College Football Playoff criteria for 2024-25 season announced

What's required for the Oregon Ducks to make their way back to the College Football Playoffs? The criteria have changed but the bracket has expanded

Jan 1, 2024; Glendale, AZ, USA; Oregon Ducks linebacker Jestin Jacobs (4) celebrates after winning.
Jan 1, 2024; Glendale, AZ, USA; Oregon Ducks linebacker Jestin Jacobs (4) celebrates after winning. / Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

After a tumultuous ending to the 2023-24 season, with Georgia getting knocked out and Florida State being left out of the College Football Playoffs, the CFP Board of Managers has announced new guidelines for the selection committee’s process.

Last season, the Florida State Seminoles were undefeated heading into the selection committee’s final announcement and were also ACC champions.

There was uproar across the nation when the Seminoles were left out of the fine four-team playoffs. Assuming the latest announcement is due, in large part, to avoid similar chaos moving forward, new parameters have been set.

As the CFPs expand from four teams to twelve, the first five seeds will be the highest-ranked conference champions.

The remaining seven seeds will then be the remaining highest-ranked teams in the nation, regardless of conference championship status.

While this still means your team could go undefeated and win its conference title but miss the playoffs, it should dramatically decrease the number of teams who feel unfairly left out. 

The CFP Selection Committee will still determine the rankings so the issue of human opinion is still at play this coming postseason.

When the CFP announced the modifications to the qualifying criteria, they included a brief paragraph describing the bracket for this year’s playoffs:

"“The four highest-ranked conference champions will be seeded one through four and each will receive a first-round bye, while teams seeded five through 12 will play each other in the first round on the home field of the higher-ranked team… No conference will qualify automatically and there will be no limit on the number of participants from a conference.”"

The CFP Board of Managers

Based on the new criteria, the Oregon Ducks would have qualified for the playoffs despite losing the Pac-12 Championship to Washington. 

The easiest way for the Ducks to qualify for the playoffs this coming season will be to win the Big Ten title game. If they fall short of that, they can maintain a top-12 ranking to nearly cement their place in the CFPs.

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