Wednesday, January 19

College Football Playoff Qualification Schedule, Release Dates and More for the 2021 CFP Selection



The expansion may have been postponed amid conference realignment talks, but the college football tie is stronger than ever and is heading into its eighth season as college football’s premier event.

The Playoff in 2021 returns to something close to normal, a year after the COVID-19 pandemic not only forced the relocation of a semifinal game from its traditional historic venue, but also required half-empty stadiums for the semifinals and the championship game. With that in mind, fans might not mind hosting four teams for a season or so.

Or maybe not.

MORE: How the Proposed 12-Team College Football Playoff Would Work

Regardless of the final format of the Playoffs, there are still important places and dates to know, not only with the bowling but also with the weekly presentations of the 25 best teams. Say what you want about the current playoff format, but you sure know how to build momentum and excitement towards the end of the season.

Sporting News has all the important dates and locations you need to know for 2021:

When are the CFP classifications published?

The first set of college football playoff rankings will be Tuesday, November 2. The qualification schedule for 2021 is as follows:

Date Time (ET)
Tuesday, November 2 7 pm
Tuesday, November 9 9 pm *
Tuesday, November 16 7 pm
Tuesday 23 November 7 pm
Tuesday, November 30 7 pm
Sunday December 5 Noon

* The second set of Playoff rankings will air between games in the Champions Classic.

When is the college football playoff selection shown?

Selection day for the college football playoff is Sunday, December 5, the day after the conference championship weekend concludes. Unlike the five previous rankings performances, the show will last four hours. The top 25 will be unveiled starting with 25 and progressing to No. 1, although the format for revealing the final playoff pairings remains to be seen.

PLUS:

2021 Coaches Poll: FBS Coaches Comment Anonymously On NIL, Transfer Portal, Playoff Expansion And More

Where are the CFP semifinals in 2021?

The eighth year of the Playoff will see the semifinals at the Orange Bowl in Miami Gardens, Florida, and the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas. It will be the third and fourth time those venues (Hard Rock Stadium and AT&T Stadium) have hosted semi-final games, respectively. (The latter hosted the Rose Bowl Game in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions in California. Both games will take place on Dec. 31).

As for which teams play where, that will be decided by the No. 1 overall seed in the Playoff. You will decide to host the 4th seed in either the Orange Bowl or the Cotton Bowl, letting the 2nd and 3rd seeds play in the other.

The other four bowls that make up New Years Day 6 are the Peach, Rose, Sugar, and Fiesta bowls.

College football playoff semifinals

bowl Stadium Date
Orange bowl Hard Rock Stadium (Miami Gardens, Florida) December 31, 2021
Cotton bowl AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Texas) December 31, 2021

New Years Day 6 bowls

bowl Stadium Date
Peach bowl Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Atlanta) December 30, 2021
Flower vase Rose Bowl (Pasadena, California) January 1, 2022
Sugar bowl Caesars Superdome (New Orleans) January 1, 2022
Party Bowl State Farm Stadium (Glendale, Arizona) January 1, 2022

Where is the CFP championship game in 2021?

  • Location: Lucas Oil Stadium (Indianapolis)
  • Weather: 8 pm ET

This year’s College Football Championship game is scheduled for Monday, January 10 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. It will be the first time the championship has been held there.

MORE: An undefeated Cincinnati still won’t be enough for the college football Playoffs selection committee

Team with the lowest ranking in the initial classification to reach the Playoff

A trend has emerged in recent years where teams hoping to reach the knockout must reach a certain threshold by the time the CFP rankings are published for the first time: in each of the last five seasons, the team with the lowest ranking in the first set of ranking has been among the nine best teams. Additionally, four of those five seasons saw said team ranked at least in the top seven.

That’s a far cry from the first two seasons, in which Ohio State and Oklahoma reached the 2014 and 2015 Playoffs with starting rankings of 16 and 15, respectively:

Season Team Initial CFP range
2014 State of ohio sixteen
2015. Oklahoma fifteen
2016 State of ohio 6
2017. Oklahoma 5
2018 Oklahoma 7
2019 Oklahoma 9
2020 State of ohio 4

Who is on the PPC committee?

The CFP committee will have 14 members in 2021. Iowa Athletic Director Gary Barta is chair. The committee includes five new members this year, including Mitch Barnhart, Boo Corrigan, Chris Del Conte, Will Shields and Joe Taylor.

Below is the full list of members for 2021 and their titles:

Member Qualification
Gary Barta (president) Iowa Athletic Director
Mitch Barnhart Kentucky Athletic Director
Tom burman Wyoming Athletic Director
Paola Boivin Arizona State Professor
Rick george Colorado athletic director
Charlie cobb Georgia State Athletic Director
Boo corrigan North Carolina State Athletic Director
Chris Del Conte Texas Athletic Director
Will shields Former Nebraska All-American
Joe Taylor Virginia Union Athletic Director
Todd Stansbury Georgia Tech Athletic Director
Rod west President of Entergy Corporation
John Urschel Former Penn State All-American
Tyrone willingham Former Stanford coach, Notre Dame, Washington




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