Scott Van Pelt and Stanford Steve are loving the new College Football Playoff format.

On Tuesday, the CFP officially announced a move to a 5+7 selection format for the new 12-team model. Instead of the previously agreed upon 6+6 format, the Playoff will now award automatic bids to the 5 highest-ranked conference champions and the next 7 highest-ranked teams.

After the announcement, ESPN’s dynamic SportsCenter duo tackled the full late-season football calendar which now includes a loaded slate of NFL and college football action. Stanford Steve admitted this model provides what fans have “always wanted” in the form of on-campus Playoff games.

“That calendar is chock full, but think about it: When you think about on-campus games, what we’ve always wanted. Penn State people, probably getting a White Out. Auburn people, potentially getting teams down on the Plains for War Eagle,” said Steve. “Just everything you could possibly want on a college campus… That’s what I think a lot of these teams have wanted to earn.”

Stanford Steve admitted he wanted quarterfinal matchups to also be on campuses, but he gets why they are not. Still, the new model “is better than the other option” says Steve.

As for the concern that conference championship games might  mean less in the new model, Van Pelt pointed out that the chance to earn a bye late in the season will provide plenty of motivation for teams to win their conference:

“I think it’s interesting to point out: There was curiosity, concern maybe, that conference championship games might now lose their importance. Absolutely not,” claimed Van Pelt. “Because if you’re one of these big boy conferences and you win that, you’re guaranteed a bye.”

“11 days at that point in the season, there’s going to be plenty at stake in those conference championship games,” Steve agreed.

It is a shame the top 4 teams in the new format will not have the chance to play on-campus games in the postseason, but the new model will still present some matchups to remember. We’ll see which teams get the first-ever on-campus Playoff games at the end of the 2024 season in a year that will be one for the ages.