The University of Miami Hurricanes, who suffered a humbling 38-3 loss to top-ranked Clemson in the ACC Championship game Saturday night, will play Big Ten runner-up Wisconsin in the Orange Bowl on Dec. 30. The official announcement is expected around 3 p.m. Sunday.
The College Football Playoff dominoes began falling early Sunday afternoon as the selection committee announced its four semifinalists — Clemson (12-1), Oklahoma (12-1), Georgia (12-1), Alabama (11-1).
That news had a direct impact on the Hurricanes, who finished at No. 10 in the CFP rankings. There was a chance they would have faced the Crimson Tide in the Orange Bowl had newly crowned Big Ten champion Ohio State gotten that fourth semifinal spot. The Orange Bowl is contractually obligated to take the highest-ranked nonplayoff team from the ACC and the highest-ranked nonchampion, nonplayoff team from the Big Ten or Southeastern Conference or Notre Dame.
Wisconsin (12-1, 9-0 Big Ten) fits that bill, as it is No. 6 in the final CFP rankings, just behind Ohio State. The Badgers were undefeated and ranked No. 4 before they lost 27-21 to the Buckeyes in their conference championship on Saturday.
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The Badgers and Hurricanes (10-2) have played four times, most recently in the 2009 Champs Sports Bowl in Orlando. The Canes, then ranked No. 15, lost 20-14 to the 25th-ranked Badgers. The other memorable news from that rainy game was that Graig Cooper tore his ACL during a kick return, as the soggy field was in bad condition.