During the ACC Football Kickoff, Chick-Fil-A Bowl CEO Gary Stokan sat down with the Globe's Mark Blaudschun to explain the selection criteria for the ACC's No. 2 bowl. As you are no doubt aware, the Eagles have finished as the ACC runner-up twice in their short five years in the conference but have never received a bid to the Peach Bowl. Not even Matt Ryan's boyish charm and devilish good looks could earn BC a spot in the 2007 Peach Bowl. That season, the Atlanta Sports Council selected a Clemson team that BC beat 20-17 just three weeks before bowl selection.
Stokan told Blaudschun that the bowl would consider a BC team which had a competitive record (read: forced to pick BC due to the "BC One-Loss Rule"), but a team's record was just one of a handful of selection criteria that the Atlanta Sports Council uses to select their ACC bowl participant.
"We look at lot of things involved,'' Stokan said this afternoon at the ACC football kickoff meetings. "I have about 15 different criteria on a grid I have in my office with all things being considered, such as record, injuries, how a team is playing and ticket sales. It's a factor, but not the overriding one."
I get it. A college bowl game is a business and you have to make decisions accordingly. But don't go and give BC fans a false sense of hope saying that "If you buy enough tickets, maybe we'll consider inviting Boston College." It's just not happening. Why? Because here is Stokan's real list of bowl selection criteria:
1. Under no circumstances should we invite Boston College
2. Must. Protect. Sellout. Streak. At all costs.
3. Ticket sales
4. Never invite a school north of Virginia
5. Restaurant and hotel sales
6. Never, ever BC
7. Fan travel reputation
8. Even Duke's Cutcliffe brings some ties to the SEC
9. How a team is playing
10. Head-to-head record
12. The ACC has 11 teams
13. Individual star power
14. Even Wake Forest would be preferable to BC
15. Overall record
I don't even think BCMike's upcoming nuptials can get BC an invite to the Peach Bowl. Normally I wouldn't sweat such intentional bias against BC from a wannabe BCS bowl game. (Trust me, we're used to not getting any love). But it's just a tad bit annoying when your program's non-BCS bowl game ceiling includes a game played in a stadium falling apart in the middle of the Orlando hood, a game played a stone's throw away from the murder capital of the world and a bowl named after a multivitamin dietary supplement.