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Notebook: Ferentz addresses playoff changes

BY SETH ROBERTS | JUNE 28, 2012 6:30 AM

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The biggest news of the college football off-season has come and gone, but the acceptance of a four-team playoff is still making waves through the Midwest.

Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz discussed the playoff during a press gathering on Wednesday, hours after he and Athletics Director Gary Barta released a statement on the matter.

"A lot of really smart people have been working on this now for a really long time," Ferentz told reporters. "It's almost anticlimactic because so much has been talked about the last couple weeks."

A selection committee will choose four teams to compete in seeded semifinals within the existing bowl structure, starting in 2014-15; the winners will meet in a national championship game on Jan. 12, 2015.

Details still need to be hammered out, from the way in which teams are selected — arguments could be made for either featuring the four top-ranked teams or the top four conference champions, for example — to the makeup of the selection committee itself.

Ferentz said he would never want to serve on the committee — "No, no, no, no," he said — and that he believes conference commissioners "have the best vantage point" on the national landscape and therefore would make a solid foundation. Coaches, meanwhile, may be the "worst group" to select the national semifinalists, he said.

"In November, all I know is the Big Ten; I've seen those teams on film," Ferentz said. "But for me to comment on how Boise [State] is, or how TCU is, or anybody in the Pac-12, you can't do it because you don't see those teams.

"… All I see during the week is who we're playing, or us. So I'd probably vote for us, right?"

That potential conflict of interest will undoubtedly create controversy similar to the soon-to-be defunct BCS, but Barta said that comes with the territory. And even when questions arise, he said, the playoff is a major upgrade over the current system.

"No matter where we draw the line, there will be controversy remaining," he said in a release. "The next team is always going to feel left out … At the end of the day, if anyone thinks this will solve all controversy, that is not going to go away. We will just have a clearer picture of who will be the national champion."

Alvis 'full-go' after 2011 ACL tear

Junior defensive lineman Dominic Alvis said on Wednesday that he has completely healed from the torn ACL that forced him to miss the final four games of the 2011 campaign and all of the 2012 spring practice.

Alvis, one of a small handful of Hawkeye linemen who will enter the 2012 season with game experience, tore the ligament during Iowa's 24-16 win over then-No. 13 Michigan on Nov. 5. He had surgery to repair the tear a week later.

"I'm full-go, basically [since] after spring ball," he said. "… [I'm] just getting back in shape, getting healthy, getting ready for the fall. [Strength and conditioning] coach [Chris] Doyle is making things hard on us now so it's easier later."


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