SAN FRANCISCO (ABC4 Sports) – The format to determine the Pac-12 Championship Football Game as been changed effective immediately.
Starting in 2022, the two teams with the best conference winning percentages will play for the title, regardless of divisions.
This change would have resulted in a different Pac-12 Football Championship matchup in 5 of the past 11 years.
Utah, which won the Pac-12 title in 2021 over Oregon, still would have made it to the title game last year and in 2019 when it lost to Oregon. But the Utes would not have qualified in 2018 under this new format, as Washington State would have played Washington.
The measure passed with unanimous support from the league’s head football coaches, athletic directors and board of directors.
The current Pac-12 conference football schedule, based upon two divisions, will remain in place for the 2022 season. Scheduling scenarios for seasons beyond 2022 will continue to be reviewed.
“Our goal is to place our two best teams in our Pac-12 Football Championship Game, which we believe will provide our conference with the best opportunity to optimize CFP invitations and ultimately win national championships,” said Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff. “Today’s decision is an important step towards that goal and immediately increases both fan interest in, and the media value of, our Football Championship Game.”
The NCAA Division I Council approved today the deregulation of the current rule that had limited an individual conference’s autonomy to determine their football championship game participants. Based on a motion brought by the Pac-12 and unanimously supported by all FBS conferences, the NCAA’s Football Oversight Committee previously recommended this deregulation to the Division I Council.
|Year||Original FCG Participants||Participants under new system|
|2011||#9 Oregon vs. UCLA||#4 Stanford vs. #9 Oregon|
|2012||#8 Stanford vs. #16 UCLA||#5 Oregon vs. #8 Stanford|
|2013||#7 Stanford vs. #11 Arizona St.||No Change|
|2014||#2 Oregon vs. #7 Arizona||No Change|
|2015||#7 Stanford vs. #20 USC||#7 Stanford vs. #16 Oregon|
|2016||#4 Washington vs. #9 Colorado||No Change|
|2017||#10 USC vs. #12 Stanford||No Change|
|2018||#11 Washington vs. #17 Utah||#11 Washington vs. #13 Washington St.|
|2019||#5 Utah vs. #13 Oregon||No Change|
|2020||#13 USC vs. Washington**||#13 USC vs. #25 Colorado|
|2021||#10 Oregon vs. #17 Utah||No Change|
* CFP rankings used from 2014-21, BCS rankings used from 2011-13
** Washington was unable to play in 2020 FCG and was replaced by Oregon as the second-place team in the North Division.