Big Jim Delany strenuously objects to the suggestion that another round of postseason expansion is in the works.
Whether or not these are legitimate depends on perspective – but they’re legitimately held, anyway, by many across the college landscape. Delany likes to describe it as “too much ice cream isn’t good for anybody” – the idea being, eight might be too much of a good thing, with unintended consequences.
… “But we’re just really three years into a 12-year arrangement. It only took about three months to start this discussion (about expanding), and I’m sure I will be viewed as too conservative on this point. But that’s how I feel. That’s how our (Big Ten) members feel. That’s how our coaches feel, that’s how our athletic directors feel and that’s how our presidents feel. So I’m going to reflect that, for sure.”
Oh, for sure, for sure. Just like before.
Of course, it’s worth recalling that the Bowl Championship Series was never, ever going to be scrapped for a playoff, either. For a long while, the commissioners were so resistant to even discussing the possibility, they actually referred to a playoff as “the ‘p-word’”). And then suddenly the BCS was gone. After the 2011 season a playoff was necessary.
LSU and Alabama played in an all-SEC rematch and the conference commissioners suddenly saw the virtue of doubling the access and having a small tournament. So there won’t be an eight-team bracket – until there is.
“There is” depends upon concerns, you know. Like these:
They’re splitting $500 million annually. While the sum would increase if they expanded, it’s unclear by how much (and if part of the increase might be offset, potentially, by other factors; as one example: would conference championship games continue?). There are concerns: more wear and tear on players, more missed class time, a devaluation of the regular season and so on.
They’ll rationalize the latter if there’s enough thrown in the pot. Or, if you prefer the cruder punchline to the old joke, we know what they are and we’re just haggling over the fee.
Really, it might be amusing if they could walk away after recognizing they went too far, but that’s not a road on which you can retrace your steps once the journey has commenced. So enjoy what you’ve got while you can, because at some point in time, Delany will give in to more entertainment. That’s the business he’s in, after all.