Yahoo Sports’ Jason Fitz takes a look at what we’re missing by not having a 12-team College Football Playoff field this season.
JASON FITZ: Well, everybody's still upset about the fact that there are only four teams in this year's College Football Playoff, and it looks like at least five teams were deserving of the opportunity to let it play out on the field. I am here to be a beacon of light because next year, the College Football Playoff expands to 12 teams, which could solve everything. The question is, what would that expansion look like if we had it right now? And the answer? I'm here to tell you, the matchups are spicy.
Now, the playoff committee is still important in this process. For anyone that doesn't know, next year we go to what they call a six and six format. So six automatic bids will go to the highest-ranked conference champions. That one's easy. Then the next six at-large bids will go to the next highest-ranked teams. The top four teams obviously get a first-round bye. So the committee is still going to have a hand in who's the at large and who gets those byes. That's very important.
If you look this year, we know who the byes would go to. Obviously Michigan at one, Washington at two, Texas at three, Alabama at four. So that stays the same this year, and we get it.
But then what happens to the rest of the matchups? They are awesome. You have Oregon taking on Missouri, two explosive teams that want the opportunity to continue playing that would then, the winner of that matchup, get to face Michigan, a team that has, at times, struggled lately to have any offense. That would be a second-round game that would be killer.
On the other side of the bracket, you have Ohio State taking on Ole Miss. Again, explosive teams. The winner of that matchup getting the opportunity to take on Washington.
If you go next up, you've got Georgia taking on Penn State. Massive brands here, and the winner gets the opportunity to take on Texas. Can you imagine a Georgia-Texas second-round game? We would be salivating for it.
And last up, let's call it the battle of the disrespecteds because not only do you get Florida State at number five continuing their playoff journey, which makes us feel good, they would take on in the first round Liberty, another undefeated conference champion that got absolutely zero respect in the conference championship conversation. The winner of that matchup gets to take on Alabama. So if Florida State wins it, then four and five is decided on the field instead of in a conference room.
I spent years hearing from college football fans that the College Football Playoff would actually dull interest in the regular season. But when you see these matchups, you can't look me in the eye and tell me you won't be flocking to your TV to watch every single one of them. This year, while it's all chaos in a four-team playoff format, what we're reminded of is finally we are getting the expansion we need and deserve.