Count Clemson coach Dabo Swinney and his Tigers team as opponents of an expanded playoff proposal, which would include the six highest-rated conference champions and six overall offers. Clemson’s 14th-year coach said so in an interview with The Athletic, listing a myriad of reasons for his objection. In short, these were the main points:
“(The players) don’t want to play more games,” Swinney said, “and to be honest with you, I don’t think there are 12 teams that are good enough.”
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It is true that the proposed model could potentially produce a 17-game season for a team that plays in its league game and is ranked lower than fourth. But, assuming Clemson continues to win playoff bids as a top-four team – which the Tigers have done every year of the playoff era, minus the 2014 season – then the new model Would only result in one more game for Swinney and Co. The new model also ensures that any one or two-game losing Clemson team will advance to the playoffs.
His second point could be better defended, at which point it becomes a debate as to whether you prefer the exclusivity of a four-team playoff rather than making sure every playoff-caliber team can make the playoffs, at risk. to include participants of potentially lower quality.
Swinney added that a playoff overtime would result in a worse regular season product – much like NFL teams choosing not to play star players because they are guaranteed playoff spots.
“So you have to play more games just to play more games, and I think the more you extend it, the less important the season becomes.
“Oh, well, you’re in the playoffs, why play Trevor (Lawrence) in this game? You’re already there.”
This is not the first time that Swinney has opposed the playoffs. He said so when college football abandoned the bowl championship series in favor of the four-team model; Clemson has never played a national championship game under the BCS model, but made six playoffs, four places in a championship game and won two national titles under the current model.
“I wasn’t for all four (playoff) teams,” he told The Athletic. “I never quite get it.… I love the college game and I loved it when it was a big deal to be in the top 25, top 15, top 10, to go win the bowl game.”