Posted: Monday November 14, 2011 1:02AM ; Updated: Monday November 14, 2011 12:53PM
Stewart Mandel

Penn State, Boise State fall in latest bowl projections

Story Highlights

Thanks to a scandal-filled week, Penn State might not be attractive to many bowls

Boise State likely lost a shot at a BCS berth with its last-second loss to TCU

With many surplus eligible teams, several 6-6 programs could be left in the dust

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Chris Peterson
A last-second loss to TCU likely cost Chris Peterson's Boise State Broncos a shot at a BCS bowl.
Steve Conner/Icon SMI

A week ago, I had Penn State slotted for the Capital One Bowl, which has first choice of Big Ten teams outside of the BCS. This week the Nittany Lions fell all the way to the Meineke Bowl of Texas, not because they lost to Nebraska but because bowl committees will likely steer clear of Penn State in the wake of its ongoing scandal. Yes, their fans will travel, but it won't be worth the week of negative publicity.

In other news, Boise State falls from the BCS to the Maaco Bowl Las Vegas for a second straight year. The Vegas bowl has first choice of Mountain West teams but is not obligated to take likely champion TCU. Boise's strong showing for last year's bowl and a recent game at UNLV make it the preferred choice there.

A few reminders:

• After the No. 1 and 2 teams are slotted and replaced, the BCS at-large selection order this year is 1) Fiesta, 2) Sugar and 3) Orange. The highest-ranked (in this projection Houston) is guaranteed a BCS berth if it finishes in the Top 12.

• Most bowls are not obligated -- I repeat, NOT OBLIGATED -- to choose in exact order of conference standings. For instance, "Big 12 No. 3" means "third selection of Big 12 teams," not "the Big 12's third-place team."

• I'm currently projecting five surplus eligible teams, and the number could rise. My projections include only five Big East teams, but all eight could conceivably get eligible, as could Navy (4-6) if it beats San Jose State and Army. That doesn't bode well for 6-6 teams hoping for at-large spots.

BCS Bowls
Date Predicted matchup
Jan. 2 Rose: Wisconsin (Big Ten champ) vs. Oregon (Pac-12 champ)
Jan. 2 Fiesta: Oklahoma (BCS at-large) vs. Stanford (BCS at-large)
Jan. 3 Sugar: Alabama (BCS at-large) vs. Houston (BCS at-large)
Jan. 4 Orange: Clemson (ACC champ) vs. Cincinnati (Big East champ)
Jan. 9 BCS Championship: LSU (BCS No. 1) vs. Oklahoma State(BCS No. 2)
Other Bowls
Date Predicted matchup
Dec. 17 New Mexico: San Diego St. (MWC No. 4) vs. Eastern Michigan (Army*)
Dec. 17 Idaho Potato: Louisiana Tech (WAC) vs. Toledo (MAC No. 3)
Dec. 18 New Orleans: Louisiana-Lafayette (Sun Belt No. 1) vs. Illinois (C-USA*)
Dec. 20 Beef 'O'Brady's: Tulsa (C-USA) vs. Pittsburgh (Big East)
Dec. 21 Poinsettia: TCU (MWC No. 2) vs. Nevada (WAC)
Dec. 22 Maaco: Boise State (MWC No. 1) vs. UCLA (Pac-12 No. 5)
Dec. 24 Hawaii: Hawaii (WAC) vs. Northwestern (C-USA*)
Dec. 26 Independence: Wyoming (MWC No. 3) vs. North Carolina (ACC No. 7)
Dec. 27 Little Caesars: Ohio (MAC No. 2) vs. Purdue (Big Ten No. 8)
Dec. 27 Belk: West Virginia (Big East No. 3) vs. Virginia (ACC No. 5)
Dec. 28 Military: Wake Forest (ACC No. 8) vs. Air Force (Navy*)
Dec. 28 Holiday: Arizona State (Pac-12 No. 3) vs. Texas A&M (Big 12 No. 5)
Dec. 29 Champs Sports: Notre Dame (Big East No. 2**) vs. Florida State (ACC No. 3)
Dec. 29 Alamo: Washington (Pac-12 No. 2) vs. Texas (Big 12 No. 3)
Dec. 30 Armed Forces: Marshall (C-USA) vs. BYU (BYU)
Dec. 30 Pinstripe: Rutgers (Big East No. 4) vs. Missouri (Big 12 No. 7)
Dec. 30 Music City: Miami (ACC No. 6) vs. Vanderbilt (SEC No. 7)
Dec. 30 Insight: Baylor (Big 12 No. 4) vs. Michigan State (Big Ten No. 4)
Dec. 31 Meineke Texas: Penn State (Big Ten No. 6) vs. Texas Tech (Big 12 No. 6)
Dec. 31 Kraft Fight Hunger: Cal (Pac-12 No. 6) vs. Temple (Pac-12 No. 7*)
Dec. 31 Sun: Georgia Tech (ACC No. 4) vs. Utah (Pac-12 No. 4)
Dec. 31 Liberty: Southern Miss (C-USA No. 1) vs. Mississippi State (SEC No. 8)
Dec. 31 Chick-fil-A: Virginia Tech (ACC No. 2) vs. Auburn (SEC No. 5)
Jan. 2 TicketCity: Iowa (Big Ten No. 7) vs. SMU (C-USA)
Jan. 2 Capital One: Georgia (SEC No. 2) vs. Michigan (Big Ten No. 2)
Jan. 2 Outback: Nebraska (Big Ten No. 3) vs. South Carolina (SEC)
Jan. 2 Gator: Ohio State (Big Ten No. 5) vs. Florida (SEC No. 6)
Jan. 6 Cotton: Kansas State (Big 12 No. 2) vs. Arkansas (SEC)
Jan. 7 BBVA Compass: Syracuse (Big East) vs. FIU (SEC No. 9*)
Jan. 8 Northern Illinois (MAC No. 1) vs. Arkansas State (Sun Belt No. 2)

* -- Replacement team for a conference without an eligible team.

** -- The Champs Sports Bowl can pick Notre Dame instead of a Big East team once in the current four-year period (2010-13).
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