The entire college football universe spent the weekend and first part of this week in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for the inaugural College Football Playoff championship. Everyone, that is, except the game's coaches.
The new system is a paradigm shift for the game, and places the AFCA convention, which got underway Sunday in Louisville and wraps up Wednesday, in direct conflict. There aren't many options for the AFCA. Moving a week forward creates conflict for more coaches, and moving backward isn't an option with the recruiting calendar opening next week.
This year's convention has been well-attended, with many sessions taking place before standing room only-crowds, including Bret Bielema's address to more than 4,000 coaches on Monday. But it creates a sticky conundrum for the game's more high-profile coaches; many opted attend the game in North Texas or join ESPN's coverage in Bristol, including Gus Malzahn, the man originally slated to speak in Bielema's slot on Monday.
With that in mind, FootballScoop spoke with multiple AFCA officials and was told there are no plans to pair future conventions with the College Football Playoff championship. The National Association of Basketball Coaches marries its annual convention with the Final Four, and will do the same this spring in Indianapolis.
The AFCA convention is scheduled out through 2021. The AFCA convention and Playoff will not cross paths in 2016 (San Antonio for AFCA, Phoenix for the College Football Playoff) or 2017 (Nashville, Tampa) and, with the exception of Indianapolis in 2019, future convention sites are not viewed as likely potential candidates to land future championship games. (The Playoff is expected to announce host cities for 2018-20 championship games in the fall.)
Further, AFCA officials told FootballScoop that the organization's leadership would be unlikely to mix its education-focused convention with the hoopla that accompanies the national championship game.
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.