Mark Cuban seeks to create college football playoff

April 10, 2010: Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban during the game between the Sacramento Kings and the Dallas Mavericks at Arco Arena in Sacramento, CA. Ben Munn/CSM.

After two failed bids to buy a baseball team, Mavs owner Mark Cuban has now set his sights on fixing the college football postseason.

“The more I think about it, the more sense it makes as opposed to buying a baseball team,” said Cuban, who tried to buy the Chicago Cubs and Texas Rangers within the last few years. “You can do something the whole country wants done.”

Cuban said he envisions either a 12- or 16-team playoff field with the higher seeds getting homefield advantage. The homefield advantage, Cuban said, would ensure the college football regular-season games would not lose any importance.

The bowl games could still exist under Cuban’s plan, but he said he would make it more profitable for programs to make the playoffs than a bowl.

“Put $500 million in the bank and go to all the schools and pay them money as an option,” Cuban said. “Say, ‘Look, I’m going to give you X amount every five years. In exchange, you say if you’re picked for the playoff system, you’ll go.’ “

I think 12 or 16 teams is too aggressive too early. In my proposed eight-team playoff, all of the teams that would miss the playoffs (Michigan State, LSU, Arkansas) had an opportunity to seal a bid earlier in the year, but failed to do so. This ensures the regular season keeps its importance, which is something that BCS apologists bring up every time they attempt to defend their flawed system.

Other than that, I’m glad to see Cuban focusing his efforts on this, because a college football playoff seems to be going nowhere fast. Maybe throwing money at the problem will convince schools to go to the playoff instead of the BCS, but it’s going to take a lot of convincing.

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What would a college football playoff look like this year? (Part II)

AUBURN, AL - NOVEMBER 13: Quarterback Cameron Newton  of the Auburn Tigers celebrates with fans after their 49-31 win over the Georgia Bulldogs at Jordan-Hare Stadium on November 13, 2010 in Auburn, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Last week, I outlined what my proposed eight-team playoff bracket would look like prior to Championship Weekend. Boise State got the 8th and final bid because they beat the Hokies straight up early in the season and were ranked ahead of VT in the BCS standings. Let’s see if anything has changed in seven days…

Here are my assumptions:

1. The six BCS-conference champs get an automatic bid unless they are ranked outside the top 15. There would need to be some sort of ranking system used. For now, we will use the BCS. I’d rather do a straight #1-#8 seeding based on the rankings, but in order for a playoff to get implemented the big conferences would need some preferential treatment. That’s just the way it is and we all know it.

2. If a conference champ is ranked lower than #15 in the rankings, they give up their automatic bid and it becomes an at-large bid. (This rule is to ensure that the regular season keeps its meaning and only the elite teams make the playoffs.)

3. If a conference champ is ranked behind a non-BCS school, and have a head-to-head loss to that team, then they give up their playoff bid to that team. This is the “I Drink Your Milkshake!” rule.

4. Seeds and at-large bids are distributed based on the current BCS standings. Certainly, these rankings need to be tweaked to place more of an emphasis on head-to-head matchups, but they are fine for now. If an at-large team has a better BCS ranking than a conference champion, they will get a higher seed.

5. There will be three rounds of playoffs. The first round will be held at the home stadium of the higher-seeded team. The semifinals and the final will rotate amongst the four BCS cities (Miami, Pasadena, Tempe and New Orleans), so that those cities don’t lose the revenue from the bowl games.

So here is how an eight-team playoff would look at this point…

Read the rest of this entry »

What would a college football playoff look like this year?

Oct 21, 2010; Eugene, OR, USA; Fans of the Oregon Ducks cheer during the game against the UCLA Bruins at Autzen Stadium. Photo via Newscom

Last year, I ran a series of posts examining how a college football playoff system might look. I’m getting a late start this year, but it might be for the best since the rankings are more settled.

Here are my assumptions:

1. The six BCS-conference champs get an automatic bid unless they are ranked outside the top 15. There would need to be some sort of ranking system used. For now, we will use the BCS. I’d rather do a straight #1-#8 seeding based on the rankings, but in order for a playoff to get implemented the big conferences would need some preferential treatment. That’s just the way it is and we all know it.

2. If a conference champ is ranked lower than #15 in the rankings, they give up their automatic bid and it becomes an at-large bid. (This rule is to ensure that the regular season keeps its meaning and only the elite teams make the playoffs.)

3. If a conference champ is ranked behind a non-BCS school, and have a head-to-head loss to that team, then they give up their playoff bid to that team. This is the “I Drink Your Milkshake!” rule.

4. Seeds and at-large bids are distributed based on the current BCS standings. Certainly, these rankings need to be tweaked to place more of an emphasis on head-to-head matchups, but they are fine for now. If an at-large team has a better BCS ranking than a conference champion, they will get a higher seed.

5. There will be three rounds of playoffs. The first round will be held at the home stadium of the higher-seeded team. The semifinals and the final will rotate amongst the four BCS cities (Miami, Pasadena, Tempe and New Orleans), so that those cities don’t lose the revenue from the bowl games.

So here is how an eight-team playoff would look at this point…

Read the rest of this entry »

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