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.
The person also said Friday that 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, are expected to be part of the new 12-to-18 member football panel.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the selection process is still ongoing.
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.
Rice already has a link to sports — and a green jacket.
Last year, she and business executive Darla Moore became the first two female members of Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters.
Attempts to reach Rice through Stanford University, where she is a professor, were not immediately successful, nor were attempts to reach Jernstedt. Gould declined comment through an Air Force Academy spokesman.
BCS executive director 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 names of several candidates have already been reported, including Southern California athletic director Pat Haden, Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich, Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez, West Virginia athletic director Olive Luck and Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long.
ESPN.com on Friday reported that former Big East Commissioner Mike Tranghese and former Mississippi and New Orleans Saints quarterback Archie Manning was also expected to join the selection committee.
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.
AP Sports Writer Antonio Gonzalez in San Francisco contributed.
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