Changes on horizon for bowls as CFP expands to 12 teams & More Trending News


A U.S flag is rolled out onto the sphere earlier than the Holiday Bowl NCAA soccer recreation between North Carolina and Oregon Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

College soccer’s bowl season started on Dec. 16, at 11:30 a.m. Eastern, with two .500 teams squaring off in a 15,000-seat stadium within the Bahamas.

UAB’s 24-20 victory in opposition to Miami (Ohio) drew a median of 822,000 viewers to ESPN. It ended up being the least-watched of 39 bowl video games on ESPN’s networks and certainly one of solely two with fewer than 1 million viewers.

For perspective, heading right into a Christmas Day, NBA video games on ESPN, ABC and TNT drew a median of 1.5 million viewers, in accordance to Sports MediaWatch.

There are a variety of bowl video games. It is difficult to argue there are too many.

“We talk to the commissioners, the athletic directors, head football coaches on a regular basis, and there is no indication whatsoever that they want to decrease the number of opportunities for teams to play in bowl games,” mentioned Nick Carparelli, the chief director of Bowl Season.

As school soccer heads towards the debut of an expanded, 12-team playoff in 2024, these concerned with bowls anticipate modifications from scheduling to qualification to perhaps even some kind of compensation to gamers for taking part.

While the College Football Playoff has undoubtedly diminished the significance of bowl video games, they don’t seem to be going away. And an even bigger playoff is likely to be an opportunity for bowl season to reinvent itself.

“I actually think that the expanded playoff could create some needed, helpful separation,” ESPN vp of programming Nick Dawson mentioned. “And I think you can draw a more clear line between, these 11 games are the playoffs and this other pool of games is bowl season.”

Bowl season is now not only a time interval; it is a corporation, rebranded from the previous Football Bowl Association.

Carparelli, a former affiliate commissioner of the Big East and Under Armour government, advocates for bowls and tries manage them in methods they have not been earlier than.

“Every bowl game is different and what the definition of success for one bowl game might be very different from another,” he mentioned.

An even bigger CFP that begins in mid-December will imply rearranging the bowl schedule across the playoff, which can probably require 11 TV home windows with no competitors from different school soccer video games.

Everyone concerned with the CFP has expressed a need to convey the media rights to the expanded format to an open market after the present 12-year take care of ESPN expires in 2025. It could be shocking if a brand new CFP deal did not contain a number of networks.

Conventional knowledge suggests if one other community has rights to the CFP, it will be motivated to purchase the rights to different bowls to assist promote the massive occasion.

“I do expect competition,” Dawson mentioned.

All bowls outdoors the CFP have their very own media rights offers, although ESPN owns and operates 17 postseason video games. At the highest of the bowl meals chain are the so-called New Year’s Six video games, at the moment a part of the College Football Playoff semifinal rotation.

What these video games attempt for is to stay a part of the brand new playoff mannequin, which can embody first-round video games performed on campus. Carparelli has already reached out to convention commissioners who handle the CFP, urging them to take into account much more bowl participation.

The actuality, although, is similar stage of bowl involvement may very well be troublesome to preserve. There have already been calls for extra on-campus video games within the 12-team format and CFP officers have mentioned they’re open to that.

The second tier of bowl video games is usually these performed between Christmas and New Year’s Day. They produced some thrillers this season: Arkansas 55, Kansas 53 within the Liberty Bowl; Oregon 28, North Carolina 27 within the Holiday Bowl; Pittsburgh 37, UCLA 35 within the Sun Bowl.

Notre Dame’s 45-38 victory in opposition to South Carolina within the Gator Bowl and Florida State’s 35-32 win over Oklahoma within the Cheez-it Bowl every drew greater than 5 million viewers for ESPN.

For the bowls on this tier and the non-playoff New Year’s Six video games, among the many greatest issues is opt-outs by prime gamers who’re prioritizing being wholesome for the NFL draft.

An answer may very well be NIL.

Now that school athletes might be compensated for use of their names, photos and likenesses, bowl sponsors may organize to pay taking part gamers for selling their companies. The Cheez-it Bowl signed 4 gamers to an NIL deal that concerned staying in a Cheez-it-themed resort room.

“The bowl system is treading lightly in that area because we really want to take the lead from the conference commissioners on how they want us to handle it,” Carparelli mentioned.

Opt-outs are nearly actually right here to keep, however perhaps Alabama stars Bryce Young and Will Anderson Jr. taking part in within the Sugar Bowl will encourage extra potential first-round draft picks to stick it out by way of the bowl season.

“The way you create value for yourself is to play football,” Alabama coach Nick Saban mentioned.

The third tier of bowl video games principally contains the pre-Christmas video games. The majority of these video games match teams from outdoors the Power Five conferences and embody many owned by ESPN.

Those video games may very well be impacted most if the NCAA customary for bowl eligibility is raised from six to seven victories, which Carparelli mentioned is a chance. He expects every convention to re-assess how a lot bowl entry it wants.

(*12*) Carparelli mentioned. “And anyone who questions the relevance of bowl games, I think just needs to take a deep breath and accept the fact that bowl games don’t have to factor into the national championship equation for them to be meaningful to a lot of people.”

Changes on horizon for bowls as CFP expands to 12 teams

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Changes on horizon for bowls as CFP expands to 12 teams

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Changes on horizon for bowls as CFP expands to 12 teams

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