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Bowl projections 2012: Michigan State/Northwestern winner to Gator Bowl?

The winner of the Michigan State Spartans game against the Northwestern Wildcats could be headed to the Gator Bowl, according to reports, provided the winner also earns a victory in its season finale.

Gregory Shamus

Bowl projections are always fun to think about and, with the college football season winding down, the rumors are becoming a lot more relevant. One of the more interesting revelations to come out over the weekend was that the winner of the upcoming matchup between the Northwestern Wildcats and Michigan State Spartans is likely headed to the Gator Bowl.

The Spartans and Wildcats will matchup on Saturday afternoon with an apparent bowl bid on the line, according to the Big Ten Network's Rick Pizzo.

That final game against the Minnesota Golden Gophers might not be a gimme for the Spartans considering it'll be outside in Minneapolis, but if Michigan State is able to take care of business this weekend one would have to assume it will make them want it a little more next weekend as well.

The Gator Bowl is scheduled to take place on New Year's Day in Jacksonville, Fla. The game's organizers are given the third selection of Big Ten teams and the fifth selection of SEC teams following the BCS selections. Michigan State has lost its only appearance at the Gator Bowl.