With Texas leaving, Big 12 swaps ADs for CFP

Kansas State athletic director Gene Taylor will replace Texas athletic director Chris Del Conte on the College Football Playoff selection committee, the CFP announced Wednesday.

A CFP spokesman told ESPN the Big 12, which has the capacity to name its representative, made the decision to replace Del Conte. Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby has publicly criticized the secretive process that led to his flagship programs leaving for the SEC.

“Given what has occurred,” Bowlsby told ESPN on Wednesday, “we felt we would be better represented by another of our ADs.”

Del Conte was not immediately available for comment.

Taylor, who was nominated by the Big 12 and approved by the 10 FBS commissioners and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick, will serve a three-year term.

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“Gene is well respected and will be an excellent member of the committee,” CFP executive director Bill Hancock said in a statement. “We look forward to welcoming him to the group.”

Taylor has served as Kansas State athletic director since 2017, with the Wildcats reaching three bowl games during his tenure. He previously served as deputy athletic director at Iowa (2014-17) and as North Dakota State AD (2001-14).

“I am grateful to be selected to serve on the CFP Selection Committee, and I look forward to this exciting opportunity,” Taylor said in a statement. “I appreciate the Big 12 nominating me. The committee has a very important job to select the best football teams, and I am thrilled to be a part of this process.”

The CFP selection committee is responsible for selecting the four teams for the playoff and assigning them to semifinal games, as well as ranking the other Top 25 teams.

The other selection committee members are chair Gary Barta (Iowa athletic director), Mitch Barnhart (Kentucky athletic director), Paola Boivin (Arizona State professor), Tom Burman (Wyoming athletic director), Charlie Cobb (Georgia State athletic director), Boo Corrigan (NC State athletic director), Rick George (Colorado athletic director), Will Shields (former All-American offensive lineman at Nebraska), Joe Taylor (Virginia Union vice president for athletics and community wellness), John Urschel (former All-American offensive lineman at Penn State), Rod West (Entergy Corp. group president) and Tyrone Willingham (former coach at Stanford, Notre Dame, Washington).