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Larry Scott already stumping for Pac-12 champ in playoff

Larry Scott

As to be expected, the past couple weeks of conference media days has brought a number of tired debates back to the surface. Among them has been the debate over eight-game conference schedules or nine-game schedules. For the Pac-12, the answer is simple. Commissioner Larry Scott addressed the benefits of having a nine-game conference schedule as college football moves into the College Football Playoff era this fall.

“We know that there will be continued controversy and debate, but the clear statement has been made that strength of schedule is going to be a determining factor in figuring out which of the four teams ought to be competing in that playoff,” Scott said during his state of the Pac-12 press conference this week at the Pac-12 media day event in California. The College Football Playoff selection committee will be placing an emphasis on strength of schedule when determining its rankings and choosing which four teams will be selected to participate in the College Football Playoff. the Pac-12 has opted to go with a nine-game conference schedule in part to raise the overall strength of schedule for the conference. Of course, it also makes it easier to schedule for all Pac-12 schools when they only have to fill three non-conference spots as opposed to four. The Pac-12 also backed out of a conference-wide scheduling agreement with the Big Ten that would have raised the strength of schedule for both conferences.

Scott chose to focus on the depth of the Pac-12 in 2014, a wise strategy considering the national respect for Oregon, Stanford and UCLA along with the rising expectations for programs like USC, Washington and Washington State. With some quality depth, the Pac-12 could be the most entertaining conference to watch this fall, so folks on the east coast may have to prepare for some late nights. The Pac-12 also has a chance to impress on a national level with some key non-conference match-ups.

“This year the Pac‑12, again, has scheduled a very tough non‑conference slate that includes 13 games against bowl teams from a year ago,” Scott said. “Highlights of our non‑conference match‑ups this year include five games against Big Ten opponents – Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern, Rutgers and Illinois. We’ve got three games against Notre Dame this year – Stanford, USC, Arizona State all playing against Notre Dame, and of course UCLA’s match‑up in Dallas against Texas early in the season.”

But Scott’s final remark about the schedule was one with a slight aim at the ACC and SEC. Both the ACC and SEC will play eight-game conference schedules. Whoever comes out on top of the Pac-12 is likely to have a decent shot at playing in the College Football Playoff, which Scott is already stumping for as best he can.

“Here it is with the most competitive nine‑game conference schedule in the nation, our champion will be incredibly well‑positioned in this first-ever historic College Football Playoff.”

Some power conference is going to get left out of the four-team playoff, if not more. Scott clearly believes his conference should not be on the outside looking in.

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9 Responses to “Larry Scott already stumping for Pac-12 champ in playoff”
  1. drummerhoff says: Jul 24, 2014 8:03 PM

    I don’t call that stumping. It’s just a fact that the PAC champion will be in a great position this season. The SEC can say the same.
    The 2 conferences trump the other 3 —all records being equal— the PAC & SEC are in before any B1G, Big12 or ACC.

  2. bigdinla says: Jul 24, 2014 8:51 PM

    Pretty ridiculous. They have 4 good teams and a bunch of jags. So tired of the 9 game rhetoric already. Playing Cal, Utah, Arizona, Washington, Washington State, Oregon State and Colorado is not tough.

  3. drummerhoff says: Jul 24, 2014 10:15 PM

    Prediction: Washington v USC in the Pac12 Champ game.

  4. fflnick says: Jul 25, 2014 4:04 AM

    They backout out of playing the B1G for one reason- $.
    Another all conference game means more inventory for their networks. Playing games against other conference means some games wont be under their tv jurisdiction.
    The SEC will eventually go to 9 conference games for the same reason.

  5. mauldawg says: Jul 25, 2014 6:40 AM

    The PAC 12 is the weakest overall of the Big 5.

  6. drummerhoff says: Jul 25, 2014 9:49 AM

    8 or 9 conference games is a bs argument.

    The real conversation should be all big 5 schools play 10 games against other big 5 schools, whether it’s conference or non is immaterial. 10 quality foes should be the benchmark.

  7. lanzurrah says: Jul 25, 2014 10:15 AM

    Deepest conference in CFB. Ask Auburn and LSU fans how good the Washington States, Oregon States, and lower-level Pac teams are….

  8. oldforester says: Jul 25, 2014 12:06 PM

    “it also makes it easier to schedule for all Pac-12 schools when they only have to fill three non-conference spots as opposed to four”

    That is BS. When you are paying little sisters and paying them $500,000 + there is no difficulty.

    The SEC consistently uses their 8 conference game schedule to build in bye weeks late in the season. They do play a weak non-conference schedule overall, and patsies in the SEC. This year:
    Alabama will play Florida Atlantic, W. Carolina, Southern Miss, Ole Miss, and Miss State.
    LSU will play Sam Houston, UL Monroe, Miss State, New Mexico State, & SEC power Kentucky.
    Auburn will play San Jose St, Louisiana Tech, Samford, Mississippi State, and Ole Miss.
    All of these teams will be challenged, at best, in less than half their schedules. In a 12 game season one game IS significant, especially when placed as a bye near the end of the season, when if effect your team gets a 2 week break to recover.

  9. 8to80texansblog says: Jul 25, 2014 1:52 PM


    Not sure I would call Ole Miss a “patsy”

    They beat Texas by 21 in Austin, beat a 9 win Vandy team in Nashville, and they beat a 10 win LSU team….

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