Hurricanes coach won't be choosy about bowl options

Associated Press
Published November 28, 2005

CORAL GABLES - If he could pick where to play next, coach Larry Coker would obviously grab a spot in the Atlantic Coast Conference title game, followed by a Bowl Championship Series appearance.

Neither will happen, so Coker has no real preference about which bowl takes his team.

"I just hope that we play the best team in the best bowl," Coker said Sunday. "When you're kind of the ugly stepsister, you just go to the prom with whoever asks you. ... But seriously, when things are out of your control and when you're not in control of your own destiny, you're kind of at the mercy of what's out there."

So, what's out there?

Probably a spot in the Gator Bowl in Jacksonville on Jan.2 against Louisville, which gave Miami fits last season and hosts the Hurricanes early in 2006.

That would spark parallels to Miami's Orange Bowl appearance two years ago, when it played Florida State, then opened 2004 against the Seminoles. Miami is scheduled to visit Louisville on Sept.16.

"I'd rather not do that, to be quite honest. ... I'd rather not have a game with Louisville, turn around and play Louisville again next year," Coker said.

The Gator Bowl selection committee meets today, and the Cardinals are expected to receive their formal invitation this afternoon. Gator Bowl Association president Rick Catlett said Sunday night the ACC representative would not be announced until after FSU and Virginia Tech play for the ACC crown Saturday in Jacksonville.

"I don't guess we're excited about any bowl right now. I know I'm not and I doubt that our players are either," Coker said. "We'll just be in recovery mode. And when it's time to play, much like the Peach Bowl last year ... we'll be ready when the time comes."