Time to Expand the College Football Playoff?

The NCAA College Football National Playoff Championship debuted in 2014 and now after five editions of the tournament, expectations for an expanded version of the competition are rising. The tournament, which features four teams currently, could be increased to see more of the NCAA's top 10 college football teams play in the postseason.

Of course, an expanded field would have a number of pros and cons. NCAA football Fans are gearing up for the 2020 College Football Playoff Champions Game. Fans can visit William Hill to wager on the team they believe will win the big game.

Currently, four teams qualify for the College Football playoffs. Although expanding the current playoff format to feature more teams is likely to happen, it isn't going to occur for a few more seasons. So, what are the reasons to expand the playoff format and why should it stay the same?

Pros of expansion

The obvious reason is the love Americans have with college football and the intensity and energy the collegiate game possesses compared to the NFL. College football delivers a completely different emotional feeling to fans and adding additional teams to the playoffs gives more fans the passion of watching their favorite school compete for the national title.

On the field, it is difficult to say that one team is better when they never play each other. Thus, the problem with ranking teams. Is LSU really better than Penn State? They have the same records but one is ranked first and the other fifth. Unless they play each other, we don't know if these teams are truly better or worse than the other. Therefore, adding further places to the playoffs gives fans, coaches, pundits, and players the chance to see just which team is the best of the best.

Minnesota and Baylor are currently undefeated but nowhere near the playoff places in the current college football rankings. It is unfair to the two teams and theoretically, an expanded playoff format could see these teams qualify for the postseason. With the current format, neither is likely to make the postseason.

Cons of expansion

The expansion of the college football playoffs would lead to further games. The number of injuries with the added games could possibly lead to injury especially head trauma issues. The NFL's owners are lobbying for two additional games to the league's regular season. The argument against the added games by the NFL Players' Association is that the added games would cause further bodily harm.

The same argument can be made when it comes to the collegiate game. Let us not forget the players play the game for free while the colleges and coaches reap financial reward.

If the playoffs are expanded, it begs the questions, where does it stop and how many playoff teams are enough? It took the NCAA decades to finally bring in the playoffs into fruition after years of fans and schools begging for it. Regardless of how many additional teams are added to the playoffs -- six, eight, possibly 12 -- there will always be teams unhappy with the format.

The structure of college football does need re-examining, but adding more playoff places may not be the right move to fix it.

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