My proposal for a true national champion!
1. End the regular season one week earlier than we currently do. This would
mean playing the conference championship games on Thanksgiving weekend.
If the networks want ratings, I would think that this would be a good way to
create a new holiday tradition.
2. Following those games, 8 teams are chosen for a national playoff. The 5
conference champions from the "Power 5" conferences would qualify automatically,
then there would be 3 at-large positions. These positions are determined in
the following order:
1) Any "Group of 5" team or independent team with 0 losses qualifies
2) Then, if all spots are not filled, any "Group of 5" conference champion who
has 1 loss may qualify, only if there are no other "Power 5" teams or
independents remaining with 1 loss. Those teams get priority.
3) Then, if all spots are not filled, the selection committee will select the
remaining team(s) from a preference list(similar to College Football Playoff
Top 25 rankings).
The committee would then seed the teams 1-8. The games are played at campus
sites on the first Saturday in December, until 4 teams remain.
3. For 2016, the bracket might look like this (using 2016 CFP standings):
#8 Western Michigan (At-large) at #1 Alabama (SEC champion)
#5 Penn State (Big 10 champion) at #4 Washington (Pac 12 champion)
#6 Michigan (At-large) at #3 Ohio State (At-large)
#7 Oklahoma (Big 12 champion) at #2 Clemson (ACC champion)
4. The remaining 4 teams play each other in 2 New Year's Day bowl games, which
rotate every other year (for example: Rose and Sugar on odd years, Fiesta and
Orange on even years). The other teams go back into the regular bowl pool. So
bowl matchups would be determined after the first Saturday of December.
5. The two winners of the New Year's Day games meet in a "plus-one" national
title game at a pre-determined neutral site (similar to Super Bowl).