ACC Bowl Picture Clearing Up

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The Hokies have yet to play the ACC Championship Game, but if you want to go
ahead and start planning your New Year’s holiday trip, it appears Tech’s bowl
options are down to two. The Orange Bowl and the Music City Bowl are Tech’s most
likely bowl destinations this year.

Obviously, if Tech beats Boston College on Saturday, they’ll head to the
Orange Bowl. However, if they don’t win, the Music City Bowl looks like the
final destination.

This is how the ACC bowls are shaping up right now…

Chick-fil-A Bowl

The Chick-fil-A Bowl has invited hometown Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets
have a 2-0 record against SEC teams this year, including a big 45-42 win over
in-state rival Georgia on Saturday. Tech is playing better than any team in the
ACC right now, and probably matches up better against an SEC team moreso than
any other ACC school.

Right now, the likely opponent in the Chick-fil-A Bowl would be either LSU or
South Carolina.

Gator Bowl

The Gator Bowl has also made its move before the ACC Championship Game. The
Gator has invited the Clemson Tigers. Clemson won four of their last five games
under new head coach Dabo Swinney, and there is some excitement amongst the fan base
again. Jacksonville is also a very short trip for Tiger fans.

Reports indicate that the Tigers’ likely opponent in the Gator Bowl is
Nebraska. The Cornhuskers won five of their last six games, and finished 8-4
overall. They finished with a share of the Big 12 North championship.

Champs Sports Bowl

Assuming Georgia Tech and Clemson are off the board, the Champs Sports Bowl
would choose between Florida State and the loser of Boston College-Virginia
Tech. None of the major ACC bowls would choose Boston College because they don’t
have much of a traveling fanbase. Florida State would be an easy pick for the
Champs Sports Bowl, though they haven’t been officially extended the invitation
yet, which is interesting.

The opponent would be a Big Ten team. At this point, it appears it would be
either Wisconsin or Minnesota.

Music City Bowl

It looks like the Music City Bowl isn’t going to have an option. ACC rules
state that if the loser of the ACC Championship Game is still available, the
Music City Bowl must pick them. Thus, it looks like either Boston College or
Virginia Tech will be heading to Nashville for New Year’s.

In all likelihood, the Music City Bowl officials are pulling for BC to beat
Tech on Saturday. The likely SEC opponent is Vanderbilt. Boston College vs.
Vanderbilt isn’t an appealing matchup, and the Hokies would bring a lot more
fans than the Eagles.

Meineke Car Care Bowl

On Tuesday afternoon, it was reported by the Raleigh Observer that North
Carolina will accept a bid to the Meineke Car Care Bowl in Charlotte. That is a
perfect fit for the Tar Heels. They will have a nice homefield advantage in
their bowl game.

North Carolina will face a Big East team in this game. Right now that team
appears to be West Virginia.

Emerald Bowl

Miami would be a good pick for the Emerald Bowl in San Francisco. They would
be a nice television draw, and though they won’t bring many fans, no ACC school
would take very many fans all the way to the West Coast.

A possible opponent for the Hurricanes could be the Cal Golden Bears.

Eagle Bank Bowl

Navy has already accepted a bid to the Eagle Bank Bowl in Washington, D.C.
The natural opponent for the Midshipmen would be the Maryland Terrapins.
However, the pre-Christmas date conflicts with Maryland’s exam schedule. As of
Thursday morning, it looks like Wake Forest could be heading to the Eagle Bank
Bowl.

Wake would face Navy for the second time this year. The Midshipmen upset the
Demon Deacons in Winston-Salem earlier this season.

Humanitarian Bowl

Who is the lucky team to go to Boise this year? It looks like it could be
Maryland right now, and they’d take on high-powered Boise State. The Broncos are
undefeated this year. They would be a tremendous challenge for the Terps.

The Humanitarian Bowl originally wanted a matchup between two undefeated
teams: Ball State and Boise State. However, they weren’t able to accomplish that
goal.

NC State

Since NC State didn’t finish with a winning record, they can’t be chosen
ahead of any other ACC team for the conference’s nine bowl tie-ins. They’ll have
to look elsewhere to find a bid. As of now, possibilities include the Motor City
Bowl, the Texas Bowl and the PapaJohns.com Bowl.

Possible Opponents for the Hokies

Assuming the Hokies are either going to the Orange Bowl or the Music City
Bowl, their possible opponents are limited. The Orange Bowl gets the last pick
of all the BCS bowls this year, so they seem destined to end up with Cincinnati.
Thus, if the Hokies beat BC on Saturday, their likely bowl opponent will be the
Cincinnati Bearcats.

If Tech loses to the Eagles, it looks like they are headed for Nashville. The
two names from the SEC that are being thrown around for the Music City Bowl are
Vanderbilt and Kentucky. Right now, more people believe the hometown Commodores
will end up in the Music City Bowl.

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