Executive Director Bill Hancock on Monday described the 16 years of the Bowl Championship Series as “a golden era for college football.”
“I’m proud of our track record and I’m proud of the BCS,” Hancock said in Newport Beach at the annual awards breakfast of the Football Writers Assn. of America. “It matched No. 1 and 2, enhanced the regular reason, it improved the bowl system and it introduced new schools to top-tier bowl games.”
The BCS ends with Monday night’s title game at the Rose Bowl.
Next year, a four-team playoff will replace the standings formula that has produced the title-game participants since 1998.
Hancock, who is also executive director in the new College Football Playoff, knows the four-team playoff might also be controversial.
Had the 13-member selection committee been in place this year, it would have had to decide among Stanford, Michigan State and Baylor for the fourth playoff spot.
“The sport is so popular that contention will go hand in hand with it,” Hancock said.
Starting next year, the committee will choose and seed the top four teams.
The No. 1 team will be protected, Hancock said.
If you applied this year’s final BCS standings to next year’s semifinals, Florida State would play Michigan State in the Sugar Bowl and No. 2 Auburn and No. 3 Alabama would play in the Rose Bowl.
Hancock said the committee would not manipulate seedings, in that hypothetical, so that Michigan State could play in the Rose Bowl.
“I don’t think so,” Hancock said.
That would require making Michigan State No. 3 and Alabama No. 4.
“If it was a dead-solid tie, they might think of that,” Hancock said.
Hancock said the committee will try to avoid rematches but ultimately said “the integrity of the bracket will trump.”