With most of the major conferences playing condensed football seasons this fall, the NCAA had decided to waive the wins requirement to play in a bowl game this season. That means any of the 127 FBS teams can play in a game.
At present, there are 39 bowl games, including the first round of the College Football Playoff. So 78 teams will earn bowl bids.
That's good news for schools like Indiana, a team that's playing a conference-only schedule when the Big Ten season starts on Oct. 24. The Big Ten is playing eight scheduled games, plus a ninth game on the weekend of the conference title game.
In previous years when teams were allowed to play 12-game schedules, a minimum of six wins was required to be eligible for a bowl game, which meant a .500 record or better. With shortened seasons and more difficult schedules, getting eligible for many teams would have been hard.
Indiana, for instance, is a likely underdog in four games this season (Penn State, Michigan, Ohio State and Wisconsin), though a few of those lines might be pretty small. Indiana, which was 8-5 a year ago, winning eight games for the first time in 26 years, earned a trip to the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, where they lost to Tennessee.
The plan, for now, is that the College Football Playoff selection committee will select its four teams on Sunday, Dec. 20, and the bowl selections will soon follow.
Indiana begins its season at home on Saturday, Oct. 24 against No. 9 Penn State. The game kicks off at 3:30 p.m. ET
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- PENN STATE GAME PERSONAL FOR WHOP PHILYOR: Whop Philyor was taken out of last year's Penn State game on a helmet-to-helmet hit. This year's season-opener means more to the Indiana receiver. CLICK HERE
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