Condi Rice expected on playoff panel


NEW YORK — Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to be part of the selection committee that will pick the teams for the College Football Playoff next year, a person with direct knowledge of the process told The Associated Press.

Former Mississippi and New Orleans Saints quarterback Archie Manning, former Big East Commissioner Mike Tranghese, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Gould, the former Air Force Academy superintendent, and former NCAA executive Tom Jernstedt, who worked with the basketball tournament selection committee, also are expected to be part of the new 12-to-18 member football panel, the person said Friday.

The committee is expected to be comprised of current athletic directors and former college athletic administrators and coaches. The playoff will replace the Bowl Championship Series, which is in its final season after years of criticism and controversy. The committee will select the top four teams to play in national semifinals. The winners will play for the national championship.

BCS executive diretor Bill Hancock declined to confirm the names.

“The process is not finished,” Hancock said. “And we’re in a very good place. When it is finished, we will announce the names of the members.”

The commissioners are scheduled to meet Nov. 11 in Washington, and an official announcement about the committee could come then.

Though she has never worked in college athletics, Rice has made no secret of being a sports fan — college and pro. She frequently attends Stanford athletic events and meets with many of the athletes, including football players being recruited by the school. She’s also been a volunteer coach for the golf team.

The 58-year-old Rice was the national security adviser during President George W. Bush’s first term and became secretary of state in his second term. She is now a professor of political economy at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.

Rice was born in Birmingham, Ala., and spent part of her youth in Tuscaloosa, home to the University of Alabama and its top-ranked Crimson Tide football team.