It seemed to be a jumbled mess with the NCAA and there not being enough six-win bowl eligible teams to fill the needed slots. That is no longer the case.
On Monday, the NCAA announced that the remaining bowl slots would go to the seven-loss teams that have the highest Academic Progress Rate (APR). This may seem like another one of the NCAA’s antics, but it could be a good balance to push academic initiative rather than strictly on-field performance.
Shortly after the NCAA release, the University of Missouri (5-7) announced they would not accept a bowl bid. This could be due to the off-field conflict with the unfair rights of African-American players as well as the health issues and retiring of head coach Gary Pinkel. However, it seems quite strange due to the fact that they had the APR necessary, and you don’t see schools deny a revenue opportunity such as that very often.
Brett McMurphy of ESPN reported that there is a tie between Minnesota and San Jose State and Illinois and Rice for APR, then the bowls would select those teams for that slot.
If tie among 5-7 teams Minnesota & San Jose State or Illinois & Rice for 1 bowl slot, bowl chooses which team it wants, source told @ESPN
— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) December 1, 2015
As many as five teams with seven-losses will be selected to a bowl game. In early projections, Kentucky and other power conference schools have been selected to fill these slots. This may seem a confusing process, but the NCAA is doing the right thing initiating academic success for athletic reward.