College football is one of the greatest things about being an American. The historic competition between certain schools/teams and anticipation for game days in the fall is matched only by the NFL and it’s actually often greater.
There exists a serious issue with Division I college football, however, and that is in the College Football Playoff bracket. The first-ever CFP “tournament” was held in 2014 with Ohio State beating Oregon in the final.
While the CFP is certainly exciting, it’s hard to argue that the four-team, semi-final to final concept is lacking. With the sheer amount of money that college football rakes in for the NCAA and Division I universities in general, you’d think that they would have expanded the bracket since that inaugural playoff.
Why Change is Needed
Oftentimes in life, less is more. When it comes to the CFP, though, that is not the case. More is more.
College football fans and football fans, in general, want to see more teams competing for the National Championship than just the top four seeded universities. This would both make the NCAA more money as well as give way more universities a chance at the National title.
While ratings will probably never take a significant dip for college football, fans are getting sick of seeing only the same teams compete in the CFP every year. Alabama will always be a powerhouse, but there should be more than just one playoff win required to get to the National Title.
These are college kids, so it certainly shouldn’t be as big a tournament as March Madness, but there’s a happy medium between the two. At the very least the top eight seeded teams should compete in an expanded CFP.
Considering the fact that there are over 100 division I football teams in the U.S., even that still feels like a small number. The NFL’s playoffs see a total of 14 out of 32 teams (7 from each league) compete for a chance at the Lombardi trophy.
The NCAA should take note and realize that there’s more money to be made from expanding the College Football Playoff bracket. When you think about it, only four teams out of the top 25 ranked universities making it is ridiculous.
Quite honestly, if your school is even ranked it should have a shot to at least challenge a top four team for the National Championship. This would make the playoffs way more competitive and would turn the CFP into its own coveted event which could even have the potential to challenge the NFL’s playoff ratings.
College Football Playoff Potential Solutions
If the NCAA were to take up an active role in fixing the CFP tournament, the most readily available solution would be an eight team bracket very similar to the model that the NBA and NHL use for their playoffs.
This is college football so you obviously don’t want student-athletes overworking themselves and putting their safety in danger, but expanding from three playoff games to seven would certainly not have that great an effect on the health and safety of the players.
This would simply make for a more competitive and entertaining playoff and allow more teams the opportunity to make history for their schools all while allowing the NCAA to profit.
Considering the new NCAA rule changes allowing student athletes to profit off image and likeness, it’d really be a win-win scenario for all parties.
Whether it’s 8 or 16 or 25, there just plain needs to be more teams allowed to qualify for the College Football Playoff. It’s hard to argue that only four schools making it should be considered a “tournament”, especially when the same schools like Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State seem to always be the ones who have any legitimate shot.