ACC coaches want playoff votes
AMELIA ISLAND, Fla. -- ACC coaches are in favor of having the coaches' poll be a part of the criteria used by the selection committee to determine the four teams in the College Football Playoff.
Duke coach David Cutcliffe, serving as league coaches' chair, told ESPN.com on Wednesday during the league's spring meetings that his group also is in favor of having every single coach have a vote in the poll and complete transparency in the voting. They also favor doing away with a preseason poll and releasing their first poll at some point during the season -- much in the way the BCS standings are released.
League coaches also favor the model used by the NCAA basketball selection committee, with either current athletic directors or conference representatives serving on the committee as opposed to retired coaches.
"For the most part, we wanted to see conference representation and institutional representation rotated to some degree," Cutcliffe said. "But the biggest item for us is the criteria of selecting those four teams. We want our coaches' poll to matter. In another sense, all the coaches have a vote on the committee, and we think that's good for the game for the coaches to be good stewards of who's in that national championship picture.
"All of us having a vote, the vote becoming transparent and the vote being conscientiously done. We think we're qualified. We're not watching every game on the East Coast, on the West Coast, but no one else is, either. We see a lot of film of a lot of people. We know who's good, and who's best -- maybe moreso than anybody else is looking at the game."
The one key piece to the College Football Playoff puzzle that remains unresolved is how the selection committee will look, and how they will go about selecting the four teams to make the playoff. Conference commissioners left meetings last month without any clear consensus, though it appears unlikely the committee will feature a representative from all 10 FBS leagues.
Cutliffe said there was no consensus from the coaches on who should serve on the committee, only that they favored having various leagues represented.
The coaches' poll is currently used as part of the the BCS formula, but those with a vote have come under some heavy criticism in the past for their final votes. Some have trended toward favoring their own conferences in their final rankings. Others have pointed out that some coaches do not even do their own voting.
The BCS standings are being eliminated after this season.
"Part of our concern was when you start naming individual coaches, it's so hard to not have bias by coaches that have coached in certain leagues," Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe said. "So the way we looked at it is if we allowed all the coaches to vote in the coaches poll and the coaches poll was looked at as a major contributing factor to the selection process, then all college coaches would have some input into the selection process. We're just throwing things out right now because I don't think anybody has a firm grasp of things.
"Will you have some bias from each coach? Absolutely you will, but through the country if it got balanced out, you'd probably still have a pretty legitimate idea of at least who the coaches though the top-four teams were."
The league coaches are also in favor of remaining at eight league games, a decision made when Notre Dame was added to the schedule as part of its move in other sports to the ACC.
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