Originally written on Crystal Ball Run  |  Last updated 10/23/14
So where do you play the Super Bowl of college football? Does it have to be a warm weather site? In SEC country? How important is it to have a domed stadium. Those questions and many more will be answered between now and Jan. 12, 2015, when the new playoff system starts. So where do you think the championship game should be played? Here is our look at the Top 10 locations. 10. MetLife Stadium (East Rutherford, N.J.) I doubt there will be widespread support for a cold weather site that doesn't have a dome, but if the Super Bowl can be played here why not college football's championship? This would give college football the most coveted media market and that's something all of the university presidents would love. MetLife can hold close to 83,000 fans, and by playing the game in a cold weather location it might keep away some of the corporate types for more real fans who don't care about the temperature once the game starts. 9. Reliant Stadium (Houston, Texas) The Harris County-Houston Sports Authority is an organized and powerful group, but can it really beat out the Dallas/Arlington group that will be backed by Jerry Jones? Don't count them out. Going with Reliant Stadium would be a nice compromise for some folks who don't want the game in SEC nation, won't go north and would like to stick it to Jones. Reliant has played host to a Super Bowl and the Texas Bowl, as well as the home site for the Houston Texans. Reliant can hold a few more than 71,000 and the retractable roof makes it appealing as well. 8. Bank of America Stadium (Charlotte, N.C.) This is my dark horse, but don't count out the possible appeal of going to Charlotte in January. Yes, it could be cold, but it probably won't be "north" cold. Bank of America Stadium is another compromise site that could appeal to SEC folks and it would definitely be appealing to the ACC as it may be the only way any of them see a championship game. With a capacity near 74,000 it is easily big enough to host the event. Now the officials in Charlotte need to get serious about a bid and make a run at this game. 7. Ford Field (Detroit, Mich.) Going to Detroit in the winter may not seem that appealing, but when Ford Field was the host of Super Bowl XL in 2006 it seemed to be a decent hit. You have to ignore the media complaints about going to Detroit. The facility, and the nightlife in Detroit and in nearby Canada were as popular as any Super Bowl site (except for South Beach). Notre Dame AD Jack Swarbrick actually said Chicago's Soldier Field could be a legitimate host. I would say Detroit is a better option because of the dome. It can fit 70,000, which is large enough for a title game. Ford Field has also been a solid host for the Little Caesars Bowl and the Mid-American Conference Championship Game. 6. University of Phoenix Stadium (Glendale, Ariz.) I hate the name and there was all that Fiesta Bowl nonsense (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/andy_staples/03/30/fiesta-bowl-junker/index.html) that just sullies the place, but the University of Phoenix Stadium has a lot to offer. I love the retractable field that allows for natural grass with a dome possible if needed. Phoenix Stadium has hosted the BCS National Championship and one of the greatest Super Bowls ever when the New York Giants upset previously undefeated New England in 2008. Heading to the southwest U.S. in January has to be appealing as well. 5. Sun Life Stadium (Miami Gardens, Fla.) Now this is a good fit for college football's championship. With tradition and respect thrown away by ADs and presidents, why not play the game at a stadium that is now on its seventh name since opening as Joe Robbie Stadium in 1987. Sun Life is a horrible home field for the Miami Hurricanes (I miss the old Orange Bowl), but it has played host to five Super Bowls and that's enough proof that it can handle college football's biggest game. Let's not forget it was also the site of the 2009 BCS National Championship and it served as a great host for capacity crowd of 78,468. 4. Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Ga.) Most college football fans in the south already believe the Georgia Dome hosts the national championship game each year when the SEC title game is played. Organizers of the Chick-fil-A Bowl have it made it pretty clear they want to host the game and are cocky enough to think no one can do it like them. Maybe they are right, but it's tough to believe anyone from outside the SEC would want to play the game in Atlanta. The place holds just a few more than 71,000 and it has hosted some big games, including the 2006 Sugar Bowl when West Virginia upset SEC-champ Georgia. It also was the place for basketball, gymnastics and team handball events during the 1996 Summer Olympics. It is also the home of the NFL's Atlanta Falcons. There's no question this place is going to be a frontrunner. 3. Lucas Oil Stadium (Indianapolis, Ind.) Lucas Oil Stadium is the home of the Indianapolis Colts — as well as Super Bowl XLVI and Big Ten championships — has to be considered a favorite. There is no question that Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany will make every effort to get this game in his backyard as his teams need any and every advantage it can get (especially with SEC foes). Lucas Oil opened in 2008 and has a retractable roof, so just in case the weather is unseasonably warm in January they can play the game with all of the elements. It can hold 70,000, which is large enough for this game. Indianapolis has the right mix of activities and nightlife to be a respected host city as well. 2. Cowboys Stadium (Arlington, Texas) We all know that Dallas Cowboys owner will do about anything to land this game in his $1.1 billion sports colossus. Even before the presidents voted to accept the playoff proposal, there were folks organizing a group to prepare a formal bid. That's Texas style folks. This is another domed stadium with a retractable roof, and it opened in 2009. With a capacity of 110,000 it has to be appealing to the administrators looking to make the biggest buck on this game. Cowboys Stadium has hosted some major events, including Super Bowl XLV, Big 12 championship, Cotton Bowl, major concerts, boxing, and so on. The game would be a first-class event at Cowboys Stadium. However, I will never shake the image of a huge cockroach racing across the Fieldturf (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=OQnwP0v4Lxs) during a Cowboys-Redskins game, so I can't vote for this one. 1. Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.) The Rose Bowl has such history and tradition that it only seems fitting that the first playoff championship is played at such a place. It may be highly unlikely since the Rose Bowl prefers to maintain its own tradition with the Pac-12 and Big Ten, but it is part of the semifinal mix. A reasonable compromise would be to make the Rose Bowl the championship location and allow the other bowls to fight it out for the semifinals. College football has trashed tradition over the past few years so who needs the Rose Bowl deciding who is better between the Pac-12 and Big Ten? The Rose Bowl has hosted Super Bowls and can seat more than 94,000. Who doesn't want to see Alabama and Auburn face off again 2,200 miles from home?
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