Big 12 News

College Football Playoff Expansion on Hold Over Conference Auto Bids

NCAA Football: College Football Playoff-Selection Sunday

College Football Playoff expansion appears to be on hold as the management committee can’t agree whether the Power 5 conferences will receive automatic bids.

Brett McMurphy of Action Network HQ reported that information after the committee’s meeting on Wednesday.

The meeting was the latest opportunity for the College Football Playoff management committee to get representatives from each conference, along with Notre Dame, to agree to the specifics of playoff expansion.


.@CFBPlayoff management committee agrees @CFBPlayoff should expand & prefers 1st round games played on campus, sources told @ActionNetworkHQ. However, they can’t agree if Power 5 conferences receive auto bids or not. That’s biggest hold up, sources said. Next meeting in January’

That seems to back up the reporting of The Athletic’s Nicole Auerbach, who spoke with Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby after the meeting.


Bowlsby went on to say that he felt “12 (teams) was good for college football” and “I’d like to be done, but as long as we keep progressing toward a good outcome, I’m willing to spend the time and I think others are, too.”

There are two proposals being looked at. A working committee, which included Bowlsby proposed a format in the summer that included 12 teams, which included automatic bids to the highest-ranked six conference champions. After Texas and Oklahoma announced their move to the SEC, and the ensuing cavalcade of conference realignment, the ACC-Big Ten-Pac-12 Alliance proposed that each of the Power 5 conferences get an automatic bid.

SEC commissioner Greg Sankey told Auerbach that he didn’t support the latter approach, saing “I still think earning your way in is the right approach.”

College Football Playoff executive director Bill Hancock released a statement saying that discussion will continue in January. Hancock had said earlier this year that a decision was needed by the end of 2021 in order for the playoffs to expand sooner than the end of the current four-team contract.

You can find Matthew Postins on Twitter @PostinsPostcard.

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