Big XII Unanimously Approves Conference Championship Game Starting in 2017
Late Friday morning, the Big XII Conference voted unanimously to switch from the current format of crowning its football champion to implementing a conference championship game, beginning in the 2017 season.
Since downgrading the number of teams in the conference in 2011, the Big XII has been the only Power 5 conference to not grant two of its teams a chance to play in a conference championship game. This move to a conference championship game could potentially add around $27-$28 million dollars per year for the conference, Big XII commissioner Bob Bowlsby said on Friday.
A large part of the college football world has been of the opinion over the past two seasons that the Big XII champion shouldn't be automatically slated into the College Football Playoff simply because they did not have a conference championship game. In the 2014 season, the conference missed out on getting a team in the College Football Playoff when they claimed co-champions between Baylor and TCU. However, the absence of a championship game benefited Oklahoma last season, all but guaranteeing the Sooners a seat at the table since they wouldn't have the opportunity to lose another game before bowl season.
With the addition of a championship game, the next discussion for the Big XII will be whether they stay at ten teams or if they will expand to 12 or more teams.