During an interview with Greg McElroy on McElroy’s Always College Football show, Dabo Swinney discussed how the expanded College Football Playoff is bad for the players.
Clemson’s head coach also talked about being bothered by people in charge not listening to players’ feedback on playoff expansion.
“I get beat up for this all the time and I don’t really care,” Swinney said. “We want to listen to the player on everything – like, everything – and I’m all for expanding the playoff. Great. I got no problem with it. But I want to do it in a way that’s healthy for the player. And what bothers me about the expansion of the playoff is when all this was coming about a few years ago, we were kind of given a charge by our commissioner to go and talk to our team and ask them, hey, this is what was coming down the pipe, here’s how it’s going to look like – wanted the feedback. I met with my team and I’ll never forget it, and I kind of laid it out for them, here’s where we are, and they all looked at me like I was crazy, like I had three eyeballs.
“You mean to tell me we got to start in July and we’re going to finish later in January? Oh and we just beat Alabama and now we gotta go play Georgia next week? You know, or you beat Ohio State, Alabama and now you gotta go play Georgia? And these are guys that have pro aspirations, and until you’ve been through a season of 15 games at this level, it’s hard to really have that perspective. So, the interesting thing about the whole dynamic to me, when all that was coming about – I gave the feedback but nobody listens.
“We listen to the player on all these things, but when it comes to – like, they don’t want to start earlier in July. They don’t want to go later in January. Oh, finals? Who cares? It just falls on deaf ears, and so I’m like, we can’t just keep expanding college football. And now where we are, you’re going to have to play 17 games. So, that’s a lot for a college player.”
A lengthy decision on whether or not to expand the College Football Playoff was finally made in September when the CFP Board of Managers unanimously voted to go to a 12-team playoff in the future. The new format, which triples the size of the current four-team model, will go into effect in 2024.
Clemson has made six CFP appearances, champions of the ACC each time. The Tigers’ most recent trip to the playoff came at the end of the 2020 season.
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