Badgers likely headed for a Tampa holiday

Bowl invitation could be formally extended Tuesday

IOWA CITY, Iowa—It seems a mere formality, but the University of Wisconsin will have to wait until Tuesday to receive and accept an expected invitation to play in the Outback Bowl, Jan. 1 in Tampa, Fla.

The Badgers missed an opportunity to play in the Rose Bowl when they lost to Iowa here Saturday, 30-7. Michigan (9-2 overall, 7-1 Big Ten) now heads to Pasadena due to a Big Ten championship tie-breaker, while the Hawkeyes (9-2, 7-1) will likely receive a Capitol One Bowl bid Tuesday as the conference's top at-large team.

Following Saturday's game, the Outback Bowl's chairman for team selection, Bernie O'Brien, stated that he could not see any reason why his bowl would not then select the Badgers (9-2, 6-2). "Not right now," he said.

After the four BCS bowls, including the Rose, make their selections, the Capitol One committee receives first choice of remaining Big Ten teams. It is anticipated that Michigan will be the only BCS-bound Big Ten squad. The final BCS proclamations will not be made until Dec. 5, but Iowa, Wisconsin and the rest of the non-Michigan Big Ten could be released into the general pool Monday during a BCS conference call.

"They have to release the Big Ten then the [Capitol One Bowl] will pick and then we'll pick," O'Brien said.

"On Monday we meet at 4:30 and then we make the recommendations to the board of directors," he said. "It will be announced Tuesday afternoon."

Wisconsin has played in the Outback Bowl once before, losing to Georgia 33-6 in 1998.

"Hopefully we will play in a January first Bowl game and in warm weather," Wisconsin head coach Barry Alvarez said. "That's always a good reward."

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