Playing in a New Year’s Eve bowl is still on the table for Florida State, but the chances of playing in a New Year’s Six bowl are all but gone.
Those hopes for the Seminoles likely came crashing down last week with Louisville’s 36-10 loss at Houston. The Cardinals entered the contest ranked fifth in the country and with a legitimate shot at making the College Football Playoff.
Had both Louisville and projected ACC champion Clemson each reached college football’s semifinal, the next-highest ranked ACC team would have won a spot in a New Year’s Six bowl. That team at the time was Florida State, and that bowl was the Capital One Orange Bowl in Miami.
Louisville sunk to 11th at the unveiling of the College Football Playoff rankings on Tuesday night. With only a contest with rival Kentucky remaining on the schedule, even a loss would probably not drop the Cardinals below the Seminoles.
That’s because when the committee weighs résumés, head-to-head contests are considered, and it would be tough to make a convincing case for the Seminoles given their two ACC losses and 63-20 loss at Louisville.
There are other avenues where FSU could capture an at-large berth into a New Year’s Six bowl, but those avenues are pretty small and would require significant upsets elsewhere. The Seminoles would also need to win their regular-season finale at home on Saturday night against rival Florida.
For the time being, it appears as though FSU will stay in Florida for bowl season with the 2016 season likely to end in the same place it started — Orlando. The Seminoles seem to be trending toward the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl on Dec. 31. The Russell Athletic Bowl in Orlando on Dec. 28 is also a possibility.