Fun fact! The Gator Bowl is not played at the home of the Florida Gators, in Gainesville. It is played in Jacksonville, between an SEC school and a Big Ten school. The game has generally hosted at least one ranked team (with a stretch of six games in a row between two ranked squads in the early 2000s) and is a marquee matchup in the bowl slate.
Date and time, ET: January 1 at 12 p.m.
TV channel: ESPN2
Location: Jacksonville, Fla.
Stadium: EverBank Field -- capacity 77,510
Tickets: Find available seats here.
Last year's score: Northwestern 34, Mississippi State 20
Last year's attendance: 48,612
Last year's TV rating: 1.4
Last year's payout for each school: $3.5 million
Team with the most all-time appearances: Florida (7-2) and Clemson (4-5)
Team with the most all-time wins: Florida (seven)
Georgia (8-4, 5-3 SEC)
It was a rough year for the Bulldogs. Despite coming into the season with a top-10 ranking, injuries to a handful of key offensive playmakers derailed any chance UGA had of playing for the SEC championship.
And with senior quarterback Aaron Murray out for the year with a knee injury, Hutson Mason has been handed the reins earlier than expected. Georgia comes into bowl season with some momentum on its side following a big comeback win over in-state rival Georgia Tech. The Bulldogs fell behind by 21 points early, but a big second half push from Mason and running back Todd Gurley led the charge to pick up a win in overtime.
Now they’ll look to send their seniors out with a bang. While the Dawgs’ offense has played well for most of the season, the defense has struggled after losing a handful of key players to the NFL. The defense ranked 81st nationally in scoring defense, surrendering nearly 30 points per game to their opponents. The extra weeks of practice should give Mark Richt and the coaching staff some time to make adjustments, but it would seem we’ll be in for a high-scoring affair.
Last bowl game: 2013 Capital One Bowl vs. Nebraska, 45-31 win
Last year without a bowl: 1996
All-time bowl record: 27-18-3
Head coach's bowl record: Mark Richt, 8-4
Nebraska (8-4, 5-3 B1G)
Another year, another solid, eight-win season for Bo Pelini -- good enough to satisfy some, but not enough to quell the whispers around his job security. Still, this one was more difficult than most, as Pelini lost starting quarterback Taylor Martinez to injury midway through the season, and was forced to alternate between redshirt freshman Tommy Armstrong and senior Ron Kellogg behind center. That is also to say little of the other fiascos that have gone on this year, including a secretly leaked rant about Nebraska fans, and a public spat with Huskers legend Tommie Frazier.
Kellogg played most of Nebraska’s last two games after Armstrong was forced out with an ankle injury, and it remains to be seen which of them will end up starting the bowl game. Regardless of who will be behind center, expect to see a heavy dose of Ameer Abdullah, who led the Big Ten in rushing this season with 1,568 yards on a 6.2 YPC. All Big Ten first team selections Randy Gregory (9.5 sacks, 17.0 TFL) and Ciante Evans (11.0 TFL, 3.0 sacks, 4 interceptions out of his cornerback position) lead the way for the nation’s 36th-ranked defense.
Last bowl game: 2013 Capital One Bowl vs. Georgia, 45-31 loss
Last year without a bowl: 2007
All-time bowl record: 24-25
Head coach's bowl record: Bo Pelini, 3-3