College Football 2024 Conference Realignment and Playoff Format

by Mike Walsten
The Helmet Co.
College Football Realignment

In 2024, Division 1 college football is undergoing significant conference realignment with major changes across various conferences:

Big Ten Conference: The Big Ten will be the largest conference with 18 teams, including new additions like Oregon, Southern Cal, UCLA, and Washington.

Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC): The ACC will have 17 members, adding Cal, Stanford, and SMU for the 2024 season.

Big 12 Conference: The Big 12 will have 16 teams, welcoming Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, and Utah while losing Oklahoma and Texas to the SEC.

Pac-12 Conference: The Pac-12 is facing significant changes with only Oregon State and Washington State remaining as full members.

SEC: The SEC will include traditional members along with newcomers like Texas and Oklahoma.

American Athletic Conference (AAC): Army will join the AAC in 2024.

Group of 5 Conferences: A total of 62 schools will compete in the Group of 5 conferences in 2024.

Moreover, the College Football Playoff (CFP) is expanding to a 12-team format starting in 2024. This new format will include the six highest-ranked conference champions and six at-large bids, with the top four conference champions receiving a first-round bye to the quarterfinals.


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Mike Walsten is the owner and founder of The Helmet Co. He is also the author of Separated at the Border: A Novel (Myakka Press, 2019), and was profiled in People Magazine June 4, 1990.