Mandel also reports that the Sugar Bowl may have passed on at least two top 10 teams in order to select Virginia tech and Michigan.
The Sugar Bowl is one of the oldest bowls in college football as it was first played on New Year's Day in 1935, trailing only the Rose Bowl which began annual play in 1916. The game has racked up quite a bit of history since its inception, too, having hosted the BCS National Championship game in 2000 and again in 2004.
The 2011 Sugar Bowl featured the Ohio State Buckeyes defeating the Arkansas Razorbacks with a 31-26 final score, but that victory has since been vacated by Ohio State due to a scandal at the school. Terrelle Pryor also ended up losing his MVP award from that game, keeping him from joining a Sugar Bowl MVP class that has included Tim Tebow, JaMarcus Russell, Jason Campbell and Ken Dorsey in the past.
Game date, time: 8:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Location: Superdome in New Orleans, La.
TV channel: ESPN
2011 winner and loser: Ohio State, Arkansas