Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott spooked some folks earlier this week with the absurd notion that, because of the newly-announced SEC-Big 12 bowl alliance, the plus-one model for college football’s postseason has gained some traction, which would essentially not be a playoff in any sense of the word.
The Big 12 and ACC have already, essentially, come out against a plus-one model by favoring a seeded four-team playoff. Now, one of the most powerful men in the sport has come out against such a proposal as well.
Speaking at his conference’s baseball tournament Saturday, SEC commissioner Mike Slive said that while he appreciates the dialogue jump started by Scott’s “traction” comment, he (rightly) doesn’t think such a model is in the best interests of the sport.
“It’s interesting because clearly what we did (with the SEC/Big 12 bowl) created a lot of thinking by a lot of people,” Slive told the Birmingham News‘ Jon Solomon. “I appreciate people thinking about that. But I think what’s in the best interest of college football is a four-team playoff. I think it’s better for everyone involved in the game.”
The SEC will hold its annual spring meetings this week, and Slive hopes that, by the time the gathering in Destin, Fla., comes to an end Friday, his conference will have hashed out its preference for how the postseason should. One thing is clear, though, that such a preference likely won’t include anything related to either a plus-one model or one that includes conference champs only.
Instead, the conference will likely come out in favor of a seeded four-team playoff consisting of the four highest-ranked teams regardless of how they fared in conference play.
As for how the four teams — and it will be a four-team playoff despite Scott’s and other similar “threats”, as Kevin Scarbinsky deftly notes HERE — are selected, Slive is open to pretty much anything that doesn’t limit the field to conference champs only, up to and including a selection committee.
“It seems to me if that is the issue, then we ought to address that and not compromise the national championship by gerrymandering who plays,” Slive said. “I am very much open to a thorough analysis of the selection process and whatever changes people recommend.”
Slive did allow that a selection committee would be “difficult, but doable.”
A final decision on what the postseason will look like is expected before the end of summer, perhaps as early as the end of next month.