Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, will host the College Football Playoff’s first national championship game on Jan. 12, 2015.
College football’s new playoff system begins during the 2014-15 season, replacing the Bowl Championship Series. The name for the new four-team format was disclosed two days ago and officials meeting in Pasadena, California, yesterday announced the site of the first title game.
The Rose Bowl and the Sugar Bowl will host the first national semifinals on Jan. 1, 2015. The No. 1 team will play the fourth-ranked team, while No. 2 meets No. 3, with the winners advancing to the Monday night championship game.
“The first championship game of the College Football Playoff era is going to be very special, and Cowboys Stadium is a wonderful place to host the first game,” executive director Bill Hancock said in a news release.
Cowboys Stadium, home of the National Football League’s Dallas Cowboys, has been the site of college football’s Cotton Bowl since 2010. The location for the national title game will be up for bid each year, similar to the process for the National Football League’s Super Bowl.
Tampa, Florida, was the only other city to bid for the inaugural College Football Playoff championship game.
Under the new playoff plan, the national semifinals will rotate among six bowl games, meaning there will be two playoff games along with four other major bowls each season. Still to be determined is the makeup of the selection committee that will choose the four participating schools.
A playoff format has been in demand for years by many fans, some lawmakers and even President Barack Obama. Since 1998, college football’s champion has been crowned by the BCS, which uses a formula that incorporates rankings and computer polls to decide the two schools that play for the title.
Walt Disney Co.’s ESPN in November reached a 12-year agreement to carry all of the postseason games tied to the new college football playoff system. The Sports Business Journal has reported that the deal, which runs through 2026, is worth more than $7 billion.