Doug Franz College Football Playoff - Week 5
In case you don't know from the things I've said on air. I hate the BCS but I don't have a problem with the BCS formula. I just don't want it used to narrow the field from 124 to 2.
Although I'm thrilled we will have a four-team playoff soon, I've always wanted a 16-team playoff. I'm not being greedy because the new system will be so much better than the BCS. I just want to implement some of the greatness of March Madness while rewarding conference champions.
I put before you the Doug Franz College Football Playoff. The "DFCFP" makes every non-conference game vital to each conference because each game determines conference strength. Conference strength determines conference rank versus the other conferences. The DFCFP improves on the NCAA basketball tournament because teams don't get in the playoff just by winning their conference. They have to win one of the conferences ranked in the top eight (as opposed to the NCAA basketball tournament where every conference champion is in).
Every week the BCS rankings will change, therefore changing the teams making the playoff. Check in each week and see how things have changed. At the end of the season, it's up to you to pick the winners of each game and set in motion the championship challenge.
If you want an explanation for the way my formula works, check the bottom of the blog.
Here's the playoff pairings if the regular season ended today:
16) Kent State @ 1) Kansas State
15) Rutgers @ 2) Oregon
14) Louisiana Tech @ 3) Notre Dame
13) Nebraska @ 4) Alabama
12) Oklahoma @ 5) Georgia
11) Clemson @ 6) Florida
10) Florida State @ 7) LSU
9) South Carolina @ 8) Texas A&M
Obviously, the current system proponents try to say a playoff destroys the integrity of the regular season. Not true it enhances it. How did Alabama's loss to LSU in 2011 hurt them last year? It didn't. In the DFCFP, LSU losses a second round home game since they lost in the regular season and now they must travel to Oregon.
Alabama gets hurt as well. Although they still keep two home games, the Crimson Tide's first game went from playing the MAC Champion to a battle-tested Big Ten Champ Nebraska.
Texas A & M wasn't in the playoff last week. Now the Aggies have a 1st round home game.
The SEC has six teams in the DFCFP. No other conference has more than 2.
I love the Nebraska road trip. The best fans in college football trying to buy tickets in a stadium that sells out every game against Nick Saban would be classic.
The playoff also rewards the two best teams with games against lesser foes but rewards those teams from conferences that never get this type of an opportunity. However, it doesn't go overboard with every conference champion like March Madness.
I'd love to be at the Oklahoma/Georgia game.
If the seeds held (which I would say LSU would beat Oregon in the second round, but I digress), you would see ND's Manti Te'o versus Oregon's unstoppable run game.
By ranking every team 1-124, you get a true representation of the best conference by taking the average BCS rank of every team in the conference. This playoff system makes every college football game in the country vital because it rewards teams and conferences alike.
Here's the ranking of the conferences after week 1 of the BCS and the average BCS rank of the teams in the conference.
1) Big 12: 37.7
2) SEC: 40.25
3) Pac-12: 44.83
4) Big 10: 48.5
5) Big East: 61.63
6) ACC: 63.92
7) WAC: 76.71
8) MAC: 76.84
9) Sun Belt: 79.9
10) MWC: 83.7
11) C-USA: 92.17
The money line is being one of the top eight conferences (explanation below). The pressure on every team in conferences 7-10 is intense because every game could determine if your conference champion gets in the playoff. At this point in the season, one non-conference win by any team in the conference could move your champion into the playoff.
I developed the DFCFP in 2001. I've never seen the SEC's average rank in the 40s. Auburn is killing the conference.
The Mountain West and Sun Belt are right on the heels of the MAC. Boise State is ranked higher than Kent State but the overall rating of the teams in the MAC keeps their champ in the playoff. The big difference is the MAC has three teams ranked 100-124 while the Mountain West has five, proving it's a harder conference to win.
The WAC would be talking so much trash if this truly worked out. Not only did a faction of teams breakaway from the WAC to form the Mountain West in the first place, but also Boise State and Nevada just left the WAC for the MWC with the goal of having better access to the post-season. If Boise State would have stayed, they'd be in but now their new conference drags them down.
Is Kansas slightly overmatched? The Big 12 is impressive but it could be so much more. The ninth-best team in the conference is Baylor at #59. The conference falls off a cliff to get to its tenth team as KU is #103. If it wasn't for KU, the average Big 12 team would be in the Top 30.
The Pac-12 used to have an average in the 50's. This year it's a tougher conference than the Big 10.
The magic of the DFCFP is how it highlights the regular season more than any other system. Here's the process for coming up with the teams for the playoff.
1) Rank all D-1 (FBS) teams 1-124 (from Alabama to Southern Miss)
2) Rank all the conferences 1-11 based on the average BCS rank of the teams in the conference.
3) Reward the first place team in the top 8 conferences with an automatic bid.
1. Kansas St
6. Florida State
7. Louisiana Tech
8. Kent State
4) Independents—this means you Notre Dame—get no special treatment. If you're not in a conference, earn a wild card bid or join a conference.
5) Select 8 wild-card teams based on BCS rank excluding those already selected with an automatic bid.
1. Notre Dame
5. Texas A&M
6. South Carolina
6) Rank the 16 teams based on BCS rank with no regard to status as an automatic qualifier or wild-card entry. The tournament would follow a bracket format. Although re-seeding would be a better way to reward the regular season, nothing is better than filling out a basketball bracket and I want that momentum and attention on college football.
7) First two rounds are at the home of the better seed.
8) Final Four and Championship game are played at a rotation among Fiesta, Cotton, Sugar, Rose.
I'm aware that after the first two rounds there are three games left at neutral sites with four bowl game hosts. This is leverage in case the Rose wants to stick to tradition. If they duck out I've got three games and three bowls. If the Rose does want to stay involved, there would be a new bowl game created for the two teams that just missed out on the playoff. This week would be Texas vs. Stanford.
I give you the extra bowl game just to prove that the bowls don't have to die. Texas vs. Stanford is still a great college football game and Texas has great fans.
We wouldn't have 35 bowl games anymore—sorry Pinstripe Bowl—but some of the big ones with tradition don't have to go anywhere. If you're an Arizona or Arizona State fan are you saying you wouldn't go to the Holiday Bowl against Texas Tech? You'd still get the benefit of extra practices to prepare for your bowl game. Players would still get to enjoy the goodies they receive for participating. As for the fans, we get a real champion.
Feel free to ask me any questions or give me your opinions and I'll put it in the mailbag: firstname.lastname@example.org