Jim Carty may not be writing for the News anymore but he’s still writing. Since Drew Sharp doesn’t really check facts, Carty did it for him. While Michigan under the Rodriguez regime will probably reach its sixth win sometime in October 2009, there’s been a lot of folks suggesting that a 6-6 2008 squad might still get passed over on a bowl for a Big Ten team with a better record. Sharp suggested as much today in the Freep.
Except he’s wrong. Carty confirmed as much and included his Q&A with the Big Ten office on his blog, Paper Tiger No More. The details:
Q: Is a Big Ten-affiliated bowl allowed to select a 6-6 Big Ten team over a 7-5 team? For example, if Michigan were 6-6 and Northwestern were 7-5, and all the other bowl spots were taken, could the Motor City take a .500 Michigan team over a Northwestern team with a winning record?
Chipman: Depends on the bowl and situation; For the Capital One, Outback, Alamo and Champs Sports Bowls, they can select any eligible team except a team that has two fewer wins or two more losses than another eligible team (so they could pick a 6-6 team over a 7-5 team, but could not pick a 6-6 team over an 8-4 team). For the Insight and the Motor City bowls, they can pick any team once the other five bowls (including the Rose Bowl) make their selections, regardless of win differential. So the Insight or Motor City could pick a 6-6 team over an 8-4 team.
Q: Is a 6-6 team eligible to go to a bowl that isn’t affiliated with the Big Ten if all bowl spots affiliated with the Big Ten are filled?
Chipman: Once all the Big Ten bowl slots are filled, Big Ten teams are not eligible for outside bowls unless they go 7-5 or better, unless there are no more 7-5 teams available and bowl slots are still open, in which case 6-6 teams would become eligible.
Related: I working on setting up an interview with JC sometime soon.