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2008 Bowl Bubble #3

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ACC

 

Bowl Tie-ins: BCS/Orange, Chick-Fil-A, Gator, Champs Sports, Music City, Meineke Car Care, Emerald, Humanitarian, EagleBank

 

Locks: Boston College, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Miami, North Carolina, Virginia Tech

 

Bowl Eligible: Wake Forest

 

Bubble Teams: Clemson, N.C. State, Virginia

 

We finally had a team be eliminated for bowl consideration this week, that being Duke. N.C. State stayed alive with a stunning blowout win over North Carolina and they finish with a home game against Miami on Saturday. I misspoke last week I said the winner of the Clemson/Virginia game would become bowl eligible. Clemson actually needed two wins since they've played two I-AA teams this year and you can only count one of those games towards bowl eligibility. Their last game will be at home against South Carolina. Wake Forest could be in trouble if they don't beat Vanderbilt this week to pick up win #7 and if there ends up being more eligible teams than bids for this conference, they likely will have to go hunting for an at large bid which could be tough with a 6-6 record.

 

Notre Dame

 

Bowl Tie-ins: Cotton, Gator, Sun

 

Wow, don't think anyone anticipated them losing to Syracuse. This puts the USC game as almost a must win for the Irish or they could be staying home for bowl season. You can forget about the Gator Bowl if they finish 6-6 but the Sun Bowl would still be possible. Remember they are considered a Big East team when it comes to bowl selections and the rule is bowls must invite 7+ win teams over 6 win teams if there are not enough available slots in a conference. The Big East has six bids and currently four teams with 7+ wins. If Rutgers and South Florida pickup win #7 that would fill of the Big East slots and Notre Dame would have no where to go except hope for an at large bid although the same 7+ win rule applies for at large bids as well.

 

Big East

 

Bowl Tie-ins: BCS, Gator/Sun, Meineke Car Care, International, Papajohns.com, St. Petersburg

 

Locks: Cincinnati, Connecticut, Pittsburgh, West Virginia

 

Bowl Eligible: Rutgers, South Florida

 

Bubble Teams: Louisville

 

So with Notre Dame's bowl hopes in doubt, the Big East might get to keep all six of their bids. Very big game for USF against UConn tonight to get that all important win #7 because the following week they are at West Virginia. Louisville's season will be on the line in two weeks at Rutgers.

 

Big Ten

 

Bowl Tie-ins: BCS/Rose (two bids?), Capital One, Outback, Alamo, Champs Sports, Insight, Motor City

 

Locks: Iowa, Michigan State, Minnesota, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin

 

I was a bit presumptuous last week in stating that if Ohio State won they were on their way to a BCS bowl and the reason is because of what is happening in the Pac-10. Oregon State is one win away from getting the Rose Bowl bid which would put USC into the at large pool and the Fiesta Bowl would likely jump all over them. That would send Ohio State off to the Capital One Bowl. It then remains to be seen if the Motor City Bowl will be an open bid or not.

 

Big XII

 

Bowl Tie-ins: BCS/Fiesta (two bids), Cotton, Holiday, Gator/Sun, Alamo, Insight, Independence, Texas

 

Locks: Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas, Texas Tech

 

Bubble Teams: Colorado

 

There are no changes in this conference. Again Colorado must beat Nebraska on Friday to keep their season going or then the Independence Bowl becomes an open bid.

 

Conference USA

 

Bowl Tie-ins: Liberty, GMAC, Texas, Armed Forces, New Orleans, St. Petersburg

 

Locks: East Carolina, Houston, Rice, Tulsa

 

Bubble Teams: Memphis, Southern Miss, UTEP

 

Marshall was eliminated yesterday with a loss to Rice. Of the three bubble teams, UTEP has the longest odds as they finish the season at East Carolina. Memphis and Southern Miss play conference bottom feeders Tulane and SMU respectively.

 

MAC

 

Bowl Tie-ins: Motor City, GMAC, International

 

Locks: Ball State

 

Bowl Eligible: Buffalo, Central Michigan, Northern Illinois, Western Michigan

 

Bubble Teams: Akron, Bowling Green

 

I can now safely call Ball State a lock after they beat CMU on Wednesday thus eliminating any chance that they will have to rely on an at large bid. CMU and WMU may have to sweat a little because Buffalo will be attractive to the International Bowl.

 

Mountain West

 

Bowl Tie-ins: BCS, Las Vegas, Poinsettia, Armed Forces, New Mexico

 

Locks: Air Force, BYU, Colorado State, TCU, Utah

 

Utah is on their way to the BCS now so the conference will get five bids. I was probably the only one watching UNLV last night blow their chance at their first bowl bid in eight years as they were stunned by lowly San Diego State and their season is now over. UNLV's loss ends up being Colorado State's gain as they became bowl eligible with a win over Wyoming.

 

Pac-10

 

Bowl Tie-ins: BCS/Rose (two bids?), Holiday, Sun, Emerald, Las Vegas, Hawaii, Poinsettia

 

Locks: Arizona, California, Oregon, Oregon State, USC

 

Bubble Teams: Arizona State, UCLA

 

As covered in the Big Ten section, Oregon State is a win away from going to the Rose Bowl and likely giving the conference two BCS bids assuming that USC beats Notre Dame and UCLA. Stanford broke my heart yesterday with a listless performance against Cal and has been eliminated. The conference now will have no more than six eligible teams at the most with the ASU/UCLA elimination game this week. The winner of that game will still need another win the following week in their rivalry game to become bowl eligible. Poinsettia Bowl is now a WAC bid.

 

SEC

 

Bowl Tie-ins: BCS/Sugar (two bids), Capital One, Cotton, Outback, Chick-Fil-A, Music City, Liberty, Independence, Papajohns.com

 

Locks: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi, South Carolina, Vanderbilt

 

Bubble Teams: Auburn

 

Arkansas was eliminated yesterday with a loss to Mississippi State. Auburn will have to shock the world against Alabama this week to become bowl eligible or the Independence Bowl becomes an open bid.

 

Sun Belt

 

Bowl Tie-in: New Orleans, PapaJohns.com?

 

Locks: Troy

 

Bowl Eligible: None

 

Bubble Teams: Arkansas State, FIU, Florida Atlantic, UL Lafayette, Middle Tennessee

 

Troy crushed ULL yesterday but they haven't officially won the conference yet. I think that Arkansas State can still win the conference by tiebreak if they win this week against a horrific North Texas team and then upset Troy in two weeks. But even if that scenario plays out, Troy is a lock for a bowl bid because the PapaJohns.com would then become a Sun Belt bid since the SEC will not fill it and the conference had a contingency bid. I'm still not 100% sure if the Sun Belt needs a 7+ win team to be pick up that bid officially though so if the Arkansas State scenario doesn't play out, there wouldn't be another 7+ win team in the conference.

 

WAC

 

Bowl Tie-ins: Humanitarian, Hawaii, New Mexico, Poinsettia

 

Locks: Boise State

 

Bowl Eligible: Fresno State, Hawaii, Louisiana Tech, Nevada, San Jose State

 

Boise State can still get a BCS at large invite but you can forget about them getting invited over Ohio State and now possibly USC. The conference did officially pickup the Poinsettia Bowl with Stanford's elimination in the Pac-10. The rest of the conference is still a mess but I think it's safe to assume at 6-6 that San Jose State will definitely not be getting a bid.

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Who will Cinci,(most likely), play in The Orange Bowl?

 

Whoever emerges from the mess that is the ACC. Cincy isn't locked for the Orange Bowl, they could up in the Sugar but that isn't likely. Of course, they still have to beat Syracuse and we've learned that isn't as automatic as assumed.

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From the way the fans and the announcers were acting after Cinci's victory over Pitt, I thought their Orange Bowl ticket was all but punched.(Assuming that they beat Syracuse this Sat., which as you pointed out, is no guarantee. Just ask Charlie Weiss about that.)

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From the way the fans and the announcers were acting after Cinci's victory over Pitt, I thought their Orange Bowl ticket was all but punched.(Assuming that they beat Syracuse this Sat., which as you pointed out, is no guarantee. Just ask Charlie Weiss about that.)

 

That's because there's no chance the Sugar Bowl would pass on a bigger team for Cincinnati unless the doomsday scenario happens and I can't even see them taking Cincinnati in that case.

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