By RALPH D. RUSSO, Associated Press
How many teams will be allowed to play for the national championship is just one of the many issues being considered by the guys who run the BCS.
When the games will be played is a hot topic, too.
The 11 conference commissioners and Notre Dame's athletic director met Tuesday in Dallas, along with BCS Executive Director Bill Hancock to resume discussing possible changes to college football's postseason.
While there seems to be growing support for creating a four-team playoff to determine a champion, how exactly that would work and when the games would be played remains to be seen.
"It's very clear the commissioners do not want the championship game to be played too late," Hancock said in a telephone interview.
He couldn't define too late, but in the past the BCS title game has been held as late as Jan. 10, and has regularly been played on Jan. 7 or 8 since it was implemented for the 2006 season.
Hancock added the commissioners were "resolute about not having BCS games in the midweek after Jan. 1".
The Sugar, Orange and Fiesta bowls take turns being played after Jan. 1, but ratings and attendance for the weekday games have been sagging.
College football leaders were hoping when they implemented this version of the BCS that playing big bowl games in the middle of the week would give those games a TV stage with little competition. Also, that they would help build excitement leading into the national championship game.
Instead, the season seems to drag on after New Year's Day.
Hancock said part of the 4-hour meeting was spent reviewing final exam schedules for all 120 schools. He said the commissioners would like to avoid playing games from early December to about Dec. 21, when most schools have finals.
The commissioners will meet again on Wednesday, but Hancock doesn't expect them to start whittling down the long list of ideas for how to conduct the postseason yet.
"Sooner or later the group will have to begin to narrow the focus, but I think there will be plenty of time for that," he said.
The commissioners will get together again in March, and another major meeting is scheduled for late April in Miami.
Hancock said he'd be surprised if the work was complete by then.
"I don't want to put a timetable on it because I might get surprised," he said. "But I can definitely say it will be a long and deliberate process."
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