Gator Bowl Matchup Not a Done Deal; FSU-West Virginia Hinges on ACC Championship Game

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Byline: GARRY SMITS

TALLAHASSEE - The retirement of Florida State coach Bobby Bowden on Tuesday is the first domino that had to fall in setting up a potential Konica Minolta Gator Bowl matchup Jan. 1 between the Seminoles and West Virginia.

Now, the Gator Bowl Association has to wait for the outcome of the ACC title game between Georgia Tech and Clemson.

"Matching Florida State with Bobby Bowden coaching his last game, against West Virginia, the school he coached before coming to FSU, would be an outstanding game," GBA president Rick Catlett said Tuesday. "Obviously, there are still some conditions that have to be met, and coach Bowden's resignation was one of them."

FSU has a 5-0-1 record in the Gator Bowl and is 3-0 under Bowden.

The first game in the Seminoles' current streak of 28 bowl-eligible years in a row was the 1982 Gator Bowl, when FSU beat West Virginia 31-12.

If the Chick-Fil-A Bowl in Atlanta passes on the loser of the ACC title game and selects Virginia Tech, as expected, the Gator Bowl also can turn down the title game loser. …