The Peach and Garden State bowls filled up yesterday, leaving only the Bluebonnet Bowl with an open spot among the nation's top 14 postseason football games.
Hometown favorite Georgia Tech, a 38-21 loser to Notre Dame Saturday, accepted the Peach Bowl bid to play Purdue in Atlanta on Christmas Day.
Arizona State, the only team to beat Rose Bowlbound Southern California this season, will play Rutgers in the first Garden State Bowl Dec. 16 at East Rutherford, N.J.
Stanford accepted one bid to the Bluebonnet Bowl late Saturday night and officials of that New Year's Eve game in Houston hope to pair the Indians against either Georgia or Alabama.
One of those two, which depending on whether Alabama beats Auburn Dec. 2, will go to the Sugar Bowl to play top-ranked Penn State on Jan. 1. An Auburn victory or tie will send Georgia, tied by the Tigers Saturday, to the Sugar Bowl.
However, Alabama Coach Bear Bryant has let it be known that he will recommend no trip to his players unless they beat Auburn and go to the Sugar Bowl.
That will be the only way Florida State, which heaped a 38-6 whipping on Holiday Bowl-bound Navy Saturday, will get to a bowl game despite its present 7-3 record.
Locally, besides Navy, which plays Western Athletic Conference champion Brigham Young Dec. 22 in San Diego, Maryland will face Texas in the Sun Bowl Dec. 23 at El Paso, Tex.
Meanwhile, Penn State Coach Joe Paterno disclosed that his team's vote to take the Suger Bowl bid "was very close, but they agreed we should play the highest-ranked team available. So we've gambling it will be Alabama.
Penn State, 10-0 and winner of 18 straight games, closes out it regular season Friday at Pittsburgh.