Real men of genius

The newest face in the room, the commissioner of a league that hasn’t had a team in the CFP in five seasons, has a playoff proposal.

The newest Power 5 commissioner has another alternative to the riddle, one he has privately held for weeks and is now making public. An outsider to college sports administration, Kliavkoff enters with a unique approach. The former MGM Resorts executive believes commissioners should focus more on the long-term situation. There is no Playoff structure or contract after the current deal expires.

While unanimity is required to expand the Playoff before the contract ends, unanimity is not necessary to create a Playoff format in a new contract that would begin in 2026.

So what is Kliavkoff’s plan? A “subset” of the CFP Management Committee—the 10 FBS commissioners and Notre Dame’s Jack Swarbrick—would agree on a model and “then others would have the right to join us,” he said.

Is he suggesting the Power 5 create the format?

“You guys can all determine for yourself what subset of those 11 people would have to say, ‘We agree,’ for that to become the College Football Playoff,” Kliavkoff said.

So, it sounds like he’s cool with the Alliance taking its ball and going home, without the SEC and Notre Dame in tow.  How compelling is this?

Bowlsby and Sankey continued their subtle digs at The Alliance, a three-league group of the Pac-12, ACC and Big Ten that formed after the latest realignment wave began. When asked if he’s miffed the Big 12 wasn’t invited to join the trio, Bowlsby shrugged. “I think they’ve got some work to do to demonstrate The Alliance is a force to be reckoned with,” he said.

The Alliance is seen by many as standing in the way of expansion. At least two of its three members have now publicly stated they are against the 12-team model that at least eight others support. The group also includes the three newest conference commissioners, something others have pointed to as a factor in the expansion process.

“We’ve got some new guys who don’t have a whole lot of sense of history. I don’t begrudge them that,” Bowlsby said. “It’s a lot to get up to speed on.”

When Bob Bowlsby is dissing you, it’s probably a sign.

And then there’s the one true thing, the rock upon which playoff expansion is built.

Supporters say these are stirring reminders expansion is needed and it would come with a significant financial windfall. A 12-team expansion in the final two years of the contract would generate an additional $450 million in revenue—some of which would be used for long-term athlete health care and family travel.

More important, though, a 12-team expansion would provide 16 extra postseason opportunities over those two years.

Are these guys so distrustful of each other that they’re prepared to walk away from that?  One can only hope.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs

18 responses to “Real men of genius

  1. mp

    I read that article as well and did not take it as the Alliance would exclude the SEC, rather the SEC and Alliance would get agreement and then everybody else better join in or get left behind.


    • godawgs1701

      What I take away from it is the Alliance is going to make a plan and get enough G5 commissioners on board to force the SEC to go along with their plan.


    • Seeing as those parties are at complete loggerheads over the size of the format and whether P5 champs get auto bids, I’d say you need to rethink your take.

      Kliavkoff wants to try an end run around Sankey and Swarbrick and then hope they change their mind afterwards.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mp

        Maybe so. To be honest, the undertones actually had me read even more into it, like the Power 5 breaking away from D-I completely. No way Kliakoff thinks he can do that without SEC. Clearly my vision of the end state (which is that stratification of football) is coloring my interpretation.


      • Down Island Way

        pac 12 commish acts like he’s at the black jack table debating whether to stay or hit me knowing that the sec commish is the dealer showing ace/king…

        Liked by 1 person

  2. godawgs1701

    This sport needs new leadership. This is beyond ridiculous. In a few short years we’ve gone from it feeling ludicrous that Condoleeza Rice was one of the voices in charge of picking our postseason to me wishing she was running the Pac 12 instead of some casino magnate who probably hadn’t watched a game before last year. If the person flying your plane has no idea how a plane works nor has ever been on a plane, that’s a big problem.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. uga97

    Power 4 and a half.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hogbody Spradlin

    “some of which would be used for long-term athlete health care and family travel.” That could be anywhere from a generous one tenth of one percent to an extravagant one half of one percent.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Where is a post about Stetson/JT? The symphony is ready. Everyone is in their seats. Just waiting on the Senator to take his bow and start conducting.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. ASEF

    Man, talk about misreading a room. Sounds like the P12 found themselves another winner for Commish.


  7. Whoa….let’s see. G5 plus Alliance = 8. SEC + B12 + ND = 3. One group holds 8 team playoff, second sticks to 4. Winner of each meet for TV. Voila! 12 team playoff without voting for one.


  8. sniffer

    Real Men of Genius

    Those were funny commercials. Thanks, Senator, for the reminder

    Liked by 1 person