The brand new WSU bowl forecast

WITH FRIDAY'S loss in the Apple Cup, Washington State falls into the third-place mosh pit in the chase for the bowls. The Cougs are still eligible to be selected to any bowl game other than the Rose Bowl, but Bill Moos will now need to sell WSU's case harder than he would have with a win. CF.C's Matt Moore breaks it down.


The Situation: The Alamo gets the first pick of any Pac-12 team not taken by the Rose Bowl or selection committee. Historically, the second place team in the standings goes here, but the Alamo will have the right to select any conference team with six wins.  No matter what happens tomorrow this list will include WSU, Stanford, Oregon, and the winner of the USC/UCLA game.  Utah can join that list, but only if they beat Colorado.

WSU's Case: The Cougs are currently nationally ranked (thought that may change in the next poll), have a marquee player and boast a coach with the biggest following in the state of Texas outside of Tom Landry.  They are still a tough option for the Alamo to pass up.  The biggest obsticle is Oregon.  The Ducks are firmly entrenched in second place, carry a lot of name recognition and are ranked higher in the polls.  As much sizzle as Mike Leach would bring, the Alamo will go with the Ducks unless someone else grabs them first.  If Stanford get the Rose Bowl and Oregon gets a Fiesta Bowl Bid, don't be surprised if the Cougs go here.  UCLA went last year and won't be an attractive option.  Utah is a contender, but not as attractive.


The Situation: The Holiday gets the next pick after the Alamo and will have the same list of remaining teams to choose from.  Even with today's loss WSU will be a prime candidate for this bowl.  Scenarios that have the Cougs getting passed up however, generally involve the LA schools.  If an LA school wins the conference title game, Stanford will be sitting in WSU's way.  But even if Stanford wins the Pac-12 championship, both LA schools will still be an eligible choice for this bowl.  I do not think the Holiday Bowl would select USC in that situation, as they played in San Diego last year, but UCLA is a very attractive option.

WSU's Case: WSU went to the Holiday Bowl in 2003 and generally packed the place.  The Holiday Bowl holds no specific objections to WSU and is likely to consider them. The Cougs fits exactly the kind of exciting, high scoring offense the Holiday Bowl traditionally features.  But the biggest concern here is UCLA.  The Bruins are just down the road, and may hold a fair amount of sway with the selection committee.  WSU needs USC to win tomorrow to take away some of the Bruins’ luster.


The Situation: The Foster Farms Bowl basically gets the remaining team of their choice.  The Cougars are an option, but the December 26 bowl date complicates the logistics.

WSU's Case: WSU's standing for this bowl is very good, the problem is the bowl date. Foster Farms is likely to try and stick as close to home as possible. They will likely grab any California team available, but you never know.


The Situation: The Sun Bowl has the fifth choice, and cannot go lower.  For a 6-3 Cougar team to fall this far would be very disappointing, but possible. They will likely have two choices: WSU and Utah.  They cannot select the loser of the USC/UCLA game.

WSU's Case: The Sun Bowl would be thrilled to get WSU, but could have the option of Utah available.  Another game with a December 26 time slot, they will have a difficult time attracting fans.  Utah is slightly closer to El Paso.


The Situation: If everybody turns the Cougs down, Las Vegas cannot.  WSU doesn't need to make a case, they can fall no further than the Las Vegas Bowl. It’s hard to see WSU falling to here, though.

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