Pop Tart Bowl – Thursday, December 28th at 5:45 PM in Orlando, Florida
Clemson fans might not realize it, but the Tigers have been in this game recently. That is because the sponsor changed recently. This was known as the Cheez-It Bowl in 2021 when Clemson defeated Brock Purdy and the Iowa State Cyclones.
There is no more Prince Cheddward. We have no idea if Milton the Toaster could be making a comeback as the new bowl game mascot, but this is still the next best bowl game after the NY6 options. Technically, it is one of nine games on the next tier of ACC bowl games, but traditionally it has the top selection outside the teams that go to the playoff or the Orange Bowl.
The Tigers won’t be the next highest-rated team for the ACC, but there is an outside shot at the Pop Tart Bowl. If FSU makes the playoff, which means Louisville would go to the Orange Bowl, then Clemson would get consideration, along with NC State and Notre Dame.
When the economics of football are involved, head-to-head results aren’t always a slam dunk to be the deciding factor, but they are impactful. If FSU is in the Orange Bowl instead of the playoff, then Louisville is available. They would likely get the nod because of their victories against the Irish and the Wolfpack.
Otherwise, Clemson defeated Notre Dame. Notre Dame defeated NC State. NC State defeated Clemson. My guess is economics win out here, and though Clemson travels well, Notre Dame is Notre Dame.
Pop-Tarts Bowl is a possibility, but kind of a longshot.
Possible opponents: The Pop-Tarts Bowl hosts the Big 12, so Oklahoma is a realistic possibility here, as are Oklahoma State, Kansas State, and West Virginia.