Fixing the BCS: Four-Team Playoff + Cotton Bowl

Since a four-team playoff will effectively remove two teams from the BCS picture, Proposal #4 (probably my favorite one), would include the Cotton Bowl as a BCS and possible semi-final game. It would (as in Proposal #2) be the home of the Big 12 champion and the Fiesta would take the top lower-tier conference champ/independent.

In practice, the Fiesta Bowl would probably be completely against this since the frequency with which they would host a semi-final game would be almost non-existent (except in 2012). A possible solution would be for the Fiesta and Cotton to alternate the Big 12 champ every other year.

Proposal #4: Four-Team Playoff with Cotton Bowl

  • Conference Champions will continue to play in traditional BCS tie-in games (Big 12 champ to Cotton, top lower-tier champ to Fiesta).
  • Teams ranked #1 and #2 will always automatically qualify for the playoff.
  • Conference champions ranked in the top six will automatically qualify for the playoff. If there are more than two conference champions ranked #3-#6, the two highest-ranked champs will qualify for the playoff.
  • Lower-tier conference champs must be ranked in the top 16 and upper-tier conference champs must be ranked in the top 20 to play in a BCS game.
  • The two BCS games with the highest-ranked conference champions will select from remaining teams ranked #3-#6. The highest-ranked conference champion will play the lowest-ranked additional selection and the lower-ranked conference champion will play the higher-ranked additional selection.
  • In the event that an independent or a team from a lower-tier conference is selected for a semi-final game, the bowl at the top of the BCS selection rotation will host the semi-final game.
  • The other BCS games will be selected following the procedures from proposal #1.
  • Since the Fiesta Bowl will usually host a lower-tier conference team, they will always have first pick in the rotation.

Here are all of this year’s BCS games based on this proposal.

Semi-Final #1: Orange #1 Florida St* #5 Stanford*
Semi-Final #2: Sugar #2 Auburn* #4 Michigan St*
The Rose Bowl Game #7 Ohio St** #10 Oregon**
Fiesta #15 UCF* #3 Alabama***
Cotton Bowl Classic #6 Baylor* #7 Ohio St***

*Conference Champion
**Conference Champion Replacement
***”At-Large” Selection

And what past seasons would have looked like:

2012

Semi-Final #1: Fiesta #1 Notre Dame #6 Stanford*
Semi-Final #2: Sugar #2 Alabama* #5 Kansas St*
The Rose Bowl Game #4 Oregon** #16 Nebraska**
Orange #12 Florida St* #3 Florida***
Cotton Bowl Classic #11 Oklahoma** #15 Northern Illinois*

*Conference Champion
**Conference Champion Replacement
***”At-Large” Selection

2011

Semi-Final #1: Sugar #1 LSU* #5 Oregon*
Semi-Final #2: Cotton Bowl Classic #3 Oklahoma St* #2 Alabama
The Rose Bowl Game #4 Stanford** #10 Wisconsin*
Fiesta #7 Boise St** #6 Arkansas***
Orange #15 Clemson* #8 Kansas St***

*Conference Champion
**Conference Champion Replacement
***”At-Large” Selection

2010

Semi-Final #1: Sugar #1 Auburn* #3 TCU*
Semi-Final #2: The Rose Bowl Game #2 Oregon* #5 Wisconsin*
Fiesta #10 Boise St* #4 Stanford***
Orange #13 Virginia Tech* #6 Ohio St***
Cotton Bowl Classic #7 Oklahoma* #8 Arkansas***

*Conference Champion
**Conference Champion Replacement
***”At-Large” Selection

2009

Semi-Final #1: Sugar #1 Alabama* #4 TCU*
Semi-Final #2: Cotton Bowl Classic #2 Texas* #3 Cincinnati*
The Rose Bowl Game #7 Oregon* #8 Ohio St*
Fiesta #6 Boise St* #5 Florida***
Orange #9 Georgia Tech* #10 Iowa***

*Conference Champion
**Conference Champion Replacement
***”At-Large” Selection

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