One of college football's most outspoken head coaches has taken the time to fill us in on his playoff thoughts. The great Steve Spurrier had this to say when he was asked about the coming playoff, via Josh Kendall:
Steve Spurrier a fan of four-team playoff. "And I (will) like the eight team when we go to that in about five years."
— Josh Kendall (@JoshatTheState) May 1, 2012
We saw a month ago, when Spurrier was discussing his own team, that even when he is being flip, he can drop serious knowledge. This insight into a playoff is no different; the Old Ball Coach is spot on in his assessment.
Playoffs expand. That's what they do.
Check the addition of wild-card teams to Major League Baseball and the NFL in recent years. Look at college basketball coaches complaining because they were the 66th-best team and deserved a shot, resulting in the current 68-team field.
B/R's Barrett Sallee says no, the expansion does not have to come. He's right; it doesn't have to come. But it most certainly will.
You see, while Sallee and I agree that the playoff should not expand, he has a lot more faith in the mechanisms of the sport than I do. College football, at its core, is a sport that tries to hold true to its roots while bending to appease the public.
The public complaining is how we arrived at the BCS. No more split champions; get No. 1 and No. 2 in the title game to determine "a true champion." Then that system wasn't fair, so it needed to tweak the BCS and add an additional game to include more people in the postseason party.
Now, after this season's All SEC Everything BCS Championship Game, the BCS is officially heading out in 2014. More complaining about it not being fair. More access is needed. Four teams is enough until your team comes in fifth.
We're merely trading out Oklahoma State 2011 for Oregon 2011 in the pecking order. The additions are coming, just like Coach Spurrier mentioned. The man knows his stuff; he understands the climate of the game and where things are heading in the next few years.
Maybe sooner, if the SEC finds a way to put three teams in a four-team playoff and folks whine as hard about that as they did this year's title game.
The playoff doesn't need to expand, and more importantly, it should not expand. Except, it will. And it will expand before we ever get the split that Sallee references in his article.