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November 25, 2013

Bowl Breakdown

With one (or two) game left to go, there are still plenty of possibilities out there for Missouri's post-season. But fans like to make plans in advance, so before we dive fully into the last week of the season, it seemed like a good time to outline the possibilities for the Tigers' bowl destination.

There are really only six games Mizzou could play in, and one of those may now be out of the picture. If it isn't one of these six, it will be a significant surprise.

LocationOpponentWhat has to Happen
January 6th, 2014/Pasadena, Ca.BCS #1 vs BCS #2Baylor is now out of the way. The Tigers would have to win two games and then hope for a loss by either Florida State or Ohio State. If all three of those things happen, the Tigers likely play for the whole ball of wax.
January 2nd, 2014/New Orleans, La.BCS (likely Central Florida)In all likelihood, Missouri has to win the SEC Championship and not qualify for the National Championship game to land in the Sugar. It is possible, but not likely, for the Tigers to beat A&M while Auburn gets blown out by Alabama. If Missouri then took the Tide to the wire, Mizzou might get an at-large bid over Auburn. But conference title game losers rarely get at-large bids.
January 1st, 2014/Orlando, Fl.Big Ten #2 (likely Michigan State)This is probably Missouri's best bet right now. The Tigers will not have more than two losses (either losing to A&M for 10-2 or losing the SECCG for 11-2). If Mizzou is not in the BCS, this is the first SEC selection. This bowl will have a choice between Missouri and either Auburn or South Carolina (whichever isn't in the BCS). The Tigers would be an attractive choice.
January 3rd, 2014/Arlington, Tx.Big 12 #2 (likely loser of Baylor/Oklahoma State)The Capital One Bowl would need to select either South Carolina (this is likely going to require a win over Clemson) or Auburn, whichever one is not in the BCS. Then the Cotton and the Outback pick together. The Outback generally takes an East team and the Cotton a West, but with a win over A&M, LSU could be in the picture here. The Outback has never hosted LSU, while the Cotton has had the Tigers five times, including 2011. If the Outback and Cotton agree, you could see LSU in Tampa and Mizzou in Arlington.
January 1, 2014/Tampa, Fl.Big Ten #3 (Michigan St./Wisconsin/Nebraska)See the analysis of the Cotton Bowl. Now, if A&M were to beat Missouri this weekend, it's possible the Aggies could be a factor in all of this too. A&M did just play in the Cotton Bowl last year, but I've got to believe the Aggie fans would paint the town maroon for Johnny Football's final game.
December 31, 2013/Atlanta, Ga.ACC #2 (Clemson/Duke/Miami)This is as far as Missouri can slide and I honestly don't see it happening. But let's say Mizzou loses this weekend to A&M, South Carolina beats Clemson, then loses the SECCG. Bama and Auburn go to the BCS, the Capital One takes LSU or A&M and the Outback and Cotton divide the other of those two and South Carolina. That puts Mizzou in Atlanta. But I think it's a long shot. I can't see Missouri sliding past the Outback Bowl.

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