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Who plays in the Fiesta Bowl this year? Teams, date, schedule for New Year’s 6 bowl game

The Fiesta Bowl celebrates its golden anniversary on Jan. 2, 2021, but it’ll be a celebration lacking noise.

A year ago, the Fiesta Bowl played host to the College Football Playoff semifinal between Ohio State and Clemson. This season, it’s back in its normal role as a New Year’s Six bowl, lowering the marquee nature of its matchup. Due to COVID-19’s rise in Arizona into the winter months, the 2021 Fiesta Bowl will also be played without fans.

Some bowl projections, including those at Sporting News, see the Fiesta Bowl as a likely landing spot for the Big Ten vs. Pac-12 matchup that usually takes place in the Rose Bowl, which is a national semifinal this season. With no Pac-12 teams projected in the CFP field, the Fiesta Bowl should get the best that conference has to offer while likely settling for whoever’s deemed Ohio State’s baby brother in this year’s Big Ten.

Here, you’ll find the info you need to know about watching the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 2, 2021, along with what to expect from the teams chosen to play in the game.

When is the Fiesta Bowl 2021?

  • Date: Jan. 2
  • Time: 4 p.m. ET
  • TV broadcast: ESPN
  • Location: State Farm Stadium, Glendale, Arizona

The 2021 Fiesta Bowl marks the 50th playing of the game since its inception in 1971. The game has always been played in the Phoenix metropolitan area, and it’s been in Glendale at the now-named State Farm Stadium since 2007. 

Who plays in the Fiesta Bowl 2021?

The final College Football Playoff rankings release of the season takes place on Dec. 20 at noon ET. That’s when the participants in the 2021 Fiesta Bowl will be announced. 

Fiesta Bowl projections

Sporting News’ Bill Bender projected earlier this week that the Fiesta Bowl will feature USC vs. Indiana. With the Rose Bowl one of the CFP semifinals this season, the USC-Indiana matchup would have allowed for a strong Big Ten vs. Pac-12 bowl matchup at a different location. USC chose not to play in a bowl game, though, announcing that after losing to Oregon in the Pac-12 Championship.

Northwestern’s performance against Ohio State in the Big Ten title game could be taken into consideration for which Big Ten team is chosen for this game, as well. 

Fiesta Bowl odds

Sporting News will have Fiesta Bowl odds when they become available.

Where is Fiesta Bowl being played in 2021?

As usual, the Fiesta Bowl is being played in the greater Phoenix area, and like every year since 2007, it’s at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

With COVID-19 cases on the rise in Arizona, it was announced in early December that there’ll be no fans at the Fiesta Bowl. That’s consistent with the recent order that stopped fans from attending games of the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals. 

New Year’s Six Bowl schedule 2021

All of this year’s New Year’s Six Bowl games are televised on ESPN.

Date Bowl Matchup Time (ET)
Dec. 30 Cotton Bowl TBD 7:15 p.m.
Jan. 1 Peach Bowl TBD 12:30 p.m.
Jan. 1 Rose Bowl TBD 5:00 p.m.
Jan. 1 Sugar Bowl TBD 8:45 p.m.
Jan. 2 Fiesta Bowl TBD 4:00 p.m.
Jan. 2 Orange Bowl TBD 8:00 p.m.

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