These are actual bowl projections from our good friends at FanHouse. However many writers seem to forget a few things when making BCS bowl projections. First is the bowl selection order: Orange, Fiesta, Sugar (after the replacement picks), and this clause:
Whether alternative pairings may have greater or lesser appeal to college football fans as measured by expected ticket sales for the bowls and by expected television interest, and the consequent financial impact on Fox and the bowls.
Here is the complete selection order including the replacements and assuming Texas wins the Big XII:
BCS Title game: #1 vs #2
Sugar Bowl: They get first replacement since they lose number one team to title game
Fiesta Bowl: They get second replacement since Texas is in title game
Orange Bow: At large selection vs. ACC Champion
Fiesta Bowl: At large selection vs. Texas replacement
Sugar Bowl: At large selection vs. SEC runner-up
Rose Bowl: Big Ten vs. Pac-10
Next are the projections from FanHouse
BCS Title game: Texas vs. Florida
No complaints here especially since it is one vs. two.
Rose Bowl: Oregon vs. Ohio State
Nothing can change here since it is Pac-10 vs. Big 10
Orange Bowl: Clemson vs. Boise State
Really? Boise State as the first at-large team taken after the replacement picks. Pretty sure the Orange Bowl wants better ratings then last years game which was the lowest watched BCS game in its history with a 6.1 rating between Cincinnati and Virginia Tech. That rating was 1.6 below the previous low which happened to also commence at the Orange Bowl between Louisville and Wake Forest in 2007. This pick is tricky, because the Orange Bowl would love to have the Big Ten runner up but that team most likely will go to the Fiesta Bowl. While there has been a track record of good games with non-BCS schools in BCS games the ratings have slipped, so why take the risk of picking Boise State when a slightly more attractive Cincinnati or Pittsburgh is still on the board.
My picks: Georgia Tech vs. Cincinnati
That game is still not sexy, but it should be fun to watch the two contrasting offense face off. With all the Brian Kelly to Notre Dame talk this game will get a bump over Boise State in the ratings.
Fiesta Bowl: TCU vs. Penn State
The Penn State choice is a safe pick as the replacement for Texas, even though Iowa is more deserving then Penn State. The Hawkeyes are ranked higher, more wins against above .500 teams, and beat Penn State in Happy Valley. Either way a Big 10 team will be in the Fiesta Bowl.
The Fiesta then picks second after the Orange Bowl while TCU is plausible here Virginia Tech is still on the board and a Penn State/Iowa game against Virginia Tech would bring in good ratings since these are more 'brand name' schools. TCU has to be taken but the Sugar Bowl would really want TCU. The second pick will come down to Boise State and Virginia Tech. Boise could be the choice since the bowl is most likely to have a Big 10 which means the ratings will be there, and the last time Boise State was in the Fiesta Bowl they traveled well and put on a great show.
My pick: Boise State vs Penn State
Now I could really see Virginia Tech in this game and they would be if this were the Sugar or Orange Bowl. Boise State should get the nod since they most likely will be fourth or fifth in the final rankings. There is the chance that if Oregon State beats Oregon in the Civil War then the Ducks could go here, but I am playing this as if all the favorites win.
Sugar Bowl: Alabama vs. Pittsburgh
Alabama is a no brainer, but Pitt really? First off Pitt does not have the offensive horses to hang with Pitt and while the Sugar gets the last pick the only way that the Big East champ ends up here is if the Orange Bowl selects TCU which seems to be far fetched. The Sugar would LOVE Virginia Tech, and the only way they get chosen is if the Fiesta takes TCU which leaves the last spot between Boise State and Virginia Tech. The Hokie fans will travel to the Sugar or Orange Bowl.
My pick TCU vs. Alabama
This would have a ton of story lines with Utah beating Alabama last year and a 2010 MWV vs. Alabama would be intriguing with the questions to 'Bama about if they will be ready and really want to be in this game. This pick will happen if Boise is taken to the Fiesta Bowl since TCU earned an at-large berth by being the highest rated non-BCS school. Now the only twist is if TCU is picked up by the Fiesta which leaves Boise State and Virginia Tech for the Sugar Bowl. The BCS would gain a ton of goodwill and relieve the political pressure by taking Boise State.