ESPN’s Mark Schlabach puts the Ole Miss-Georgia Tech Music City Bowl matchup No. 22 on his list and the MSU-Rice Liberty Bowl at No. 24.
Yahoo! Sports’ Graham Watson is more excited about the Music City (No. 12) and less pumped up about the Liberty (No. 26).
Also: Sports Illustrated’s Stewart Mandel: Music City (22) and Liberty (27); CBS Sports, Music City (26) and Liberty (28); www.SBNation.com panel, Music City (20) and Liberty (28).
Rose Bowl tickets are high-priced treats
According to Forbes magazine, as cited by Yahoo! Sports, the most expensive bowl tickets, as you would expect, are for the national championship game between Auburn and Florida State. At $1,864 per ticket, you could buy five of the most expensive tickets to the Sugar Bowl ($350) and have a few bucks left over.
The average price for a Rose Bowl ticket is $978, thanks to high demand from Michigan State and Stanford fans.
A quick check of StubHub.com on Friday indicated that the top Liberty Bowl ticket is $300 but the top Music City Bowl ticket for sale is on the Club Level of LP Field – for a fanciful $9,250. There’s also a sideline-row ticket for sale at $4,470. There are plenty of tickets on sale there for much, much less.
Nine eligible teams will be staying home
If it seems like there are already too many bowl games, don’t tell that to the nine bowl-eligible teams that are staying home this season.
Most of them, like Troy, Louisiana-Monroe and South Alabama, finished the season 6-6. But Bpbby Petrino’s first Western Kentucky team finished 8-4. The Hilltoppers made their first bowl last season, losing in the Little Caesars Bowl.
Toledo (7-5), with wins over bowl-bound Navy, Bowling Green and Buffalo, is staying home at 7-5.
Rice head coach David Baliff was named Conference USA Coach of the Year this week. He also won the honor in 2008. The Owls also led the league with 10 All-CUSA picks, including five first-teamers.
Compiled by John L. Pitts