Team Selection Committee Recaps Week 9 as Final Month of Regular Season Begins

As we enter the final month of college football’s regular season, there are still plenty of questions to be answered in the ACC, SEC, Big Ten and Big 12. On Monday, the Florida Citrus Sports Team Selection Committee did its best to make sense of this weekend’s Week 9 action and its effect on the Camping World Bowl and Citrus Bowl.

The meeting, held in the Varsity Club at Camping World Stadium, was the committee’s first in two weeks after a Food for Florida distribution event at the stadium cancelled the Week 8 gathering. This week, Florida Citrus Sports representatives were spread across a dozen games in our partner conferences and saw plenty of heart-pounding action — including a few thrilling upsets.

Paul Rossie made a four-legged friend on the field during Mississippi State’s win over Kentucky in Week 8. The Week 8 Team Selection Committee meeting was not held as scheduled due to a Food for Families event at Camping World Stadium.

One of those shockers came in Chestnut Hill, where Boston College rolled past Florida State (2-5, 2-4 ACC) to move to 5-4 on the season and 3-3 in conference play. Troy Anderson and Steve Vehrs were on hand for the win and left impressed with what BC had to offer.

“If they win the remainder of their games, they might be a team to watch,” Vehrs said of the Eagles, who have NC State, Connecticut and Syracuse remaining on their schedule. “Certainly their fan base will be energized and looking to go somewhere. The coach (Steve Addazio) didn’t really anticipate this season being a strong one for them, as they were expected to be in a rebuilding phase, and regardless of what happens the rest of the season, I think this is a team to watch going forward.”

Anderson also said he was pleased with the reception in Boston, which generally is known more for its reputation as a pro sports town. BC last appeared in an Orlando bowl game in 2007, when it defeated Michigan State 24-21 in the Camping World Bowl, known at the time as the Champs Sports Bowl.

“Bostonians are very proud people, and one thing they’re very unified on is their professional sports,” Troy said. “And the city, as big as it is — you talk about the colleges around there, and there’s a bit of a conflict of sorts with MIT, Harvard, Northeastern, Boston U, Boston College. But it was a great experience, and we recommend it for anyone who gets a chance (to go to BC) in the future.”

Elsewhere, Dave and Melanie Brock were on hand in chilly, rainy Morgantown for the host West Virginia Mountaineers’ 50-39 loss to Oklahoma State (7-1, 4-1 in the Big 12). The Brocks reported having a lengthy chat with West Virginia athletic director Shane Lyons, who noted that the Mountaineers (5-3, 3-2) have always enjoyed their trips to Orlando, despite coming up short in Camping World Bowl appearances in 2016 and 2010.

In the Big Ten, meanwhile, Brian Wagner (pictured above) and Kurt Langschwager said they received an exceptionally warm welcome from Michigan (6-2, 3-2) prior to its 35-14 win over Rutgers (3-5, 2-3).

Larry Poleyoff and Michael Potyraj said the South Carolina faithful, including Tommy Suggs (pictured), were thrilled at the possibility of a Citrus Bowl bid.

“They took care of us really well and were a class act all the way,” Wagner said. “They were really excited about coming back to Orlando for a bowl game. Several people asked that they would like to do it if they could play Florida again. They rolled out the red carpet for us to come see them play on Saturday, and perhaps we can do the same for them if they come back in January.”

The sentiment was similar in Columbia, South Carolina, where Larry Poleyoff and Michael Potyraj not only ran into SEC commissioner Greg Sankey — the featured speaker at Florida Citrus Sports’ “Chalk Talk” luncheon a few days earlier — prior to the Gamecocks’ (6-2, 4-2 SEC) victory over Vanderbilt (3-5, 0-5), but also encountered many around the program who were hopeful a Citrus Bowl trip could be in the cards.

“Tommy Suggs described his last experience in Orlando as fantastic,” Potyraj said of the former South Carolina quarterback, now a radio color analyst. “He said we really know how to host a bowl in Orlando.

“It was not hard to find people who have been to Orlando for a bowl game,” Potyraj added of the mood in the tailgate lots near Williams-Brice Stadium. “And they talked about the fact that they always have Orlando in their sights and would love to come back down.”

The next Team Selection Committee meeting is scheduled for next Monday, Nov. 6, in the Varsity Club. The Team Selection Committee is an all-volunteer community that represents Florida Citrus Sports at games across the Big Ten, SEC, ACC and Big 12, and participation is open to all active members. To learn more about membership options, visit our information page.

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