Originally Posted by improbus
My question is, how does this game fit into the new playoff?
To my understanding, it doesn't. It will simply host the top SEC and Big 12 teams that don't make the playoff, similar to how the Rose Bowl has been handled lately. In that respect, one could ask what's the big deal. But the devil in the details is what's making the college football people take notice.
* It appears that far from being mortal enemies over Texas A&M and Missouri, the two leagues are now joining at the hip. One could presume this is because the SEC needs a strong ally to offset the B1G/Pac pairing and the Big 12 needs a strong ally to ensure survival. Either way, the viability of the Big 12 no longer appears to be in question, at least in the short run.
* It signals a shift in conferences' attitudes toward bowl games. This game is not going to be like the others. The leagues will run it, sell it and keep far more of the money generated from it. The host will merely be the venue. This could become the norm faster than you'd think, especially when the BCS contract expires.
* One could extrapolate (and most analysts are) that the SEC, B1G, Pac and Big 12 are consolidating power, and the yet-to-be-decided terms of the playoff -- who gets to be in it, how the money is split up -- are going to be to their liking. Four team playoff... four major conferences... hmmm. Which is bad news for every other conference, and ACC schools in particular are about to find themselves on the wrong side of the power line. They'll technically have access to the playoff as will other schools, just to deter antitrust concerns, but if they're left in the dust in the future with respect to revenue and bowl tie-ins etc., it will be extremely difficult to build and sustain a championship-level program. So the ACC's football-first schools have to seriously ask themselves if they can afford not
to switch conferences given the opportunity.
It makes me think that people already know what is going to happen.
I'd be surprised at this point if they don't, but I'm not an insider so I'm like most people, just reading tea leaves here.