Morgantown, West Virginia – The West Virginia Mountaineers finished the season 6-6, but technically, they are not eligible to play in a bowl game.
As first mentioned by Reddit’s College Football Account, West Virginia and Miami of Ohio both beat Long Island University, who was promoted from Division 2 and now plays in the FCS Northeast Conference. The Northeast Conference caps football scholarships at 45, which is below the 56.7 scholarships required to be counted towards bowl eligibility.
The official rule reads: “126.96.36.199.1 Each year, a Football Bowl Subdivision institution may count one victory against a Football Championship Subdivision opponent toward meeting the definition of a ‘deserving opponent’, provided the opponent has averaged 90 percent of the permissible maximum number of grants-in-aid per year in football during a rolling two-year period.”
Technically, Long Island University does not meet that requirement.
There are 82 bowl slots and 83 teams with 6+ wins. West Virginia, Miami (OH) and Hawaii (6-7) are the final three teams in terms of eligibility.
With that said, West Virginia is behind all of the other bowl eligible teams but ahead of Miami (OH) and Hawaii, and will get the very last bowl slot available. Miami (OH) and Hawaii will be left out.
The Big 12 has exactly enough teams for its bowl tie-ins with West Virginia included and the MAC would have more eligible teams than available bowl-conference tie-ins, so West Virginia will get in and Miami (OH) will not. It’s a very complicated situation, but the Mountaineers will just barely sneak into a bowl game this season.