It seems that the fcs limits (66 scholarships/roster size 85) work well enough. So we have a proven model that works. The fbs schools should be able to succeed with the same limits. This would provide significant cost savings for schools, particularly the 90 fbs schools that lose money athletically each year. Fans wouldnt notice the difference, networks would not recognize any difference, and it seems financially more prudent with virtually no downside.
Other options would be to cut scholarships to something like 50 for football but let them break them up. This example would provide a savings of 35 scholarships and again, it wouldn’t alter the excitement and quality of college football. It would just mean teams would likely have a smaller stockpile of high quality reserves.
Even with a roster limit of 85 for football that is approximately 4x the number of starters (22). That would equate to a xc roster of 28 and i would argue that very few ncaa d1 xc teams are that large. And, if they are that large many mid distance athletes are included. A decent d1 xc roster could be 15-17 distance runners. Those mid d guys could be dropped from xc rosters and be allowed to train with a coach in the fall which is currently what they are basically doing anyway.
I am not anti football but rather trying to consider how football currently creates more financial problems for athletic programS at most schools. They can be recalibrated and still be successful and also be less of a drag on athletic programs.