Five bowls are credentialed to attend Saturday’s
Indeed, it’s been a peculiar year not only in the
The glut of postseason events — 35, most instantly forgettable — and dearth of eligible teams likely will mean bids for every 6-6 squad and, perhaps a 6-7, or even a few 5-7s, the latter based on Academic Progress Rates.
Blame parity. Blame
Four otherwise eligible programs, the ACC’s
So if the Hokies, who have reached postseason 19 consecutive years, beat Virginia to gain the sixth victory needed for eligibility, where might they head? And what of the outside chance of them qualifying at 5-7?
"I think it's impossible," Tech athletic director Jim Weaver said of handicapping the Hokies' possible postseason destination.
Ah, but we must try.
The five bowls scouting Saturday’s game are Atlanta’s Chick-fil-A, Orlando’s Russell Athletic, El Paso’s Sun, Charlotte’s Belk and
Five conference teams —
So let's go in pecking order:
* Orange (Jan. 1, 8 p.m.): The winner of the Florida State-Georgia Tech ACC championship game Dec. 1 heads to South Beach. Suffice to say, bowl and television suits prefer the
* Chick-fil-A (Dec. 31, 7:30 p.m., vs.
At 7-5 with a victory over
* Russell Athletic (Dec. 28, 5:30 p.m., vs.
* Sun (Dec. 31, 2 p.m., vs.
Given Virginia Tech's disappointing record, few fans figure to travel in postseason regardless, so El Paso might not be all bad, especially if the Pac-12 opponent were Southern California.
* Belk (Dec. 27, 5:30 p.m., vs. Big East): Given Duke's small fan base, Charlotte is the Blue Devils' most convenient destination. If Duke beats Miami and goes earlier, Virginia Tech could land here.
* Music City (Dec. 31, noon, vs. SEC): The Hokies played in the inaugural game, routing
* Independence (Dec. 28, 2 p.m., vs SEC): Unless Wake Forest and Virginia Tech win, and the BCS passes on Clemson, the ACC will be unable to fill this slot. The Deacons would be the most likely team here.
* Military (Dec. 27, 3 p.m., vs. service academy): Barring the bowl chaos described below, no ACC representative will be available.
Chaos ensues if 70 teams aren't eligible by the usual standards. Thus far, 62 have cleared the low bar, with more than a dozen capable of joining them.
If eight more squads don’t qualify, the NCAA will consider 5-7 teams with the highest Academic Progress Rates. The possible 5-7s with the best APRs are Rice, Wake Forest, Missouri, Virginia Tech and
If the Hokies backdoor into postseason this way, there's no telling where they'd play.
And just remember this when bowl forecasting: After Tech lost last season’s ACC championship game to Clemson, neither Weaver nor coach
Happy Thanksgiving, y'all!
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