In the BCS era, college football fans clamored for a playoff. Well, they got what they wanted, but many fans still aren’t happy. Yes, instead of being happy with a four-team playoff, many fans wanted – and want – six teams. Or eight. Or 16.
Aaron Taylor does not.
“I think that’s the easy, lazy way to kind of fix all these problems,” the CBS Sports Network lead college football analyst said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “(People think), ‘Two was good, four is better, eight is best.’ I think what that would do is create what we see. To me, this is a year of mediocrity. People have stubbed their toes. We got all these two-loss teams, and we’re talking about potentially three-loss teams being in there. If you do that, you considerably devalue the value of the regular season. I think that’s why the playoff committee has really tried to adhere to the conference championships – because one way or another, that’s the best way to maybe try to preserve the integrity of the regular season, which is what you’re seeing when you have an Ohio State and Michigan not competing for the conference championship.”
Imagine if we had an eight-team playoff. There’s a pretty good chance that No. 2 Ohio State (11-1) and No. 5 Michigan (10-2) would both be included in the field, which would have reduced The Game – an epic double overtime thriller – to a glorified exhibition. But because it was essentially a playoff play-in, it was, for many fans, the college football game of the year.
Why would we want to get rid of that?
“(Expanding the field) means that you can go ahead and lose games along the way but still be valued high,” Taylor said. “If you start opening this up, you could have all two-loss teams and three-loss teams and now you have teams that don’t deserve to be in there, and we’re starting to hear things like we do in the NFL: ‘Wait unit we peak at the right time. Wait until we get to the playoffs.’ We don’t want to do that to this sport. This sport is so good and so popular because of the playoff that starts on Sept. 1 and goes throughout the year. Every weekend, you have a chance to prove that you deserve to be there and belong. I understand (the argument). I would watch it, I would be interested, I think it’s going to go that way. But if it were me making the decision, I would keep it at four and put the pressure on the committee.”