By Mike Jones on November 6, 2018 at 3:18 pm



This piece gets a little bit more difficult and less entertaining to write every week. Since Iowa got bowl eligible they have done nothing to improve their standing, losing two games they should’ve won, including one to a team that lost to Eastern Michigan. Iowa’s failure is Purdue’s gain, though, as the Boilermakers are sitting pretty for a bowl game. Michigan State joined the ranks of the bowl eligible teams with a 24-3 win over Maryland and Minnesota lost any semblance of hope when they were blasted [again, BLASTED] by the…Illinois Fighting Illini?

Illinois has Nebraska, Iowa and Northwestern left on their schedule. Oh god, could Illinois somehow fight to become bowl eligible? Iowa might just give them that chance because never count out the Hawkeyes!

Nebraska’s effort against Ohio State was valiant but with their seventh loss they are all but eliminated from bowl contention. Rutgers made it to the 1-7 mark two weeks ago, lost to Wisconsin to go 1-8 and have Michigan, Penn State and Michigan State on the schedule. 1-11 is very realistic for the …Golden Knights? Black Kinghts? Red Knights? What are they again? It doesn’t matter. They’re bad.

Bowl Eligible: Michigan, Ohio State, Michigan State, Penn State, Wisconsin, Iowa.

To be Eligible: Maryland, Northwestern, Purdue.

Queso Bowl’d: Indiana, Rutgers, Illinois, Nebraska, Minnesota.

The Rules

  • Four teams are chosen for the College Football Playoff and six bowls rotate for the semifinals: Rose, Sugar, Cotton, Fiesta, Orange, and Peach. The bowls hosting the semifinals this year are the Orange Bowl and the Cotton Bowl.
  • The National Championship will be played at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California on January 7th, 2019.
  • As the Rose Bowl is not hosting a semifinal, if the Big Ten Champion is selected for the College Football Playoff, the next highest ranked team by the CFB Playoff Committee, or the runner-up, will be selected for the Rose Bowl.
  • The highest-ranked champion from the Group of Five mid-majors (AAC, C-USA, MAC, MWC, Sun Belt) is guaranteed a spot in the non-playoff bowls if they fail to make the playoff.
  • The Big Ten has a six-year contract with the eight non-playoff bowl games (through the 2019 season). The Big Ten has an eight-year contract with the Pinstripe Bowl (through 2021).
  • The non-playoff bowls are broken down into three tiers. Tier 1: Holiday, Citrus and Outback. Tier 2: Pinstripe, Music City/TaxSlayer, and Redbox (formerly known as the Foster Farms Bowl). Tier 3: Quick Lane and First Responder (formerly known as the Heart of Dallas Bowl)/Armed Forces.
  • As the Orange Bowl is a CFB Playoff Bowl, the Citrus Bowl will feature a Big Ten team this season.
  • The Music City/TaxSlayer and First Responder/Armed Forces Bowls supposedly alternate each year. I’ve been doing this for a while and that’s the “official” line I always get. Despite this, an ACC team has played in the TaxSlayer Bowl for two straight seasons telling me that there really aren’t any hard and fast rules when it comes to bowl selections. It’s all about straight cash, homie.  
  • Iowa has played in the following bowls since 2010: Insight, Outback, TaxSlayer, Rose, Outback, and Pinstripe.

Media Projections:

247 Sports: Outback, vs. Mississippi State

Bleacher Report: Pinstripe, vs. Duke (lol)

CBS Sports: Holiday, vs. Washington

ESPN (Mitch Sherman): RedBox, vs. Oregon

ESPN (Kyle Bonagura): Outback, vs. Florida

SBNation: Holiday, vs. Stanford

Sporting News: Outback, vs. Mississippi State

Sports Illustrated: TaxSlayer, vs. Florida (Beware autoplay videos on

USA Today: Holiday, vs. Stanford

At this point, the Hawkeyes should be hopeful to make it to the Holiday Bowl. They’ll probably need to go 9-3 or at worst 8-4, depending on how the teams ahead of them perform. Michigan and Ohio State making the College Football Playoff/NY6 would bump everyone else up, so the better those teams do, the better Iowa fares in the bowl picking order.

Should Iowa lose to Northwestern, which is a possibility, they’ll probably finish 8-4 and be looking at a Florida bowl (again). If they somehow lose to Nebraska, which is a possibility with the way the Cornhuskers have been playing, REDBOX TIME BABY. WOOOOOOOOOO ENJOY THOSE MOVIES.

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