Bill Hancock Believes A Group Of 5 Team Can Make The Playoff
The odds of a Mountain West team getting to the playoff are very, very slim.
Bill Hancock has jokes to tell at Mountain West media days
Can we really blame College Football Playoff director Bill Hancock for defending the very thing he is in charge of even though it is heavily favored toward the power conferences?
Hancock is just doing his job but that does not mean when he speaks we can all criticize what he says. The playoff director is at Mountain West media days and during his open media session he discussed the playoff, and that includes him saying that “absolutely” a team from the Group of Five has a chance to make the playoff.
Hancock also went on to say that an unbeaten Mountain West champion would be in the mix for a spot in playoff. The key word there is “mix,” because it will take a special season for any team from a non-power conference to have a chance to make the playoff, and that special season would have to be accompanied by a bit of chaos at the top.
No one is buying what Hancock is selling to the media, but we get it, he is doing his job. His job sucks defending a system that gives virtually no shot at getting into the four-team field. To hear him give false hope to a league that has some quality, and some years elite programs, is tough to take.
Up next is the company line where Hancock said many times, “four’s not going away.” That is referring to the size of the playoff, it is entering its fourth year of a 12-year deal.
Fine, it is at four teams, well that is until money is presented with another comma attached to it, but stop saying teams from a non-power league have shot.
Even if Houston went undefeated last year they probably would have been shut out as well even with wins over Oklahoma and Louisville. Hancock did say that Houston could have made it last year with their non-conference schedule, but until it happens no one should believe this narrative.
That is where it starts if the Mountain West, or any Group of Five team, wants to get into the top four. Schedule your tail off and still go undefeated. Colorado State has the schedule this year as they play Oregon State, Alabama, Colorado and Abilene Christian.
Yeah, there is one FCS game on the schedule but going to SEC country to face the Crimson Tide would wash that away, but there is still the task of beating a Nick Saban coached squad and that is not likely to happen.
This also likely means playing more road games than home because getting a home game against a Power Five team is not exactly easy. Yes, a road win would give that game a boost, but these Group of Five teams need home games for their fans and also to earn much needed money.
Plus, once a G5 teams starts showing they are really good it because that much harder to not just bring quality teams in front of their home crowd, but to schedule any power conference teams at all.
If teams are serious stop scheduling FCS teams and then at least two teams from a Power Five conference, and that probably not enough even with an undefeated team. Some luck is needed as well because those Power Five teams on the schedule need to be good.
Western Michigan played two Big Ten teams in Northwestern and Illinois. The problem was that the the Wildcats finished 7-6 and the Illini won just three games; the other two teams on the Broncos schedule were a bad Sun Belt team and one from the FCS.
Technically every conference has a shot but that is not realistic to believe that. Until a team from outside the Power Five get into the playoff at four teams, no one should buy what Hancock is selling about access.