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College Football Playoff Expansion: 2024 Goal Remains, But Scheduling Conflicts Arise

NCAA Football: CFP National Championship-Clemson vs Alabama

The College Football Playoff committee is still working hard to expand to a 12-team playoff by 2024, but several hurdles remain, according to a new report from CBS Sports.

The committee, which includes the 10 FBS commissioners and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick, met Thursday to discuss how likely it is that they could start an expanded playoff a year or two before the end if the College Football Playoff’s current deal in 2026.


“Progress is being made,” said CFP executive director Bill Hancock after the meeting. “Will we get there? I don’t know.”

It’s likely, and there is enthusiasm for it, but scheduling appears to be the biggest issue that commissioners are dealing with. The scheduling problems result from the finals on college campuses, plus the NFL’s Week 18 and postseason schedule.

When it comes to finals, remember, the expansion would include first round games on campus. However, according to CFP guidelines, 2024 first-round games could not begin until Thursday, Dec. 19. And as CBS notes, each university has a slightly different schedule. Alabama’s finals run Dec. 13-19, while Notre Dame’s finals are set for Dec. 16-20.

Could these be shifted and how big a hurdle would that be? We will find out.


Also, there’s the NFL scheduling. Does the College Football Playoff want to go head-to-head with the NFL on weekends or do they prefer to try and play the games during the business week? That’s been a topic of conversation and debate.

The group has met and discussed these issues three times since the edict came down in August from the CFP Presidents to expand the playoff no later than 2026. No date has been set for the next meeting.

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