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BCS commissioners settle on six ‘access bowls’

LSU vs Alabama Football AP

Some details of a four-team playoff in college football are still to be determined, but the BCS commissioners and Presidential Oversight Committee did finalize some aspects of the ‘access bowls’ that will make up the semifinal sites of the new postseason.

Here are highlights on what was decided:

  • There will be six access bowls, not seven. There were brief talks that a seventh access bowl with spot for the highest ranked team without a contractual tie-in could be added to the mix, but that’s been tossed out.  Currently, the Rose Bowl (Big Ten, Pac-12), Sugar Bowl (Big 12, SEC) and Orange Bowl (ACC, Notre Dame, Big Ten, SEC) have conference tie-ins and will be part of the rotation.
  • However, conferences without a contractual tie-in — the Big East, Conference USA, MAC, Mountain West and Sun Belt — will have access to one of the host bowls. That access will go to the highest-ranked champion of those conferences.
  • The other five at-large teams will be chosen by a selection committee based on final regular-season rankings. That includes Division 1 Independents (Army, BYU, Navy and Notre Dame). That will fill up all 12 slots in the six access bowls.
  • A higher portion of playoff revenues will go to the conferences participating in the playoff/access bowls. A lower distribution will to conferences that aren’t represented. Additionally, 10 percent of revenue will be reserved for academic performance and schools can be penalized for not hitting a certain APR mark.

Some areas still to be determined:

  • The three other “host” bowls. It’s believed the Fiesta, Cotton and Chick-fil-A will fill those spots to total six access bowls..
  • A media-rights deal, reported to be worth about $475 million a year over 12 years, per ESPN’s Brett McMurphy. ESPN will likely end up getting those rights.
  • Who will make up the selection committee.

There’s still a long way to go since specific numbers for revenue distribution and criteria for at-large spots haven’t been determined, but the big takeaway from today is that conferences lacking contractual tie-ins to access bowls aren’t being shut out entirely. That was a big concern for conferences like the Big East, which has BCS automatic qualifier status. Given recent BCS history combined with conference reshuffling, the Big East has to feel good about its chances of getting a bid to a host bowl more often than not.

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16 Responses to “BCS commissioners settle on six ‘access bowls’”
  1. eidolon21 says: Nov 12, 2012 6:45 PM

    all about the money

    lack of a level playing field
    cheating etc doesnt matter

    NCAA and BCS are only in it for the money

  2. normtide says: Nov 12, 2012 7:00 PM

    Does this really have to be so complex?

  3. frug says: Nov 12, 2012 7:35 PM


    Only if you hold the playoffs inside the bowl system. If they had done the smart thing and held the semi-finals on campus (or even in a non-bowl neutral site) they could have just gone back to the old system for the bowls.

    Four teams in the playoffs and open market for everyone else. Oh well…

  4. normtide says: Nov 12, 2012 7:43 PM

    Frug- neutral site was the way to go. The problem with campus site is it harder to promote. Knowing where ahead of time is an advantage. Plus, it is a huge media event and needs a city capable of hosting it. A small college town would struggle to pull it off.

    But your right, using the bowl system seems to be a mistake.

  5. sbuel2 says: Nov 12, 2012 8:06 PM

    Hate to say it but games at local colleges could be very nasty for the Northern teams as many do not have covered stadiums and the Northern hosts would definitely have an advantage over Southern teams in the winter temperatures and potential weather.

    This should be changed to a real playoff system but if this is all they can come up with.

    The original lockins can get a lesser team in the slots. Nebraska almost made the Fiesta Bowl if they had one the Big 12 Championships with a less than stellar record.

    This does not seem to limit it to two teams per conference which still could shut out the other conferences with better records but the polls disregard due to conference affiliations just like the current system.

  6. eidolon21 says: Nov 12, 2012 8:06 PM

    is a BCS bowl a Post season bowl banned for OSU ?

  7. frug says: Nov 12, 2012 8:38 PM


    And having the games in Miami, New Orleans and Pasadena gives Southern schools an advantage. It’s called home field advantage for a reason.


    The problem with campus site is it harder to promote. Knowing where ahead of time is an advantage. Plus, it is a huge media event and needs a city capable of hosting it. A small college town would struggle to pull it off.

    Yet for some reason there is never problem when Green Bay hosts the NFC CG…

  8. normtide says: Nov 12, 2012 9:15 PM

    Green Bay has an NFL team, and the infrastructure that requires. Has Green Bay hosted a modern super bowl? I am not saying it can’t be an outdoor, cold, snowy game at solider field in Chicago. Just that Chicago could do it better then Starkville Mississippi could.

  9. drummerhoff says: Nov 12, 2012 9:16 PM

    The only thing left that matters is how the 3 game playoff money is divided. That has the potential to separate a few conferences from the others. Apply that logic to this season, the ACC & B1G would lose access to the projected $475mil. Year-over-year of exclusion, and we can understand why the ACC upped its exit fee to $50mil.

  10. suprmous says: Nov 12, 2012 10:32 PM

    How do you spell relief to all of this? M O N E Y and promotion. I doubt very seriously that you could get much promotion after all the teams have met their respective schedules unless it was against a powerhouse, just saying.

  11. alligatorsnapper says: Nov 13, 2012 5:07 AM


    That gets back to what coaches and players have voted for through the decades when there was suggestions of new bowl game venues being established in northern areas for December and January. Athletic departments know their players and staff (and boosters and fans) want to get out and shop and be tourists for the day(s) preceding and succeeding the game. None wanted to get out in Chicago, Green Bay, Detroit, Buffalo, etc. even in covered stadiums.

    suprmous: You may have not heard this but members of the southernpatriots family yesterday found an elderly couple completely emaciated sitting on a old decrepit pier along an isolated small bayou yesterday. They had run out of food a few days earlier. Water levels remain very high in some of the smaller lower areas of south Louisiana, leaving some stranded.

  12. norcalirish says: Nov 13, 2012 6:39 AM

    This is going to be a mess.

  13. twoody50 says: Nov 13, 2012 7:23 AM

    The Northern schools are used to playing away games during Bowl Season. Been doing it it forever. Southern schools will continue to hold “home field” advantage. It’s the MONEY way.

  14. normtide says: Nov 13, 2012 7:44 AM

    Twoody- The northern schools play their CCG in a dome as opposed to outside. That tells me, they want to play in a warmer climate. Also, ccg’s and bcs games are geared toward they media coverage, more do then for the fans.

  15. dmvtransplant says: Nov 13, 2012 10:23 AM

    @ normtide

    Technically only the Big Ten plays in a dome. The Big East & MAC play outside, unless the Big East title is going to Syracuse then it’s going to be played inside.

    The only reason the Big Ten plays in Indy was the Super Bowl was going to be played there the same year of the conference championship game. Chicago, Detroit & Cleveland tried to bid for the game, but the Cleveland reps weren’t allowed to give their presentation and Chicago & Detroit were turned down, because there were actual NFL games going on around the time and the stadiums wouldn’t have looked professional in time for the CCG.

    I’m not saying your not right I’m just saying there’s more to it.

  16. joewashu says: Nov 15, 2012 9:56 PM

    @ dmvtransplant:

    The MAC plays its title game indoors, and has for a few years now. The Mac Title Game is played @ Ford Field (indoors) in Detroit

    The Big East Title game does not (yet) exist. As they expand to 12+ teams, I do not know where they plan to play their title game

    That being said, I would love to see the Big Ten Title game @ Soldier Field, or possibly even Lambeau Field. I was under the impression both Chicago and Green Bay were bidding against Indy for the game

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