Pac-12 Football: Christmas Bowl Arrangement With MWC In Works?

Harry How

Could the Pac-12 have a Christmas bowl game with the Mountain West in Los Angeles down the line?

With the Pac-12 likely to withdraw from their arrangement with the New Mexico Bowl and adding in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl, the conference is probably looking for one extra slot to fill the rear and ensure that they have eight positions in case they have eight teams ready to fill in bowl games.

One possibility? Christmas with the Mountain West in the Los Angeles Coliseum! Or something.

However it doesn't look like it'll be a straightforward arrangement at this point. The Christmas Bowl wants the Mountain West as their mainstay conference, while the Pac-12 would rotate with the American Athletic Conference and maybe some BYU too. Let's let the Christmas Bowl CEO explain how exactly this works.

As far as conference alignments go, The Christmas Bowl has plans to secure the Mountain West as it’s ‘anchor’ conference. Hopefully featuring the MWC’s one, two, or three selection. The Christmas Bowl is now negotiating to secure the 2nd or 3rd selection from the American Athletic Conference and the 7th selection from the PAC 12 Conference, to play the Mountain West in an alternating schedule (3 years each conference) in the Christmas Bowl 2014-2019. The bowl is also working with CUSA to utilize its #1 selection, in a potential 3 year arrangement, to play the MWC representative, in the event the PAC 12 #7 is not available.

So where does BYU fit into all of this? The Christmas Bowl is currently seeking a one or two-year agreement between the Cougars and the bowl game. The bowl is very impressed with BYU’s consistent bowl eligibility and ability to sell tickets, especially in Southern California.

Now the Pac-12 would need to find another bowl in years where they're not in the Christmas Bowl mix. But at the very least the conference would have enough bowl slots for the [hopefully few] times the conference doesn't make it into the College Football Playoff.

That would give the Pac-12 four bowl games in California (Rose, Holiday, Fight Hunger, Christmas), one in a popular destination spot (Vegas), one in Arizona (Wild Wings) and two in Texas (Sun, Alamo). That would give the conference pretty much 75% of its bowls in home or semi-neutral territory and should provide appealing travel sites for most of the Pac-12. Who doesn't like a trip down to California after a successful season?

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