For those of us who’d like to see a college football playoff in our lifetimes, some welcome news came out of the 12-team Big Ten last week.
The Chicago Tribune reported Monday that the league’s athletic directors are considering the idea of a four-team playoff to decide the national champion. While there is still a long way to go, that’s significant news because the Big Ten led the charge to kill a Plus One system proposed four years ago by the SEC. Maybe watching two SEC teams play for the BCS championship finally persuaded the Big Ten’s ADs that getting a shot at the national title for one of their schools was more important than blind devotion to the Rose Bowl.
Of course, the whole point of a playoff would be to reduce some of the unsatisfying scenarios that have popped up ever since the BCS’s creation, such as:
- 2001: A team getting blown out 62-36 in its last game, missing its conference championship game and still playing for the national title.
- 2003: A team finishing No. 1 in the AP and Coaches’ polls but finishing third in the BCS standings.
- 2004: An SEC team going 12-0 and not making the national title game.
- 2007: Eight two-loss teams fighting for No. 2 in the BCS standings.
- 2011: Two teams from the same SEC division playing for the national title.