Announced earlier this year and expected to commence in 2014, the so-called Champions Bowl is still searching for the location of the inaugural game that will pit the champions of the SEC and Pac-12 (maybe) in a game similar to the Rose Bowl.
According to at least one report, the list of potential host cities has been whittled down to a select couple of few.
ESPN.com‘s Brett McMurphy tweeted earlier today that the Champions Bowl has sent out RFPs (Requests for Proposal) to a total of 10 cities scattered out across the Southeast and Southwest. Six of those cities are in what would be considered SEC territory — Atlanta, Jacksonville, Nashville, New Orleans, Orlando and Tampa; three are in the Big 12’s footprint — Dallas, Phoenix and San Antonio; and one, Houston, that could be considered both given Texas A&M’s move from the Big 12 to the SEC.
Among those cities, Dallas is considered the early front-runner. When a host city for the 2015 game (played after the 2014 regular season) is unknown.
The Champions Bowl — or whatever name it ultimately officially adopts — is one of three bowls that have been guaranteed access on a rotational basis in the new playoff system, which will commence in earnest following the 2014 regular season. The other two bowls guaranteed a rotational spot are the Rose and Orange.
The Capital One, Chick-fil-A, Cotton, Fiesta and Sugar Bowls, among others, will be in the running for what’s being described as “access bowls” in the six-bowl rotation.