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2017 bowl projections: How the postseason will go if the media’s somehow totally right

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Now that each conference’s preseason polls are out, let’s use those to plan out bowl and Playoff games.

All State Sugar Bowl - Alabama v Ohio State Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Not many college football things happen in July, but here’s one: Each conference releases its official preseason poll, assembling the opinions of its media days participants (the exception is the Big Ten, where handles it.)

So here are bowl season projections based almost entirely on those polls. For the New Year’s Six games, I used a guesstimate of what the preseason AP Poll will look like based on presumed updates to the way-too-early polls from back in January (they’re rarely all that different.)

For these predictions, I didn’t go out of the way to ensure bigger and more prestigious teams got better bowls, which is a factor in the actual bowl selection process. This time around, just for fun, I largely slotted teams according to predicted standings. Let’s pretend things are fair! I also let each conference entirely fill its spots, even though IRL, some will fill spots others can’t.

These aren’t my picks yet, so your friends don’t have to email me about any parts they might not like. Tell them to save that for the season.

2017 bowl projections, based on media predictions

Bowl Team Team Ties
Bowl Team Team Ties
National Championship (Atlanta) Alabama Ohio State Rose winner vs. Sugar winner
Sugar (New Orleans) Alabama USC Playoff semifinals
Rose (Pasadena, CA) Ohio State Florida State Playoff semifinals
Peach (Atlanta) USF Auburn CFP at-large
Orange (Miami) Clemson Penn State ACC vs. Big Ten/SEC/ND
Fiesta (Glendale, AZ) Washington Oklahoma State CFP at-large
Cotton (Arlington, TX) Oklahoma Michigan CFP at-large
Citrus (Orlando) Miami Georgia Big Ten 2-4/ACC vs. SEC 2
Outback (Tampa) Wisconsin Florida Big Ten 2-4 vs. SEC 3-8
Liberty (Memphis) West Virginia Kentucky Big 12 5 vs. SEC 3-8
TaxSlayer (Jacksonville) Virginia Tech LSU ACC 3-6/Big Ten 5-7 vs. SEC 3-8
Arizona (Tucson) Wyoming UL Lafayette MWC vs. Sun Belt
Music City (Nashville) Nebraska Tennessee ACC 3-6/Big Ten 5-7 vs. SEC 3-8
Sun (El Paso, TX) Pitt Washington State ACC 3-6 vs. Pac-12 5
Belk (Charlotte) Georgia Tech South Carolina ACC 3-6 vs. SEC 3-8
Alamo (San Antonio) Kansas State Stanford Big 12 2 vs. Pac-12 2
Camping World (Orlando) Louisville Texas ACC 2 vs. Big 12 3
Military (Annapolis, MD) NC State Memphis ACC vs. AAC
Texas (Houston) TCU Texas A&M Big 12 4 vs. SEC 3-8
Pinstripe (New York City) Notre Dame Iowa ACC 3-6 vs. Big Ten 5-7
Independence (Shreveport, LA) North Carolina Mississippi State ACC vs. SEC
Cactus (Tempe, AZ) Baylor Oregon Big 12 6 vs. Pac-12 7
Heart of Dallas Texas Tech WKU Big 12 vs. C-USA
Quick Lane (Detroit, MI) Wake Forest Michigan State ACC vs. Big Ten
Holiday (San Diego) Northwestern Utah Big Ten 2-4 vs. Pac-12 3
Foster Farms (Santa Clara, CA) Minnesota UCLA Big Ten 5-7 vs. Pac-12 4
Hawaii (Honolulu) UCF Hawaii AAC vs. MWC
Dollar General (Mobile, AL) Toledo Troy MAC 1 vs. Sun Belt 2
Armed Forces (Fort Worth, TX) Army Indiana Army vs. Big Ten
Birmingham Houston Arkansas AAC vs. SEC 9
Potato (Boise, ID) Ohio Colorado State MAC 2 vs. MWC
Bahamas (Nassau) Southern Miss WMU C-USA vs. MAC
St. Petersburg Navy ODU AAC vs. C-USA
Frisco (TX) Tulsa BYU AAC vs. At-large
Boca Raton Temple MTSU AAC vs. C-USA
Camellia (Montgomery, AL) Miami (OH) Arkansas State MAC 3 vs. Sun Belt 3
New Mexico (Albuquerque) UTSA Boise State C-USA vs. MWC
Las Vegas San Diego State Colorado MWC 1 vs. Pac-12 6
Cure (Orlando) Cincinnati South Alabama AAC vs. Sun Belt
New Orleans Appalachian State Louisiana Tech Sun Belt 1 vs. C-USA

The one tricky team, based on this method: BYU. The independents obviously aren’t part of any conference polls, but Army has a designated spot this year, and Notre Dame gets an ACC spot (I just threw it somewhere in the middle for now.) But this year, BYU’s going to have to wait and see what’s available, assuming the Cougars don’t make the NY6. The new Frisco Bowl only has one conference tie-in at the moment, though, sooo I guess that’s better than nothing.

Anyway, I think this turned out fine. What do you think?