Note: This piece has been edited, sorry for the confusion when this was first published.
In a press release sent out on September 23, the Mid-American Conference announced that it is among the conferences eligible for the College Football Playoff.
All MAC programs will join every FBS team in college football with equal access to the playoff based upon its performance. No team will qualify automatically.
The CFB Playoff Selection Committee will select teams to a 4-team playoff based on "body of work, strength of schedule, head-to-head results, comparison of results against common opponents, championships won and other factors." This season, the two semifinal games will be played at the Sugar Bowl and the Rose Bowl. Those as well as the four premier bowl games (Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Cotton Bowl, Peach Bowl) will all be played on New Years Eve and New Years Day. The National Championship will be played in Arlington, Texas on January 12.
One of the Group of 5 schools will be eligible to play at least one of the premier bowl games.
The highest ranked program by the Selection Committee from either the MAC, American Athletic, Conference USA, Mountain West or Sun Belt Conferences will play annually in one of the premier bowl games.
This year, the highest rated MAC team would likely be the Northern Illinois Huskies. Although the Huskies were blown out by Arkansas last week, Northern Illinois has looked like the best team in the MAC so far this season. Although with that loss and the rest of the MAC relatively underwhelming, it isn't likely that anyone from the MAC makes the playoff this year.
However, if a team like the Jordan Lynch-led Northern Illinois from last year or the 2012 Ohio Bobcats (before that ugly loss to the Miami RedHawks on Halloween, of course) could potentially make it into the playoff with an undefeated record and the right circumstances.