FanPost

Re-alignment and playoffs


Following up on the insanity from last night, here are my thoughts on how to organize D1-A football. Return to sixteen 8-team geographical conferences and have an orderly playoff. This can be done while maintaining historical rivalries and promoting exciting non-conference games because of the reduced league season and because non-conference losses do not affect qualification for the playoffs.

Is anyone happy with the re-alignment money grab? I didn't think so. Let's go back to smaller leagues that make geographic sense and allow for balanced schedules. Eight-team conferences are pretty much ideal because they give us exactly sixteen leagues, perfect for a playoff. Also, even numbers make scheduling easier. The western teams get 7-team conferences because teams are spread so thin between the CA border and the Front Range.


Mid-Atlantic

Dixie

Miss Delta

WLOCP

Red River

Breadbasket

Southwest

Duke

GT

Aub

FL At

A&M

IA St

UCLA

Mary

Kentucky

Bama

Fl Int

Baylor

Iowa

USC

Navy

Louisville

LSU

UCF

OK

Kansas

AZ

NCSU

SC

Miss

USF

OK St

KSU

ASU

UNC

VT

Miss St

FSU

Tex

Mizz

Hawaii

UVA

WVU

Tenn

Miami

Tex Tech

Nebr

SDSU

Wake

E Car

Vandy

UGA

Tulsa

Minn

Fresno

Temple

Clemson

UAB

FLA

Ark

North IL

Pacific

Rockies

Western

Great Lakes

Eastern

Stars-n-bars

Tejas

Ohio Valley

Mideast

Cal

Colo

Nevada

Ill

Army

LA tech

No Tex

Ball St

Akron

CSUSJ

CSU

UNLV

Indiana

BC

LA-Lafay

Rice

Bowling

Buffalo

Ore

NewMex

Utah

Mich

Oh St

LA-Monroe

SMU

Cinn

CMU

OreSt

NM st

Utah St.

Mich St

Penn St

S Bama

Tex St.

Miami U

EMU

Stan

UTEP

Boise

ND

Pitt

Ark St

UTSA

Mid Tenn

Kent St

Wash

WY

BYU

NW

Syr

So Miss

TCU

W Mich

Marshall

WSU

AFA

ID

Purdue

Uconn

Memp

Houston

Ohio

Toledo

Wisco

Umass

Troy

Tulane

W Kent

Rutgers

Addendum: 64 team realignment

WEST
SOUTH
NORTH
EAST
Wash Boise OK Auburn Illinois BC UNC Clemson
WSU BYU OK St Bama Indiana Pitt NCSU Fla
Ore AZ Tex LSU Iowa PSU Duke FSU
OreSt AZ St. A&M Miss Iowa St. Syr UVA GA Tech
Cal Colo Ark Miss St Minnesota Ohio St. VT Kent
Stan Nebr TCU Tenn N'Western Michigan Mary Miami
USC Kansas Tex Tech Tulane Purdue Michigan St. WVU SC
UCLA KSU Mizzou Vandy Wisco ND Wake UGA

Notes:

No more independents. ND keeps its Big Ten games and has room on the schedule for SC, Stan, and Navy.

Ohio-Michigan is now non-conference, as it was in the beginning. Could swap Indiana and OSU and it would make a solid hoops conference, but Boston-Bloomington wouldn't exactly be geographically tight.

I also made the Minny-Wisco game, which is the oldest in the land, non-con. I would not object to switching ILL and Minny.

This anticipates Pitt and Syracuse becoming relevant in football again.

ACC is now effectively basketball only.

But what about basketball-only schools in football conferences? I re-aligned those, too. Appendix not included for space and relevance reasons.

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Let's give each team a 11 week schedule, plus one bye. That means post-season starts thanksgiving weekend. How should we work playoffs? I think the sixteen conference champions, and only the conference champions should make it in. Yes, this means every year 3-4 patsies get in. We could make an exception that in the case of a 3-way circular firing squad tie atop a league, then The Committee could select an additional team from that league and ding a lesser conference champion is they have N or more losses. But remember: a few patsies are good in that they protect the higher seeds.

How does seeding work? I'd do it like in tennis, where the tournaments aren't 1-16, 3-14, etc. It'l be top half of the daw vs bottom half, with pairings chosen each round to optimize travel convenience.

WRINKLE: if two conferences want to form a 16-team superleague for the $TEXAS, then they can. But only if they keep the round-robin format with inter-divisional games counting only as tiebreakers. (So they're basically two separate leagues with a mutual scheduling agreement.) Their championship game would replace one 1st round playoff game. Conceivably, two top-5 teams could then meet in the 1st round, which would suck for them. On the other hand, $TEXAS.

1st round played Friday-Saturday while america recovers from Turkey overdosing. Higher seed gets home field. TV and gate split 50-50. Home team gets most, but not all, of concessions, etc.

Play the 2nd round the following week. Same rules apply.

Semis played the following week, because OMG FINALS! Also, allows teams to make plans for New Years bowl games with several weeks lead time. Venue? Maybe at home for higher seed, maybe at neutral site. I prefer home because the local team should be able to open presents in the morning and still be within a couple hours drive for an afternoon kickoff.

Title game played NYD as COTG intended (Maybe Jan 2). And teams that lost in earlier rounds can still play bowl games.

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I welcome your comments. Thanks for reading!

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