The 2008 Champs Sports Bowl marks the first meeting between Florida State and Wisconsin and the first time the Seminoles have played in Orlando since a 1996 regular season neutral site game against Wake Forest.
The Seminoles hold an 8-2-1 record all-time vs. current Big Ten opponents and boast a 20-14-2 all-time postseason bowl record. FSU has played five of the current 11 Big Ten schools, with the last such meeting occurring in the 2006 Orange Bowl when the Seminoles fell to Penn State 26-23 in triple overtime.
This year marks the first Champs Sports Bowl appearance for the 'Noles.
Head coach Bobby Bowden, who is in his 33rd season with the Seminoles, has 381 career victories, placing him 2nd in all time FBS victories behind Joe Paterno.
Graham Gano was awarded this year’s top honor for a placekicker as he won the 2008 Lou Groza Award. The senior leads the nation in FG's and is the highest scoring kicker in all of the FBS. No kicker in America converted more attempts from 50 yards than Gano and he converted 24-of-26 field goal attempts overall.
Bowden’s squad finished the regular season with the nation’s 13th-ranked defense, holding opponents to just 291.8 yards per game. The Seminoles also feature one of the nation’s premier pass rushers in Everette Brown who is third nationally in sacks and tackles for loss.
Florida State is just 5-7 in bowl games since 1996. From 1982-1995, Florida State never lost a bowl game, going 13-0-1 in that span.
Wisconsin is 10-9 overall in bowl games, 10-5 since 1982. The Badgers' nine bowl victories over the last 15 seasons is second to only to Boston College which has 10 bowl wins over that period.
The Badgers broke their January bowl streak as the squad was one of only three teams in the country to play in four straight January bowl games. This is the fourth consecutive Wisconsin appearance in a Florida-hosted bowl game.
Like the Seminoles, the Champs bowl appearance is a first for Wisconsin, and is just the second time in program history that the Badgers have faced an ACC team in a bowl game. Wisconsin defeated Duke in the 1995 Hall-of-Fame Bowl.
The Badgers won four of the last five games to close out their 2008 campaign 7-5 overall and 3-5 in the Big Ten. A combined four points was the difference in two of Wisconsin's losses this year - 20-17 to Ohio State, and 25-24 at Michigan State.
Wisconsin features a rushing attack that finished the regular season 14th nationally with 212 yards per game.
The game will be broadcast on ESPN beginning at 4:30 eastern on Saturday, December 27.