Buffalo is a one point dog to Bowling Green depending on the result of that game UB will be either a #1/2 seed in the conference or the #5 seed in the MAC. Of course if NIU gets into a BCS bowl game that would mean those four bowl games would go to the second through fifth selections in the conference.
For those of you who don't know how these things typically work, like the athletic director of Louisiana Tech, here is the deal.
It's horse trading...
Conference and Bowls have agreements as to where their teams go but those are more guidelines than rules. The reason Buffalo went to the third seeded MAC bowl in 2008 despite being the conference champion.At the time the International Bowl, the Bulls, and the MAC all wanted UB in that particular bowl game.
This season the MAC has four guaranteed bowls. They Pizza Bowl,the GMAC Bowl, the Potato bowl, and the Poinsettia Bowl (the MAC is a backup for Army)
If NIU does not make a BCS bowl the only two MAC teams guaranteed a bowl are the Huskies and whoever wins the east. The other two contracted games will pick the MAC teams they want between Toledo, Ball State, Ohio, the runner up in the east and CMU if they beat the Eagles.
Bowls look for revenue not match ups so if CMU qualifies you better believe the Pizza bowl will give them a nice long look. So Buffalo needs a win not just to guarantee a MAC East championship but also a Bowl game.
That being said here are some of the predictions for Buffalo.
|Jerry Palm (CBS)||Poinsettia||Utah State|
|Brad Edwards (ESPN)||Famous Idaho Potato||Washington State|
|Mark Schlabach (ESPN)||Heart of Dallas||North Texas|
|Jason Kirk (SBNation)||Famous Idaho Potato||Troy|
|Matt Daley (Hustle Belt)||New Era Pinstripe||Rutgers|
I love the the prediction from Hustle Belt. A "New York" versus "New Jersey" bowl game in the Bronx is appealing especially given that New Era is a big booster of the "New York Bulls Initiative." There will be an opening because the Big12 can't meet all of its commitments.
So the stars are aligning right? Well maybe.
But Buffalo's golden ticket may be blocked by the Golden Domers. It's hard to see Notre Dame passing up this bowl unless they have a far better match up somewhere else.