Projecting all 35 bowl matchups
Boise St.'s loss could spiral them all the way down to the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl
Unless West Virginia is available, the Irish are headed to the Champs Sports Bowl
The title game stays the same, but Wisconsin and TCU now meet in the Rose Bowl
So where does Boise State land now that it's not going to the BCS? Most likely the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl in San Francisco, which has first pick of WAC teams and will likely choose between 12-1 Nevada and 11-1 Boise State.
Assuming it chooses the higher-profile Broncos, look for a deal to be brokered that sends the home-state Wolf Pack -- a likely 12-1 team -- to Las Vegas to play 10-2 Utah. Meanwhile, Boise may get a semi-glamorous date with Miami (7-5). With an interim coach at the helm and few fans expected to travel, the 'Canes could slip all the way to the bottom of the ACC's nine-team pecking order.
A few other notes:
Notre Dame (7-5) is likely headed to the Champs Sports Bowl. The one possible exception might be if 9-3 West Virginia is available (UConn would be the Big East's BCS rep) and the Orlando game decides to hold off using its Irish pick sometime over the next three years. But that doesn't seem likely.
Assuming the loser of Saturday's Oklahoma-Nebraska Big 12 title game doesn't fall below the Alamo Bowl (I'm projecting Texas A&M to the Cotton), one of two 10-2 Big 12 teams, Missouri or Oklahoma State, could be left facing a 6-6 Pac-10 team in the Holiday Bowl. My guess is it will be the Cowboys.
Iowa's (7-5) season-ending slump could send it barreling down the Big Ten's lineup but facing a better team. Expect the Outback Bowl to take Penn State (7-5), while the Gator Bowl chooses Michigan (also 7-5) to face Florida. That would send the Hawkeyes to the Insight Bowl, where 10-2 Missouri would await.
As always, it's important to remember that most bowls are not obligated to choose their teams in exact order of conference standings. For instance, "ACC No. 3" means "third choice of ACC teams" -- not "the ACC's third-place team."
The necessary 70 teams are already eligible, and as many as four more could get there this weekend. However, I'm projecting the final number to be 71, with 6-6 Western Michigan the lone team left out.
|Jan. 1||Rose: Wisconsin (Big Ten champ) vs. TCU (at-large)|
|Jan. 1||Fiesta: Nebraska (Big 12 champ) vs. Stanford (BCS at-large)|
|Jan. 3||Orange: Virginia Tech (ACC champ) vs. West Virginia (Big East champ)|
|Jan. 4||Sugar: Arkansas (at-large) vs. Ohio State (at-large)|
|Jan. 10||BCS Championship: Auburn (BCS No. 1) vs. Oregon (BCS No. 2)|
|Dec. 18||New Mexico: BYU (MWC) vs. Ohio (WAC*)|
|Dec. 18||Humanitarian: Fresno State (WAC) vs. Temple (MAC No. 3)|
|Dec. 18||New Orleans: Florida International (Sun Belt No. 1) vs. UTEP (C-USA)|
|Dec. 21||Beef 'O'Brady's: Southern Miss (C-USA) vs. Pittsburgh (Big East)|
|Dec. 22||Maaco: Utah (MWC No. 1) vs. Nevada (Pac-10 No. 5*)|
|Dec. 23||Poinsettia: San Diego State (MWC No. 2) vs. Navy (Navy)|
|Dec. 24||Hawaii: Hawaii (WAC) vs. Tulsa (C-USA)|
|Dec. 26||Little Caesars: Northern Illinois (MAC No. 1) vs. Louisville (Big Ten No. 8*)|
|Dec. 27||Independence: Air Force (MWC No. 3) vs. Georgia Tech (ACC No. 7)|
|Dec. 28||Champs Sports: Notre Dame (Big East No. 2**) vs. NC State (ACC No. 3)|
|Dec. 28||Insight: Missouri (Big 12 No. 4) vs. Iowa (Big Ten No. 5)|
|Dec. 29||Military: East Carolina (C-USA) vs. Boston College (ACC No. 8)|
|Dec. 29||Texas: Illinois (Big Ten No. 6) vs. Baylor (Big 12 No. 6)|
|Dec. 29||Alamo: Arizona (Pac-10 No. 2) vs. Oklahoma (Big 12 No. 3)|
|Dec. 30||Armed Forces: SMU (C-USA) vs. Army (MWC*)|
|Dec. 30||New Era Pinstripe: Syracuse (Big East No. 4) vs. Kansas State (Big 12 No. 7)|
|Dec. 30||Music City: North Carolina (ACC No. 6) vs. Tennessee (SEC No. 7)|
|Dec. 30||Holiday: Washington (Pac-10 No. 3) vs. Oklahoma State (Big 12 No. 5)|
|Dec. 31||Meineke Car Care: Connecticut (Big East No. 3) vs. Clemson (ACC No. 5)|
|Dec. 31||Sun: Maryland (ACC No. 4) vs. Toledo (Pac-10 No. 4*)|
|Dec. 31||Liberty: UCF (C-USA No. 1) vs. Georgia (SEC No. 8)|
|Dec. 31||Chick-fil-A: Florida State (ACC No. 2) vs. Mississippi State (SEC No. 5)|
|Jan. 1||TicketCity: Northwestern (Big Ten No. 7) vs. Texas Tech (Big 12 No. 8)|
|Jan. 1||Capital One: LSU (SEC No. 2) vs. Michigan State (Big Ten No. 2)|
|Jan. 1||Outback: Penn State (Big Ten No. 3) vs. South Carolina (SEC)|
|Jan. 1||Gator: Michigan (Big Ten No. 4) vs. Florida (SEC No. 6)|
|Jan. 6||GoDaddy.com: Miami (OH) (MAC No. 2) vs. Troy (Sun Belt No. 2)|
|Jan. 7||Cotton: Texas A&M (Big 12 No. 2) vs. Alabama (SEC)|
|Jan. 8||BBVA Compass: USF (Big East) vs. Kentucky (SEC No. 9*)|
|Jan. 9||Kraft Fight Hunger: Miami (Pac-10 No. 6*) vs. Boise State (WAC)|
Teams in bold have accepted bowl invitation.