College Football bowl season is officially here! On Sunday, the final rankings were revealed and bowls began announcing their respective teams.
In preparation for the most exciting part of the college football season, let’s take a look at 20 things you should know for this upcoming bowl season.
But first, the most important thing you should know is the exciting news that MikeDropSports will be part of a Bowl Picking extravaganza! I will be picking bowl winners (more accurately) than guys who are as knowledgeable, if not more, than I am when it comes to college football. This exciting collab will include Andre Cherry of the CherryPickin Podcast David Creekmur and Sean Plichta from D&S Sports Talk and Dom LaNave and Alex Brannam from The Dom and Thunder Show. There will also be an additional collaboration presenting some details and background of each bowl game.
Now onto, the 20 things to know:
Alabama has made the playoffs in all five years since its origination. Clemson has made it each of the last four. Oklahoma is in it for the third time and Notre Dame for the first time.
Notre Dame is the first non-Nike sponsored Playoff team (Under Armour)
Alabama has the most bowl wins (40) of all-time and second most losses (25) though, the most of 2018 bowl teams (Nebraska has 27 losses)
3 bowls will feature conference champ vs conference champ – Orange Bowl – SEC champion Alabama vs Big 12 champion Oklahoma; Rose Bowl – Pac-12 champion Washington vs Big Ten champion Ohio State; Boca Raton Bowl – C-USA champion UAB vs MAC champion Northern Illinois
2019 Rose Bowl Game will be the first time the Pac-12 champion faces the Big Ten champion in the game since 2011.
Holiday Bowl is the anti-Rose Bowl, featuring Big Ten and Pac-12 title game runner ups – Northwestern vs Utah.
Four bowl eligible teams (6-6) did not receive bowl invites – Louisiana-Monroe, Southern Mississippi, Wyoming, Miami (Ohio). Of those teams, ULM has never won a bowl and has the second longest bowl appearance drought (2012).
Kansas has the longest active bowl drought, they haven’t won at least 6 games since 2008. After ULM in 2012, the next longest drought is 2013 and includes Oregon State, UNLV, Ball State, Kent State.
Ball State is 0-7 all-time in bowl games, the worst active record among FBS teams
Buffalo, who finished 10-3 losing the MAC title game, will appear in their first bowl game since 2013, when they face Troy in the Dollar General Bowl.
Of the teams participating in 2018 bowl games, only UAB and Buffalo have never won a bowl game. UAB is 0-2 – their three bowl appearances include Hawaii, Bahamas, and now Boca Raton. Whose better than them? Buffalo, meanwhile, has played in Canada, Boise, and now Mobile, Alabama. Not as much fun as UAB.
Cincinnati (10-2) qualified for their first bowl game since 2015. They face Virginia Tech in the Military Bowl, who they lost to in the same game in 2014. This is the third time in 11 years these two teams have been matched up (VT also won the 2008 Orange Bowl) and 4th bowl all-time (Cincinnati won the 1946 Sun Bowl)
Virginia Tech’s 26 year bowl streak is now the nation’s longest active streak. Florida State finished 5-7, snapping their 36 year bowl streak.
Boise State’s appearance in the First Responder Bowl vs Boston College, will be the school’s 17th consecutive season bowling, by far the longest active streak among Group of 5 teams.
Five teams have never qualified for a bowl game – Texas State, Coastal Carolina, UMass, Liberty, Charlotte.
Appalachian State won the first ever Sun Belt title game and will face Middle Tennessee (C-USA title runner ups) in the New Orleans bowl. Appalachian State is 3-0, winning bowl games each of the last three years (one of two teams to be 3-0, with FAU the other).
Of non-undefeated teams, Marshall has the highest bowl game winning percentage (11-2). They face USF in the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl.
Louisiana will face Tulane in the Cure Bowl. This will be Louisiana’s first bowl game outside of the New Orleans Bowl, where they previously made their only 5 bowl appearances.
Miami faces Wisconsin in the Pinstripe Bowl, which is a rematch of last year’s Orange Bowl. This will be the third time these teams have met in a bowl game since 2009. Over that time, Miami has played fellow ACC foe Wake Forest only once.
Texas will face Georgia in the Sugar Bowl. Ironically, Georgia has never faced Texas A&M (Texas’ ex-rival), since the Aggies joined the SEC 7 years ago. It’s interesting to see Texas play Georgia before Texas A&M does.