College Football Playoff to expand to 12 teams, AP source says

The College Football Playoff would expand from four to 12 teams, with six spots reserved for the highest ranked conference champions, under a proposal that will be considered next week by the league commissioners who manage the postseason system.

A 12-team playoff would include the six highest-ranked conference champions in major college football, plus six at-large selections, a person familiar with announcement told The Associated Press on Thursday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the CFP has not yet released details.

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A full announcement with more details of the plan was expected later Thursday. The Athletic was the first to report a 12-team model was being proposed.

The CFP's surprising disclosure comes a week ahead of the planned presentation by a subgroup of the management committee to the full panel in Chicago on June 17-18.

It’s an important step in a process that has several more to check off before expansion can become a reality.

CFP National Championship Presented by AT&T - Ohio State v Alabama

A general view of the CPF 2021 field logo before the College Football Playoff National Championship football game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Ohio State Buckeyes at Hard Rock Stadium on January 11, 2021 in Miami Gardens, Florida.

The management committee must determine next week whether it will recommend expansion to university presidents who make up the CFP oversight committee. The presidents are scheduled to meet with the management committee in Dallas on June 22.

If the presidents sign off, the next step is determining whether the plan can be implemented and when.