Could Jax host college football title game?
Four-team NCAA football playoff format comes into focus
College football is no stranger to Jacksonville, site of the Florida-Georgia game and Gator Bowl, but talk of the sport's biggest game coming to the River City is now on the table.
Jacksonville could host the college football national championship game -- a possibility that is becoming relevant after a proposed four-team playoff plan came into focus earlier this week.
Conference commissioners reached consensus Wednesday on the proposal to be presented to university presidents next week for approval.
If it goes into effect, the change in the format for crowning college football's national champion would begin in the 2014 season.
In the proposed format, the national semifinals will rotate among the four major bowls -- Sugar, Fiesta, Rose and Orange. Those sites are New Orleans, Glendale, Az., Pasadena, Calif., and Miami.
That means every other year those cities will host a semifinal game.
As for the national championship, that will be played at a neutral site through a bidding system, similar to the NFL, according to the proposed plan.
That's where Jacksonville comes into play.
Alan Verlander, executive director of sports and entertainment for the city, spoke Thursday about the chances of the River City hosting a college football national championship.
"The city of Jacksonville, we're going to go after this," Verlander said. "This is an event that needs to be in Jacksonville, Fla. We've proven that we can do it on a big level. We've proven that we can host the Super Bowl. We can host big events, and not just hosting but do them well."
Verlander also mentioned Jacksonville having held NCAA basketball tournament games, putting on the Florida-Georgia football game every year, and playing home to an NFL team.
"Obviously, we do a pretty big one every Sunday with the Jaguars," he said. "We are accustomed to doing big events like this."
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