With its football team currently on the outside looking in at the College Football Playoffs, Baylor has hired a PR firm to stump for the program among the national media.
According to reports from ESPN, Kevin Sullivan Communications was hired last week to advocate for the Bears' inclusion. The move might be the first of many such moves in the coming years, particularly when several teams have a case for sneaking in to the four-team bracket.
Baylor was ranked seventh in the official College Football Playoff Rankings when they were released last week. Two spots ahead was TCU, whose only loss of the season came against the Bears, 61-58.
Since then, No. 4 Mississippi State was upset by Ole Miss, creating space for a new tentative playoff place-holder one week before the decisive rankings are revealed. When the latest rankings were revealed Tuesday, TCU was third while Baylor was sixth.
"@Jake_Trotter: Sullivan wanted to clarify, firm not campaigning directly to playoff committee. But rather, advocating Baylor to natl media"
— Kevin Sullivan (@KSullie) December 2, 2014
"It is an incredible platform for us to make our case," said Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw in an interview with ESPN. "We would be a Big 12 co-champion with a tiebreaker over TCU. It would give us three top-15-quality wins. We would have the strongest resume among those under consideration."
That's the message Kevin Sullivan Communications will be pushing:
Attn: Baylor fans... This is the beginning of an email the firm Baylor hired has been sending to national media pic.twitter.com/LK8qq2CXtP
— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) December 2, 2014
Sullivan served as White House communications director under George W. Bush and served similar roles with NBC Sports and the Dallas Mavericks.
In the AP Poll, TCU and Baylor have moved into the Nos. 4 and 5 spots, turning the committee's pick into a potential controversy.
From this angle, the College Football Playoff Committee certainly looks a lot like the BCS, doesn't it?