In this installment of the Roberts Poll, we dig into the big question for half of the MAC: who is going to which bowl? Bear in mind that these are projections, not official bowl bids. We used the Roberts Poll and this SB Nation article on bowl tie-ins to determine reasonable pairings. We intentionally avoided same-conference games and games that previously occurred in the season.
If you are unfamiliar with the Roberts Poll, you are missing out. This is the formula we use to rank the teams. It basically comes down to a mathematical formula that takes the quality of a win or loss and combines it with margin of victory to assign a team points.
This year, six MAC teams have already secured bowl eligibility, with two more on the cusp of sealing it in the next two weeks. Miami-Ohio Redhawks need to win their last two games, which the Roberts Poll predicts is going to happen. Additionally, the Buffalo Bulls need to win their last two games to earn a possible bowl berth, but the Roberts Poll suggests they should not hold their breath.
Five of the six teams attending bowls have the added benefit of traveling to a much warmer climate. Based on teams that have already secured bowl eligibilty, this is what the bowl picture will look like for the MAC teams:
AutoNation Cure Bowl
Akron Zips vs Arkansas State Red Wolves
Raycom Media Camellia Bowl
Northern Illinois Huskies vs Appalachian St. Mountaineers
Popeyes Bahamas Bowl
Ohio University Bobcats vs Marshall Thundering Herd
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
Toledo Rockets vs Fresno State Bulldogs
Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl
Fort Worth, TX
Central Michigan Chippewas vs Colorado Buffaloes
Dollar General Bowl
Western Michigan Broncos vs Georgia State Panthers
Of these six bowl games, the Roberts Poll predicts four victories based on the overall strength of the MAC this year. Northern Illinois, Ohio, Toledo, and Western Michigan are expected to beat their respective opponents. Because each game was hand-paired with comparable teams, each bowl game ought to be a thriller.
College Football Playoff:
Adjusting for the Miami (FL) being a game behind because of hurricanes, we adjusted their score and determined that they would be CFP-eligible. Alabama, Wisconsin, and Georgia make up the remaining three teams.
CFP Semifinal at the Rose Bowl Game
#2 Wisconsin Badgers vs #3 Georgia Bulldogs
CFP Semifinal at the Allstate Sugar Bowl
New Orleans, LA
#1 Alabama Crimson Tide vs #4 Miami-Florida Hurricanes
According to Roberts Poll points, Alabama and Wisconsin will meet in the CFP National Championship Game, with the Crimson Tide earning the final win.
CFP National Championship Game
#1 Alabama vs #2 Wisconsin
None of the MAC schools are projected to make it into the elite New Year’s Six games this year. It is worth mentioning that both the Army Black Knights and UCF Knights made it the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl and Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, respectively.
Some other noteworthy games include the Foster Farms Bowl, which features the Minnesota Golden Gophers taking on the similarly-colored Arizona State Sun Devils. This year’s Texas Bowl is projected to include the Texas Longhorns and the Texas A&M Aggies. Personally I find this funny, because there will be a 100% certainty to hear “Deep in the Heart of Texas”. The UCLA Bruins will face the bitter Detroit cold in the Quick Lane Bowl against the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders in another fun match-up.
2017-18 Bowl Projections
|Dec 16||Las Vegas||Wyoming||Utah|
|Dec 16||R + L Carriers New Orleans||Florida Int.||Utah State|
|Dec 16||Gildan New Mexico||Air Force||UTSA|
|Dec 19||Boca Raton||SMU||Southern Miss|
|Dec 20||Frisco||North Texas||Colorado State|
|Dec 21||Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla||UAB||Navy|
|Dec 23||Birmingham||Houston||Ole Miss|
|Dec 24||Hawai'i||Boise State||South Florida|
|Dec 26||Cactus||Iowa State||California|
|Dec 26||Quick Lane||UCLA||Mid Tenn State|
|Dec 26||Zaxby's Heart of Dallas||Florida Atlantic||Kansas State|
|Dec 27||Texas||Texas A&M||Texas|
|Dec 27||New Era Pinstripe||Iowa||Boston College|
|Dec 27||Foster Farms||Minnesota||Arizona State|
|Dec 27||Walk-On's Independence||Missouri||Texas Tech|
|Dec 28||Camping World||Oklahoma State||Georgia Tech|
|Dec 28||Valero Alamo||Washington||West Virginia|
|Dec 28||SDCCU Holiday||Arizona||Michigan State|
|Dec 29||Goodyear Cotton||Washington St||Notre Dame|
|Dec 29||Franklin American Mortgage Music City||Northwestern||NC State|
|Dec 29||Belk||Kentucky||Wake Forest|
|Dec 29||Hyundai Sun||Stanford||Louisvile|
|Dec 29||NOVA Home Loans Arizona||San Diego State||Troy|
|Dec 30||Capital One Orange||Penn State||Virginia Tech|
|Dec 30||PlayStation Fiesta||USC||Army|
|Dec 30||AutoZone Liberty||TCU||South Carolina|
|Jan 1||Chick-fil-A Peach||Oklahoma||UCF|
|Jan 1||Citrus||Ohio State||Auburn|
|Jan 1||Outback||Clemson||Mississippi State|
Who do you think will win these bowl match-ups? Comment below to lock in your answer before the schedule changes again next week!