football-fbs flag

NCAA.com | October 24, 2018

When is the 2018-19 College Football Playoff?

Getty Images Alabama-2018-championship

The fifth annual College Football Playoff starts on Saturday, Dec. 29, 2018 with two semifinal games that determine who will face off for the national championship a week later. The CFP National Championship is scheduled for Monday, Jan. 7 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California.

The two semifinals games will be played at the Orange Bowl and Cotton Bowl in Miami, Fla. and Arlington, Texas respectively. The first game will be played at 4 p.m. ET, and the second at 8 p.m. ET, with the order decided closer to the games. Both semifinals will be broadcasted on ESPN.

MORE: 2018-19 bowl schedule and broadcast info | National championship history

The national championship game will kick off at 8 p.m. ET at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California, and will also be available via ESPN.

2019 CFP schedule:
EVENT DATE LOCATION
Selection Day Dec. 2, 2018 | ESPN N/A
Orange Bowl (Semifinals) Dec. 29, 2018 | 4 or 8 p.m. ET, ESPN Miami, Fla.
Cotton Bowl Bowl (Semifinals) Dec. 29, 2018 | 4 or 8 p.m. ET, ESPN Arlington, Tex.
CFP National Championship Jan. 7, 2019 | 8 p.m. ET, ESPN Santa Clara, Ca.

The complete 2018-19 college football bowl season begins Dec. 15 with the Celebration Bowl, being played in last year's championship host city, Atlanta. Click here to see this upcoming year's bowl schedule and TV listings.

Four schools are selected to the postseason College Football Playoff, which has determined the FBS national champion since 2014. A selection committee ranks the programs based on performance in conference play and championship games, strength of schedule and other factors. The first CFP top 25 rankings of 2018 will debut on October 30 and will be updated and released each week until the end of the regular season and conference championships. The final rankings will be released on selection day, Sunday, Dec. 20.

Alabama, Georgia, Oklahoma and Clemson comprised last year's four-team field. In the championship game, Alabama beat Georgia 26-23 in overtime to claim its fifth title since 2009.

RELATED: How the AP preseason football poll predicts the College Football Playoff

Below is the list of previous CFP champions since the Playoff's conception in 2014:

CFP history:
YEAR CHAMPION RUNNER-UP SCORE LOCATION
2017 Alabama Georgia 26-23 (OT) Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, GA.
2016 Clemson Alabama 35-31 AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas
2015 Alabama Clemson 45-40 University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale. Ariz.
2014 Ohio State Oregon 42-20 Raymond James Stadium, Tampa Bay, Fla.