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Tear College Football Down . . .

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…and build it back better. There has never been an NCAA recognized champion of college football! Not ever. Not even once. Mr. FishDuck, when pulled away from his fun with online real money casino had to ponder this one with me, and acknowledge how the champion of college football for the year 2023, crowned by a playoff in 2024, is ...


There has never been an NCAA recognized champion of college football! Not ever. Not even once. Mr. FishDuck, when pulled away from his...
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You make a lot of good common sense Mike. Thanks for the food for thought.  Too bad that many obstacles  never listen to common sense.


Administrators, TV executives, donors, and fans always choose common sense in their major decision making process. Not really!  😉 


Logic and symmetry falls victim to self interest and money.


Anyway, thanks for the mental stimulation this morning.  I will just take it day by day and one season at a time enjoying the path of Our Beloved Ducks football team.

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Brilliant, been saying for a long time they should adopt the soccer type of subdivisions. If a team, program drops they drop out of the top division, those who are competitive move up, and you have competition.


That kind of movement already happened with the cougs and beavs not making the cut to any meaningful conference. It also happened to the buffs, and Arizona schools. 


Creating divisions like you propose would only codify something that already happens in the real world. Now how do you create a functioning NCAA, that is the tough part.

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Thanks Mike but you just made my head spin. 

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I like Mike's idea, but I would want to expand it to 16 teams with eight at-large teams.  Too many times you could have a potential national champion who came up short in one game due to injuries, etc.  Or take the top two teams in each conference?

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Mr. FishDuck

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Mr Whitty once again has displayed his research capability. It's a bit dizzying to me but I'm a common man. The problem is the NCAA hasn't been able to provide the necessary leadership and control since the professional football days of Hugh McElhaney


Let's let the market decide. Does anybody wish Oregon had fewer scholarships to offer young men, lesser facilities to attract top talent,( both students and coaches); fewer wins in their column, money to spread around to other sports, fewer opportunities to watch our beloved Ducks, etc etc etc.?


Let's leave well enough alone. More regulation is not the answer. Do we want a higher power telling us how many 4 stars we can have, and how much of our revenue should be shared with the beavers.


I don't think so !


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I believe the Conference championship games already identify the two top teams from each conference. CCG's are a defacto first round playoff game. The NFL has Division and then Conference championship games. Its not how College plays out, but it is the reality. The playoffs don't really want a true champion, they want money. Do we really need to see a potential matchup 3 times in one year to see if a team is capable of winning the Natty? If they wanted a true champion, then why play the same teams over and over again, potentially 3 times in a row (could happen)? Money.


It won't happen, but I would love to see 4 major conferences. Independents don't get to dictate. Join a conference or don't play for a NC. 4 Major conferences amount to around 65-70 teams. Team 71 has 0 shot at winning any game in the playoffs. Its a defacto 8 game playoff and resonates purity of 'ScoreBoard'. Conference Championship games produce Conference "Champions". Then each "Champion" plays in an East/West Division Championship game. Those Division "Winners" play for all the marbles. 


But wait!!! This would make all those committees absolutely worthless! Rankings would be relegated to a side show. We can't have that now can we? Opinions are more important. Money is more important. 

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The biggest problems would be money and who controls it. Whomever controls the money, has the power. 

College football should be reorganized for many reasons.

On the monetary side, conferences are currently negotiating media deals independently. Ever hear of “divide and conquer”? The media currently is winning the most important battle. They get to broadcast college football for less than it is worth. 

The NFL garners in excess of $11 billion in media rights revenue, college football around $2 to $3 billion. Is the NFL really 4 to 5 times more popular?


There is an opportunity to capture more revenue.

The problem is that college football needs to reorganize in order to capture that revenue. They need to collectively bargain as one unit with the media. Which means who then distributes that revenue? Is it distributed evenly?

Will Universities and their mega donors all agree to a wholesale reorganization? Will everyone go quietly to their assigned conference? Will they agree on distribution of revenue?

Good luck with all the operations, legal, and ego problems!!!



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Great thoughts but your article nailed why it's not happening. Follow the money. 


As you so correctly pointed out this is what CFB has been chasing since 1984 and it will not stop. The Power 2 is not going to bring teams like Oregon State, Washington State, and Boise State into the fold. With a 40-team conference, Kentucky will not be left out. Vandy is likely the only SEC team that will be left out. And the P2 Alliance in part was formed to assure that the Pac-2s and Boise's of the world will not have the same voting power as the B1G and the SEC going forward. 


You have come up with terrific thoughts that the NCAA could have come up with decades ago and failed to be proactive. Add Notre Dame and UNC to the B1G. Add Clemson, FSU, and 2 others, (Miami, NC State, UVA, and VA Tech?) to the SEC and you have 40 teams IF Vandy and Northwestern can afford to carry the P2 financial weight. If not fill in the blanks with teams like OK St, Utah, Kansas, or K State.


The SEC was not proactive with NIL. Instead, the NCAA stuck its member institutions with large legal fees defending an indefensible system. As you so correctly noted, NCAA president Baker after searching for relief from Congress has waived the white flag. 


What I would like to see is the P2 schools regulating themselves in CFB and CBB and conferences staying as-is for all other sports but again, following the money is not going to allow such a format to happen.


Thanks again. Lots to ponder.

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Charles, I hope we see 16 teams come 2026/27. No 1st round byes. No automatic qualifiers for conference champions with the top 16 getting in the field. 1 caveat, to keep the lawyers away, the highest-ranked G5 team is in the field whether or not ranked as a No.16 seed. 


Too much money in a 16-team PO not to do this and after the ACC goes away for whatever reason, and speculating that UNC and Notre Dame go B1G and Clemson and FSU join the SEC, the Power 2 could simply hold their own PO. (Using College Football News preseason rankings.)


B1G Bracket - 


No. 8, Missouri at No. 1. Ohio State /  No. 5. Notre Dame at No. 4. Ole Miss


No. 7. UW at No. 2. Texas / No. 6 Florida State at No. 3 Michigan


SEC Bracket -


No. 8. Iowa at No. 1 Georgia / No. 5. LSU at No. 4 Penn State


No. 7 Tennessee at 2. OREGON / No. 6 USC at No. 3 Alabama


Three teams from the West would be in a national field.


I prefer Mike's thoughts on 40 teams. But the Massey Rankings rank teams by how good they are and not by the number of people watching the games. Not by a program's 'market value.' Boise State may be a better football team than Mississippi State, but MSU draws far more eyeballs. The P2 Alliance has been formed to separate from the Boise State's of the CFB world and manage CFB, mindful of anti-trust issues, as the P2 so desires. 


Again, so grateful to Mike for his article. My idea of where CFB is headed is just one of many ideas. 

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Eight conferences of 10 teams each to crown an 8-team tournament champion is absolutely perfect!!  And that's why it will never happen.  Bracket should also be predetermined, not based on rank.  Remove all judging and guesswork.


I don't care about at-large bids or second place conference finishers.  Results matter.  In general, the best teams win tournaments, but not always.  It's exactly what makes following sports so compelling.  If David slays Goliath, Goliath shouldn't get a second shot.


However, I am open to allowing 2nd place conference finishers their own tournament as it's own compelling twist to highlight conference strength or "what could have been."  Like a consolation bracket.


College presidents would never back moving up and down divisions based on W/L results.  This should remain standard Division I requirements over the course of a number of years.  With transfers, graduations, recruiting, football rosters are too volatile to move teams around based on one year's on field performance.  Scheduling also becomes an issue.


If conferences need more than 10 teams to accommodate all Division I teams, they can go back to divisions if necessary.  Figure it out.  You only get to send one champion to the playoff.  The SEC has been gaming the system for years with 8 conference games and 14 teams.  They don't care about a true conference champion as much as they want two playoff teams - minimum.

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Wow, some great thoughts people.


We all agree on one thing, some type of change is needed.

But who controls the $$ will win the argument. 


Why are the other levels, non-D1 schools able to have playoffs and an onfield determined winner?

But D1 schools cant?!


Football is too brutal for 16+ games/year without some kind of health and financial guarantee. As long as they are considered students I'm against that many games.


I wish we would go back to the old way of bowl games and voting in polls to determine winners.

That would mean only a few schools and their fanbase would have something to argue about during off-season. 


And all the players would likely play in their respective bowl. Maybe.


No, I think the B1G and SEC are leading the way. National Champs will have to go through them. ESPN will need to cancel ACC contract early and force ND to join the B1G and let the others go where they may.


The NCAA could pick schools from all others for an "NCAA" championship, like the NIT bball tourney.


In the meantime, I'm glad we joined the B1G. Like it or not, it's the future. 

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Great article, Mike!  I love your idea.  Unfortunately, it makes too much sense, so it will probably never happen.

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Interesting points. Basketball has 3rd party media multiple conferences and still has an NCAA championship. Does that mean it breaks the Sherman act, and nobody challenges it court because the status quo is fine to the schools, media and basketball players don't lose sleep over one unpaid season before going pro?




I will note there is no mathematical requirement in your hypothetical scenario for a conference to have 10 teams. Teams per conference is another variable we have to work with.


It doesn't have to be 10, 20, 40, 80...


The simplest is to just round preference to the nearest base 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128. Then you could put the entire division into a bracket and knock yourself out any which way.


Relegation is too complicated for Americans to latch onto, which makes it hard to draw a line on any number of teams though.


Using money as the threshold is tough too. A school may have the money one year and not the next when recession hits and funding gets cut.


This is a situation where the benevolent dictator wins because there is no obvious situation that makes everyone happy, but a dictator runs afoul of the Sherman act.


And how long before the SEC and B1G run afoul of anti-collusion laws that could be seen as anticompetitive to players opportunities?


Around and around we go for eternity. There is no destination, just a journey, so we best all enjoy the ride.

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32? Here's a possible NFL-Lite Conference - 'College Teams' sponsored by the NFL. Revenue sharing. Collective bargaining. Transfer regulation designed to preserve rosters in the short run. Perhaps an HS draft?


ATL - Georgia




BAL - Clemson


BUF - Michigan State




CHI - Missouri


CIN - Kentucky 


CLV - Ohio State


DAL - Texas


DNV - Colorado


DET - Michigan


GB - Wisconsin




IN - Notre Dame


JAX - Florida State


KC - Nebraska






LAS - Oklahoma


MIA - Ole Miss


NE - Arkansas




NYG - Bama


NYJ - Auburn


PHL - Penn State


PIT - Iowa






TB - Florida


TN - Tennessee


DC - South Carolina


As good as any guess?

Edited by Jon Joseph
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One thing you can be sure of,


The rich get richer and the poor get poorer, 


In the meantime, In between time. Ain't We Got Fun!


There is nothing new under the Sun.

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As I get older I take things one day at a time. Bucky at Autzen is a dream come true for me.

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The world is not a logical place anymore(if it ever was). The proposition in the article makes sense, but we all know it's not the NCAA that controls the sport. The colleges in the Big leagues will just do what they want.


Look at the Tennessee suit against the NCAA investigation, the State government is getting involved. Not because Tennessee is innocent, but because it's the state's public university. Politicians have delegates, they are entering an election cycle. Which is pretty much the only time they pretend to care about their voters.


Imagine the NCAA going into Arkansas, and telling them they are taking a haircut for the newest cycle. The school could take a one hundred million dollar loss, and I doubt they would understand it's based off European football club relegation standards.


Northwestern is filled with lawyers, journalists, and politicians that are past graduates. You think they would just accept the fact that they are being booted from a 150 year old conference, so Boise State can jump in? I just don't see it. 


The logic is there, a very well written article btw. I agreed with almost the entire thing, even quoting Wikipedia 😂. But the SEC and Big Ten have become too big. The only thing the other programs could do , is bring in the government to try and enforce some sort of regulation. Kind of like how they try to keep companies like Microsoft, WalMart, or Disney from monopolizing the market.


A Big Ten-SEC merger could be seen as "cornering the market". But then you invite an even bigger devil in the door. The only thing worse than an uncaring magnate, is a "caring" politician.

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The vast majority of the recruiting fireworks are detonated in December but there are still some storylines to follow on signing day.


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