ESPN personality Paul Finebaum, who has his own show on the SEC Network, says the College Football Playoff’s decision to expand to a 12-team format may have saved college football.
However, he says they now need to make sure the playoff is ready to run in 2024.
A working group recommended on Thursday to the CFP management committee that the playoff should be moved from a four-team playoff to a 12-team playoff. ESPN’s Heather Dinich reported on Friday the playoff format will not happen for the next two years, but it is not likely going to have to wait until the current contract is up, as long as everyone is on the same page.
“This is the most important and exciting moment in the history of this game,” Finebaum said on ESPN’s Get up Show Friday. “And it has to happen sooner rather than later. You can’t say in a couple of weeks we are going to do this in ’25 or ’26, it has to happen the season after next. If it does, I think the sport of college football can be saved.”
Finebaum believes the sport was losing its audience because teams like Clemson, Alabama, Ohio State and Oklahoma are always in the national playoff hunt. They want some new blood, if you will, and the CFP will meet again next week in Chicago to discuss the recommendations of expansion even more.
“The four-team playoff has been a really big success since it was created nine years ago, actually almost nine years ago this week,” said the head of the CFP Bill Hancock in a media teleconference call that included The Clemson Insider. “And it remains a big success. It’s been great for college football. We’ve been delighted with it. But the presidents, our board asked the management committee to review the CFP when we were six years in, and the management committee has done just that.
“This proposal at its heart was created to provide more participation for more players and more schools. In a nutshell, that is the working group’s message … more participation.”
And now college football writers, reporters and analysts like Finebaum want to get things moving and have the new playoff format in place by the 2023-’24 college football season.
“The sport was losing audience. It was losing interest,” Finebaum said. “Give the people who run the sport credit. They recognize that. They quit trying to say everything was okay when it wasn’t. This is so significant. It is so exciting, and I just may stick around a couple of years and cover it.”
Time to get the latest Clemson apparel to show your Tiger pride. Order your officially licensed Clemson gear right here!