Clemson – although Clemson is playing in a bowl game that they do not belong in due to their record and ACC standing, it is not abnormal for a team to leapfrog one spot in the bowl selection process. The Tigers will take on Texas Tech in the Tangerine Bowl. Clemson is going to have a very difficult time keeping up with the Red Raiders' passing attack. Charlie Whitehurst gets some more game experience before next season as well. Even with a loss, which is not a forgone conclusion, Clemson will greatly benefit from the extra weeks of practice.
Tangerine Bowl vs Texas Tech
Ole Miss – Mississippi gets a match up with Nebraska as a result of beating Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl. Eli Manning will be able to throw for all sorts of records on a shaky Husker secondary, but will the Rebels end up with a win?
Independence Bowl vs Nebraska
Virginia – The destination, Charlotte, is not what Virginia had hoped for, but with an 8-5 regular season, Virginia left the door open for Clemson to snatch the Tangerine Bowl from them and that is exactly what happened.
Continental Tire Bowl vs West Virginia
Arkansas – it is a shame that Arkansas fell from the SEC title game all the way to the 2nd worst bowl that an SEC team can go to. The Hogs are penalized for going to the Cotton Bowl too many times recently. I guess that Georgia should have gone to the Cotton last year. That would mean that Arkansas could return to Dallas this season. Instead, Arkansas licks it wounds and heads east to the Music City Bowl to face Minnesota. Arkansas should win this game, but will they fall into the same trap that Georgia did last year and lose focus in this game?
Music City Bowl vs Minnesota
Wake Forest – any bowl is a good bowl for Wake Forest. And believe me that Georgia Tech did not want to return to the Seattle Bowl for several reasons. So when the Seattle and Silicon Valley did a switch for preferred teams Wake Forest was able to sneak into the Seattle Bowl to play Oregon.
Seattle Bowl vs Oregon
Georgia Tech – Seattle was not where the Jackets wanted to end up and they didn't. Playing Fresno State in the Silicon Valley Classic will be no cakewalk for Tech. The Jackets need a win to forget the beating that Georgia gave them.
Silicon Valley Classic vs Fresno State
Maryland – the Terps screwed themselves when they dropped a late season game against Virginia. With the loss to the Cavs, Maryland fell from a probable Sugar Bowl match up with Georgia all the way to playing Tennessee in the Peach Bowl. The payout loss from the Virginia game (1.6 million from the Peach to nearly 13 million for the Sugar) is somewhat irrelevant for Maryland because of the way that the ACC shares its bowl revenue among all 9 institutions.
Peach Bowl vs Tennessee
Tennessee – it has to be humbling for Jabari Davis to wind up in the Peach Bowl the season that Georgia wins the SEC title. Davis said that he chose to go to Tennessee over Georgia because he wanted to play for national titles and not in Peach Bowls. Nevertheless, Tennessee will have its hands full in the Peach Bowl with Maryland. The Turtles have good speed and a decent defense. That combination has dealt Tennessee a loss 4 times this season (Georgia, Florida, Alabama, and Miami).
Peach Bowl vs Maryland
Virginia Tech – Air Force awaits the Hokies in the San Francisco Bowl. This season did not go as planned for Tech. And considering the way that Pitt and West Virginia seem to be headed, Frank Beamer and company need to tighten their chinstraps just to finish 3rd in the suddenly stout Big East.
San Francisco Bowl vs Air Force
Florida – playing Michigan will most certainly turn TV sets on New Year's morning. However, meeting the Wolverines in the Outback Bowl is a step back for both programs. Florida had played in a BCS-caliber bowl game from 1990 forward with the exception of the 1999 Citrus Bowl when it lost to Michigan State. The Gators seemed like a lock for the Citrus Bowl until FSU thrashed them in Tallahassee. Now the Gators go home with $3.1 million less than they would have with a Citrus payout.
Citrus Bowl (Sorry I can't get used to the Capital One Bowl) vs Michigan
LSU – the loss to Arkansas wasn't so bad after all. Well yes it was, but a consolation prize of playing Texas in the Cotton Bowl will do. An LSU-Texas match up in the Cotton Bowl will ensure a sell out and like the Florida game; TV sets will be turned on for this game. A win over Texas would be a nice feather in the cap of this LSU program. Also, 9-4 sure beats the heck out of 8-5.
Cotton Bowl vs Texas
NC State – the Wolfpack has lucked out and got a great opponent in Notre Dame. Any time that your program can play Notre Dame on national television is great exposure. Those two teams have had similar seasons. A big build up with a disappointing finish. Notre Dame's $11 million mistake against USC kept them out of the BCS. I for one cannot believe that the Irish were not given the benefit of the doubt. After all, they are given the benefit of the doubt more often than any other team in college football when it comes to bowl game. State could use this win, like the 3 wins over Florida State in recent years, to add to its list when talking with recruits.
Florida State – I don't think that Florida State should be in the BCS. And the only thing that makes Bobby Bowden think that they should be is the fact that the Noles won the ACC. Florida State my have recent tradition on their side in this game, but that is about it. Georgia will be favored to win this game by more than a touchdown. Georgia fans should also outnumber FSU fans, who are notorious for not traveling well, even in state.
Sugar Bowl vs Georgia
Georgia – sure, Florida State is not what they once were. However, beating the Noles on national television, in a BCS game, with no other bowl game on in that time slot would do wonders for Georgia's recruiting efforts, not only in the Peach State, but also in Florida. This Georgia program appears to be here to stay. A convincing win over Florida State would help hammer than point home.
Sugar Bowl vs Florida State
All Southern Bowl mach ups:
ACC vs SEC
Georgia vs Florida State
Tennessee vs Maryland