Just a few notes on the current status of bowl bids. First, Terry Hutchens reports that the Insight and other bowls do not expect to issue bids until after the conference championship games, i.e., two weeks from now. As I said below, it's my recollection that in the past, the BCS bowls have released certain at-large teams from consideration early. Illinois is not even in the top 14 right now, so it may well be that the BCS will say "no thanks" to the Illini after next weekend, but the Insight folks don't seem to anticipate that.
Mike Pegram has a nice summary of the Big Ten bowl picture, including links to various media speculation. The Michigan media believes MSU is a lock for the Insight Bowl. The Indiana media believes the same of IU. The national media uniformly is projecting IU to the Insight. As I have noted on many occasions, most of the people doing the projections for the national publications are ignorant of even the most basic of bowl eligibility rules, so I don't place much stock in their projections. What does seem clear is that the Insight likes IU (in a general sense), and the Motor City Bowl, really, really, really covets MSU. I am holding out hope for a backroom deal between the Insight and the Motor City that will send IU to Tempe and MSU to Detroit. Absent that, I have to think MSU, a football school with a huge fan base and no bowl bids since 2003, would be very attractive to the Insight. Damn you, Penn State!