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Are The Aggies A Good Fit For The Citrus Bowl?

Texas A&M will not be selected for the bowl game it wanted prior to the season, but big bowls will be calling

After the Aggies lost to Ole Miss on Nov. 13, it felt like a prestigious New Year's Six bowl game was in question. Then a loss at LSU to end the season made that almost a certainty. So surely the Aggies will not be playing on Jan. 1, right?

Not so fast, my friend. It seems one such New Year's Six bowl game is still showing interest in the 8-4 Aggies. The CEO of the VRBO Citrus Bowl, Steve Hogan, has named No. 25 A&M as one of three teams of interest for the Jan. 1 game, along with No. 22 Arkansas and No. 23 Kentucky.

"We want to reward the deserving team first,” Hogan told the Lexington Courier-Journal on Thursday. “When some discussions need to be held, if it is not entirely clear, we just want to make sure that we have all the data points and that we are attentive to the position we have on the top of the selection line. So that’s why it takes a little longer."

The choice will be made on Sunday after the conference championship games are done, and after the College Football Playoff makes its picks for the national champion and New Year's Six bowls.

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The game sometimes takes the highest-ranked SEC team in the CFP rankings that is not selected for a NY6 bowl game, as it has done three times since 2014 when the current format began.

And while the Citrus Bowl is showing interest, it would be a longshot for the Aggies to be selected after they fell to No. 25 after the LSU loss. But one determining factor could be the fact that A&M has never played in the game while both Kentucky and Arkansas have.

“I don’t see this kind of separation as disqualifying in the Kentucky case,” Hogan stated. “But on the other hand… I think the news of Arkansas or A&M, in this case, is always exciting and good for the team, for the destination and all that. I would emphasize that this is just one kind of data point among a few that we weigh."

Early in September when the season kicked off the Aggies certainly did not think they would find themselves competing with Arkansas and Kentucky for a bowl game. But here we are.