- Brian Bennett, ESPN Staff Writer
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Each of the major conferences have been asked to nominate people for the new College Football Playoff committee. The list from the Big Ten was both lengthy and diverse.
Commissioner Jim Delany told ESPN.com on Friday that the league submitted "dozens" of names after the league office first came up with some and then asked for suggestions from athletic directors and coaches around the conference.
"It was a pretty lengthy list of names to consider, and basically we forwarded all of them," Delany said. "But obviously, some names have more support than others."
Like other commissioners, Delany declined to reveal any names on the list. But he called it a "pretty good cross section."
"We had former media, present ADs, former ADs, former coaches and people in the private sector with good football pedigrees," he said. "They came in all shapes and sizes."
And the list didn't just include a bunch of people with Big Ten ties, Delany said.
"It was a combination," he said. "There are some people outside of our region and some inside it. There are some people from other conferences. Our group, I thought, was pretty universal in their picks. There wasn't just Midwestern, Big Ten ties. We had people from the East, the South, the West Coast and the Plains. So while [the list] came from Big Ten people, the flavor was purely national."
Delany declined to say how many current Big Ten athletic directors volunteered for the role. But he added, "there were more people nominating other people than nominating themselves." Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez has expressed a willingness to serve on the committee, while Ohio State's Gene Smith has joked that he he wouldn't want the headache.
Delany said he hopes the committee will "recruit smart, experienced people with thick skin, lots of integrity and the ability to operate under pressure."
The commissioners will pare down the various lists of names and form the committee in the coming months.
"I think we'll be fine," Delany said. "I'm confident it will come together."
1dSharon Katz, ESPN Stats & Information
3dTom VanHaaren and Erik McKinney