The annual New Year's Eve matchup between the SEC and ACC has changed its name a few times during its 45 years, but -- unlike other bowls -- the Chick-fil-A Bowl has at least had the decency to make a smooth transition from the Peach Bowl (1968-1997) to the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl (1998-2005) to the Chick-fil-A Bowl (2006-present) and reportedly back to the Chick-fil-a Peach Bowl when it becomes part of the College Football Playoff semifinal rotation in 2016.
Last year's Chick-fil-A Bowl was one of the best games in the bowl's history, with Clemson kicking the game-winning field goal as time expired to knock off LSU. South Carolina is the only team to represent both the ACC and the SEC, losing both appearances in 1969 and 2010.
There was some intrigue for the bowl this time around, with multiple respected outlets reporting the matchup was to be Georgia vs. Miami. ACC Commissioner John Swofford reportedly strongarmed the bowl into taking Duke instead, which meant taking A&M in order to assure a television draw.
Date and time, ET: Dec. 31, 8 p.m.
TV channel: ESPN
Location: Atlanta, Ga.
Stadium: Georgia Dome (capacity: 71,228)
Tickets: Find available seats here.
Last year's score: Clemson 25, LSU 24
Last year's attendance: 68,027
Last year's TV rating: With 8.56 million viewers, last year's game was the most-viewed non-BCS bowl game on ESPN
Last year's payout for each school: $3.55 million
Team with the most all-time appearances: Clemson (8)
Team with the most all-time wins: LSU (5)
Texas A&M (8-4, 4-4 SEC)
After a fantastic SEC debut that included a win on the road against Alabama, Texas A&M was expected to figure heavily into the league title race in 2013. But things didn’t work out as well as the Aggies had hoped, and they ended up with a 4-4 league record, which placed the team fourth in the SEC West.
The offense continued to perform at a high level, which isn’t surprising given the fact that Johnny Manziel was still under center. The trouble for A&M in 2013 came largely on the defensive side of the ball; the Aggies allowed 30.9 points per game and 6.2 yards per play. Both figures represent significant steps back from 2012.
Last bowl game: 2013 Cotton Bowl vs. Oklahoma, 41-13 win
Last year without a bowl: 2008
All-time bowl record: 15-19
Head coach's bowl record: Kevin Sumlin, 2-1
Duke (10-3, 6-2 ACC)
Their 45-7 beatdown in the ACC Championship Game aside, Duke has been one of the more -- most? -- remarkable stories of this college football season, winning ten games for the first time in school history. Perhaps equally remarkable is the fact that they scored victories over then-ranked Miami and Virginia Tech in the same year, as well, part of an eight game win streak. Those upsets, coupled with the fact that head coach David Cutcliffe has taken Duke -- DUKE! -- to consecutive bowl games have made it an unprecedented time for the Blue Devils.
Duke is one of the rare two-quarterback situations in college football, with Anthony Boone and Brandon Connette both having shared time. It is Boone, however, who has taken the majority of the snaps down the stretch, and although his numbers have not been outstanding -- just a 10:9 TD:INT ratio and a YPA of 7.15 -- he has been effective enough to keep winning. Connette, his signal-calling counterpart, has 13 passing touchdowns himself, on 61.8% completion.
Last bowl game: 2012 Belk Bowl vs. Cincinnati, 48-34 loss
Last year without a bowl: 2011
All-time bowl record: 3-6
Head coach's bowl record: David Cutcliffe, 4-2