UCLA’s waiver to go bowling at 6-7 hinged on three key issues according to an NCAA source.
The NCAA’s bowl licensing subcommittee made a bit of history when it granted the Bruins bowl eligibility even if it loses the Pac-12 championship game on Friday. They are currently 6-6.
UCLA will go bowling regardless according to an NCAA …
… because the Pac-12 championship was not a scheduled game. UCLA, then, is being viewed as a 6-6 team for bowl purposes. (Certainly not for bowl promoters’ purposes.)
…because the Pac-12 cannot fill all seven of its bowl slots.
More to the point, there are only 71 bowl-eligible teams at the moment. Denying UCLA would have put the college football right at the cut line – just enough teams to fill 35 bowls. That means that a non-regional team probably would have been shipped out West to fill the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl.
North Texas was allowed to play in a bowl after winning the Sun Belt at 5-6 in 2001. The Mean Green lost the New Orleans Bowl to Colorado State to finish 5-7.