The Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) and the National Football Foundation (NFF) have announced the formation of a new college football poll beginning with the 2014 season.
The poll is officially named the “FWAA-NFF Grantland Rice Super 16″ and is named after the early 20th century sportswriter Grantland Rice. It’s likely that most writers and fans will refer to the poll simply as the “Super 16″ poll.
“We are proud to partner with the FWAA on the launch of the Grantland Rice Super 16 poll,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “Objectivity represents a core value for both our organizations, and we hope that by combining the credibility of both our organizations that we’ll provide a fun reference point for fans to follow during the college football season.”
A total of 36 voters will rank the top 16 teams in the Football Bowl Subdivision each week. The poll will be released each Sunday with the final release this season set for Dec. 7.
Making up the panel of voters will be 26 members from the FWAA and 10 from the NFF. According to the release, the voters will be “current or past writers of national stature” and “will be selected to ensure balanced-geographical representation.”
“We are extremely excited to announce this first poll in conjunction with the National Football Foundation at a time when major college football is ushering in a new era,” said 2014 FWAA President Kirk Bohls. “I can’t think of a better partner in jointly producing the ‘Grantland Rice Super 16’ poll of the best teams in the nation.
“Our poll will include distinguished past presidents of the FWAA as well as outstanding NFF Hall of Famers who have given so much to the game we all love and who hope to bring more insight to college football and enjoyment of this fine game. We feel we can provide a very valuable poll of some of the best-credentialed voters and most knowledgeable, objective college football minds around.”
The “Super 16″ poll will join three other polls in 2014 — AP Poll, Amway Coaches Poll, and Harris Poll. In addition, the computer gurus such as Jeff Sagarin will surely continue to release their own rankings.
But with the College Football Playoff beginning next season, the polls will merely serve as a reference for the Selection Committee. The committee will release their own rankings four times every other week and they will have “flexibility to examine whatever data they believe is relevant to inform their decisions.”