The internet was a BUZZ last week when this news came out. People LOVE playoffs. A lot of people think if some playoff teams is good, then more would certainly be better. As a college football fan I disagree. I think the correct number of playoff teams should be 6 with zero automatic bids for conference champions. I don't like the idea of the college football's regular season value being watered down. I like watching fans absolutely die in November as their conference or national championship hopes get ripped out of their chest. I don't want to lose that
Having said that...I LOVE this proposal as a Notre Dame fan. All the "jOiN a cOnfeREnCe" LOSERS are going to be irate when they realize what this means for the Irish.
First and foremost...this strengthens Notre Dame's ability to remain independent. The most important thing that Notre Dame needs is access to the playoffs. If the NCAA/CFP went to a 6-team format with five power 5 conference Champions receiving automatic bids then ND would run into situations all the time where they'd be competing with a 1-loss power 5 runner-up. ND against the SEC runner up is not a good formula for the Irish in terms of playoff access. 12 teams with 7 at large bids just increases the likelihood that ND will qualify. 12 teams probably incentivizes teams to continue to play a strong non-conference schedule because if you're after one of those at large bids you'll still need to boost that resume nationally. If teams knew they ONLY needed to win their conference to get in then they might be even more inclined to take ND off the schedule and have the non-con schedule be cupcake city.
"BUT CHIEF...Notre Dame can never earn a 1st round bye in this format as an Independent"
That man above is Jack Swarbrick. Happy Jack, some might start calling him if this goes through. He was on the committee that proposed this 12 team playoff format. He sat there quietly as the Conf powers insisted on highest ranked conference champions got that first round bye when hypothetically speaking an undefeated and undisputed #1 ranked Notre Dame team would get the 5th spot. Then you realize that is said scenario Notre Dame would get a home playoff game in December. All the gate revenue from a HOME playoff game AT Notre Dame Stadium. A cold, dark, wet, home game against the lowest playoff qualifier. According to the internet those teams in recent history would have been Coastal Carolina(2020), Memphis(2019), Penn State(2018), UCF(2017), Western Michigan(2016), Houston (2015), and Boise State (2013). A home playoff game against one of those teams…sign me up. A home playoff win for the fans (and recruits) and then a neutral site game in the next round which I believe has been said will be re-seeded so again, in that scenario, ND would play the lowest ranked team still alive. Love that for the Irish.
More playoff games, more playoff access, schedule not impacted, more nationally televised games, more revenue, more everything for Notre Dame. So no, this will NOT make Notre Dame join a conference. It basically ensures that they never will. They'll be playing a national schedule, recruiting coast to coast, and winning in the double digits every year until Nick Saban retires and then ND can finally win that National Championship. Wake up the echoes and tell the haters to suck it because ND is about to be in the playoffs every year now.