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A 68-team college football playoff for 2017-18 would actually look something like this

FBS and FCS, together in one bracket.

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College football’s top-level tournament is tiny. But what if it weren’t?

Every March, this website posts a 64/68-team football version of the NCAA tournament bracket, based on the previous season’s gridiron results, the kind of thing Mike Leach has been advocating for over a decade.

First, here’s the latest version of that (I’ve taken it upon myself to pick all the games as well), and then an explanation.

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Made with
  • For most seeds, I used Massey Composite rankings, which combine every poll and computer into one number. So don’t blame me for where your team ranks. For the FCS teams who rank amongst FBS teams, I used Sagarin, and for the rest, I used the final FCS top 25.
  • Oh right, of the world’s various What If March Madness Football brackets, this is the one that remembers FCS is actually part of Division I and, therefore, its conference champions would earn autobids to a true version of the NCAA tourney.
  • I plotted everything according to the S-curve, then adjusted a few to avoid round-one same-conference games, but didn’t worry about that in rounds two and onward, like the NCAA does. Life is short.

I didn’t set out to give us the exact same final four teams as the actual Playoff produced, but here we are.

Northwestern loses in round one because no one deserves to watch any more Northwestern than we already had to, Stanford’s out because 2017 Stanford was a random results generator, Florida State becomes the first FBS team to ever beat North Dakota State (that’s not true), Iowa over USC because Iowa already has a transitive 48-point win over USC, and Clemson over Ohio State because Ohio State is physically incapable of scoring on Clemson in a playoff.

Also, Troy over Michigan because (1) Troy already beat a team at least as good as Michigan, and (2) the Wolverines are still cursed by the Onion Man of Tampa.

Yes, that’s Charlie Strong vs. Texas, decided partly by their results against Texas Tech.

Where are all these games happening? Bowls or whatever?

I guess. Let’s do them on campus, and see if we can get away with it.

But how will players have time for all this, with finals and a full schedule an-

It ain’t that serious. It’s not gonna happen.

Who’s your pick to win it all? Bama? Why not pick somebody else?

I didn’t, but it’s too late for me anyway.