The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

Bowl Selection Process

55 days ago
SEC Staff

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2017-18 SEC Bowl Selection Process

College Football Playoff Bowls:

  • Cotton Bowl
  • Orange Bowl
  • Fiesta Bowl
  • Sugar Bowl (Semifinal)
  • Peach Bowl
  • Rose Bowl (Semifinal)
  • CFP National Championship

Contract Bowls:

  • Sugar (SEC vs. Big 12 when Sugar is not a semifinal game)
  • Rose (Pac 12 vs. Big Ten when Rose is not a semifinal game)
  • Orange (ACC vs. highest ranked SEC/Big Ten non-champion or Notre Dame when Orange is not a semifinal game)

Access Bowls:

  • Cotton
  • Fiesta
  • Peach
Bowl Contract Teams Date Time (ET)
Cotton Bowl Filled by CFP Selection Committee Dec. 29, 2017 8:30 p.m.
Fiesta Bowl Filled by CFP Selection Committee Dec. 30, 2017 4 p.m.
Orange Bowl ACC vs. SEC/Big Ten/Notre Dame Dec. 30, 2017 8 p.m.
Peach Bowl Filled by CFP Selection Committee Jan. 1, 2018 12:30 p.m.
Rose Bowl Semifinal Game Jan. 1, 2018 5 p.m.
Sugar Bowl Semifinal Game Jan. 1, 2018 8:45 p.m.
CFP National Championship Winners of Semifinal Games Jan. 8, 2018 8 p.m.

SEC BOWLS: After the CFP selection process the Citrus Bowl gets the first selection of available SEC Teams.

Bowl Date, Time (ET) Network
Citrus Bowl (Orlando, FL) vs. Big Ten Jan. 1, 2018, 1 p.m. ABC

POOL OF SIX BOWLS: After the Citrus Bowl selects a team, there will be a pool of six bowls and the Conference, in consultation with the institutions and the bowls, will make the assignments for these six bowl games from all eligible SEC teams.

Bowl Date, Time (ET) Network
Outback Bowl (Tampa, FL) vs. Big Ten Jan. 1, 12 p.m. ESPN2
TaxSlayer Bowl (Jacksonville, FL) vs. Big Ten/ACC Dec. 30, 12 p.m. ESPN
Music City Bowl (Nashville, TN) vs. ACC/Big Ten Dec. 29, 4:30 pm ESPN
Texas Bowl (Houston, TX) vs. Big 12 Dec. 27, 9 pm ESPN
Belk Bowl (Charlotte, NC) vs. ACC Dec. 29, 1 pm ESPN
Liberty Bowl (Memphis, TN) vs. Big 12 Dec. 30, 12:30 p.m. ABC

BOWLS AFTER THE POOL OF SIX:

Bowl Date, Time (ET) Network
Birmingham Bowl* (Birmingham, AL) vs. American December 23, 12 p.m. ESPN
Independence Bowl** (Shreveport, LA) vs. ACC December 27, 1:30 p.m. ESPN

*The Birmingham Bowl selects after the CFP, Citrus Bowl and the Pool of Six Bowls (Outback Bowl, TaxSlayer Bowl, Music City Bowl, Texas Bowl, Belk Bowl and Liberty Bowl).

**The Independence Bowl selects after the CFP, Citrus Bowl, the Pool of Six (Outback Bowl, TaxSlayer Bowl, Music City Bowl, Texas Bowl, Belk Bowl and Liberty Bowl) and the Birmingham Bowl.

FAQs:
1) Which SEC Team qualifies for the College Football Playoff?
The winner of the SEC Championship Game automatically qualifies for a spot in the Peach, Cotton or Fiesta Bowls if that team is not selected to participate in the four-team playoff. If the SEC Champion is selected to participate in the four-team playoff it will play in the Sugar or Rose Bowl.

2) How can additional SEC teams be selected for the CFP?
Additional SEC teams may be selected for the CFP Semifinals (Sugar or Rose) or one of the CFP access bowls (Fiesta, Peach or Cotton Bowls) based on its ranking in the final CFP Selection Committee rankings. There is no limit on the number of teams from any one conference that can be selected to participate in the CFP bowls.

3) How can a SEC Team be selected to participate in the Orange Bowl?
When the Orange Bowl is not a semifinal game and a SEC team is the highest ranked team among the non-champions of the SEC and Big Ten and ranked higher than Notre Dame after the CFP semifinal games have been filled, then that team will participate in the Orange Bowl. There are eight years in which the Orange Bowl is not a semifinal game and the SEC is guaranteed three of the eight years, the Big Ten is guaranteed three of the eight years and the remaining two years can be filled by Notre Dame, the SEC or the Big Ten based on CFP Selection Committee rankings. To be clear, the SEC Champion can never participate in the Orange Bowl unless it is a semifinal game.

4) How does the CFP selection process work in 2017-18?
The CFP Selection Committee ranks the top 25 teams and selects the four teams to participate in the semifinal games (Sugar and Rose). Then, after the contract bowls (Orange) are filled based on conference agreements, the Committee will assign teams to fill the remaining access bowls (Cotton, Fiesta and Peach). The Orange Bowl is filled with an ACC representative and the highest ranked non champion from the SEC and the Big Ten or Notre Dame after the CFP semifinal games have been filled. Each conference champion from the contract bowls (ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, SEC & Pac 12) has a guaranteed spot in its contracted bowl or in an access bowl (Cotton, Fiesta or Peach) if the contracted bowl is a semifinal game and the conference champion is not selected to participate in a semifinal game. The highest ranked champion from the Mountain West, American, Conference USA, Sun Belt or MAC is guaranteed a spot in a CFP bowl and the remaining spots are filled based on the rankings of teams after the contract bowls have been filled.

5) Where is the CFP National Championship Game played?
The CFP National Championship Game will be played in locations selected by the CFP. The 2018 CFP National Championship Game will be played Atlanta, Georgia, on January 8, 2018.