Florida will play Virginia in the Capital One Orange Bowl on Dec. 30.
The Gators were No. 9 in the final College Football Playoff Rankings, and the Cavaliers were No. 24. The two teams will play at Hard Rock Stadium at 8 p.m. in Miami Gardens.
UF (10-2) was the second-highest ranked non-playoff team from the SEC, with No. 5 Georgia and playoff-bound No. 1 LSU both ranked higher. UVA (9-4) was the highest ranked non-playoff team from the ACC with No. 3 Clemson headed to its fifth-straight playoff appearance.
Virginia lost to Clemson 62-17 in the ACC Championship Game this past weekend while UF was idle.
This is the Gators’ second-consecutive New Year’s Six appearance, having beat Michigan 41-15 in the Peach Bowl in 2018.
UF has not played in the Orange Bowl since the 2001 season, when it defeated Maryland 56-23. Florida and Virginia have only met one time in the history of the two programs. The Gators lead the all-time series 1-0, having scored a 55-10 victory over the Cavaliers in 1959.
UVA’s offense stacks up well with UF’s, averaging 32.4 points per game to Florida’s 33. But the Gators defense gives up just 14.4 points, while the Cavaliers yield 26.4 per game.
Early indications have Florida heavily favored. The Gators opened up as a 13-point favorite, per Vegas Insider. ESPN’s FPI matchup predictor also gives UF an 81.1 percent chance of winning.
If Florida is victorious, it will secure its first 11-win season since 2012.
Follow Kyle Wood on Twitter @Kkylewood. Contact him at [email protected].