Snowman’s Take! CFP Payoff? The Dark Side of College Football!

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 7, 2019; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Clemson Tigers quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) passes against the Alabama Crimson Tide in the second quarter during the 2019 College Football Playoff Championship game at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

A question was posed to me and others. And it was the same thing I have been wondering for a while. Why is it that only certain teams get good treatment when it comes to College Bowl Games? More to the point, why is it that when when it comes to the recently formed College Football Playoff?

After much research and conversation, I the Snowman, along with others have been privy to an answer that seems wrong, but fits. I had Robert Cobb, aka The DawgFather on my show Snowman in the Morning to discuss this and after listening to this, it fits and it’s so true.

The CFP committee does not give two good damns about how a team plays. Nor do they care if it is undefeated, top of their conference, best players, or anything. Instead, can your school and team put asses in the seats? Is your alumni faithful and concentrated in one spot in the country that can bring a following? Tempe, Arizona, hello?

Does your brand get recognition? Is your brand recognized? Can it bring MONEY?

Yes, in case you haven’t figured it out, MONEY?

The College Football Playoff should be renamed the College Football PAYOFF. The money aspect is the bottom line. The one thing that drives which team to where.

Mr. Cobb, provided a great example. He is a very dedicated fan of THE Ohio State University. The Buckeyes have experienced much and recent success in playing in Bowl games out west. In particular Arizona. Why you ask? Because it seems like every time the Bucks don’t get to the playoff, they “happen” to be in Arizona for the Fiesta Bowl – a seven figure payoff for the school by the way. Here’s the kicker, as the distinguished and honorable Mr. Cobb told me, the Buckeye Alumni based in Arizona is the largest chapter. Therefore, they bring a brand, a following, and asses to the seats and to the area. Hell, they’re already planted there so they are going to spend and splurge money in the community anyway and already are, so the Fiesta Bowl is a bonus for them.

But what about teams like Minnesota, Northwestern, Central Florida, Memphis, and others that are truly legit good that have the ability to run the table and stake their claim to the CFP? Well, the same questions apply so the answer is an emphatic no. Remember 2017 with the University of Central Florida? They did what they were supposed to do – BEAT EVERY TEAM ON THEIR SCHEDULE. But because they didn’t play Bama, or LSU, or anyone else, they don’t get a sniff of the CFP. You certainly can’t expect them to travel well, bring an established brand, or bring an established alumni fan base. Or can you? Seems like they checked all of those boxes when they went to Atlanta’s Peach Bowl and walloped Auburn. Don’t let the final score fool you!

How about when Boise State met TCU in the Fiesta Bowl in 2010. 12-0 TCU, 13-0 Boise State. Why wasn’t this the Championship Game? I’ll tell you why, the same reasons listed above – even though University of Phoenix Stadium was sold out, Who brought the most money into the BCS Payoff (Not Playoff Y’all)? Most importantly, who brought the most recognizable BRAND to the Bowl game? It seemed like the general public didn’t think it was a sexy matchup because it did not involve an Ohio State, a Michigan, or a Penn State. A UCLA, a USC, or a host team like Arizona.

There are some points where records and performance by the teams do not matter. Other “intagibles”, if you want to call them as such, matter in the selection of the four teams for the College Football Playoff. Which is why the CFP will NEVER do the right thing and expand. But that’s a subject for another Take.

But for now, that’s Snowman’s Take – What’s yours?


By Brian Snow

A native of Chicago, the Snowman got bit by the broadcast bug while listening to Jim Durham call the Chicago Bulls, Wayne Larrivee call the Chicago Bears, and John Rooney call the Chicago White Sox. He dropped his first call in 1995 and then it was on from there.

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