'Bowl Projections' — Herd on hold

Leave a comment

With one more week remaining in college football’s regular season, here are CFT’s 2009-10 bowl projections.

Click HERE for a “who’s who” of bowl eligibility.

Right now it looks like Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe and UCLA will be the 6-6 teams left out in the cold … unless Notre Dame decides not to go bowling.

Mark Snyder-less Marshall is good ol’ No. 68, otherwise known as “bowl team in waiting.”

Bowl Championship Series Title Game

January 7 — Pasadena, Calif.

BCS No. 1 vs. BCS No. 2

Projection: Alabama vs. Texas

BCS — Orange Bowl

January 5 — Miami Gardens, Fla.

BCS vs. BCS (ACC champion if available)

Projection: Georgia Tech vs. TCU

BCS — Fiesta Bowl

January 4 — Glendale, Ariz.

BCS vs. BCS (Big 12 champion if available)

Projection: Boise State vs. Penn State

BCS — Sugar Bowl

January 1 — New Orleans

BCS vs. BCS (SEC champion if available)

Projection: Florida vs. Cincinnati

BCS — Rose Bowl

January 1 — Pasadena, Calif.

BCS (Big Ten champion if available) vs. BCS (Pac 10 champion if available)

Projection: Ohio State vs. Oregon


January 6 — Mobile, Ala.

ACC No. 9 vs. MAC No. 2

Projection: Middle Tennessee* vs. Ohio

(* no eligible ACC team available)

Alamo Bowl

January 2 — San Antonio

Big Ten No. 4-5 vs. Big 12 No. 4-5

Projection: Michigan State vs. Texas Tech

Papajohns.com Bowl

January 2 — Birmingham, Ala.

Big East No. 5 (or Sun Belt if none eligible) vs. SEC No. 9

Projection: South Florida vs. Kentucky

Cotton Bowl

January 2 — Arlington, Texas

Big 12 No. 2 vs. SEC No. 3-4

Projection: Oklahoma State vs. Tennessee (an “Orange Bowl” of sorts)

International Bowl

January 2 — Toronto

Big East No. 4 vs. MAC No. 3

Projection: Rutgers vs. Temple (Owls seek revenge for getting booted from Big East)

Liberty Bowl

January 2 — Memphis, Tenn.

C-USA No. 1 vs. SEC No. 6-7

Projection: Houston vs. Arkansas

Gator Bowl

January 1 — Jacksonville, Fla.

ACC No. 3 vs. Big East No. 2, Big 12 No. 4, or Notre Dame

Projection: Miami (Fla.) vs. West Virginia

Capital One Bowl

January 1 — Orlando, Fla.

Big Ten No. 2 vs. SEC No. 2

Projection: Iowa vs. LSU

Outback Bowl

January 1 — Tampa, Fla.

Big Ten No. 3 vs. SEC No. 3-4

Projection: Wisconsin vs. Mississippi

Chick-fil-A Bowl

December 31 — Atlanta

ACC No. 2 vs. SEC No. 5

Projection: Virginia Tech vs. Georgia

Insight Bowl

December 31 — Tempe, Ariz.

Big Ten No. 6 vs. Big 12 No. 6

Projection: Minnesota vs. Missouri

Sun Bowl

December 31 — El Paso, Texas

Pac 10 No. 3 vs. Big East No. 2, Big 12 No. 5 or Notre Dame

Projection: California vs. Oklahoma

Armed Forces Bowl

December 31 — Fort Worth, Texas

Mountain West No. 3-4 vs. C-USA No. 3

Projection: Air Force vs. East Carolina

Texas Bowl

December 30 — Houston

Big 12 No. 8
vs. C-USA No. 7 or Navy

< p>Projection: Iowa State vs. Navy (accepted bid)

Humanitarian Bowl

December 30 — Boise, Idaho

Mountain West No. 5 vs. WAC

Projection: Bowling Green* vs. Idaho

(* no eligible MWC team available)

Holiday Bowl

December 30 — San Diego

Big 12 No. 3 vs. Pac 10 No. 2

Projection: Nebraska vs. USC

EagleBank Bowl

December 30 — Washington D.C.

ACC No. 8 or MAC No. 4 vs. C-USA No. 6 or Army

Projection: Northern Illinois vs. Marshall (or Army if it defeats Navy on Dec. 12)

Champs Sports Bowl

December 29 — Orlando, Fla.

ACC No. 4 vs. Big Ten No. 4-5

Projection: Clemson vs. Northwestern

Independence Bowl

December 28 — Shreveport, La.

Big 12 No. 7 vs. SEC No. 8 (or Sun Belt if none eligible)

Projection: Texas A&M vs. Auburn

Music City Bowl

December 27 — Nashville, Tenn.

ACC No. 5 vs. SEC No. 6-7

Projection: North Carolina vs. South Carolina (“Carolina Bowl” should be an annual thing)

Little Caesars Pizza Bowl

December 26 — Detroit

Big Ten No. 7 vs. MAC No. 1

Projection: Notre Dame* (if Irish decide they need 15 extra practices) vs. Central Michigan

(* no eligible Big Ten team available)

Meineke Car Care Bowl

December 26 — Charlotte, N.C.

ACC No. 6 vs. Big East No. 3

Projection: Florida State vs. Pittsburgh

Emerald Bowl

December 26 — San Francisco

ACC No. 7 vs. Pac 10 No. 4-5

Projection: Boston College vs. Stanford

Hawai’i Bowl

December 24 — Honolulu

C-USA No. 2 vs. WAC

Projection: SMU vs. Nevada

Poinsettia Bowl

December 23 — San Diego

Mountain West No. 2 vs. Pac 10 No. 6 (or WAC if none eligible)

Projection: Brigham Young vs. Arizona


December 22 — Las Vegas

Mountain West No. 1 vs. Pac 10 No. 4-5

Projection: Utah vs. Oregon State (BYU can’t play in Vegas for fifth consecutive year)

New Orleans Bowl

December 20 — New Orleans

C-USA No. 4 vs. Sun Belt champion

Projection: Southern Miss vs. Troy (accepted bid)

St. Petersburg Bowl

December 19 — St. Petersburg, Fla.

Big East No. 6 (or Sun Belt if none eligible) vs. C-USA No. 5

Projection: Connecticut  vs. Central Florida

New Mexico Bowl

December 19 — Albuquerque

Mountain West No. 3-4 vs. WAC

Projection: Wyoming vs. Fresno State

Bud Foster says he is too invested in Virginia Tech to leave Hokies

Bud Foster

For years there was a thought that Virginia Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster would one day be the successor to longtime head coach Frank Beamer. With Beamer announcing his decision to retire at the end of the season, there was never any word about Foster being handed the keys to the program. Instead, Virginia Tech has found a coach with an offensive identity in the hiring of Justin Fuente from Memphis. Given the way coaching changes can tend to go, nobody would have blamed Foster for being a tad miffed at not getting the job in Blacksburg, but he will remain the defensive coordinator of the Hokies as a key member of Fuente’s new staff. He says he has put in too much work to leave now.

“I’m rooted in here. We put a lot of blood, sweat and tears in this place,” Foster said Monday. “It wasn’t hard. I wouldn’t have stayed here for as long as I’ve had if I didn’t feel like we had the opportunity to win at the highest level. I feel that more than ever right now.”

Fuente being able to keep Foster on the staff is a huge advantage. Foster not only ensures Fuente will have a dependable coach managing the defense, which should remain one of the top defensive units in the ACC as long as he stays put. Keeping Foster on the staff also allows for some tremendous stability during the transition, which can always be key when a coach with no previous ties to the university takes over a program. Foster can help Fuente get acclimated to his new surroundings and also keep valuable recruiting ties alive and well during the change.

Foster acknowledged he would love to one day be a head coach, and that dream will continue, but for now he is more interested in contributing at Virginia Tech.

“I always wanted to be a head coach. This would be a dream job. I’m happy with where I am. I’ll never be bitter. I won’t cry myself to sleep wishing “what-ifs” and they type of thing. My goal is to be the best football coach I can possibly be. I want to help this program be the best football program it can possibly be.”

Maryland wasting no time getting in touch with Mark Richt

Mark Richt

On Monday morning Georgia head coach Mark Richt said he was absolutely going to continue coaching even though his days at Georgia are coming to an end. If that is the case, Maryland would like to make that a reality for Richt.

According to a report from Inside MD Sports, Maryland has made first contact with Richt and a meeting could come as soon as tomorrow. Maryland is looking to fill a head coaching vacancy after firing Randy Edsall during the season. Richt will not be the only potential candidate to interview for the Maryland job. The Washington Post reported Monday interim head coach Mike Locksley was also given a chance to interview for the job on a permanent basis. That interview was reportedly set to happen Monday.

It would make sense for Maryland to make a call to Richt. With Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank looking to help build the Maryland program, there are sufficient funds to make a splashy hire for the program, which is showing signs of a well-structured future with plans to improve the football program. The Maryland job has some good potential in the long-term and competes in the same division as some tough opponents. That would include at least two coaches Richt is very familiar with; Ohio State’s Urban Meyer and Penn State’s James Franklin. Richt faced Meyer when the Buckeyes head coach was at Florida, and Franklin of course coached at Vanderbilt. All three were in the same SEC East Division down south. Could they be reunited in the Big Ten East in 2016?

Whatever the case may be, if Maryland can land Richt as its next head coach, it would be a tremendous hire for the Terrapins. Heck, he already has the attire for it.

Unlike Missouri, 5-7 Nebraska will jump at opportunity to go bowling

Cethan Carter

Nebraska will be first in line to accept a bowl invitation when it arrives in the mail, despite going 5-7 this season. The Huskers, who are first in line among 5-7 candidates based on APR scores, will reportedly accept a bowl invitation to fill the first vacancy left to fill once all bowl-eligible teams are slotted into the postseason mix.

Missouri released a statement earlier today saying it will not accept a bowl invitation following a 5-7 season. The Tigers would have been the second team among 5-7 teams to receive a bowl invitation based on APR scores. According to a report by Brett McMurphy of ESPN.com, Kansas State would be next in line, followed by Minnesota, San Jose State, Illinois and Rice.

Missouri and Nebraska would appear to have different agendas of course. Nebraska is coming off the first season under new head coach Mike Riley, while Missouri is in the midst of a full coaching search. The decision not to go to a bowl game allows Missouri’s coaching staff in place under the now retired Gary Pinkel to pursue new opportunities without having bowl preparations get in the way.

Maryland sack master Yannick Ngakoue entering NFL Draft

Yannick Ngakoue, Christian Hackenberg

Maryland will have a new head coach in 2016. Whoever that head coach ends up being will have to find a way to replace one of Maryland’s best players. Defensive lineman Yannick Ngakoue says he will skip his final year of eligibility with the Terrapins and declare for the 2016 NFL Draft.

Ngakoue was the second in the Big Ten with 13.0 sacks this season, trailing only Penn State defensive lineman Carl Nassib. Ngakoue’s sack total is a Maryland school record and was one of the few reasons for optimism for Maryland’s dreadful football season, which ended with just three wins.