The College Football Playoff Is Moving To 12 Teams: Good or Bad?

Noah Dunlap
4 min readSep 7, 2022

After years of discussion and debate, we now know for sure that the College Football is expanding from its current four team format to 12 teams, starting in 2026, even though the powers that be want it implemented by 2024. So the biggest question now is whether this is going to prove to be a positive move for everyone involved.

So let’s talk.

On the one hand, clearly this opens the door for massive TV rights deals that are going to come about because of the expansion, with room for more exposure, as it’s almost certainly going to have to encompass multiple networks. This means more money for everyone involved (except the players, currently), which I guess you could say is probably a good thing.

Now, there’s an argument to be made that players should potentially get a piece of the new television deals that come about because of this, and I think that’s 100% correct. For instance, we’re not talking about paying players during the year, you could simply look at this as a bonus and incentive, that, grand scheme of things, would barely cost anyone anything.

One rumored number being floated is that a new TV deal could pull upwards of $2 billion annually. So, think about it, if you give every player that makes the Playoff $20k as a bonus, with 12 teams at roughly 100 players or so, we’re talking $24 million or so each year going towards players.

For reference, $24 million out of a $2 billion deal is 0.012% of the overall deal.

At that rate, why not give each player on the National Champion-winning team an additional bonus, call it $50k. That only pushes your total to $29-$30 million, which would only be 0.015% of the television deal.

If we can’t agree to give the players some piece of the pie that comes from them having to play a few additional games, then we’re already screwed.

Now, the other side of the equation is whether this is good from a competition standpoint, and that has a bit of a trickier answer. Sure, it means more games, but at this point in time, is the sport diverse enough to need a 12-team playoff?

If we were lucky enough to get close games, then of course this would absolutely worth the expansion. The…

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Noah Dunlap

Avid Sports Fan. Host of the “Noah’s Ark of Sports” podcast. Ole Miss '20