Pac-12 Commissioner Says Rose Bowl Does Not Run College Football

NCAA Football: Pac-12 Media Day

As discussions about expanding the College Football Playoffs continue, Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff gave his thoughts on the possible expansion and how it could affect the oldest college bowl game.

Kliavkoff went on the Paul Finebaum Show and talked about the Rose Bowl and the impact that it has on the expansion discussions.

“The Rose Bowl is a more than 100-year-old tradition,” Kliavkoff said. “It is core to college football. Does it run college football? Absolutely not.”


The Rose Bowl is traditionally played between the winner of the Pac-12 and the winner of the Big 10, unless one of those teams is in the College Football Playoffs.

Playing in the Rose Bowl is considered an incredible honor and before the CFP format was implemented, the Rose Bowl was often considered just as important as the BCS Championship Game.

When it comes to the discussions of playoff expansion, the Rose Bowl wants to be part of the playoffs.

“What we’ve said is if we go to a format where the six New Year’s Eve bowl games are playing on a rotating three-year basis: quarterfinal, quarterfinal, semifinal – those quarterfinals, either an eight or a 12-team model would fall during the New Year’s weekend, and presumably the Rose Bowl, if it was hosting a quarterfinal, would host it in its traditional time,” Kliavkoff said.

That traditional time for the Rose Bowl is at 2pm pacific time on January 1, but they agreed not to have that time in order to host a semi final game under the current CFP format.

As a semifinal game once every three years under the new format, the Rose Bowl could have that 2pm pacific time slot back.

Kliavkoff says it will be tough to keep all the New Year’s Six bowl traditions and expand the college football playoffs, and that discussions about which traditions to hold on to are one of the things delaying the expansion of the playoffs.

“We’ve asked for three hours every three years to be protected against having to compete against a CFP quarterfinal and everything that we’ve asked for the Rose Bowl – a tiny ask, we’ve said if the other contract bowls like the Sugar Bowl and the Orange Bowl want similar accommodations in the years where they’re hosting a semifinal, we’d be willing to give into that as well,” Kliavkoff said.

It remains to be seen what the format will look like if the College Football Playoffs do expand.


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