CFP to Expand to 12 Teams

The College Football Playoff will expand to 12 teams after the Board of Managers approved expansion by an unanimous vote on Friday, the group that oversees the postseason system announced.

The expanded format will include the six highest ranked conference champions with the remaining spots in the field to  be made up of at-large selections. The new structure that added eight more spots to the current playoff was approved by unanimous consent of the presidential representatives from each of the 10 FBS conferences and Notre Dame.

Under the new structure, the four highest-rated conference champions by the College Football Playoff committee will receive first round byes. The first round will match the teams ranked from No. 5 through No. 12 in four games  (5 vs. 12, 6 vs. 11, 7 vs. 10 and 8 vs.9)  at the home field of the higher-ranked team.

“There are still quite a few issues that have to be resolved — some very obvious logistical issues that have to be resolved — but our hope is that we can get [the commissioners] to move on this as quickly as it is possible to do so,” said Mississippi State president Mark Keenum, chair of the CFP’s board of managers. “We have asked our commissioners, the management committee, to explore the possibility of us beginning the 12-team playoff format before the 2026 season, in either 2024 or 2025.”

The rankings of the teams will continue to be determined by the CFP selection committee, which will remain largely unchanged.

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