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Where Will UCF Football Play its Bowl Game? It’s Basically Down to 2 Options

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One is in Florida and one is not

NCAA Football: Fiesta Bowl-Louisiana State vs Central Florida
UCF won’t be making a trip to a New Year’s Six bowl game this year, but the bowl options for Greg McCrae and the Knights have apparently been narrowed down to two.
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

We are less than 24 hours away from knowing exactly where and against whom the UCF Knights will play their bowl game.

Although we don’t know where UCF is headed, a source has told Black and Gold Banneret that, among all of the possibilities, there are basically just two options on the table:

The Military Bowl and the Gasparilla Bowl

There is a darkhorse in this conversation — the Hawaii Bowl versus BYU. But the source indicated that the Knights’ chances of being in that game are minute.

There was no word given on which teams UCF would possibly face in any of these games.

Recent projections have placed the Knights in a bunch of different bowls, but many of those options — the Boca Raton Bowl, the Birmingham Bowl, the Liberty Bowl, the Independence Bowl, the Frisco Bowl, the Cure Bowl, etc. — are not being considered, per source.

The Military Bowl will kick off at noon on Dec. 27 from Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Md. The Gasparilla Bowl is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 23 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. Both games will be televised on ESPN.

The Military Bowl has pitted teams from the American Athletic Conference and the Atlantic Coast Conference against one another for the past five years. In four of those five games, the ACC team entered with a 6-6 record. There are four ACC teams that currently sit at 6-6: the Miami Hurricanes , the Florida State Seminoles, the North Carolina Tar Heels and the Boston College Eagles.

The Gasparilla Bowl has matched up an AAC team and a Conference USA team in three of the past four years, but depending upon the number of teams available and what other bowls choose to do, it also has tie-ins with the SEC, ACC and the Mid-American Conference.

The Knights have thrice played in previous iterations of what became the Gasparilla Bowl, going 1-2.

They went 9-4 before getting past Ball State in the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl, 38-17, in 2012.

Their 9-3 team in 2014 fell to North Carolina State, 34-27, in what was the St. Petersburg Bowl. UCF’s 8-4 squad in 2009 was defeated by Rutgers in the same game, 45-24.