INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — One of the strongest voices in college football doesn’t have a full time job in the industry. Barry Alvarez became a legend because of his playing days at Nebraska, his coaching at Wisconsin, and then his work as Badgers Athletic Director. Now he’s the Special Advisor for Football for the Big Ten Conference.

He says he’s a fan of the decision to add USC and UCLA.

“Those are brand names," Alvarez said. "Those are brand names that we add to the conference, just like we did with Penn State and Nebraska."

Alvarez says that knowing commissioner Kevin Warren, don’t expect the conference to rush into more expansion.

"You keep an open mind, but there's no rush to continue to expand," Alvarez said.

He hopes the Rose Bowl continues to be a premier game.

“I know the Rose Bowl is very valuable, and the tradition of the Rose Bowl is important to our league," Alvarez said. "We'll do whatever we can to keep that relationship."

Alvarez's discussion of expansion wasn't limited to the idea of adding teams to the Big Ten. He also shared thoughts related to the idea of potential growth of the College Football Playoff.

"I was in favor of eight. I can live with 12. Sixteen...I just don't want it to be four anymore," Alvarez, a former CFP selection committee member, said of the number of yearly CFP participants. "I want to get off of four. We need inclusion. I think it'll be better for college football if you have an opportunity for more people to be in it. If you lose a game early in the year, people are throwing their hands up in the air and saying, 'You're out of the CFP.'"

Alvarez says he’s a proponent of name, image, and likeness but wants more oversight.

"I happened to be sitting in with the head coaches in May in our meetings, and how frustrated they were when they're out recruiting and you have someone that's using NIL as an enticement for recruits," Alvarez said. "It puts a coach in a bad situation. Do I do that and make myself vulnerable to be fired for cause? And if I don't do it, I'm gonna lose recruits and I'm gonna get beat and it's gonna be hard to compete."