Florida will play Virginia in the Orange Bowl at 8 p.m. Dec. 30 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, the College Football Playoff committee announced today.
It will be the second consecutive New Year’s Six bowl for the Gators (10-2, No. 9 CFP) in Dan Mullen’s tenure at UF, which routed Michigan in last year’s Peach Bowl. Virginia (9-4, No. 24 CFP) is coming off a 62-17 thumping by Clemson in Charlotte, N.C., Saturday in the ACC Championship Game. The Cavaliers allowed a championship game record for points and yards (619).
This will be Florida’s fourth Orange Bowl appearance, and it boasts a 3-0 record in its previous outings. The Gators upset No. 8 Georgia Tech, 27-12, in 1967, routed No. 15 Syracuse, 31-10, in 1999, and dominated No. 10 Maryland, 56-23, in 2002. Florida also won the 2009 BCS National Championship Game at the Orange Bowl site (Dolphin Stadium, now renamed Hard Rock Stadium), as it defeated No. 1 Oklahoma, 24-14, to win its second national title in a three-year span.
The Gators will face Virginia for the second time in school history. The only other meeting between the two was on Oct. 3, 1959, and the No. 19 Gators came away with a 55-10 victory in Gainesville.
Florida is making its 45th all-time bowl appearance, and it is 23-21 in its previous bowl games. This will be the 19th time the Gators play in a New Year’s Six bowl.
With a win in the bowl game, the Gators would record their eighth 11-win season in program history and first since 2012. Moreover, Florida would end consecutive seasons with bowl wins for the first time since a four-year streak from 2008-11. Florida has already secured its second consecutive 10-win season for the first time since 13-win campaigns in 2008 and 2009, and Mullen is already the first head coach in program history to post 10 wins in each of his first two seasons.
The Gators Ticket Office is accepting bowl order requests now until Monday, Dec. 9 at 11:59 p.m. Football Season Ticket Holders can login to their account (Account Manager) to place their order. General public sales begin Tuesday, Dec. 10 at 10 a.m. All tickets will be delivered electronically.
The final four field announced Sunday: No. 1 LSU (13-0), No. 2 Ohio State (13-0), No. 3 Clemson (13-0) and No. 4 Oklahoma (12-1). The remaining New Year’s Six bowls and final Top 25 will be announced at 3 p.m. on ESPN.
Dec. 28, Peach Bowl: LSU vs. Oklahoma
Dec. 28, Fiesta Bowl: Ohio State vs. Clemson