Dienhart: Big Ten gets in Orange Bowl mix

The Big Ten enhanced its postseason situation with news that the ACC and the Orange Bowl committee will consider a team from the Big Ten to serve as a potential participant in the game beginning with the 2014 season. Of course, the Big Ten already has a spot in the Rose Bowl, giving the Big Ten ties to two prestigious bowls.

The ACC and Orange Bowl also will consider Notre Dame and teams from the SEC to serve as an opponent for the ACC champ, which will play in the Orange Bowl unless it is identified as one of four teams to take part in the national semifinals of a playoff that will begin with the 2014 season. You can read the full release at BigTen.org.

[ RELATED: Read Tom Dienhart’s weekly bowl projections. ]

The last Big Ten team to play in the Orange Bowl was Iowa after the 2009 season. The Hawkeyes beat Georgia Tech, 24-14.

The Big Ten has sent three other schools to the Orange Bowl since 1999. Iowa lost to USC after the 2002 season, 38-17. Penn State played Florida State after the 2005 season in a battle between Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden that the Nittany Lions won, 26-23. And Michigan beat Alabama, 35-35, after the 1999 season with Tom Brady at the controls.

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BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men’s basketball for BTN.com and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at btn.com/tomdienhart, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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