I believe I detect a note of buyer’s remorse from Mr. Herbstreit.
Kirk Herbstreit says the playoff is redefining what fans view as a successful season. Coaches have less time than ever to find success, and Herbstreit says an 8-team playoff would make it worse.
“I was a guy that thought we’d eventually go to eight,” Herbstreit said on SiriusXM College Sports Nation. “This is the first time I really felt that fans, even maybe players, that there was a focus for 15 weeks for the four.… Then the teams are decided, and it was like fanbases getting frustrated with a 12-1 season or an 11-2 season, ‘Ugh, going to the Rose Bowl, the Fiesta Bowl.’ It’s like, what have we created where fans are so focused on the four, that if their team still has a great year and goes to a Jan. 1, they’re left frustrated?
“Can you imagine, if it was eight, how that would create? Fans call it a meaningless bowl game. I could not disagree with that any more. Any time the Big Ten plays in a bowl game, to me, that’s significant. Any time the SEC and Big Ten play each other, I don’t care if it’s the Outback Bowl or Gator Bowl, I find those matchups interesting and important to the conferences and their pride.
“I’m a little concerned, even at four, that we’re getting to the focus of playoff-or-bust. If it went to eight, I think it would get worse, where the only games that ‘matter’ to people are if you made the playoff. I don’t think that’s healthy for the game of football when the only thing that matters if your team is successful if they make the playoff.”
Well, duh. This is what people like me warned about as the cost for postseason expansion, dude. Once bracket creep starts, the only thing that can stop it is a failure to find more revenues to support it.
At least your network has those nifty selection committee shows to broadcast, though. Which is really the point here.