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Bowl projections: Here are Maryland football’s most likely options

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The Terps are almost certainly going to land in one of these three bowl games.

NCAA Football: Rutgers at Maryland Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland football is bowl-eligible. The Terps beat Rutgers Saturday afternoon to finish the regular season with six wins, the minimum number needed to guarantee position in a bowl game.

Bowls will be announced next week when the College Football Playoff Committee reveals its top four, but we can pretty easily predict where Maryland will end up.

Wait, how does this bowl thing work again?

Bowls have contracts with different conferences. For example, the Foster Farms Bowl, which Maryland played in two years ago, has a contract with the Big Ten and the Pac-12, so one team from each conference is guaranteed a spot in that bowl each season (rules prohibit Maryland from playing in that specific bowl again within a six-year span).

Here’s each bowl the Big Ten has a contract with, from our friends at Bucky’s 5th Quarter:

SEEDS BOWL
1 Rose*
2-4 Capital One
2-4 Outback
2-4 Holiday
5-7 Music City/Gator**
5-7 Kraft Fight Hunger
5-7 Pinstripe
TBD A Detroit bowl
TBD Military/Heart of Dallas/Armed Forces
*The Big Ten will also share a spot in the Orange Bowl with the SEC and Notre Dame.
**The ACC and Big Ten will likely share spots in the Music City and Gator bo

Big Ten teams are locked into bowl games based on tiers. This can all get a bit complicated, but the gist is this: teams are sorted into tiers based on record, and bowls can pick among a certain tier based on how prestigious that bowl is. More prestigious bowls get to pick from the higher tiers, while the lower-tiered bowls are left with the rest. Maryland, which finished at 6-6, will end up in one of the lower-tiered bowls, for sure.

Out of the agreements the Big Ten has with respective bowls, here’s what makes the most sense:

Heart of Dallas Bowl

When/where: Tuesday Dec. 27, noon, Cotton Bowl Stadium

TV info: ESPN

Road trip rating: 7/10. It’s somewhere warm, and would make for a fun trip if you’ve got time to spare near the holidays. It’s certainly not close to Maryland, though.

Who’s predicting Maryland to land here: Sports Illustrated

Quick Lane Bowl

When/where: Monday Dec. 26, 2:30, Ford Field, Detroit

TV: ESPN

Road trip rating: 3/10. Detroit doesn’t have many tourist attractions, especially in the winter. And it’s far.

Who’s predicting Maryland to land here: CBS Sports

Pinstripe Bowl

When/where: Wednesday Dec. 28, 2 p.m., Yankee Stadium, New York

TV info: ESPN

Road trip likelihood: 9/10. This is only four hours away from most Marylanders, and would make for a fun post-Christmas trip, if you’re into that kind of thing.

Who’s predicting Maryland to land here: SB Nation