College Football Playoff Expanding To 12 Teams In 2024
Update, 5:30 p.m.: Patrick Kraft released a statement on the playoff expansion Thursday evening, calling it a “very exciting step.”
“For Penn State, the prospect of hosting a CFP game in Beaver Stadium is thrilling for our fans and impactful for our community. As someone with an appreciation of college football history, being able to keep the quarterfinals and semifinals with the traditional bowls – Cotton, Rose, Peach, Orange, Sugar, Fiesta – is hugely important,” Kraft said. “I look forward to the future of the CFP and Penn State’s participation as we carry on our strong football tradition and compete for national championships.”
Original Story: The four-team era of the College Football Playoff (CFP) will officially be over soon.
The CFP Board of Managers announced Thursday morning that the playoff is expanding to a 12-team model for the 2024-25 season.
The first round will take place the week ending Saturday, December 21, 2024, at either the campus of the higher-seeded team or “another site” picked by that team. The top four teams get a first-round bye and No. 5, No. 6, No. 7, and No. 8 will host No. 12, No. 11, No. 10, and No. 9, respectively.
The 2024 quarterfinal games will be the Fiesta Bowl, Peach Bowl, Rose Bowl, and the Sugar Bowl. The Cotton and Orange Bowls will host the semifinals and the National Championship will be January 20, 2025, in Atlanta. The playoff bowls will continue on a rotating basis for at least the 2024 and 2025 seasons.
“This is a great day for college football,” CFP Board of Managers Chairman Mark Keenum said. “I’m glad we are able to follow through and launch the expanded playoff early. It’s very exciting for schools, alumni and everyone involved.”
The CFP has operated in its current format since 2014. Penn State has never appeared in the playoff, but its current No. 8 ranking would all but guarantee a berth this season had the field expanded to 12 teams sooner.
Penn State Athletics did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the expansion. Former Athletic Director Sandy Barbour said last year that James Franklin was in suppport of expansion. Current Athletic Director Pat Kraft was indifferent about the matter at his opening press conference.
“It doesn’t matter to me,” Kraft said. “I want to be top four. That’s what my goal is. If it expands, that’s great. You have a down year and you’re 12. It’s eventually going to get there.”
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