While the Champs Sports Bowl was a time to say goodbye to the outgoing class of BC seniors, BC coach Jeff Jagodzinski took a moment to look forward as well. The 2007 season saw BC win eleven games for the first time since 1940, gaining national notoriety after starting 8-0 and reaching the national number two ranking before dropping three of the team's final six games. The Eagles should find themselves somewhere in or near the top 10 when the season's final polls are released, which would be the best finish for the school in 23 seasons.
"What this does for us in recruiting is huge," said Jagodzinski. "Kids want to go where you're winning."
Jagodzinski added that he will continue to emphasize the recruiting of "high character" players. "I told (the outgoing seniors), I'm bringing in 25 players just like them: character guys; BC guys."
The Champs Sports Bowl announced a record crowd of 46,554 that virtually filled the lower section at the Florida Citrus Bowl. BC's contingent looked to be larger than the 5,000-6,000 announced by the school's ticket office earlier in the week, and was certainly bigger than the group that followed the Eagles to the ACC Championship Game in Jacksonville four weeks earlier. In particular, BC's student section at the Champs Sports Bowl was probably double or triple the size of the student group that traveled to Jacksonville in the week before final exams. Turnout by fans of the Michigan Wolverines or Florida Gators, whose teams play in the Capital One Bowl held at the same stadium on January 1, did not seem to materialize. The crowd appeared to be exclusively composed of Michigan State and BC fans and Orlando locals.
Eight Straight is Great
BC extended the nation's longest bowl winning streak to eight games with the win over the Spartans. In addition to the Champs Sports Bowl victory, the Eagles' senior class came away with wins over Navy in the Meineke Car Care Bowl, over Boise State in the MPC Computers Bowl, and over North Carolina in the Continental Tire Bowl. "You never want to be the team that ends the streak," commented BC All-America safety Jamie Silva after the game.