This is from Steve Hogan, the executive director of the Capital One Bowl, when I asked him about the bowl’s interest in Ole Miss following Georgia’s loss to Georgia Tech. The bowl is contractually obligated to take the SEC team with the best overall record — or within one game of that record — after BCS bowl selections are made.
There is some very sincere interest in Ole Miss for several reasons. First and foremost I have a lot of respect for Pete Boone, he’s a friend of many years, and there are great people there with an unbelievable fan base.
Second, is Houston Nutt. He has a lot of friends in Orlando. We have a lot of respect for Ole Miss. It’s exciting to see what the Rebels have done over the course of the year to be where they are.
There is sincere interest in Ole Miss, and there will be a lot of debate.
We’re no stranger to Western teams in Orlando. We’ve had Arkansas a couple of times, LSU and Alabama. We’ve had a variety of teams from the East and West. There’s no reason why Ole Miss would not make sense in Orlando. There is no impediment.
We try to look at the teams available based on the balance of their season. We don’t want to make it about (selling) every last ticket available. That would be easy to do. It might cost us a few thousand in sales, but we’re not there for every last person to come to Orlando if you will. We often take into account a team deserving on the balance of the year.
Personally, I’m very fond of Pete Boone, and obviously Houston is a good man and a great coach. We have a lot of respect for both of those men in Orlando.
We think the world of their athletic program there, and let everyone know they’re in our mix.