The NCAA has approved what many people have been calling for, a three year break on the creation of new bowl games. This means that there won't be any new bowls added until 2019 at the earliest, according to CBS Sports.
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The decision comes after three 5-7 teams were placed in bowls last season, and there weren't enough teams to fill all 80 slots for the 40 bowls. The bowl system was declared "broken" after the mountain West Conference played itself.
Austin, Texas, Charleston, South Carolina, and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina were all eying future bowls, but those plans have been put on hold.
“Having 5-7 teams and teams in the same conference playing bowl games kind of skewers the attempt for bowls to reward successful teams,” said Tommy McQueeney, chairman of Charleston's planned Medal of Honor Bowl. “For that reason, just as an individual, I feel the NCAA has done a commendable job of trying to move this forward to something that makes much more sense for their commissioners and their conferences. Having said that, we're the ones probably most disappointed by the decision because we feel like we're well overdue.”
There's a bittersweet tone for Charleston, who has been aiming to get a bowl for some time. The NCAA had a problem with the Confederate flag on the Statehouse grounds, and determined that no bowls could be played there. Now that the flag has been removed, they aren't allowed to petition for one until 2019.
“It's been almost a biblical story of patience,” McQueeney said. “The NCAA was apologetic and said we want you to reapply in 2019 and we'll see what's going on at the time. At that time, they feel like those applications that have the most strength for the public and the conferences would be the ones accepted.”
In 2019, almost every bowl contract will be up for renewal, which means that some can stay and some will go - and some will move to other places. It also likely means that there wil be new bowls added.
The last time there was a three-year moratorium was in 2011, but that one had more to do with financial problems.
The NCAA made new criteria for licensing bowls, and six new bowls were added after the moratorium, including those in Miami; Orlando; Boca Raton, Florida; Montgomery, Alabama; Tucson, Arizona; and the Bahamas.
Last season, a staggering 63% of the Football Bowl Subdivision played in bowl games, up from just 35% in 1997.
The goal is to have less bowls and determine a new way to figure out eligibility.
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They also want to have tighter restrictions on the bowl certification process, making it harder for bowls to get established.