The prospect of a College Football Playoff expansion to 12 teams is so close, yet so far away.
Power Five conferences have essentially split between the superconference SEC and a new alliance among the Pac-12, ACC and Big Ten. On the outside is the Big XII conference, still trying to recover from the loss of OU and UT without another hand to hold in the Power Five.
As a result of the changing structure in CFB, West Virginia University President E. Gordon Gee no longer appears to be on the side of a 12-team CFP expansion. Gee announced, via WVU’s The Daily Athenaeum, that he will not vote in favor of the potential expansion once it goes to vote in September — seen as a way to keep struggling Big XII programs in the realm of possibility with making the CFP.
Gee spoke with the student newspaper and said the following:
“I am on the College Football Playoff Board of Directors [Managers] and I was a strong advocate for the 12-team playoff. I am now no longer because I think with this changing environment, we want to keep it very narrow and keep it so there is a lot of opportunity to reconfigure what we’re doing in athletics.”
The WVU president believes the vote will get more pushback than has been reported.
“I think it is on life support now,” Gee boldly claimed. “I have one of the votes and I think it nearly needs to be unanimous and I’m not voting for it. I think the Big Ten will not vote for it and the Pac-12 will probably not vote for it either.”
Reported by OutKick College Football Analyst Bobby Carpenter, the three Power Five conferences that formed an alliance have been on board with changing the CFB scheme: “The three commissioners all seemingly want to expand the Playoff, but they want to dictate the terms of who gets in, where games are played, and what the conference caps will be.”
But Gee believes that after all of the change started by the SEC’s growth, faith will be weak on the 12-team Playoff vote: “It’s one of those ideas that I think was very good when there was stability. When there’s instability, the idea becomes less appropriate.”
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela