College Football Playoff needs to expand to 8 teams
When the dust settled after the semifinal round of the first College Football Playoff, I think America was left with the same general sentiment: We want more.
In its first season, the playoff is already better than the BCS system, which came before it. Of the four teams selected, the No. 4 seeded Ohio State Buckeyes knocked off the top-seeded Crimson Tide proving the parody in the sport. However, the parody also proved that at least for this season it is increasingly difficult to decide the best team in college football.
The College Football Playoff needs to expand to eight teams. Programs such as No. 5 Baylor, No. 6 TCU and No. 8 Michigan State can all make the argument that they belonged in the playoff. Both TCU and Baylor were jumped by the Buckeyes in the final week of the regular season. And then, No. 8 Michigan State pulled off a comeback victory against Baylor in the Cotton Bowl.
However, decisions like these typically aren't made because they are the right thing to do. Games are added if they financially make sense. And in this case, it's almost guaranteed to provide a huge influx of funds.
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The two College Football Playoff games became the two most-watched broadcasts in the history of cable television, according to ESPN.
The Rose Bowl averaged 28,164,000 viewers and the Sugar Bowl averaged 28,271,000 viewers.
When some is good, isn't more better?
If the playoff was expanded, it's safe to assume it would continue to see meteoric numbers of viewers. ESPN paid $7.3 billion for rights to the broadcasts of the College Football Playoff until 2025 — if two games were added, it's safe to say ESPN would pay more.
The playoff pits programs against each other that normally do not face each other. Florida State and Oregon had storylines that were not only appealing for the two fan bases, but also nationally. The nation was captivated by the matchup of college football's two best quarterbacks Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota.
Implementation is key — and not too tough. The first round can be played before Christmas, the semifinals can be played on New Year's Day and the National Championship can stay in early January.
More playoff games means more possibilities of elite players and programs matching up.
It could mean more money.
It makes sense.
Ryan Gillespie is the Editor-in-Chief at the Central Florida Future. Follow him on Twitter at @rgillespiecff or email him at RyanG@CentralFloridaFuture.com.