Reports are out this afternoon that the Northwestern Wildcats have accepted an invitation to play in this year's Gator Bowl. So why would that matter to Mississippi State?
It matters to State because Vanderbilt - the team we are contending with for a bowl spot - played the Wildcats earlier in the year, and bowls generally do not like repeat matchups.
Add to that this chat Brad Locke had earlier in the week with the Gator Bowl President where he told Locke that the Gator would not take a 6-6 team over an 8-4 one. Couple Northwestern's likely playing in the game with the President's quotes, and you all but surely have yourself an MSU trip to the Gator Bowl.
Should this report prove true, that most likely means that Vanderbilt will stay home for the Music City Bowl, leaving Ole Miss to the BBVA Compass Bowl in Birmingham.
All of the information is coming fast this afternoon, but we will try to update you when we have something more concrete.
[UPDATE] - Since the publication of this report, Northwestern has officially accepted an invitation to play in the Gator Bowl.