notable part of James’ broadcast repertory is his complete absence from the airwaves. James’ last television gig came in August 2013, a one-episode stint on an obscure Fox Sports Southwest show that ended in a controversial firing. As his prominence has faded from both screen and memory, a complicated question looms: Whatever happened to Craig James?
A breadcrumb trail of legal documents, polarizing political statements and high-profile controversies have left him virtually unemployable in the modern broadcast climate.
Inquiries to he, various lawyers and affiliated political organizations culminated with a text message from James to Yahoo Sports this week: “In 2014 my commitment to the Lord and my family took center stage in my life,” adding that he recently graduated from the Dallas Theological Seminary. “Life is good being a Monday morning armchair [quarterback],” he said. “To God be the glory.”
“It was one of the most bizarre and ill-fated campaigns we’ve seen from someone of prominence in the state of Texas,” said Mark Jones, a professor of political science at Rice University.
James’ candidacy was doomed by both his complete lack of political experience and his emergence as a lightning rod in the state for his role in Leach’s firing after allegations of mistreatment of James’ son. James’ political strategy may have cost him any return to television, as Jones recalls James taking a stance to the right of the notably conservative Cruz.
During that campaign, James, 57, made a flurry of inflammatory statements, including that gays “would have to answer to the Lord for their actions” and that being gay is “a choice.” He criticized an opponent for taking part in a gay parade: “Right now in this country, our moral fiber is sliding down a slope that is going to be hard to stop if we don’t stand up with leaders who don’t go ride in gay parades.”
In explaining James’ dismissal after one show on Fox Sports Southwest, a Fox spokesman initially nodded to these comments in a statement to the Dallas Morning News – “he couldn’t say those things here.”
James filed a lawsuit against Fox for religious discrimination, backed by the Texas-based Liberty Institute, and he also joined the Washington-based Family Research Council, which claims to advance public policy from a “Christian worldview.” The lawsuit, which was announced with fanfare, led to Fox responding with a 224-page motion to dismiss, much of which doubles as a troll over James’ journalistic shortcomings during the Leach saga. A letter in the court filing serves as a description for why James’ ostracization from mainstream television likely won’t end. It sums up James, a former face of the sport, as “divisive, contentious and undesirable.”
Back when Herbstreit played quarterback at Ohio State, he can remember sitting in the Buckeyes’ team hotel in September 1992. As they killed the day waiting to play No. 8 Syracuse, Herbstreit watched ESPN with rapt attention.
The Buckeyes had struggled in early season wins over Louisville and Bowling Green, and Herbstreit recalls James comparing the Orange to a Corvette and the Buckeyes to a clunky truck. More than a quarter century later, he still remembers James’ specific caustic comments about Ohio State.
Herbstreit recalled the anecdote in a recent phone interview not to pick on James. He was illustrating just how powerful James’ voice was at a time when there simply weren’t that many voices in the sport.
“You have to take your readers to the era,” he said. “No ESPN News or SEC or Pac-12 Network. There was just one show … and people tuned in to watch Craig be the sarcastic and cocky guy.”
A few years later, Herbstreit recalls being at a pay phone in the Detroit airport on his way to call an Arena League football game. He’d auditioned for James’ role on “ESPN GameDay” after James left for CBS to be a fixture of their NFL coverage. Herbstreit never dreamed he’d get it, as he’d only been doing local media and the occasional Kurt Warner arena game. Herbstreit took a knee in shock when his agent told him he’d got the job. He knew it would change his life forever.
Herbstreit says being just 26 at the time was a blessing, and he recalled the prospect of replacing a voice as prominent as James as “terrifying.”
“He was the guy, and it left a gaping hole on their desk,” Herbstreit said. “Craig was the hot guy at the time, he’d played with the Patriots in the NFL. But it wasn’t just his NFL background, he had a charisma on-air and a swagger that he brought.”
The version of the story pushed by the James family involved Leach punishing him by banishing him to a small dark closet. Leach denies this version, as he wanted Adam James away from the practice field and out of the sunlight to deal with the concussion.
Emails that emerged later showed Craig James used a Texas-based strategic consulting firm, Spaeth Communications, to leak information to publicly pile on Leach. That included a video played on ESPN’s “SportsCenter” that Adam James took from his alleged exile. Leach later said, “ESPN … was just spewing this stuff that Spaeth and Craig James were feeding them.” As emails and phone messages emerged in the legal process, Craig James came off as an overbearing Little League dad who’d leave coaches lengthy messages complaining about his son’s playing time. In Fox’s 2015 legal filings to get James’ lawsuit dismissed, they claimed: “Leach’s dismissal left many viewers with strong, negative opinions about James’ credibility and journalistic ethics.” (That suit got settled and attorneys agreed to dismiss it in 2016.)
Leach’s lawsuit against ESPN, James and Spaeth was filed in 2010 and took until 2015 to finally cycle out of court. Leach lost his final appeal to the Texas Supreme Court. By then, Leach was back coaching at Washington State after sitting out the 2010 and ’11 seasons. James didn’t return requests seeking specific comment. Adam James, according to LinkedIn, appears to work in real estate and land development in the Dallas area.
Leach remains bitter about the firing from Tech and James’ role in it, because he feels it cost him his job at Tech and two prime years of his career. In a recent phone interview, Leach said of James: “You create your own karma. It looks like he might have created his. I think he’s a dishonest person and the sport is better off without him. And that’s pretty clear-cut.”
According to Texas Monthly, James described his battle with Leach during a speech at a church as a “spiritual war.” He illuminated that comment by telling Texas Monthly in 2012, “There’s a lot of people who don’t have a faith and don’t believe what I believe, who want to rip me up. They don’t like the fact that I go home to the same lady every night and have for 29 years.”
Even those who remain more aligned with James question his decision to run for political office. Former Texas Tech chancellor Kent Hance, who considers James a friend, advised him against running for Senate. Hance, who is a former U.S. congressman, summed up James’ fall this way: “He understood football and announcing, but he had no conception of politics. Especially going for U.S. Senate on your first try. It’s like being an engineer and all of a sudden trying to be a banker.”
SMU coach Sonny Dykes saw James’ legal battle from both sides. He worked for Leach, considers him a friend and spent hours on the phone with him talking about James. Dykes also recruited Adam James to Texas Tech as an assistant and coaches on the campus where Craig James rushed for 3,742 yards as part of the iconic Pony Express with Eric Dickerson. (James admitted to the Dallas Morning News during his political campaign that he took “insignificant” extra benefits from boosters, as he was there during a corrupt era that led to the school receiving the NCAA’s dreaded death penalty.)
Dykes said he wishes James would come around SMU more, yet understands why he’s a controversial figure.
“You know, he kind of messed with the wrong guy,” Dykes said. “Mike Leach has a lot of people that like him and some powerful people. It seemed like that got the tide turned against Craig. I don’t know what happened. I really don’t.”
One of the hallmarks of James’ disappearance has been a distinct lack of nostalgia or clamor for his voice to return to the scene. He’s done occasional media appearances the past few years: He tweeted about a recent spot on the “Tony Bruno Show” and did an interview earlier this year for a book on Texas high school football.
James tried to engage his old contact base for his podcast – “Airing It Out with Craig James” – which ended in January 2016 after 45 episodes. A website that promoted that podcast and some of James’ writing – CraigJames.com – appears to have stopped being updated around the same time. James mixed football analysis with religious writing. Articles included, “Of Course, Evangelicals CAN vote for Trump,” “Transgendered Insanity Sweeps the Nation” and “The Dangerous Truth About Atheism.”
Financially, James doesn’t appear to need the work, according to media reports that emerged during his campaign. He sold part of a business for $3 million before his campaign and owns an annuity that’s slated to pay him at least $500,000 a year. He owns a ranch worth at least a half-million dollars and is selling his gated ranch home in Celina, Texas, for nearly $1.5 million. It rests hundreds of yards behind a gate, with an American flag towering over the entrance.
James says he’s comfortable in his role outside the media. He has a certificate in Biblical and Theological Studies from Dallas Theological Seminary. James said he’s found a new role. “As a modern day warrior for Jesus Christ, I seek to share His Good News for all,” he told Yahoo Sports in a text.
His ties to the television industry have loosened the past few years. James had the paradoxical existence of being well known without being beloved, famous without being popular and friendly yet distant to many who worked with him. A Big 12 source summed him up this way: “He had a unique way of covering up ignorance with arrogance.”
Tirico considers James, who he endearingly calls “Pony,” a “lifelong pal” after their years together at ESPN. Tirico hadn’t seen him in years and ran into him at a Patriots game two years ago and they reconnected like they’d spoken last week. But Tirico understood the media exile and difficulty James will have returning from it. “When you go down the road as staunchly as he did,” Tirico said, “it’s hard to cycle back and be the All-American running back.”
James told Yahoo Sports he’s “attended all six of my grandkids’ births!” He added that his nickname has changed from “The Pony” to “Pop C” to his grandkids.
Killed 5 hookers obv
Forgot Craig James existed and was better off for it. Will go back to forgetting he is a person on this earth
How could you forget about the guy that killed 5 hookers
New Mexico & Boca Raton bowls are both good fun. Las Vegas will probably be a curbstomping but maybe if AzSt musters some pride it can also be fun
That's a deceptively fun lineup of bowl games and even more fun to gamble
#Nebraska Cornhuskers #Kansas State Wildcats
Looks clean to me in SD
looks like a good clean, midwestern values, lunch pail type attitude, 13k in the stands, get a little better everyday, nc2a, blue collar, 16 goals for success type of tackle.
those shirts nebraska's coaches are wearing
Is this year’s playoff the best collection of qbs the playoff has ever had? I think so
wouldnt touch that one with a 10 foot pole. hell, im tempted to go the other side of that one
sounds like you're doubting herm
im doubting the team without nkeal harry and against a friggin good fresno d