The idea of University of Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez serving on the first College Football Playoff selection committee is becoming more plausible.
Alvarez said he’s spoken multiple times with Bill Hancock, the executive director of the CFP, and sent strong signals that he would serve on the new selection committee if asked.
The committee, still undefined in terms of numbers and backgrounds, would be charged with the demanding, high-profile task of picking the four schools that will play for the national championship starting with the 2014 season.
Alvarez is among 100-plus nominees for the committee, which is expected to have 12 to 20 members and include former coaches, athletic directors and administrators. Hancock has indicated that one retired media member could be in the final mix as well.
“I’d have to think about it,’’ Alvarez said this week of his message to Hancock, “but football’s been very good to me and I owe college football. I’d be interested.’’
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Alvarez, who coached the Badgers for 16 seasons before taking over as full-time athletic director in 2006, said his conversations with Hancock came after Alvarez spoke with Big Ten Conference commissioner Jim Delany about the opportunity.
Asked if Delany gave him a nudge in the direction of accepting a committee assignment if offered, Alvarez said: “Jim wouldn’t do that. He wouldn’t tell me that I have to do it.’’
According to the latest reports, one current AD from each of the five power conferences – Atlantic Coast, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and Southeastern Conference – will sit on the committee.
In addition to setting up the national semifinals, the committee will decide which schools will play in the four New Year’s Day bowl games that aren’t hosting the semifinal games.
The first semifinals will be staged at the Rose and Sugar bowls Jan. 1, 2015. The inaugural CFP title game will be held Jan. 12, 2015 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Alvarez, a College Football Hall of Famer who led UW to three Big Ten titles and three Rose Bowl wins from 1990 to 2005, said he’s still waiting to get specifics on the committee.
“There’s nothing finalized,’’ he said. “They didn’t give me a timetable.’’