Once it became clear that the Big 12 would not be able to fulfill its bowl obligations, nearly everyone penciled in Notre Dame to fill the Big 12's vacant slot in the Pinstripe Bowl. But comments from Irish players this week hinted that Notre Dame may prefer warmer climes to the cold and snowy Northeast.
Notre Dame is headed to the Pinstripe Bowl, per source. Irish informed appropriate parties— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerCBS) December 6, 2013
Notre Dame (8-4) will face the no. 4 selection from the American Athletic Conference, which is likely down to either Rutgers (with a win over USF) or Houston. So much for that whole football-basketball day-night doubleheader thing.
False alarm, you guys.
Two American teams have accepted berths to two ACC-affiliated bowls. Cincinnati will be the American representative in the Belk Bowl in Charlotte (likely opposite North Carolina), while ACC newcomer Louisville will represent the conference in the Russell Athletic Bowl in Orlando (prob vs. Miami).
With Northern Illinois' loss to Bowling Green in the MAC Championship -- plus, helping #Andre44Heisman get to NYC! -- Clemson can breathe a bit easier. The Tigers are hoping to hold onto that top 14 ranking in the final BCS standings and a trip to the Orange Bowl. I suppose Oklahoma could jump Clemson with an upset in Bedlam, but I'm having a hard time seeing how the Tigers will fall out of the Top 14. That should pave the way for an Orange Bowl selection for the Tigers, assuming of course that Florida State takes care of Duke in the ACC Championship Game.
That's ultimately great news for Boston College, Pittsburgh and Syracuse; three programs that would get pushed one rung down the ACC's bowl pecking order should the conference not put two teams in BCS bowls. I still think regardless of what happens in tomorrow's ACC Championship Game, the ACC will put two in BCS bowls.
-- With an FSU win, Florida State in the BCS National Championship Game and Clemson in the Orange.
-- With a Duke win, Duke in the Orange and Florida State in the Sugar as a BCS at-large selection.
More bowl game updates:
The executive director of the Annapolis-based Military Bowl has made it clear that if Maryland is still on the board for the ACC's number 8 selection, they'll take the Terrapins. As it stands, 3-5 Maryland can't jump six bowl eligible teams from the ACC (Florida State, Clemson, Duke, Virginia Tech, Miami and Georgia Tech) by virtue of the one-loss rule. So even if the conference lands two in the BCS, the highest Maryland could be selected is the Belk Bowl, the ACC's no. 5 selection. Don't see that happening; nor do I see the Music City (Georgia Tech) or Independence (BC) selecting the Terps.
Speaking of the Independence Bowl, while Brad Bates is reportedly sending out feelers to the non-ACC affiliated Heart of Dallas Bowl, I-Bowl's exec director Missy Setters would like to remind BC that they don't have a choice if selected.
Meanwhile, on the ACC side, despite rumors of Boston College seeking a deal outside of the conference, Setters said it's very unlikely.
"Just like us, Boston College is obligated to fulfill their ACC tie-ins,'' Setters said.
With Notre Dame off the table, the Independence Bowl is looking towards the Pac-12 (Arizona or Oregon State) to fill the vacant spot left by the SEC. I suppose Boston College vs. Arizona and #Andre44Heisman vs. Ka'Deem Carey wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, all things considered.
For what it's worth, neither Yahoo! Sports nor CBS Sports' Jerry Palm has Boston College falling to the I-Bowl. Y! Sports has Boston College taken by the ACC's no. 5 selection, the Belk Bowl vs. Cincinnati (UNC in the Music City vs. Vanderbilt), while Palm has BC in the Music City Bowl (ACC no. 6) vs. Ole Miss (updated after tonight's games)
One more thing to keep an eye on is the Houston-based Texas Bowl. With NIU falling out of the BCS bowl picture, the chances that the Big 12 lands two in the BCS have improved quite a bit. With just six bowl eligible teams for six bowl tie-ins, the Big 12 landing a second team in the BCS would open up a slot in the Texas Bowl, the conference's number 6 selection. The likely opponent from the Big Ten is Minnesota. Boston College vs. Minnesota -- first team to complete five forward passes wins?