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Florida State football: Early 2013 bowl projection

Kevin C. Cox

It's never too early for some bowl projections, right? SB Nation has some early guesses.

National Championship? Alabama and Oregon.

Orange Bowl? Clemson and Louisville.

The SEC gets two, the Big XII gets two, the Pac-12 gets two, while the Big Ten, the ACC, and the AAC (Big East in its final year) each get one.

Eight ACC teams make bowls (Wake Forest, Maryland, Duke, Virginia do not).

Florida State goes to the Russel Athletic Bowl (Champs) in Orlando against Cincinnati.

I don't agree with that. ACC rules stipulate that the loser of the ACC Championship Game (in this case, Miami) cannot fall below he No. 4 bowl, which happens to be the Sun Bowl, in El Paso, Tx.. In this example, Miami goes to the Chick-Fil-A Bowl, to face South Carolina.

There's little chance that happens. Bowl are about ticket sales, ratings, and boosting the local economy. While Miami projects to have its best team in a while (19 returning starters), and there would be excitement over returning to a bowl for the first time since 2010, it still has an e-fanbase. That is, it's internet only. Miami's attendance is a running joke, and even its own fans acknowledge the problem. Traveling? Forget about it, particularly if the fanbase has already been asked to travel to Charlotte three weeks prior for the ACC Title Game, which in this scenario, would have been a loss.

Florida State, on the other hand, has a huge alumni base in Atlanta, travels quite well to bowls, and seems to set ratings highs in almost every bowl it plays. The slight downside of a rematch with South Carolina is outweighed by the large disparity in dollars for the bowl and the city of Atlanta. Plus, the "rematch" is of a game played three seasons ago, and the rosters are about 80-percent different now. At worse, the Chick-Fil-A bowl could swap South Carolina out for Ole Miss, or similar.

If Clemson wins the ACC, and Miami loses the ACC Title Game, I'd be willing to bet the Hurricanes get sent to Orlando, while FSU heads to Atlanta.