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Volume 24 No. 156


The Allstate Sugar Bowl has agreed to a 12-year deal to serve as the host site of the Champions Bowl, the postseason game featuring the champions of the SEC and Big 12 Conferences beginning with the '14 season. If the bowl is selected as a semifinal game in the new BCS structure, the game would not host the SEC-Big 12 matchup in that year. The champions of the two conferences will be in the matchup unless one or both are selected to play in the new four-team model to determine the national championship. In that event, another team or teams from the conferences would be selected for the game (SEC).’s Brett McMurphy reported the SEC and Big 12 had “chosen the Sugar Bowl over the Cotton Bowl” to host the game. Sources said that “one of the factors why the Sugar Bowl was selected was the SEC's long history in New Orleans.” An SEC team “played in the inaugural Sugar Bowl” in ‘35 and SEC teams have been “a staple with the bowl game ever since.” Besides New Orleans and Arlington, the other cities that “submitted bids for the Champions game were Atlanta, Houston and San Antonio.” The game will “take the name of the Sugar Bowl as the ‘Champions Bowl’ name was just a temporary placeholder.” Sources said that ESPN will pay $80M a year “to televise the Sugar Bowl.” That is the “same amount ESPN will pay annually for the Rose Bowl.” Sources said that television rights for the Orange Bowl are “expected to cost $55 million” (, 11/6).

LIMITED ACCESS: In Dallas, Chuck Carlton writes the Cotton Bowl’s “only path now to be part of the semifinal rotation will be as one of the ‘access bowls’ in the new system.” The Rose and FedEx Orange Bowls are “guaranteed spots in the new playoff system, along with [the] Sugar because of their contracts with conferences.” At least three “access bowls” and “maybe a fourth will also be part of the system, with no decision expected until January.” The Chick-fil-A Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, and Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas are among the “top contenders for the ‘access bowls,’ with several other cities expected to bid.” The “combination of the Cotton Bowl’s tradition and reputation for hospitality along with all the benefits of Cowboys Stadium should position it well," but "nothing is certain at this point” (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 11/7).