Iowa was selected Sunday as the opponent for Stanford in the 102nd Rose Bowl Game this New Year’s Day.
A replacement for Big Ten champion Michigan State was needed, because the Spartans were among four teams to qualify for the College Football Playoff. The playoff includes the top four teams in the final College Football Playoff rankings, which were determined Sunday.
The College Football Playoff system is in its second season, and under its rules, the Rose Bowl Game is assured of a matchup between teams from the Pac-12 and Big Ten conferences when it is not among the two bowl games hosting a College Football Playoff semifinal. That is the situation this year.
When either the Pac-12 and Big Ten champion qualifies for the playoff, the bowl game is to choose a replacement from that conference.
Michigan State defeated previously undefeated Iowa, 16-13, in the Big Ten Football Championship Game Saturday, to win that conference championship.
The Hawkeyes were fifth in the final College Football Playoff rankings released today, one spot ahead of Stanford, and two ahead of defending national champion Ohio State.
Iowa (12-1) will be playing in the Rose Bowl Game for the sixth time and first since 1991, when it lost to Washington, 46-34. The Hawkeyes have not won a Rose Bowl Game since 1959, losing their last three appearances.
The Cardinal (11-2) was assured at least a spot in the Rose Bowl Saturday when it defeated USC, 41-22, in the Pac-12 Football Championship Game.
Stanford will be playing in the Rose Bowl game for the third time in four seasons and 15th time overall. The Cardinal is 6-7-1 in the Rose Bowl Game.
— City News Service
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