Even with BYU on bye last weekend, the action all over college football caused the bowl projections to shift. While some sites have the same projection for BYU’s bowl destination as last week, others have changed their tune.
Keep in mind, BYU still is not technically bowl eligible. They still need one more win in their last two games, against Utah Tech and at Stanford.
New Mexico Bowl vs. San Jose State
With the season BYU is having, it’s truly “beggars can’t be choosers.” That being said, this would be a bit of a letdown. However, San Jose State is not the WAC pushover BYU knew a decade ago. They are just two seasons removed from a Mountain West Conference championship. This year, they are 6-3. The two sides last played in 2017, with BYU winning 41-20. They have played each other 14 times since 1952.
Camellia Bowl vs. South Alabama
The Jaguars of South Alabama are no slouches this season. At 8-2, one of their two losses came on the road against UCLA. USA ranks 32nd in ESPN’s SP+ metric, above the likes of Arkansas and Notre Dame. This would be another sleeping giant BYU would play in a lackluster bowl, much like last season against UAB. These two programs have never met on the gridiron.
Myrtle Beach Bowl vs. UTSA
This is certainly one of the more ideal locales for a BYU bowl game this holiday season. They could do much worse than Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Much like South Alabama, the Roadrunners are not to be trifled with, at 8-2. They had one of the stronger non-conference schedules in all the Group of 5, with a loss to a then-ranked Houston squad and a road loss to Texas. These two teams met in 2020, when BYU came out victorious in a nail-biter, 27-20.
New Mexico Bowl vs. UNLV
Another New Mexico Bowl nod. BYU played in that bowl in 2010, blowing out UTEP. This projection has them playing former Mountain West foe in UNLV. The Rebels are not yet bowl eligible and must win out against Hawaii and Nevada to get there. They have played BYU 20 times, with BYU winning 17 of those contests.
LendingTree Bowl vs. Troy
ESPN’s second projection has BYU headed to Mobile, Alabama. The Trojans too, are 8-2. They are still jockeying for position to win the Sun Belt. BYU beat Troy 48-7 in 2020.
Frisco Bowl vs. Liberty
File this under “blah.” No one likes a bowl rematch. Plus, Liberty beat the doors off of BYU in Lynchburg just last month. While the BYU players might be foaming at the mouth for revenge, the fans would be far from enthused about this possible rematch in Texas.
New Mexico Bowl vs. Air Force
Of all the possible New Mexico Bowl projections thrown out, this might be the best. Air Force and BYU have a long, prickly history dating back to 1974. Unlike the majority of Mountain West schools, Air Force has not scheduled BYU since the Cougars departed the conference following the 2010 season. It’s always a treat to play a service academy. This would be a nostalgic matchup. Plus, the Falcons are a far cry from a doormat. They just sealed their first Commander-in-Chief trophy since 2016 with their win over Army earlier this month. And they have a top 20 defense in college football. If this matchup happens, buckle up, Cougar fans.