Report: College Football Playoff to expand by 2026
The College Football Playoff will expand to 12 teams by 2026, according to a report.
ESPN’s Pete Thamel was first to report that news. Thamel noted that expansion could come earlier than 2026, but said it would be “complicated.”
The decision was reportedly made by the College Football Playoff Board of Managers on Friday afternoon.
The 12-team model is expected to start in 2026, after the current contract, according to a source. There's still a chance that it could go earlier, but those details are complicated and would take some time to work out. https://t.co/sRWlmiDvbe
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) September 2, 2022
The decision comes roughly 1 year after college football power brokers tabled expansion following the SEC’s addition of Oklahoma and Texas.
Further details of the expanded playoff — such as automatic qualifier spots — have not been revealed. However, the new playoff is not expected to include automatic bids for conference champions.
Expanding the playoff could prove to be a major win for the ACC. Only 2 ACC programs — Clemson and Florida State — have made the CFP since it began 8 years ago. Last season was the first time the ACC failed to put a team into the semifinals.
The College Football Playoff’s current contract expires after the 2025 season. It was initially a 12-year deal that began with the 2014 College Football Playoff.