The ACC Should Fight for an 8-Team Playoff

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I was reading up on the latest conference realignment stuff, and I came across an interview with Clemson economics professor Raymond Sauer.  It’s a very quick read, but a good read, and the final question and answer got me thinking about an eight-team playoff.

Right now, it looks as if college football is headed towards a four-team playoff.  We don’t know any details such as the format (four conference champions, or four highest-ranked teams, etc.), the TV deal, or the revenue sharing.

I always assumed that when a playoff happened, it would be an eight-team format.  To me, when you compare it to every other sport out there (professional and college), four teams seems too few.  I think eight is ideal, from a competition standpoint and a money generating standpoint.

“What the colleges have to do is be careful that a playoff structure doesn’t dilute the value of the regular season,” Sauer said in the Q&A with The Post and Courier.  “The way to do this is to make the conference championships matter. Make it meaningful to win your conference, your division. I wouldn’t be surprised if we move from a four-team conception to an eight-team conception.”

I do think that after a few years of a four-team playoff, the playoff would grow.  Three playoff games is simply leaving too much money on the table.

I also read a John Swofford interview, and he had an interesting quote.

“The real challenge with the BCS is that it’s not just a simple vote. It has to be a consensus of the group and the major conferences. The five of us [SEC, Big 12, Pac-12, Big Ten and ACC] are the ones that need to come to some consensus, because that’s -relative to the other conferences- what drives the value.”

The key word there is “consensus”.  The ACC (and Virginia Tech) would have a better chance in an eight-team playoff, and I think Swofford and Charles Steger (as the current Chair of the Presidential Oversight Committee of the BCS) need to find some friends and try and push things in that direction.

I favor the top five conference champions, along with three at-large teams.  It gives the ACC a

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