San Diego Could Be In Holiday Plans

Mountaineers fans, how does sunny San Diego sound two days after Christmas?

Officials for that bowl have reportedly expressed interest in West Virginia as the Big 12’s representative for the Holiday Bowl, which is scheduled to be played at 9:45 p.m. on Dec. 27, pitting the fifth-place team in the Big 12 against the third-place team from the Pac-12 at Qualcomm Stadium.

They went so far as to insert fliers in the media packets for Saturday night’s game.

First things first. Those officials mentioned this based on the idea that the Mountaineers close out the season with victories against both Iowa State and Kansas.

The Mountaineers (2-5 in league play) are tied for eighth with Baylor in the standings after Saturday night’s loss to Oklahoma. Texas Tech (4-4) is fifth, with TCU (3-4), and Iowa State (3-5) immediately ahead of them.

The Red Raiders (4-4) have one game left, and that’s against Baylor. TCU has Texas on Thursday and closes out against Oklahoma. The Cyclones’ last game is Friday against the Mountaineers. The Bears have Texas Tech and Oklahoma State.

Just for giggles, let’s play this out in our heads and see what we come up with.

Let’s assume West Virginia wins out. That may seem like a stretch, but the Mountaineers have enough offense to beat these two.

We’ll similarly assume Baylor will be riding high and beat Texas Tech then lose to Oklahoma State.

TCU still has the Longhorns and Oklahoma, two very possible losses.

Iowa State, with a loss to West Virginia, would be 3-6, same as Baylor and TCU under these scenarios. Texas Tech and West Virginia would be 4-5, and thus, tied for fifth place.

Oh, and Kansas would be 0-9, taking a 21-game losing streak in conference play into next season.

The Holiday Bowl is now the Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl. Previous sponsors were Pacific Life, SeaWorld, Thrifty Car Rental, Plymouth, and Culligan – but never New Era.

The thought of the Mountaineers playing in that Yankee Stadium bowl against the fourth-place team from the Big East is just unearthly.

Other games

Kansas State is still in position to earn the Big 12’s automatic BCS berth, but a national title opportunity is likely out of the cards after the Wildcats were drilled by Baylor, 52-24. With three interceptions and four straight carries inside the 6 without being able to score, quarterback Collin Klein may have lost a bunch of Heisman momentum, too.

Continuing to come out of nowhere, Oklahoma State’s Clint Chelf threw for 229 yards and thee touchdowns as the Cowboys rattled Texas Tech, 59-21. And, believe it or not, 41,608 people paid to watch Iowa State rip Kansas, 51-23.

This week’s games


TCU at Texas


West Virginia at Iowa State


Baylor vs. Texas Tech

Oklahoma State at Oklahoma

Jim Elliott can be reached via e-mail at: