The trick is that the Armed Forces doesn't have an agreement with the Mountain West Conference for an automatic invite. The Mountain West Conference has six bowl agreements with the Las Vegas Bowl, Poinsettia Bowl, Hawaii Bowl, New Mexico Bowl, Potato Bowl and New Orleans Bowl. The Mountain West currently has seven bowl eligible teams, but it appears as if Boise State is going to receive the G5 invitation to one of the eight major bowls with a victory over Fresno State in the Mountain West Championship Game this coming Saturday. Should Fresno State pull the upset, it would probably be easier for Air Force to work out a deal with the Armed Forces Bowl.
What made this situation possible for the Armed Forces Bowl to even consider Air Force for their bowl game is the fact that Army is not bowl eligible. Army would have received an automatic bid, but the Black Knights currently sit at 3-8 and cannot get to the needed six wins to be bowl eligible. Navy has already accepted a bid to the Poinsettia Bowl after becoming bowl eligible last weekend. So, for the Armed Forces Bowl to have a military presence in their game, they need to go after the Falcons. The Falcons have played in the Armed Force game three times in recent history, splitting match-ups with Houston and losing to a DeSean Jackson-led California.
This story will play out through the week, and after Championship Saturday we will find out the fate of all the bowls on Sunday, December 7th.