ATLANTA - With the announcement coming Sunday about which two teams will take part in this year's Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl on New Year's Day, bowl president Gary Stokan talked with FOX 5's Cody Chaffins about the excitement and changes coming with this year's game.
When it comes to which two teams will be playing in Mercedes-Benz Stadium, that decision is made by the College Football Playoff committee, so Stokan along with the rest of college football fans can only speculate at this point. One of the more popular projections would be a Georgia vs. Cincinnati matchup.
UGA was originally going to open their season in one of the Chick-fil-A Kickoff games against Virginia. "How ironic would ti be in the crazy chaos of COVID-19 2020, that we would start the year 2021 with Georgia when we were supposed to have them at the start of the season. It would be a great way to start off the 2021 year because we're all looking forward to getting past 2020," said Stokan.
A selection of Cincinnati would continue a recent trend of "Group of Five" teams playing in the bowl game. In 2015 Houston defeated Florida State and on January 1st, 2018 UCF capped an undefeated regular season beating Auburn.
"What I've found is those teams come in ranked in the top ten, so they have a reason they believe they can win, but it's also Cinderella's chance to dance. From a fan perspective they're excited, and from a team perspective they're excited to get the chance to play the big boys. One of the big conferences in the "Power Five" that's a top ten team. It would be a great matchup with Cincinnati with Georgia or whomever we get," said Stokan.
When it comes to the logistics of this year's bowl game. Stokan says that Mercedes-Benz Stadium will be filled to 25% capacity which will be approximately 18,000 fans. The teams will get a combined 6,250 tickets with the remaining tickets being sold to fans by the bowl.
The bowl experience for teams will be cut down from its normal week to just two days. Stokan says that teams will come in on December 30th and play the game January 1st. While some of the bowl events will be eliminated, player's annual trips to visit patients at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta will still happen, but virtually this year.
Tickets and more information can be found at the bowl website: chick-fil-apeachbowl.com