© St. Petersburg Times, published December 9, 2002
South Florida's slim hopes of landing a bowl bid as an at-large team ended Sunday when the Motor City Bowl took Boston College (8-4) and the Seattle Bowl went with Oregon (7-5) and Wake Forest (6-6).
The Bulls finished the season 9-2 and are fourth among the other teams receiving votes in the Associated Press poll. But USF is playing its final season as an independent and its bowl options were limited by its lack of a conference affiliation.
Boston College will play Toledo Dec. 26 in the Motor City Bowl at Detroit.
The Eagles finished 3-4 in the Big East but will appear in their fourth consecutive bowl.
Toledo won the MAC West title, but lost to Marshall in the conference championship game.
The Seattle Bowl initially was supposed to have an ACC team against a Mountain West team, but made a deal with the Silicon Valley Classic to get Oregon of the Pac-10. The ACC had an extra bowl-eligible team, Wake Forest, which was given the at-large spot.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia coach Rich Rodriguez lashed out at Notre Dame after the Irish earned a spot in the Gator Bowl and denied the Mountaineers a New Year's Day game.
No. 15 West Virginia will play unranked Virginia in the Continental Tire Bowl on Dec. 28 in Charlotte, N.C.
The Irish got shut out of the Bowl Championship Series, so Gator Bowl officials chose Notre Dame rather than West Virginia.
Notre Dame, an independent in football, was added to the Big East's portion of the BCS mix after the 1997 season.
"I don't know if slighted is the right word, but I do question sometimes what is Notre Dame's affiliation with our league," Rodriguez said. "I think the Big East is a great league and we can stand on our own. In my opinion, Notre Dame either needs to get in or get out."
GAINESVILLE -- Sophomore offensive lineman Jonathan Colon injured his left knee in practice on Saturday and is expected to be evaluated today.
Colon attended Sunday's Florida basketball game on crutches and with his knee in a brace.
He had a medical evaluation Sunday, but Florida officials did not know the extent of the injury.
-- Times staff writer Antonya English contributed to this report.