2011-12 Bowl Projections

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Bowl projection season is alive and well, and this week the National Football Post presents its second edition of the year.

The Bowl Championship Series standings were certainly shaken up this past weekend, with Oklahoma State, Oklahoma and Oregon all going down to defeat. So this version of the Bowl Projections has been tweaked to reflect all of this past weekend’s results.

As usual, teams are competing for a limited number of BCS berths, more glamorous bowl games and that needed sixth win. Meanwhile, last week’s Rutgers projection into the Orange Bowl is alive and well…

Keep in mind:

• After the No. 1 and 2 teams from the final BCS standings are placed in the title game and replaced by teams from their conferences in the respected bowl games, the BCS at-large selection takes place. The order for 2011-12 is Fiesta, Sugar and Orange.

• For many bowls, committees are not obligated to choose in order of conference standings. So ACC No. 4 does not necessarily mean the team with the fourth-best record in the ACC. Ticket sales, fan travel, etc. go into a lot of these matchups. And conference politics likely will be in play for outgoing Big 12 members Texas A&M and Missouri.

• The highest-ranked non-AQ gets an automatic BCS berth if it finishes in the top 12 of the final BCS standings. But a second one does not get an automatic spot, so Boise State, TCU, etc. could be shut out if Houston remains unbeaten. However, the Broncos and Horned Frogs could be eligible for at-large berths.

• It appears that there are going to be a lot of bowl-eligible teams this season — perhaps too many, which is surprising because of the large quantity of bowl games on the schedule. Expect some teams to be unhappy because they weren’t granted postseason berths. However, Miami (FLA) deciding it will not participate in a bowl game does open up a spot for one team, possibly a squad from the Big Ten.

* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams.

** The Champs Sports Bowl can select Notre Dame instead of a Big East team once in the four-year period stretching from 2010-13.

*** Replacement because of two SEC teams being in the championship game.

BCS bowls

LaMichael JamesICONWill LaMichael James and the Ducks earn a trip to Pasadena?

Jan. 2 Rose: Wisconsin (Big Ten champ) vs. Oregon (Pac-12 champ)

Jan. 2 Fiesta: Oklahoma (Big 12 champ) vs. Stanford (BCS at-large)

Jan. 3 Sugar: Michigan (SEC champ***) vs. Houston (BCS at-large)

Jan. 4 Orange: Virginia Tech (ACC champ) vs. Rutgers (Big East champ)

Jan. 9 BCS national championship: LSU (BCS No. 1) vs. Alabama (BCS No. 2)

The other bowls

Dec. 17 New Mexico: San Diego State (MWC No. 4) vs. Toledo (Army*)

Dec. 17 Idaho Potato: Utah State (WAC) vs. Temple (MAC No. 3)

Dec. 18 New Orleans: Louisiana-Lafayette (Sun Belt No. 1) vs. Syracuse (C-USA*)

Dec. 20 Beef ‘O’Brady’s: Tulsa (C-USA) vs. Pittsburgh (Big East)

Dec. 21 Poinsettia: Boise State (MWC No. 2) vs. Louisiana Tech (WAC)

Dec. 22 Maaco: TCU (MWC No. 1) vs. Utah (Pac-12 No. 5)

Dec. 24 Hawaii: Nevada (WAC) vs. Illinois (C-USA*)

Dec. 26 Independence: Wyoming (MWC No. 3) vs. Wake Forest (ACC No. 7)

Dec. 27 Little Caesars: Ohio (MAC No. 2) vs. Northwestern (Big Ten No. 8)

Dec. 27 Belk: West Virginia (Big East No. 3) vs. N.C. State (ACC No. 5)

Dec. 28 Military: North Carolina (ACC No. 8) vs. Air Force (Navy*)

Dec. 28 Holiday: Arizona State (Pac-12 No. 3) vs. Texas (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. Kansas State (Big 12 No. 3)

Dec. 30 Armed Forces: SMU (C-USA) vs. BYU (BYU)

Dec. 30 Pinstripe: Louisville (Big East No. 4) vs. Texas A&M (Big 12 No. 7)

Paul JohnsonCould Paul Johnson and the Yellow Jackets have a date with Mississippi State?

Dec. 30 Music City: Georgia Tech (ACC No. 6) vs. Mississippi State (SEC No. 7)

Dec. 30 Insight: Baylor (Big 12 No. 4) vs. Penn State (Big Ten No. 4)

Dec. 31 Meineke Texas: Iowa (Big Ten No. 6) vs. Missouri (Big 12 No. 6)

Dec. 31 Kraft Fight Hunger: California (Pac-12 No. 6) vs. Iowa State (Army*)

Dec. 31 Sun: Virginia (ACC No. 4) vs. UCLA (Pac-12 No. 4)

Dec. 31 Liberty: Southern Miss (C-USA No. 1) vs. Tennessee (SEC No. 8)

Dec. 31 Chick-fil-A: Clemson (ACC No. 2) vs. Florida (SEC No. 5)

Jan. 2 TicketCity: Purdue (Big Ten No. 7) vs. Marshall (C-USA)

Jan. 2 Capital One: Georgia (SEC No. 2) vs. Nebraska (Big Ten No. 2)

Jan. 2 Outback: Michigan State (Big Ten No. 3) vs. South Carolina (SEC)

Jan. 2 Gator: Ohio State (Big Ten No. 5) vs. Auburn (SEC No. 6)

Jan. 6 Cotton: Oklahoma State (Big 12 No. 2) vs. Arkansas (SEC)

Jan. 7 BBVA Compass: Cincinnati (Big East) vs. FIU (SEC No. 9*)

Jan. 8 GoDaddy.com: Northern Illinois (MAC No. 1) vs. Arkansas State (Sun Belt No. 2)

Teams in bold have already accepted bids

Email dave.miller@nationalfootballpost.com or follow me on Twitter at Miller_Dave

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