The Big 12 was about to achieve something.
At this week’s meeting to discuss various issues, including the NIL, the NCAA’s Oversight Committee recommended removing section formatting required for conferences with 12 or more teams. This provision will allow the conferences to pit the top two teams of the regular season against each other in a conference championship match. It will help conferences avoid what happened in the 2021 season in the Big Ten.
Because of the divisions’ coordination, the Big 10 Championship game came out at number 3 in Michigan and number 12 in Iowa. While Iowa State was a deserving team, winning the Big 10 West, I left Ohio State’s #7 home to watch. While it would have hurt the Big Ten’s chances of getting someone in the playoff if the Buckeyes’ loss had given Michigan a second loss, in other years playing Michigan and Ohio State twice could provide a path for both teams to make College Football hem. Similar to what we saw at the SEC last season.
Alabama lost once in an SEC Championship match and handed 1st-ranked Georgia their first defeat of the season. The two highly-rated teams were sitting there with one loss, and both were accepted into the college football game. Although it was played in a divisional format, removing divisions can allow a team to recover a loss earlier in the season from a squad enemy.
If Ohio State had only suffered one loss to Michigan and managed to make up for the loss in the Big Ten title game, there could have been a situation where both teams made the college football game.
Removing the championship game’s guardrails is uncontroversial and potentially rubber-sealed, giving conferences additional flexibility in approving new ways to crown a champion. More importantly, the change will allow conferences to remove divisions, an idea that has grown in popularity in recent years. – Sheehan Jiraj, CBS Sports
The Big 12 haven’t had teams since the last wave of reorganization that saw Texas A&M, Missouri, Colorado and Nebraska go by. It had its problems when there was no championship match, such as the season in which TCU and Baylor ended in a draw at the top of the conference and the Big 12 team was crowned co-champions. He kept both teams out of College Football Playoff.
Since the replay of the conference title game, the Big 12 has been a fun race during the conference season. The race for the Big 12 title ended in the final week of the season, creating even more intrigue for the league.
The Big 12 looks set to head into a 14-team league in 2023 before Texas and Oklahoma move to the SEC. Allowing conferences to remain unsplit makes a lot of sense for a conference that will have to figure out scheduling with a team in Orlando, Florida, and one in Provo, Utah.
When the Sooners and Longhorns move to the SEC, creating a 16-team conference, removing the division’s format could create some exciting scheduling options and make the race for the title game even more interesting.
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