The College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship arrives in Arizona this week, and visitors from around the country will descend on the region to take part in the festivities. How to respect the area’s natural wonders and to responsibly deal with the waste generated by the crowds is something the CFP and ESPN, who serves as the Sustainability Sponsor of the College Football Playoff National Championship, takes very seriously. That’s why a comprehensive series of environmental responsibility initiatives has been put in place. Reducing waste, planting trees, using renewable energy, reducing emissions and repurposing materials aren’t just socially responsible – but key ingredients of a plan designed to educate as well as add an additional layer of fun and excitement to the week.

  • A fun and exciting way to illustrate the CFP’s sustainability message will take place Monday, January 11 early on game day. Local universities including Arizona State and University of Arizona are joining the four playoff teams in a unique environmental competition. All four playoff teams (Alabama, Michigan State, Clemson and Oklahoma) are planning to field teams of local alumni to compete in the “Playoff Plant-Off.” This project is part of the overall “greening” of the championship and will leave a permanent green legacy of the event.

This competition pits teams with ten members each in a contest to see which college team can plant ten trees the fastest and most correctly. Local alumni from the four playoff teams are allowed to compete as are the local universities. The event takes place Monday, January 11 at 9 a.m. at Marivue Park in Phoenix (5625 W. Osborn Road). The top two teams receive trophies and the overall winning school receives an urban forestry grant that can be used to plant trees on their home campus or a neighborhood location of their choice. Last year’s urban forestry competition was won by a team from Ohio State. A few days later the Ohio State football team went on to victory in the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship Game.

The Playoff Plant-Off is open to the public, so come out and enjoy a game day activity that benefits the environment!



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