Tradition is the foundation of college football, and the city of Pasadena, Calif. is intertwined in its legacy. But the city that hosts the Rose Bowl will play part of establishing the new landscape of the game when it plays host to meetings this week that should establish a better picture of the new-look Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) postseason.
On the docket for BCS officials when meetings kick off on Tuesday are items including the name of the new four-team playoff structure, the site of first national championship game, the three bowls that will join the Orange, Sugar and Rose "contract" bowls in the six-bowl semifinal rotation and possibly the format of the selection committee that will be used to determine the four teams in the playoff, according to Nola.com.
Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas is the odds-on favorite to land the first championship game, but Dennis Dodd over at CBSSports.com reported on Monday that Tampa's Raymond James Stadium is more of a contender for the title game than previously thought.
Tampa's a great city and has the resources to be a wonderful host, but the inaugural playoff title game needs glitz, glamour and the type of stage that screams "big-game atmosphere." There's no bigger stage than the $1.15 billion, 100,000-seat facility playfully known as "Jerry World."
As far as the semifinal sites go, only San Diego, Atlanta, Phoenix/Glendale and Dallas/Arlington submitted bids to join New Orleans, Miami Gardens and Pasadena in the six-team rotation, according to CBSSports.com.
Expect San Diego to be the odd city out.
While the national championship game will be awarded to the highest/best bidder on a year-by-year basis, BCS officials would be crazy not to lock Cowboys Stadium into its rotation, overlook the BCS tradition of the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale (even though not all of it is rosy) or pass on Atlanta—which will be the new home of the College Football Hall of Fame in 2014.
The name could be revealed which will likely draw headlines, but are non-starters to me. The biggest news could be the way that the selection committee is formatted.
ESPN.com reported in February that it will consist of 14-20 members, including one member from each of the FBS conferences. The rest of the participants could include current and former athletic directors, former commissioners and former coaches.
Should former coaches be included in the playoff selection committee?
Transparency is the key.
In a perfect world, people without ties to specific programs and conferences would be ideal; but that's nearly impossible. In order to mitigate perceived biases, committee members should be required—by contract—to maintain a specific level of accountability and transparency.
That can be achieved through a variety of ways, including, but not limited to, appearances on shows dedicated to the new version of the BCS, mandatory blog postings explaining the thought-process when evaluating teams and radio appearances throughout the country.
Transparency shouldn't be optional; it should be mandated and clearly stated beforehand to all members.
It should be an interesting week as the first college football postseason begins to take shape.