With the top three bids in the ACC already secure, the ball now rests in the Tangerine Bowl's court.
The T-Bowl has the 4th pick from the ACC and the 5th, 6th, or 7th selection from the Big XII. The Big XII selection was expected to be announced last Sunday, but officials decided to hold off on a decision for at least one more week after the committee was unable to agree on one particular team.
"We are probably going to have to wait at least one more week before we can begin to extend invitations for either one of our bowl games," said FCS Executive Director Tom Mickle said at the time.
"There are several key games which remain in this very exciting college football season. Couple that fact with the BCS and the trickle down effect reaches both of our bowl games."
The Independence Bowl will have it's pick of the 5th, 6th and 7th teams in the Big XII first, and it is believed to be that the Nebraska Cornhuskers will fill that position. The Tangerine Bowl then will pick from the remaining Big XII teams, ahead of the Houston Bowl.
The teams remaining will likely be either Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, or Texas A&M. Oklahoma State improved their chances at avoiding the Humanitarian Bowl with a 38-28 upset win over rival Oklahoma Saturday afternoon.
Texas Tech has Heisman candidate QB Kliff Klingsbury, and A&M has the famed "wrecking crew" defense. In any potential matchup, the Tigers would likely be playing a team that hasn't been on the schedule in the last 30 years.
The latest bowl projections from CBS, ESPN, and CollegeFootballNews have the Tigers playing in either the Continental Tire Bowl in Charlotte, or the Seattle Bowl in Washington state.
However, the Tangerine would be inclined to pick Clemson due the traditionally large number of fans that the Tigers typically take to bowl games in Florida.
The T-Bowl suffered a huge disappointment last season when an N.C. State-Pittsburgh matchup was only witnessed by a measly 28,000 fans. Clemson alone would likely sell that many tickets, even in a bowl game just two days before Christmas.
Additionally, most of these projections fail to account for Georgia Tech's humiliating loss to archrival Georgia, a game that will likely destroy the Yellow Jackets' hopes of leap frogging Clemson in Orlando or Charlotte.
For the Cavaliers, most experts agree that the Wahoo's would likely be a less attractive team, even though head coach Al Groh has led a resurgence in the Virginia football program.
For Virginia, the Continental Tire Bowl in Charlotte makes the most sense; geographically at least. The Cavaliers would likely sell their allotment of tickets against a team from the Big East, most likely Pittsburgh or Boston College.
The Tangerine Bowl selection committee is expected to meet Sunday to begin discussions on the selection process. The meeting time has now been confirmed for 2 PM, and a decision is expected to some down soon afterwards.
|Bowl Game||Quick Facts|
The Tangerine Bowl
#4 ACC vs #5/#6/#7 Big XII
December 23rd 5:30 ESPN
The Citrus Bowl
Payout: $750,000 per team
The Continental Tire Bowl
#5/#6 ACC vs. #4/5 Big East
December 28th, 11:00 AM (TBA)
Charlotte, North Carolina
Payout: $750,000 per team