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Orange Bowl official breaks down Clemson's BCS bowl chances


  by - Senior Writer - Tuesday, December 3, 2013 11:30 AM
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Playing in a BCS bowl game means increased visibility and a larger payout, but Clemson’s chances of playing in a BCS game this postseason hinge on what happens this weekend, and whether the Tigers will retain a Top 14 ranking in the BCS once the conference championship games play out, according to an Orange Bowl official.

The Tigers – fresh off a 31-17 loss to South Carolina last Saturday – dropped to 13th in the BCS, and need to hold close to that spot once the rankings are released next Sunday in order to have a shot at playing in a BCS game, probably the Orange Bowl.

I spoke with Larry Wahl, the VP of Communications & Community Outreach for the Orange Bowl Monday evening, and he told me that the Orange Bowl Committee held a conference call Monday morning to discuss their options, and while the Tigers are still very much a viable option, it’s still too early to give a percentage.

However, the ACCs’s tie-in with the Orange Bowl is an obvious plus for the 10-2 Tigers.

“We have always waited until after the last game and we get the results of the rankings before we make any final, final decisions on teams,” Wahl told me. “It’s hard to even speculate at this point because there is so much that could happen. But obviously, a key consideration in our deliberations is going to be the fact that the ACC is our partner. But to give you a percentage or anything at this point, I can’t do that because I just don’t know. Even if Clemson had won Saturday, we would be in the same situation that has always been our philosophy.”

Clemson Athletic Director Dan Radakovich said Monday that he spoke with Orange Bowl officials, and one of their concerns in picking Clemson would be ticket sales after sales lagged for Clemson’s appearance in the 2012 Orange Bowl.

“In my conversations with Orange Bowl officials on Sunday afternoon, their primary concerns about Clemson center on ticket sales and team ranking,” Radakovich wrote in an open letter to Clemson fans and IPTAY boosters Monday. “While the team won 10 games and remains ranked among the top in the nation, the only thing we can control now are ticket sales. It is critical that we support our team by letting the Orange Bowl know our fans are interested in attending the game and buying tickets.”

Radakovich went on to say that while Clemson has been steadily climbing back into the national rankings, fan support in bowl games hasn’t been at a peak level.

“Regardless of our postseason destination, we cannot emphasize enough the need for our fans to utilize our athletic ticket office to purchase tickets,” Radakovich wrote. “The last time we sold at least 10,000 tickets through the athletic ticket office for a bowl game was the 2009 Gator Bowl against Nebraska. With more than 20,000 Clemson fans at each of our last three bowl games, there is no question that our fans have purchased bowl tickets through third parties and the secondary marketplace, but we need your help in purchasing tickets through the athletic ticket office. This make a huge statement with the bowls and their committees.”

Part of the issue with the 2012 bowl game was the late date after New Year’s – January 4th – and the fact that the game was played on a Wednesday, making it hard for Clemson fans to make the trip. Wahl said he hoped the date for the 2014 Orange Bowl – Friday, January 3rd – would make it easier for fans to travel.

“Hopefully, if Clemson were chosen and to come, the date would be more advantageous,” Wahl said. “The game is on a Friday this time, so it’s still on the New Year’s holiday for a lot of people, so it would give them the opportunity to travel both down here and back. So, from that perspective, it’s a much more advantageous time and date.”

Clemson played West Virginia in 2012, and Wahl said that he thinks this time around, the matchup might be a little more attractive.

“Given that we have the first pick, I think the opponent will be one that is probably perceived to be better than the last time,” Wahl said. “So that might be one of those things to get people excited, too. There are a lot of good options for us to choose from this time, as opposed to last time.”

The Orange Bowl has the first pick once the National Championship teams are selected. If Florida St. beats Duke Saturday in the ACC Championship Game, the Seminoles will likely play in the National Championship in Pasadena, California. The Orange Bowl then gets to pick the FSU replacement, and if they decide to honor the tie-in with the ACC and Clemson is still ranked in the Top 14 of the BCS, they would have the option of picking Clemson as that replacement.

Once the other replacement picks are made, the Orange Bowl would then have the chance to pick the first team that didn’t automatically qualify for the BCS through a conference championship. If the season ended today, that would more than likely be Alabama.

“Here is what happens,” Wahl said. “The conference champions are placed in their respective bowl, and then the two bowls that lose the conference champions to the National Championship gets to replace them in order. If FSU stays number one, we will have the first replacement pick, and then the Rose Bowl, and on down the line. Right now, we just don’t know who would be out there.

“For Clemson, they have to be in the Top 14, and hopefully they remain in the Top 14. And then once the replacement picks are made, the Orange picks from the next available at-larges, so out of picks eight, nine and ten, we would pick eighth. If you look at the way it is today, that would be Alabama, and then UCF and NIU. Clemson is in the mix, but even if Clemson wasn’t chosen as a replacement pick, they could still be chosen by another BCS bowl.”

A potential matchup against Alabama would have a plethora of storylines – Clemson head coach Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
Head Coach
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is an Alabama graduate, and former Clemson assistants Billy Napier, Burton Burns, Chris Rumph and Kevin SteeleKevin Steele
Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
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are all on Nick Saban’s staff at Alabama.

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Post your comments
Subject (Replies: 58) Author
Front Page Story: Orange Bowl official breaks down Clemson's BCS bowl chances
TigerNet News®
There are only two scenarios we don't go the Orange Bowl
CU''90
There are actually ALOT of other scenarios.***
BigCUFan®
ALOT isn't a word.
Judge Keller
ALOT!
inthe075
Re: There are only two scenarios we don't go the Orange Bowl
whatweeatin
The Sugar can take whoever they want as a replacement***
AdamD021
Orange bowl owes the ACC...I say it's ours to lose.
cutigersJD®
Maybe they should secure better seats if they want us to
MackDaddy®
Re: Maybe they should secure better seats if they want us to
ruatiger®
After getting saddled with NIU last year....
BigCUFan®
Re: After getting saddled with NIU last year....
uproar84®
Wow...
uproar84®
This is a Clemson Athletic Department issue....
BigCUFan®
Re: This is a Clemson Athletic Department issue....
uproar84®
Re: This is a Clemson Athletic Department issue....
sanwt
Yep. Tickets for the game in C-ville, if purchased through
daj mi pivo
Bowls also contribute to the problem
Tropical
Indeed***
BigCUFan®
Spot on. For the 2012 Orange Bowl, IPTAY had bad seats
AllTimeClemson
Re: This is a Clemson Athletic Department issue....
Tiger '97
Our last OB was on a Wednesday - poor planning on their part
gat1ger
Yeah, a lot of this is because of 3rd party dealers I assume
WolfMan2
This is squarely on the bowls and the conferences, not fans
grover173
...
DGUARCELLO
Bowl sales have fallen for everyone
HAWG
Clemson fans have gotten smarter than to pay high prices
josephg®
Should offer IPTAY Bonus Points for purchasing from school
Cobbox
Re: Wow...
41rcook
This is a bowl issue not a Clemson issue
IPTAY FAMILY
People don't buy from the athletic office I assume because
WolfMan2
Re: People don't buy from the athletic office I assume because
TBryanB
Hey DRad...
tchilde
Well it ain't real hard to figure out there Dan...
heavydutytiger
What are the chances . . .
CU_Tiger_06
Re: What are the chances . . .
uproar84®
Chances are low that we fall out of the top 14.***
Judge Keller
Re: Chances are low that we fall out of the top 14.***
icebucket
Correct me if I'm wrong
sckick
Re: Correct me if I'm wrong
uproar84®
Re: Front Page Story: Orange Bowl official breaks down Clemson's BCS bowl chances
92TigerJohn
Not only that, You can print out e-tickets from numerous sites
Touch_The_Rock79
The Top 14
uproar84®
Personally I believe ASU or Stanford will drop below us
CUAllTheWay
Well what about just UCF and OU winning?
uproar84®
I think if UCF was going to pass us the would have already
CUAllTheWay
Re: I think if UCF was going to pass us the would have already
CUAllTheWay
Wait, did the Orange Bowl just break up with us?
Francis Marion®
Re: Front Page Story: Orange Bowl official breaks down Clemson's BCS bowl chances
CheapSeatsPres
Great article, David. We can always count on Hood to
Wookie
Why do bowls care about ticket sales through the school?
IPTAY FAMILY
I want Bama. Good test of our progress since '08 spanking.***
Razzmatazz
Re: I want Bama. Good test of our progress since '08 spanking.***
Oconee Tiger®
Re: I want Bama. Good test of our progress since '08 spanking.***
JBTFLO
Re: I want Bama. Good test of our progress since '08 spanking.***
Splode
When there is a bowl game on a WEDNESDAY, tickets suffer
kbutiger95
Re: When there is a bowl game on a WEDNESDAY, tickets suffer
rob32ram
Re: Front Page Story: Orange Bowl official breaks down Clemson's BCS bowl chances***
etangeman
Buying tickets through iptay poses
etangeman

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