Sunday brought the announcement of this year’s 41 bowl matchups and below is the full schedule from the Cure Bowl on December 19th to the College Football Playoff Championship on January 11th. Here’s the full bowl schedule.
College Football Playoff
|Goodyear Cotton Bowl||Arlington, TX||12/31/2015 8PM||Alabama vs Michigan State|
|Capital One Orange Bowl||Miami Gardens, FL||12/31/2015 4 PM||Oklahoma vs Clemson|
|National Championship||Glendale, AZ||1/11/2016 8:30 PM||TBD|
The Top 4 brought no real surprises, though there was some debate over where Michigan State and Oklahoma would end up. In the end, we got Alabama against Michigan State and Clemson against Oklahoma. Clemson, as the #1 seed, gets geographic priority and will play in the Orange Bowl, which leaves Alabama and Michigan State to travel to Dallas for the Cotton Bowl.
New Year’s Six Bowls
|Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl||Atlanta, GA||12/31/15 12 PM||Florida State vs Houston|
|Fiesta Bowl||Glendale, AZ||1/1/16 1 PM||Ohio State vs Notre Dame|
|Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual||Pasadena, CA||1/1/16 5 PM||Iowa vs Stanford|
|Allstate Sugar Bowl||New Orleans, LA||1/1/16 8:30 PM||Ole Miss vs Oklahoma State|
The Sugar Bowl is locked in between the Big 12 second-place team and the No. 2 SEC team according to the selection committee. Oklahoma State gets that Big 12 spot and Ole Miss is the second-highest SEC team according to the committee.
Stanford is in the Rose Bowl by dint of winning the Pac 12. The Rose Bowl got their choice of Big Ten teams, and they went with Iowa as the highest-ranked one.
The final four slots are Houston (the highest-ranked Group of 5 champion) and the top three at-larges: Ohio State, Notre Dame, and Florida State. The committee kept Florida State close to home and brought us a 7 vs 8 matchup of Ohio State vs Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl. Houston is going to the Peach Bowl as the final team that is required to play in an NY6 bowl.
All Other Bowl Games
|Bowl||City||Date & Time (EST)||Teams|
|AutoNation Cure Bowl||Orlando, FL||12/19/15 12 PM||San Jose State* vs Georgia State|
|Gildan New Mexico Bowl||Albuquerque, NM||12/19/15 2 PM||New Mexico vs Arizona|
|Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl||Las Vegas, NV||12/19/15 3:30 PM||Utah vs BYU|
|Raycom Media Camellia Bowl||Montgomery, AL||12/19/15 5:30 PM||Ohio vs Appalachian State|
|R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl||New Orleans, LA||12/19/15 9 PM||Louisiana Tech vs Arkansas State|
|Miami Beach Bowl||Miami, FL||12/21/15 2:30 PM||South Florida vs Western Kentucky|
|Famous Idaho Potato Bowl||Boise, ID||12/22/15 3:30 PM||Utah State vs Akron|
|Boca Raton Bowl||Boca Raton, FL||12/22/15 7 PM||Temple vs Toledo|
|San Diego CU Poinsettia Bowl||San Diego, CA||12/23/15 4:30 PM||Boise State vs Northern Illinois|
|GoDaddy Bowl||Mobile, AL||12/23/15 8 PM||Bowling Green vs Georgia Southern|
|Popeyes Bahamas Bowl||Nassau, Bahamas||12/24/15 12 PM||Middle Tennessee vs Western Michigan|
|Hawai’i Bowl||Honolulu, HI||12/24/15 8 PM||San Diego State vs Cincinnati|
|St. Petersburg Bowl||St. Petersburg, FL||12/26/15 11 AM||Connecticut vs Marshall|
|Hyundai Sun Bowl||El Paso, TX||12/26/15 2 PM||Miami (Fl) vs Washington State|
|Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl||Dallas, TX||12/26/15 2:20 PM||Washington vs Southern Miss|
|New Era Pinstripe Bowl||New York, NY||12/26/15 3:30 PM||Duke vs Indiana|
|Camping World Independence Bowl||Shreveport, LA||12/26/15 5:45 PM||Virginia Tech vs Tulsa|
|Foster Farms Bowl||Santa Clara, CA||12/26/15 9:15 PM||Nebraska* vs UCLA|
|Military Bowl||Annapolis, MD||12/28/15 2:30 PM||Navy vs Pittsburgh|
|Quick Lane Bowl||Detroit, MI||12/28/15 5 PM||Central Michigan vs Minnesota*|
|Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl||Fort Worth, TX||12/29/15 2 PM||California vs Air Force|
|Russell Athletic Bowl||Orlando, FL||12/29/15 5:30 PM||North Carolina vs Baylor|
|Nova Home Loans Arizona Bowl||Tucson, AZ||12/29/15 7:30 PM||Colorado State vs Nevada|
|Advocare V100 Texas Bowl||Houston, TX||12/29/15 9 PM||Texas Tech vs LSU|
|Birmingham Bowl||Birmingham, AL||12/30/15 12 PM||Memphis vs Auburn|
|Belk Bowl||Charlotte, NC||12/30/15 3:30 PM||NC State vs Mississippi State|
|Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl||Nashville, TN||12/30/15 7 PM||Louisville vs Texas A&M|
|National University Holiday Bowl||San Diego, CA||12/30/15 10:30 PM||Wisconsin vs USC|
|Outback Bowl||Tampa, FL||1/1/16 12 PM||Northwestern vs Tennessee|
|Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl||Orlando, FL||1/1/16 1 PM||Michigan vs Florida|
|TaxSlayer Bowl||Jacksonville, FL||1/2/16 12 PM||Penn State vs Georgia|
|Autozone Liberty Bowl||Memphis, TN||1/2/16 3:20 PM||Kansas State vs Arkansas|
|Valero Alamo Bowl||San Antonio, TX||1/2/16 6:45 PM||TCU vs Oregon|
|Motel 6 Cactus Bowl||Phoenix, AZ||1/2/16 10:15 PM||West Virginia vs Arizona State|
*- Denotes team with 5-7 ranking who was selected based on APR order.
There are a few bowls that I am sure that bowl execs were drooling over, and national fans should be too.
Let’s start with the biggest one: We’re getting a Holy War in the Las Vegas Bowl.
We will see a pair of blue bloods in the Citrus Bowl with Michigan vs Florida. We might even get a classic game out of this if the Gators can figure out their offense during the bowl practices.
One of the best non-NY6 bowl games will be the Alamo Bowl, where we will get two high-powered offenses and Top 15 teams.
Two matchups of Group of 5 teams to keep an eye on are the Boca Raton Bowl and GoDaddy Bowl. The Boca Raton Bowl between Toledo and Temple will feature two teams who were ranked late in the season and the winner probably earns a year-end Top 25 ranking, something big for each of these programs. Georgia Southern and Bowling Green are two of the most potent G5 offenses and should put on a show in the GoDaddy Bowl.
The full bowl schedule contains many other compelling matchups, including Tennessee vs Northwestern in the Outback Bowl. This is a matchup of two teams trending in the right direction and Northwestern could earn one of their highest rankings in school history with a win.
And, of course, we have to point out the worst of the bowl season. Due to unfortunate timing and selection of at-large teams, the Arizona Bowl is stuck with an intra-MWC matchup of Colorado State and Nevada. Ouch.
(Note: The Arizona Bowl matchup had not been officially announced at the time of publishing. However, Colorado State and Nevada are the only two bowl-eligible teams remaining who are not in any other bowl.)