College Football Playoff format 2023, explained

College Football Playoff. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
College Football Playoff. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /

Here is what you need to know about how the College Football Playoff will shake out for the 2023 season.

With wholesale changes happening to the College Football Playoff, let’s try to get our heads around the formatting for just a bit.

In 2024, college football’s postseason format will change drastically. For the better or worse, that remains to be seen. It will include 12 teams, six of whom will be the highest-ranked conference champions, as well as six other teams getting in as at-large bids.

The New Year’s Six bowls will still be a part of it, but in a slightly different manner. All the while, we will probably end up with the same result, which is roughly two or three teams who can realistically win it all. The only difference is more seats will be allowed at the postseason table.

But before we get to 2024, let’s figure out what all is going down in 2023. Are there any big changes we need to be ready for this season?

College Football Playoff: What is the postseason format for the 2023 season?

For the 10th year in a row, the College Football Playoff will be in its four-team format. This is the final year of the postseason playing out like this. It will still be the four highest-ranked teams deemed by the College Football Playoff Selection Committee on Selection Sunday after Championship Saturday.

Usually, we end up with three or four Power Five champions, but last year we got TCU and Ohio State into the mix, despite the Horned Frogs and the Buckeyes not winning their conferences. The big key here it is the best four teams who will be getting in.

Once the Selection Committee figures out who the four best teams are, No. 1 will face No. 4 and No. 2 will take on No. 3 at predetermined neutral-site locations. The No. 1 seed will get to choose what venue it wants to play at. For the 2023 college season, the two national semifinals are the Rose and Sugar Bowls. Hypothetically, Georgia would go to New Orleans, while USC stays home.

The winner of the two national semifinal games will meet at another predetermined neutral-site location. For the 2023 national championship, the Rose Bowl winner will take on the Sugar Bowl winner at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. Although NRG Stadium is not part of the NY6, we know that Houston will do a fantastic job hosting the national championship because it is an event city.

After a champion is crowned in Houston, we will then turn our attention toward playoff expansion.

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