Big Ten commissioner raised concerns over CFP's consideration of conference schedules, championships after 2017
In the first three years of the College Football Playoff (2014-16), a Big Ten team made the final four. In 2017, that streak ended when an 11-1 Alabama team was awarded the No. 4 spot over Big Ten champion Ohio State (11-2). (The 2017 Pac-12 champion USC finished No. 8.)
A new report by Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports says that Big Ten commissioner Jim Delaney called for “a review of the College Football Playoff selection protocol last year.”
One issue raised by the Big Ten is that SEC and ACC teams play eight conference games in the regular season while other leagues are playing nine conference games. In 2017, Ohio State’s second loss of the season was No. 4 against conference foe Iowa. The first Buckeyes loss of 2017 came against Oklahoma in Week 2.
Ohio State, of course, has benefitted from two-loss teams being excluded. In 2016, the Buckeyes got a Playoff bid over Big Ten champion Penn State (11-2).
Dodd’s report notes that CFP commissioners took three months to review the selection process last year. At the annual CFP meetings in April, they determined that protocol had been followed in determining the Playoff field (No. 1 Clemson, No. 2 Oklahoma, No. 3 Georgia, No. 4 Alabama).
While expansion continues to sound unlikely, the weight of conference games and conference champions could be one area where change comes to the CFP if commissioners continue to push for change to the selection protocol.