In an announcement today, the BCS Presidential Oversight committee announced that college football will finally have its playoff system.
The committee endorsed a four-team playoff system, which is scheduled to begin in the 2014 season.
The system will be in place for a minimum of 12 years. The financial specifics are still unclear, but ESPN's Ed Cunningham reported on SportsCenter that he had seen one proposal for a 10-year agreement that would have netted up to $5 billion in additional revenue.
It's safe to assume that the 12-year proposal approved today would lead to even more money.
Questions remain as to how the bowl structure will change and how the money will flow into and out of the bowl games selected to be part of the playoff—some of which are run by non-profit organizations.
One of the main arguments against the creation of a playoff system was that it would have negative effects on student athletes, as the season would be lengthened by at least a week.
The system approved today certainly won't help student athletes because the regular season will still end during finals and the holiday season.
But, in limiting the playoff schedule to four teams, the committee at least minimized the negative effects felt by student athletes. Had they opted for proposals that would have expanded to eight or 16 teams, the effects would have been much worse.
Also unclear is exactly how the seeding will work.
But one thing is for sure: there will be little room to doubt the legitimacy of the national champion in 2014. At worst, folks will be able to complain that the fifth-best team in the BCS was left out of the playoff.
That's a highly preferable alternative to some of the dubious champions in the last few years.
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