Rose Bowl signs agreement to hasten CFP expansion to 12 teams: Reports
It was originally expected that the College Football Playoff’s expansion to 12 teams wouldn’t occur until 2026, but it’s becoming very likely it will happen even sooner.
According to multiple reports, the Rose Bowl has amended its current contract, paving the way for a 12-team playoff beginning the 2024 season.
A 2024 expansion had originally been thought of as an outside chance, but the Rose Bowl’s new agreement has made it a reality.
The committee agreed to a 12-team playoff back in September – it has been a four-team playoff since its inception in 2014.
The 12 teams will consist of the six highest-ranked conference champions and six at-large teams, similar to other NCAA tournaments.
The proposal from last year had the four highest-ranked conference champions receiving first-round byes, and the remaining eight teams would play in the first round with games being played at the home fields of higher seeds. The quarterfinals and semifinals would be hosted by existing bowl games. The New Year’s Six have rotated as semifinal games since the CFP’s inception.
Under the current format, the Georgia Bulldogs took down the Alabama Crimson Tide in the 2022 National Championship Game.
Expanding from four to 12 in 2024 and ’25 will require rescheduling semifinals and championship games that already have dates and sites set, plus adding four new first-round games in mid-December to be played on campus sites.
CFP executive director Bill Hancock said in September that CFP officials have spoken to bowl partners and hosts cities that are set to hold semifinals and championship games after the 2024 and ’25 seasons, but they have not been presented definitive new dates.
The current top-four of the CFP are Georgia, Michigan, TCU, and USC. If all four teams win their respective conference title games this weekend, that will likely be the playoff.