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I haven't really been following CFB so I'm sure my reply is naive but what's the harm in 6 autobids (one for each conference and the top G5 team)? Then you can backfill the remaining 2 or 6 teams if they decide upon a 8 or 12 playoff. Is the worry too many at large bids would go to the SEC under this scenario? Does the SEC not want an autobid for each conference?
Here are the rankings of the Top 12 this year:

1. Alabama - SEC
2. Michigan - Big Ten
3. Georgia - SEC
4. Cincinnati - G5 (will be Big XII)
5. Notre Dame
6. Ohio State - Big Ten
7. Baylor - Big XII
8. Ole Miss
9. Oklahoma State - Big XII
10. Michigan State - Big Ten
11. Utah - Pac-12
12. Pittsburgh - ACC

This year would have worked perfectly. You would have had at least one rep from all 5 P5 leagues, Notre Dame and a G5 team all in the top 12. The SEC & Big Ten would have 2 at-large bids while the Big XII would have had 1. In fact, this is about as perfect as it could have worked in an expanded 12-team playoff.

Now, here are the rankings of the non-P5 teams:

4. Cincy
13. BYU
20. Houston
23. Louisiana
24. San Diego State

Herein lies an issue. Those top 3 G5 teams are all moving on to the Big XII. So, let's look at the expanded playoffs for this season using those teams as Big XII members. Suddenly, you are adding #23 Louisiana to the playoffs. Well, Pitt has to stay in as they would be the highest ranked ACC team. Utah has to stay as the highest Pac-12 team. That would eliminate Mich State as an at-large at the expense of 3 teams ranked below them. That is a significant loss of money for the Big Ten. Other than Boise State, there really isn't another G5 team left that has consistently put forth really good programs on a year in, year out basis.
 

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An 8-team playoff would have had to include Notre Dame thus allowing for just a single at-large bid, which this year would be 3rd ranked Georgia of the SEC. All the teams in the playoff would be ranked among the Top 12, so not too bad. However, put those American teams in the Big XII and suddenly you are including #23 Louisiana instead of #4 Cincy as the G5 rep. It would also move #7 Baylor out and put #4 Cincy in as the Big XII rep.
 

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Last year, under the 12 team format, the PAC 12 wouldn’t have had any team in the playoffs, since Cincinnati and Coastal Carolina were ranked higher than any PAC 12 team, including champion Oregon. You would’ve seen the Bearcats and Chanticleers in.
 

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Last year, the PAC 12 wouldn’t have had any team in the playoffs, since Cincinnati and Coastal Carolina were ranked higher than any PAC 12 team, including champion Oregon. You would’ve seen the Bearcats and Chanticleers in.
We're talking auto bid for the P5, which includes the Pac-12. The Pac-12 will be happy with any expansion scenario that includes auto bids because they are just not very good in football at the moment.
 

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We're talking auto bid for the P5, which includes the Pac-12. The Pac-12 will be happy with any expansion scenario that includes auto bids because they are just not very good in football at the moment.
Yeah, but without the auto bids, just the top six conference champs would be in, no matter who they are. The PAC 12, ACC, and B1G want the autobids, the G5 are saying no. That’s the hang-up.
 

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Even if auto bids are not directly tied to p5 conferences, if the top 6 ranked conference champions get the auto bids, wouldn’t 5 of those 6, most of the time, will end up being p5 champions?

pac12 just have to make sure their champion is ranked higher than most g5 champions. Otherwise with current 4 teams format, they will continue to lose out.
 

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Even if auto bids are not directly tied to p5 conferences, if the top 6 ranked conference champions get the auto bids, wouldn’t 5 of those 6, most of the time, will end up being p5 champions?

pac12 just have to make sure their champion is ranked higher than most g5 champions. Otherwise with current 4 teams format, they will continue to lose out.
Absolutely. And with Cincinnati, Houston, BYU and Central Florida moving to the Big XII, there are far fewer teams in those G5 ranks that could challenge for a playoff spot. Memphis, Boise State, San Diego State, Louisiana, Coastal Carolina and maybe App State would seem to be the programs in recent times that might be able to challenge for a high enough ranking to knock out the Pac-12. But, those programs are currently in only 3 G5 leagues as there doesn't appear to be a program in the MAC or C-USA that is at that level. And yeah, I know that things can change quickly with this transfer portal being the way it is.
 

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Thought this was interesting. The short of it is Portland State struggles in getting athletics to have any sort of attention on campus/community, and with football they play 13 miles away in the league's smallest stadium, plus they have low salaries across the board. The one of the two consultants hired (trigger warning Hartford fans, one is the same one your school used) hired said don't build a new football stadium closer, even though it's clear being this far out hurts them...and the reports indicated that in terms of things like enrollment, branding, revenue that athletics doesn't help the school at all (this should not come as a surprise to anyone who also follows an AE school).

The conclusion of the report is either substantially up the football commitment, drop football and stay in D1, go D2 or D3 (the report doesn't recommend doing this one), or drop sports entirely. The issue is if they dropped football they guarantee getting the boot from the Big Sky, which requires all its full time members to sponsor football. That, and it might be a challenge to join the WAC or Summit with a larger travel budget.
 

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I think it's interesting that schools are starting to hire consulting firms that go beyond the "we're a bunch of former D-I AD's who are going to tell you that sports are great!" operations.

At some point, the non-Power 5 schools are going to need to do a serious, serious study on what exactly the point of intercollegiate athletics is. I think it's a good thing that there are some new voices providing data/feedback, even if it is going to disappoint fans of some particular schools.

The future may really be that 50-60 schools should have big time, essentially minor league pro athletics, and everyone else is a D-3 model where intercollegiate sports are available as an extracurricular to whomever enrolls.
 

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I think it's interesting that schools are starting to hire consulting firms that go beyond the "we're a bunch of former D-I AD's who are going to tell you that sports are great!" operations.

At some point, the non-Power 5 schools are going to need to do a serious, serious study on what exactly the point of intercollegiate athletics is. I think it's a good thing that there are some new voices providing data/feedback, even if it is going to disappoint fans of some particular schools.

The future may really be that 50-60 schools should have big time, essentially minor league pro athletics, and everyone else is a D-3 model where intercollegiate sports are available as an extracurricular to whomever enrolls.
I think the better route for everyone involved is to have real minor leagues where players get paid and are considered professional. The pipe dream of promotion and relegation won't ever happen but would be cool too.
 

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I think it's interesting that schools are starting to hire consulting firms that go beyond the "we're a bunch of former D-I AD's who are going to tell you that sports are great!" operations.

At some point, the non-Power 5 schools are going to need to do a serious, serious study on what exactly the point of intercollegiate athletics is. I think it's a good thing that there are some new voices providing data/feedback, even if it is going to disappoint fans of some particular schools.

The future may really be that 50-60 schools should have big time, essentially minor league pro athletics, and everyone else is a D-3 model where intercollegiate sports are available as an extracurricular to whomever enrolls.
Doesn't D3 recruit and have national championship tournaments though?
 

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Doesn't D3 recruit and have national championship tournaments though?
Yeah, I'm not saying that wouldn't happen, but for the most part the student-athletes at your average D-3 school are not necessarily using the school as basically a pre-professional vocational institute for a future pro career.

My point is more similar to what gocats said- the NFL and to the lesser extent the NBA (changing with the development of the G League) use college sports as a minor league. Absent a dearth of true minor leagues and the restrictive rules that require draftees to be three (the NFL) or one (the NBA) year post high school, a ton of these kids would sign professional contracts right out of high school. There are some schools at the top end who have profited greatly from this (their highly paid coaches and administrators, mainly).

If those top end schools essentially want to be "Minor League Football" for the NFL, let them. But its silly that Akron, or Maine, or Husson, are "playing by the same rules" as these essentially pro operations.

Don't get me wrong, either- this isn't a paean to amateurism. Those kids at Alabama and Georgia should be paid. My point is more, let them be paid. Let them sign NFL deals at 18 if there's a market for them. If they need "finishing" let the Power 5's do that and compensate them for their efforts. Or even better, go to the European model. Decouple the path to being a professional athlete from the education system. Yes, kids have to go to school, but let them head off to their club teams when the bell rings.

That's all pie in the sky and will not happen, but my point remains that it may not make sense for the University of Maine to fly its athletic teams all over the country. It also may make sense. But we should look at the model critically instead of continuing to rubber stamp the millions schools spend on athletics instead of academics.
 

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This is an interesting topic and as fans/followers of a minor D1 league it does cause some self-reflection.

Geography plays as large a role as AD and a school's Board of Trustees' collective egos. Ultimately leadership at a lot of these marginal D1 schools think they are important/want to be important, and see managing D1 sports (and trying to constantly move to higher conferences) as some sort of indicator of their own relevance. In a way it seems like a lot of leadership (big ticket donors/President/AD/Trustees, etc) at all these colleges care more about moving up to a more "prestigious" conference than they care about actually winning and getting to the Tourney.

Thus I have tremendous respect for Hartford's President and Board of Trustees for putting their own egos aside and realizing how much D1 sports actually cost a small, financially-stressed school like Hartford.

Now this is where geography comes into play--from that article it's pretty clear that Portland State's athletics have near-zero community support. That is not true for UVM basketball, or Maine hockey, or UNH football. If you live in the Oregon area and are a college basketball fan... well, there are two Pac-12 teams down the road! I do not think the same pressures on Hartford or Portland State will pressure most AE schools.

As for where college sports fall more broadly I don't think the sky is falling. In America it's pretty clear that people don't want bare-bone European-model universities and would rather pay the higher cost for all the activities/amenities found at American-style universities and athletics falls right into that model. That said, it's lower-cost commuter-oriented schools like Portland State that are more in that low-cost academic-only/non-residential European model. I suspect those would be the schools to drop to D2/D3... and at that point it becomes a question of whether they will continue intercollegiate athletics at any level.
 

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After being designated the flagship SUNY, I would’ve at least thought other conferences would’ve given them two, maybe three more years.
 

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Yeah, I will be extremely disappointed if the flagship designation just results in what was going to happen 8 years ago had it not been for Hofstra’s meddling.
 

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If Stony Brook did join the CAA, combined with Hartford decision to join D-III, America East would be down to 8 members.

I hope that CCSU is the league's next phone call. BTW - We finally announced a new AD today (after 2 years as interim) and he is a great choice. Tom hired Pat Sellers and is well respected among the AD community.
 

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You mean Stony Brook isn't holding out for that Big 10 AAU peer invite or at least the American or MAC?!

At this point, I'd say it's happening. Remember us fondly, you Flagship Princes of New York, you Kings of Long Island.

In addition to that, apparently, the CAA's designs on going to 14 include Hampton, Stony Brook, Monmouth, Howard and Fairfield. My guess is this all happens and is announced as done by more blue checkmarks by next week.

That SoCon map seems like someone just guessing. The only school with any mention of moving leagues from the CAA is Charleston by Matt Brown. William & Mary, I doubt it simply because their alumni base is located north of campus. Elon I don't know, UNCW I suppose could be persuaded with the right offer. The only schools right now the SoCon should target, provided it isn't at risk to lose anyone else are Charleston and Winthrop.

MEAC is pretty much toast if the Howard to CAA goes through. And, my guess is with the Big South badly needing to shore up football (Hampton/Monmouth to CAA, Kennesaw to ASun) it'll invite at least one of , if not all of NC Central, Norfolk State and South Carolina State to have 12-14 (guard against something like Winthrop leaving...replace them with Queen's in Charlotte if that happened) and still keep a tight footprint while having 7 full-time football-playing members or at least making sure they don't fall under the threshold of 6.

Chicago State probably now thinking nah on those MEAC talks too. At least they got the OVC interested as well: Source: MEAC, Chicago State weighing options

As for the AE. No, 8 isn't enough. They'll have to add, but...schools like CCSU, Merrimack and Bryant aren't giving up NEC football. So, what's a solution to that? Joining the MEAC as football only members if it survives? Creating a rebranded league that could petition to get an FCS playoff auto bid? Pioneer League?

Let me just lay out an example scenario to make the "new league" point:

  • Howard goes to CAA as reported
  • Big South invites Norfolk State to replace Hampton
  • CCSU and Merrimack move to AE as schools 9-10
  • NEC replaces CCSU and Merrimack with New Haven and Stonehill (Extra Points said both lookin at D1 move, effectively like for like NEC geo swap, both have football)
  • MEAC adds Chicago State to put itself at 7 all sport members
  • CCSU, Merrimack, Delaware State, Morgan State, NC Central and SC State make 6 teams, can form FCS league and petition for an auto bid.

Is that worth it to any NEC school trying to get into the AE?
 

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A few things to consider:

-Merrimack has a 5-yeat deal with the NEC and is still not D-I eligible. I would think Bryant would be a better fit for the AE, as they are a more mature program and would open a new market in RI. Merrimack does have the Hockey East affiliation, which may be important, but they have a small enrollment and a tiny budget even by NEC standards.

- Central fits the public profile best and would be a nearly identical, if not better replacement than Hartford.

- Bryant is one of the better academic schools in the NEC and has solild athletics.

- However, CCSU, Bryant, and Merrimack all have the "football issue" that might make going the AE difficult without a work around.

- Hampton is in the Big South and joining the CAA has no impact on the MEAC. However, if Howard gets a CAA invite all bets are off.

I could see the NEC snatching up Delaware State and Morgan State. NC Central, SC State, and Norfolk State could easily join the Big South. I don't think anyone wants Coppin State and UMES which would like have to drop down to D-II with other regional HBCUs.

- If the CAA takes both Monmouth and Fairfield, you would think Quinnipiac might have some interest. However, the MAAC offer QU an easier path for NCAA bids in other sports lot and their priorities are hockey, so they may not have great interest. QU could drive the direction of the MAAC and wouldn't have that clout in the AE. Also, QU may be looking to get a CAA invite themselves, who knows what they are doing in Hamden ...
 
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