Florida State vs Michigan will face off in the Orange Bowl at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida.
The Orange Bowl played host to an orange crush in 2015, as Clemson rolled past Oklahoma to make the College Football Playoff National Championship. The 2016 Orange Bowl on December 30, might be more suitable for a non-R.E.M. rock pun.
2016 Orange Bowl
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That’s because it will be the first Orange Bowl held at the newly-renamed Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla., the eighth name for the multipurpose facility that began life as Joe Robbie Stadium in 1987.
The Orange Bowl hasn’t been held at the now-demolished stadium that was renamed after the bowl game itself since 1999.
Here is everything you need to know in preparation for this year’s game, featuring the Big Ten’s Michigan and the ACC’s Florida State. It should be a good one.
Date and time: Friday, Dec. 30, 8 p.m.
TV channel: ESPN
Location: Miami Gardens, Fla.
Stadium: Hard Rock Stadium
Last year’s score: Clemson 37, Oklahoma 17
Last year’s attendance: 67,615
Teams with the most all-time appearances: Oklahoma, 19
Teams with the most all-time wins: Oklahoma, 12
Michigan (10-2, 7-2 in Big Ten)
The Wolverines entered 2016 as both a Big Ten Championship and College Football Playoff contender. Both of those things were possible for the Wolverines heading into a heavyweight clash against rival Ohio State. However, the Buckeyes beat the Wolverines 30-27 in double overtime, in what would go down as one of the most thrilling Michigan-OSU games in the history of the series. It didn’t come without controversy, though. Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh was very critical of the game’s officiating afterwards — most notably concerning the first down spot they gave Buckeye quarterback J.T. Barrett on OSU’s eventual game-winning drive.
Michigan’s defense has been quite impressive all season. To end the regular season, the Wolverines finished as the No. 1 overall defense in the country, according to S&P+. In terms of points per game, Michigan finished the season ranked second in that category defensively. The unit is led by linebackers Jabrill Peppers and Ben Gedeon, who combined for 84 solo tackles on the year.
The season ended without either goals — Big Ten title or Playoff bid — accomplished. But as always, it was known at the beginning of the season that those two things may not be accomplished without a victory over Ohio State. Fear not, Michigan fans, the Wolverines aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.
Florida State (9-3, 5-3 in ACC)
The Noles entered 2016 with some high national title aspirations in Tallahassee. However, things haven’t gone quite as planned for Jimbo Fisher this season. Heading into Rivalry Week, the Noles were sitting at 8-3 with losses to Louisville, North Carolina and Clemson, thus leaving them out of the ACC Championship discussion. The loss to Louisville was a complete blowout — 63-20 to be exact, marking the most points scored ever on an FSU defense.
The inexplicable loss to an unranked UNC team came at home, and on a last-second field goal for the Tar Heels. The loss to Clemson was close and hard-fought, but it put the Noles out of contention for an ACC title.
On the offensive side of things, redshirt freshman quarterback Deondre Francois has played impressively well for his first year as a starter. The Noles have one of the better passing offenses in the country. More impressive than Francois has been how running back Dalvin Cook has performed this season. Against Syracuse, Cook became FSU’s all-time leading rusher, surpassing Warrick Dunn’s career rushing mark of 3,959 rushing yards, a record set in 1996. He’s been as good as ever. source: www.sbnation.com