On behalf of its Selection Committee, Florida Citrus Sportsï¿½ Chairman Tony Martin and Executive Director Steve Hogan announce that the University of Florida and the University of Michigan have been chosen to play in this yearï¿½s Capital One Bowl. The game, played on January 1 at 1:00 p.m. and televised on nationally on ABC, will be the first meeting between the two national powerhouses since the 2003 Outback Bowl.
Florida, the bowlï¿½s representative from the Southeastern Conference, finished the regular season 9-3 (5-3 SEC) a season removed from winning its second National Championship. Two of the Gatorsï¿½ three losses came by four points or less and the team features the nationï¿½s fourth-ranked scoring offense, averaging 43.1 points per game. In QB Tim Tebow, the Gators have the nationï¿½s top-rated passer (177.85 rating) and seventh-ranked player in total offense (330.8 ypg). Tebow is expected to be named a finalist for this yearï¿½s Heisman Trophy.
Michigan (8-4, 6-2 Big Ten) comes to Orlando after a season that started slow and finished slow, but featured an eight-game winning streak in the middle of its schedule. The Wolverines have arguably one of the nationï¿½s most star-studded offenses, but have dealt with injuries throughout the season. Michigan has taken just one snap with its top four offensive weapons ï¿½ QB Chad Henne, TB Mike Hart, WR Mario Manningham and OT Jake Long ï¿½ on the field at the same time. All four are expected to be healthy for this yearï¿½s bowl game.
ï¿½This is about as good as it gets in college football,ï¿½ said FCSports Executive Director Steve Hogan. ï¿½A top 10 team in the University of Florida led by Heisman-hopeful Tim Tebow, facing the University of Michigan looking to send coach Carr out on a high note — with a healthy Chad Henne and Mike Hart — will be one of the best games of the year. This is great for Orlando and should be one of the toughest Capital One Bowl tickets to get in years.ï¿½
This yearï¿½s meeting will be just the second-ever between these two schools. The lone previous meeting came in the 2003 Outback Bowl, a 38-30 win for the Wolverines. Florida last played in the Capital One Bowl in 2000, a 37-34 loss to Michigan State, while Michigan last squared off in Orlando In 2002, a 45-17 loss to Tennessee. Michigan has a 2-1 all-time record in the bowl while Florida is 2-2 in four appearances.
For ticket information, please log on to www.ticketmaster.com. Groups of 20 or more or those interested in membership can call the Florida Citrus Sports offices at 407.423.2476.