Sunday Night all the bowl matchups will be announced. We will have coverage of every in-state bowl game as well as the national championship game here on ESPNFlorida.com all month long with previews, podcasts, audio coverage of all bowl games in the state as well as BCS National Championship Game. Here a look at possible bowl game matchups in the sunshine state with all the different scenarios to be played out this weekend.
Beef O’ Brady Bowl December 20,2011 St Petersburg, Florida 8pm. Big East # 5 vs C-USA
FIU is pushing very hard to get in this game being just 3.5-4 hours drive away. The Panthers got help on thursday night with West Virginia win over South Florida eliminating the Bulls (5-7) from bowl contention. FIU will be keeping in an eye on this weekend games between Syracuse at Pittsburgh and Cincinnati vs Connecticut. UConn is 5-6 while winner of Pittsburgh-Syracuse game will be 6-6 and bowl eligible. Panther fans will be rooting for Cincinnati to eliminate UConn from bowl contention.
Word out of Tampa is that the bowl does want FIU and would take them if being able to. If Cincinnati beats Connecticut, then look for FIU to take the spot of Big East and take on Marshall. If Cincinnati loses to UConn, Pittsburgh defeats Syracuse and Houston is in the BCS then the bowl game will go for FIU vs Pittsburgh game as C-USA will then drop Marshall to New Orleans Bowl under this scenario as C-USA would not fill up all bowl game ties.
Prediction- FIU vs Pittsburgh
Champs Sports Bowl December 29,2011 Orlando, Florida 530pm.# 3 vs Big East # 2 or Notre Dame.
Capital One Bowl Jan 2, 2012 Orlando, Florida 1pm. SEC # 2 vs Big 10 # 2
According to my sources within the SEC, If LSU defeats Georgia this weekend, then look for Arkansas to go to Cotton bowl which is what Razorbacks and SEC prefer. That will leave South Carolina and Georgia for Cap One Bowl to pick from. Georgia last appearance was in 2009 while South Carolina has not played in Orlando under Steve Spurrier.Georgia would be coming off a lost, along with Spurrier factor look for Cap One to take South Carolina over Georgia. If Georgia upsets LSU, Georgia would go to Sugar Bowl, LSU and Alabama play for National Title, then all bets are off as Arkansas may end up in Orlando under that scenario.
With Michigan State having played in the Cap One Bowl last season and Wisconsin having been a frequent visitor in Orlando recently with two appearances in Champs Sports Bowl (2008,2009)and Cap One Bowl (,2006,2007)Look for Nebraska to get the nod.
Prediction- Nebraska vs South Carolina
Outback Bowl Tampa, Florida 1pm. Big 10 # 3 vs SEC # 3,4, or 5.
The Outback Bowl will pick after Cap One Bowl, LSU wins over Georgia, Outback will pick from whoever left between Georgia and South Carolina against the loser of the Big 10 title game between Wisconsin and Michigan State.
Prediction- Georgia vs Michigan State
Gator Bowl Jacksonville, Florida 1pm. SEC # 6 vs Big 10 # 4 or # 5
Last weekend covering FSU- Florida game in Gainesville, all people close to Florida pretty much told me that Gator Bowl would take them and set up a match up against Ohio State in the ” Urban Meyer Bowl”. There is a chance Florida may go to Atlanta for Chick Fil A Bowl as they have priorty over Gator Bowl in order of picking SEC Teams and may take the Gators depending on who is the ACC opponent as well as if Georgia upsets LSU. But I have heard that Auburn will be the selection in Atlanta leaving the Gators available for a return trip to Jacksonville.
Prediction – Ohio State vs Florida
Orange Bowl Miami Gardens, Florida. January 4, 2012. ACC Champion vs Big East Champion.
Orange Bowl has last pick so they will be stuck with Big East Champion unlike last year when they took Stanford over Big East Champion (UConn). So this year it will be the winner of Virginia Tech-Clemson game against West Virginia if Cincinnati defeats Connecticut on saturday. If Connecticut defeats Cincinnati then Louisville with a 7-5 overall record and losses to FIU and Marshall this season at home would represent the Big East.
If your the Orange Bowl you are hoping for West Virginia in the worst way. Clemson would be the preference due to the fact that Virginia Tech has been to Orange Bowl three of the last four seasons (2008,2009,2011) and Clemson travels very well and has not played in the Orange Bowl in 30 years (1982) when the Tigers won national championship over Nebraska. A matchup between Clemson-West Virginia would it least be new and unique and sell tickets. Worst case scenario would be Louisville against Virginia Tech.
Prediction- West Virginia vs Virginia Tech