Former Texas Tech head coach and current Washington State head coach Mike Leach has not been shy about voicing his opinions on expanding the playoff for the college football national championship. Even before the current format was approved over three years ago, Leach was speaking out about how he thinks football should crown a champion in the same way one is crowned in basketball…a 64-team tournament.
Apparently, even after the success of the inaugural College Football Playoff, Leach still thinks the large scale format would work. College Football Talk shared Leach’s comments from when he went through the ESPN car wash.
“I don’t know why you don’t have 64 teams,” the Washington State coach said according to ESPN. “The notion of pinpointing and selecting four perfectly, well that’s not going to happen. That can’t happen effectively. …
“It’s remarkably easy. If you’ve got 64, there wouldn’t be a lot of debate. … It would be indisputable that it was settled on the field and somebody that wins playoff games accordingly deserves to be champion and there’s no debate. It would be great fun to watch — just like it is at all the other levels.”
Okay, Mike. Here’s where your idea probably wouldn’t work all that well. In the FCS, Division II, and Division III, only twenty-four teams make the college football tournament. That is forty, yes forty, less teams than what you are implying the FBS should have.
A 64-team tournament adds six games to the college football season while the College Football Playoff essentially adds just one. This would extend the season well into January and would create conflicts with the height of conference play in college basketball.
In the NCAA Tournament, teams from both Division I-A and I-AA are allowed to compete in the 68-team field. There are twice as many teams for a committee to select from in basketball as there are in football. So that means either the FBS and FCS merge together, creating size problems galore OR you have teams like Arkansas who went 6-6 last season would get in.
Honestly, I am a huge LSU fan and they didn’t deserve to play on the same stage as Ohio State or Oregon last season.
Lastly, we all know upsets happen. Rarely will you see Alabama lose to Troy, but it can happen. A tournament of this size would call for a least a few upsets along the way. So you mean to tell me that your Cougars should be considered on the same level as the Oregon Ducks if they are to pull off an upset, Coach Leach?
I don’t think so.
I agree that an expansion would make things fun and exciting, but at the MOST the FBS should put sixteen teams in. So run along coach. I’m sure you have some linebackers to lock in a closet.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports