Capital One Orange Bowl returns to traditional night-time start

orange bowlThe Orange Bowl Committee announced today that the 83rd annual Capital One Orange Bowl will be played on Friday, December 30, in an exclusive primetime window on ESPN. Exact kickoff time will be announced at a later date. In addition, the College Football Playoff (CFP) will begin this year’s Playoff Semifinals an hour earlier (3 p.m. and 7 p.m. EST) than last year on New Year’s Eve.

“The Capital One Orange Bowl was presented with a unique opportunity by our partners, including ESPN, the ACC, Big Ten, SEC, Notre Dame and the CFP, to play this year’s game on Friday, December 30 in primetime,” said Michael B. Chavies, president and chair of the Orange Bowl Committee. “With New Year’s Eve falling on a Saturday and other bowl games planned for the early afternoon window, this schedule enables our game to stand alone and kick off the holiday weekend as the only bowl game staged on Friday night. We are confident this traditional start time will be a positive for both the out of town and local fans who attend our game, as well as the television viewers across the country.”

“In close collaboration with our partners, including the CFP, ESPN and OBC, we agree this shift provides college football fans the best opportunity to attend and watch the Capital One Orange Bowl game in primetime, as a kick off to this year’s College Football Playoff weekend,”” said Roger Ferguson, Managing Vice President Advertising, Sponsorships and Media for Capital One.

“The ACC continues to be extremely proud of its partnership with the Capital One Orange Bowl,” said ACC Commissioner John Swofford. “With this year’s game being played on Friday night in primetime, there is no question that it’s the right move for everyone involved, especially for college football fans and the loyal supporters in South Florida.”

The first of the college bowl games to be played at night, the Orange Bowl has either started or finished at night each year beginning with the January 1, 1965 game. Last year, the Capital One Orange Bowl hosted a Playoff Semifinal with No. 1 Clemson defeating No. 4 Oklahoma.

This year and in seven of the next 10 years, the Capital One Orange Bowl will feature a highly ranked team from the Atlantic Coast Conference (the champion, if not selected for the College Football Playoff) against the highest ranked available non-champion from the Big Ten, Southeastern Conference or Notre Dame.  In the other three years (2018-19, 2021-22 and 2024-25), the Capital One Orange Bowl will host a College Football Playoff semifinal.

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