ESPN Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long has been named the first chairman of the College Football Playoff selection committee.
A news conference will be held Wednesday in Dallas to announce the committee’s members.
ESPN and The Associated Press have identified the other 12 members of the committee as:
• Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez
• Retired Lt. Gen. Michael Gould, a former Air Force Academy superintendent
• USC athletic director Pat Haden
• Former NCAA executive vice president Tom Jernstedt
• West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck
• Former NFL and Ole Miss quarterback Archie Manning
• Former Nebraska coach/athletic director Tom Osborne
• Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich
• Former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
• Former Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese
• Former USA Today reporter Steve Wieberg
• Former Stanford/Notre Dame/Washington coach Tyrone Willingham
The selection committee will choose the four teams that advance to the College Football Playoff beginning after the 2014 regular season, as well as rank and place at-large teams in the noncontract New Year’s Day bowls — the Cotton, Fiesta and Chick-fil-A.
The problem that I have with a few of these selections is the same point that David Pollack brought up and took some flak for on ESPN’s College Gameday last weekend, Condoleezza Rice and General Michael Gould have absolutely zero association with college football in the past, they are clearly smart people but do they really belong on this committee of college football veterans who know the sport inside and out? I personally don’t think so, maybe they wanted to add a few detached observers to give an outside perspective, but I would rather have seen people with experience in the world of college football added to the committee. Do you really believe that Condoleezza Rice and Michael Gould are going to be staying up until hours after midnight to watch USC @ Hawaii (for example), if it has implications on the playoff selection process? I think not, but they can watch a recorded version of the game later on, and make a decision. Do I think that Condoleezza Rice knows the difference between a Triple Option and a Read Option? No I do not. Do I think that Rice is going to watch every team in the country play a few times each year and get a feel for them? I’m guessing no. Do I think that Rice watched a lot of college football during her tenure as Secretary of State? Or Gould was spending his Saturdays watching football while in command of our nation’s troops? I would doubt it. I do not have a lot of issues with the selection committee, I just feel that they should have stuck to people who knows how it feels to win and lose in the world of college football, where every game matters. Fan bases are going to be pissed off every year when one team makes the playoff over another, and members of this committee need to be able to justify themselves, I am not sure that Rice and Gould know how cutthroat the world of college football can be when one team’s fans feel they were unjustly punished by a committee who could be perceived to have an agenda.