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   Welcome to TSLMail #256 - Friday, December 8, 2006    
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Looking at the ACC Bowl Picture

by Chris Coleman,

It seems like yesterday that the Hokies were running out of the tunnel against Northeastern. But here we are in early December, and bowl season is just around the corner. VT fans are looking forward to heading to Atlanta to watch the Chick-fil-A Bowl. It will be interesting to see how the ACC performs across the board after a down year in the regular season.

Eight ACC teams received bowl bids, which is the exact number of bowl tie ins associated with the conference. For awhile it didnt look like the ACC would get to eight bowl eligible teams, but Miami upset Boston College on Thanksgiving night to win their sixth game. Here is a look at where the ACC teams are going bowling.

ACC Bowl Games
Bowl City Teams



Wake Forest vs. Louisville



Virginia Tech vs. Georgia



Georgia Tech vs. West Virginia

Champs Sports


Maryland vs. Purdue

Music City


Clemson vs. Kentucky

Meineke Car Car


Boston College vs. Navy


San Francisco

Florida State vs. UCLA

MPC Computers


Miami vs. Nevada

Some of those bowl committees are pretty excited. The others would probably just rather cancel their game this year.


The Chick-fil-A Bowl is easily the biggest winner of all the ACC bowl games. They get the hottest (and probably best) team in the ACC that will bring one of the best traveling fan bases in the country, and who is a very popular TV draw. And theyll also get the home-state Georgia Bulldogs, a big-time SEC team that sells out 92,000+ seat Sanford Stadium every weekend. The game is already sold out, the tenth sellout in a row for the bowl.

It doesnt get much better than that. Two big-time programs playing in a big city, at night, in a dome, in an unopposed time slot on national television. The Chick-fil-A Bowl wins every year, but their victory this year is a bit bigger.

The Emerald Bowl in San Francisco has to be extremely exited about the Florida State-UCLA matchup on December 27. The game will be televised by ESPN, and its the only bowl game of the day. The Emerald Bowl brass probably never dreamed about getting a team with the reputation of FSU, but they are no doubt very excited. And the Seminoles will be matched up against UCLA, who is fresh off an upset victory of Southern Cal.

Its true that Florida State and UCLA werent all that successful this year, but they are two big-name universities. This is as good a game as the Emerald Bowl will ever get.

The MPC Computers Bowl in Boise might never get a team with the reputation of the Miami Hurricanes again. The Canes obviously wont bring a lot of fans to the game, but no fan base from a major conference would bring anybody to Boise. But the fact that Miami is playing on the Blue Turf does draw some TV exposure for the bowl.

Coach Bud Foster
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The poor, poor Orange Bowl. Ill be the first to admit that I like Wake Forest. I always have. I admire what they did this year, and Jim Grobe should be a finalist for National Coach of the Year at the very least. But Wake wont take many fans to South Florida. And despite Americans infatuation with the underdog, this isnt Wichita State or George Mason in the NCAA tournament. This is Wake Forest in the Orange Bowl, and theyre playing a Big East team, Louisville. TV ratings wont be through the roof.

The Gator Bowl gets to host the loser of the ACC Championship Game for the second consecutive season, and this time that loser is Georgia Tech, which doesnt exactly have the rabid traveling fan base that the Hokies possess. West Virginia will take a lot of fans, but probably not quite as many as usual because the Mountaineers "only" finished 10-2 this year, and they were in the Gator Bowl just two years ago. Now WVU coach Rich Rodriguez is headed to Alabama, throwing the situation info further doubt.

The Gator Bowl would have selected Clemson, but the new ACC one-loss rule prevented them from doing so. Clemson finished 5-3 in the ACC, while GT was 7-1, and conference rules state that a bowl game cant pick a lower ranked team when there is more than one game between the two schools in the conference standings.

The Meineke Car Care Bowl brings in the Boston College Eagles for the second time in three years. Luckily their opponent is Navy, and Midshipmen will fill some seats.

Best ACC Bowl Matchup

Maybe Im a bit biased, but I see the best ACC matchup as the Chick-fil-A Bowl between Virginia Tech and Georgia. Both teams have great defenses, but offenses that struggle at times. Georgia Tech starts a true freshman quarterback, while the Hokies have offensive line issues. The kicking game could be the deciding outcome in this game.

Worst ACC Bowl Matchup

As much as I like Wake Forest, I dont think they have the firepower to hang with Louisville. I think they can stay in the game for awhile, but theyll have to win a low scoring game to have a chance to win, and Louisville just doesnt play low scoring games.

Also, and I dont know how good of a matchup this game will be, but Im just not interested in the Champs Sports Bowl (Orlando, Maryland vs. Purdue) this year. Marylands string of luck ran out in the last two weeks of the regular season, and Purdue is a Big Ten team that doesnt play defense. To me, this one is kind of a yawner. Pass - Your Ultimate Ticket to Hokie Sports!

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For more info on TechSideline Pass, and to subscribe, click here. Updates From the Past Week

Revisiting My Bold ACC Predictions

December 8, 2006
At the beginning of the season, I wrote an article predicting the finish for each ACC team this season, including every game, as well as postseason bowl destinations. I managed to do pretty well with some ACC teams. Others, not so much. I learned one's really hard to pick these games, especially in the preseason.

Tribbey Nearing a Decision?
December 8, 2006
The recruitment of Varina (VA) defensive tackle Bud Tribbey is beginning to heat up, as the 6-0, 288-pound prospect could have a decision very soon. Having narrowed his list to Syracuse and Virginia Tech for quite some time now, recruiting is now in full swing following the end of his senior season.

Mosley Set for First Official Visit
December 8, 2006
5-9, 190-pound Henrico (Richmond, VA) defensive back/athlete Corey Mosley will head to Charlottesville today for an official visit. The visit to the University of Virginia will be his first official visit of his recruiting process. Mosley talks about the upcoming experience as well as his future plans in his decision making process.

Warren Central Coach Responds to OSU Rumors
December 8, 2006
Rumors of a potential Ohio State offer to Warren Central (Indianapolis, IN) star running back Darren Evans have been rampant this week. caught up with Warren Central Head Coach Steve Tutsie yesterday for more on this situation and to learn if Evans, a Virginia Tech commitment, would seriously consider an offer from the Buckeyes.

Vince Hall Wins Dudley Award
December 7, 2006
Virginia Tech linebacker Vince Hall won the Dudley Award yesterday. The Dudley Award, named after early 1940s University of Virginia standout "Bullet" Bill Dudley, is given annually to the top Division 1 football player in the state of Virginia. Hall is the fifth Hokie in a row to win the award, and he joins such former Hokie greats as Cornell Brown, Corey Moore, Lee Suggs, and Bryan Randall.
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Hokies Dominate Old Dominion, 72-55
December 7, 2006
Virginia Tech used a 17-0 run in the early stages of the game to get out to a big lead en route to a 72-55 victory over the Old Dominion Monarchs. The victory, easily Techs best of the season, improves the Hokies record to 5-3. Old Dominion falls to 6-3.

Tucker Reflects on Second Official Visit
December 7, 2006
Following an official visit to the University of Pittsburgh, 6-2, 225-pound St. Johns (Washington, D.C.) defensive end/linebacker prospect Tony Tucker has decided he is done with official visits…well, at least for the month of December. caught up with the four-star prospect, who discussed his recent visit to Pitt as well as his previous official to Virginia Tech.

Searcy Set to Make Second Official Visit
December 6, 2006
DaNorris Searcy made his first official visit last weekend, when he went to Ole Miss. Perhaps more importantly, he will head to UNC this weekend on an official. The 6-0, 205-pound Towers (Decatur, GA) standout committed to the Tar Heels this past summer and recently opened his recruitment back up.

Basketball Game Preview: Virginia Tech vs. Old Dominion
December 6, 2006
Virginia Tech returns to Cassell Coliseum on Wednesday night with the hopes of turning their season around. The Hokies host the Old Dominion Monarchs, who have already upset then-#8 Georgetown on the road. A victory over a good team like Old Dominion could be just what Tech needs to jumpstart their season, which currently stands at 4-3.

January a Big Month for Hampton
December 6, 2006
Coaches from Maryland, Michigan State, North Carolina and Virginia Tech have stopped by Phoebus High School recently for Maurice Hampton, the talented 6-3, 275-pound senior. In our last interview with the offensive/defensive line prospect, Maryland and Virginia Tech were the two schools on top…is this still the case?

Hokie Hotline Notes for 12/4/06
December 5, 2006
Monday night's Hokie Hotline featured a quartet of guests: head basketball coach Seth Greenberg, running backs coach Billy Hite, defensive line coach Charley Wiles, and Chick-fil-A Bowl president Gary Stokan.

Final Coaches' Ballots Make for Interesting Reading
December 5, 2006
I picked up the print edition of the USA Today Monday morning, hoping to get a listing of bowl games and perhaps some other good material for a column. I hit paydirt, because the USA Today listed the full final ballots for all 63 coaches who voted in the USA Today Coaches' Poll. There's some interesting stuff there.

Ajiboye Set for VT; Finney Drawing Interest
December 5, 2006
As far as Virginia Techs coaches are concerned, there were two main players of interest at yesterdays Hargrave Military Academy postgraduate football workout – defensive tackle Ladi Ajiboye, a 6-2, 300-pound prospect who signed with Tech this past February, and Ben Finney, a 6-4, 210-pound uncommitted wide receiver.

2006 All-ACC Football Team and Awards
December 4, 2006
With Wake Forest's win over Georgia Tech in the ACC championship game, the 2006 ACC regular season has been put to bed, and eight of the league's 12 teams have visions of bowl games dancing in their heads. Bstreet brings you his All-ACC teams, plus offensive and defensive players of the year, coach of the year, and team of the year.

Brooks Done with Official Visits?
December 4, 2006
Denbigh (Newport News, VA) offensive lineman Jaymes Brooks verbally committed to Virginia Tech this past summer. However, at the time, he also stated his intention to make all five official visits. He made an official visit to Virginia Tech yesterday. Does he still plan to make official visits to other schools?

Star CB Enjoys Time at Virginia Tech
December 4, 2006
5-11, 175-pound Highland Springs (VA) cornerback Cris Hill made what was his first official visit this weekend when he tripped to Virginia Tech. The Hokies staff had already impressed the talented athlete with an in-school visit earlier in the week. Did the official visit experience do the same?

Hokies Lose Another Heartbreaker 63-62
December 3, 2006
The Virginia Tech men's basketball team found yet another way to lose on Sunday evening, dropping a 63-62 decision to George Washington in the Verizon Center in Washington, DC. The Hokies drop to 4-3 overall, and are now 1-3 in games decided by five points or less. George Washington improves to 5-1 with the victory.

Hokies Receive Chick-fil-A Bowl Invitation; Will Play Georgia
December 3, 2006
After weeks of speculation, its official. The Virginia Tech Hokies are heading to Atlanta, where they will face the Georgia Bulldogs in the Chick-fil-A Bowl. The game will be held in the Georgia Dome at 8 pm on Saturday, December 30, and will be televised by ESPN.

Basketball Game Preview: Virginia Tech vs. George Washington
December 1, 2006
The Virginia Tech men's basketball team continues their tougher-than-usual out of conference schedule on Sunday when they take on the George Washington Colonials in the BB&T Classic at 4 pm in the Verizon Center. The game will be televised on Comcast SportsSouth.
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