Bowl Eligibility - Updated Conference Analysis (Nov 19)

Submitted by Tauro on November 19th, 2012 at 12:36 PM

As much as I hate to say, I am rooting for Notre Dame this weekend against USC.  I cannot stand to watch another SEC dominated BCS Championship game and the Irish are all that stand between that matchup coming to fruition once more.

Miami became bowl eligible this past weekend and made the smart decision to self impose a ban for this season.  One just has to look at Ohio State to see why it was better to forego a bowl during a 6-5 season – you never know what the next season will bring.  I am sure those in charge at OSU are lamenting that decision now.

Your recap of bowl affiliations by conference:

Big Ten – 8 affiliations

Rose, Heart of Dallas, Outback, Gator, Capital One, Buffalo Wild Wings, Meineke Car Care and  Little Ceasars

ACC – 8 affiliations

Orange, Sun, Music City, Chick Fil A, Russell Athletic, Independence, Military and Belk

B12 – 7 affiliations

Fiesta, Cotton, Pinstripe, Buffalo Wild Wings, Alamo, Meineke Car Care and Holiday

Big East – 6 affiliations

BBVA Compass, Liberty*, Pin Stripe, Russell Athletic, Belk and Beef O’Brady’s

Conference USA – 6 affiliations

Heart of Dallas, Liberty*, Armed Forces, Hawaii, New Orleans and Beef O’Brady’s

MAC – 3 affiliations

Go Daddy, Little Caesars and Famous Idaho Potato

Mountain West – 5 affiliations

Armed Forces, Hawaii*, Las Vegas, Poinsettia and New Mexico

PAC 12 – 7 affiliations

Rose, Sun, Kraft Fight Hunger, Alamo, Holiday, Las Vegas and New Mexico

SEC – 10 affiliations

Sugar, BBVA Compass, Cotton, Outback, Gator, Capital One, Music City, Liberty*, Chik Fil A and Independence

Sun Belt – 2 affiliations

Go Daddy and New Orleans

WAC – 2 affiliations

Hawaii* and Famous Idaho Potato

At Large Bids – 5

BCS Championship, Fiesta, Sugar and Orange

Other Bids (Independent) – 3

Poinsettia (takes BYU eligible), Kraft Fight Hunger (takes Navy if eligible) and Military (takes Army if eligible)

* Liberty takes either CUSA or SEC team and Hawaii takes Mountain West or WAC team

In total, 35 bowl games meaning 70 slots that have to be filled by eligible teams.  Let us see how each conference fairs in terms of eligible teams.  The information below is broken down as follows: Eligible Teams (have 6 wins already) and On the Cusp (5 wins). I only have one teams left in the Still Have a Shot category.  I have also provided the remaining schedule beside each team listed under On the Cusp.

Big Ten

Eligible Teams:

Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern and Wisconsin

On the Cusp:

Michigan State (Minnesota)

Purdue (Indiana)


Purdue took care of business against Illinois and now just has to win against Indiana.  Michigan State lost another close one against Northwestern and is lucky that Minnesota is the last game on their schedule.  A lose to the Gophers will leave the Spartans at home.


Eligible Teams:

Clemson, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech and NC State

On the Cusp:

Wake Forest (Vanderbilt)

Virginia Tech (Virginia)


Both Georgia Tech and Miami became bowl eligible this week, but the administrators at Miami immediately took their program out of the post season.  Wake Forest and Virginia Tech still have  a shot on the last Saturday of the season, but neither game is easy.

Big 12

Eligible Teams:

Iowa State, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas, TCU and Texas Tech

On the Cusp:

West Virginia (Iowa State and Kansas)

Baylor (Texas Tech and Oklahoma State)


Baylor’s huge upset of Kansas State puts them in a good position to become bowl eligible.  They have two tough opponents, but as we saw this past Saturday, they can score and should be competitive.  West Virginia almost pulled out a victory against Oklahoma, but they can rest easy knowing Kansas is still on the schedule though it is shocking that they are still not eligible given how their season started.  Iowa State, on the other hand, reached six wins and is now bowl eligible.

Big East

Eligible Teams:

Cincinnati, Louisville, Rutgers and Syracuse

On the Cusp:


Still a Shot:

Pittsburgh (Rutgers and South Florida)


Look at Syracuse!  Following a big win against Louisville, they followed that up by defeating Missouri to become bowl eligible.  Pittsburgh was off, so I will keep them on the list, but they have a tough game this week.  If they can get past Rutgers, their chances look good against South Florida.

Conference USA

Eligible Teams:

UCF, East Carolina and Tulsa

On the Cusp:

SMU (Tulsa)

Rice (UTEP)

Marshall (East Carolina)


Rice beat SMU to set up a big game against UTEP – win that, and they likely go to a bowl game.  SMU has a tougher challenge against Tulsa this week.  Marshall beat Houston, knocking them out of bowl contention, but like SMU, have a tough test against East Carolina.  If all three can win this weekend, the C-USA will have six bowl eligible teams.


Eligible Teams:

BYU, Notre Dame and Navy

On the Cusp:



Nothing changed for the Independents – wait – scratch that.  Notre Dame easily took down Wake Forest and are now in line to reach the BCS Championship after Kansas State and Oregon lost.


Eligible Teams:

Ball State, Bowling Green, Kent State, Ohio, Northern Illinois and Toledo.

On the Cusp:

Central Michigan (Massachusetts)


Central Michigan took care of Miami (Ohio) and should become bowl eligible this weekend against UMass.  That will give the MAC seven bowl eligible teams.

Mountain West

Eligible Teams:

Air Force, Fresno State, San Diego State, Boise State, Nevada

On the Cusp:



Air Force obtained bowl eligibility by beating Hawaii become the 5thand final team from the MWC.

PAC 12

Eligible Teams:

Arizona, Arizona State, Oregon, Oregon State, Stanford, UCLA, USC and Washington

On the Cusp:



Arizona State is the last team to become eligible after Utah lost to Arizona.  That is eight eligible teams from the PAC-12.


Eligible Teams:

Alabama, Georgia, Florida, LSU, Mississippi State, South Carolina, Texas A&M and Vanderbilt

On the Cusp:

Mississippi (Mississippi State)

Missouri (Texas A&M)


Arkansas and Tennessee lost eliminating both schools from bowl contention.  Dooley was immediately fired and I think we can expect that John L. Smith will gone as well.  Mississippi and Missouri also lost, but they each have one game remaining.  I do not expect either to win, however, which would close the SEC with eight eligible teams.

Sun Belt

Eligible Teams:

Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, Middle Tennessee State and
Western Kentucky

On the Cusp:

Troy (Middle Tennessee State)


Louisiana-Lafayette became bowl eligible by beating Western Kentucky.  Troy did not win leaving them with one more chance to reach the post season.


Eligible Teams:

Utah State, Louisiana Tech, San Jose State

On the Cusp:



When it comes to bowl eligibility, the WAC is already set.

Final Analysis

Of the 70 slots available, 62 teams have already qualified.  I have a further 13 teams listed as On the Cusp.  There is still a good chance that there will be enough eligible teams available, though only Pittsburgh remains on my Still a Shot list.  Last week, I predicted that the following schools would become bowl eligible after the past weekend:

Air Force (Won)
Arizona State (Won)
Georgia Tech (Won)
Iowa State (Won)
Miami (Fla.) (Won)
Missouri (Lost)
SMU (Lost)

Five out of seven – not terrible.  With Miami taking a bowl ban this year, the remaining bowl games are itching to see more teams become eligible.  I believe the following teams will become bowl eligible this week:

Central Michigan
Michigan State
Virginia Tech

If correct, that would leave three spots still available to fill up all the bowl games.  Three teams play after this week: Pittsburgh (if they win this week), West Virginia and Baylor.  Only West Virginia looks like a sure thing.  As a result, if my predictions are accurate, there is the potential for a shortage of bowl eligible teams.  I will look at this further in next week’s edition.



November 19th, 2012 at 3:33 PM ^

Great post... what's interesting.. am I reading this correctly... a 6-5 Georgia Tech team is playing for an ACC championship?  They'll likely be 6-6, after this weekend. 

Clemson isn't too happy, although hey, you never know if they can get an extra BCS Bid.


November 19th, 2012 at 4:17 PM ^

Georgia Tech is in an unenviable position.  They play Georgia this week and then Florida State in the ACC Championship.  If they lose both, falling to 6-7, then technically they will not be bow eligible.  They will have to hope there are not enough bowl eligible teams.


November 19th, 2012 at 5:28 PM ^

I want to see ND lose, and have Bama, Florida, Oregon, KSU, ND, and Clemson all end up with one loss.  Then, of course, Bama and Florida will play for the "championship," and maybe, finally, everyone else in football will get pissed off enough to do something about the joke of a system they have right now.

 If it continues as planned, it will just be a beauty contest to find four teams instead of two.  If they can't make it champions only with eight teams, then I hope that today's expansion news is the beginning of a 4 X 16 major conference plan.