With the Big Ten recently proposing a 4 team playoff,http://www.thestate.com/2012/02/07/2143 ... ayoff.html
one can speculate as to where this is heading per future expansion/re-alignment if it is adopted in some fashion. It may start with the top 4 in the polls at the end of the regular season, but could turn into each of the "4" top conferences assured of being represented. If such, could see the BiG, SEC, PAC12, and ACC each getting to 16 rather fast--- and not any ole' 16.
All the prominent named schools not in the designated 4 conferences, shall be placed.
The B12 could have their glamour schools absorbed by the bunch; Notre Dame would have to cave and join one of them; and the Big East becomes regulated to the also-rans.
It may take time for all to fall in place; but TV marketing shall drive this. Bowls will still be around for all those missing out on the select playoff.
While the article did not suggest any of these particular implications; the "haves" don't intend to relinquish control.
I'm not totally against the merger of the good ole' boys system with a playoff, since it at least means a 4 team playoff where a team has to win 2 games to be champs. I think it opens the door for eventually getting an 8 team playoff where the top 4 conferences get an autobid, and spots 4-8 are based on the polls, to make it possible for Big east, CUSA, MWC, etc schools to get in. But in time when there is enough pressure.
Got to figure that with the new talk of D1 division (haves vs have nots) it likely means MAC, Sunbelt, WAC will be on the outs. A merged CUSA/MWC and Big East would be in. So really, only CUSA-MWC and BE get screwed initially.
I do think it would be a slam dunk if the autobid for B10, P12, SEC and ACC was 100% contingent on expanding to 16 schools.
Problem is there are not many openings and ideal matches:
Pac-12 (16): easy one: just bite the bullet, bring in Texas, TTech, Oklahoma, OSU.
ACC (16): WVU, Louisville, Army, Navy
SEC (16): Kansas, Kansas St.
Big Ten (16): ACC raid of Boston College and Syracuse, UConn and Rutgers from Big East
Problem of course: not a ton of easy 16 team lineups exist. Best is 12-14 schools with the top 5 conferences with the Big 12 in the mix.