Pac-12 Adjusts Football Championship Game Format After NCAA Rule Change

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVMay 18, 2022

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - DECEMBER 03: A general view of the PAC-12 logo at midfield before the PAC-12 Football Championship football game between the Oregon Ducks and the Utah Utes at Allegiant Stadium on December 03, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)
Alika Jenner/Getty Images

The Pac-12 is taking steps to make sure its two best teams compete in its conference championship game.

Starting with the 2022 season, the two teams with the highest conference winning percentage will face off for the championship. This news comes after the NCAA loosened its rules on how to determine a conference champion, allowing autonomy to the conferences.

In previous years, the winners of each Pac-12 division would play one another for the title. The Pac-12, which proposed the NCAA rule change, says the new format would have altered the matchup in five of its last 11 title games. 

It's unclear whether any other conferences plan to follow suit at this time. The proposal had full support of other conferences, which are now free to determine their champion how they prefer.

The Pac-12 says it will continue utilizing divisions for at least the 2022 campaign but plans to review its scheduling for future seasons.

"Our goal is to place our two best teams in our Pac-12 Football Championship Game, which we believe will provide our conference with the best opportunity to optimize CFP invitations and ultimately win national championships," Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff said.  "Today's decision is an important step towards that goal and immediately increases both fan interest in, and the media value of, our Football Championship Game."

The Pac-12 has not had a College Football Playoff representative since the 2016-17 season.