With the deadline for host cities to bid on the new Big 12/SEC semifinal set for August 22, Cowboys Stadium in Arlington has emerged as one of three likely finalists:
Arlington, New Orleans & Atlanta only cities that definitely will bid for Champions Bowl, sources tell— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) August 14, 2012
@espn. 2 won't bid; 5 undecided.
Dallas, which already hosts a Cotton Bowl game that pits the two conferences against each other, would have to be considered the early front-runner, since neither Atlanta nor New Orleans have facilities nearly as impressive as the billion-dollar plus behemoth commonly known as "Jerry World" or "The Death Star".
The Big 12 would almost certainly prefer that the game be played closer to their home turf than all the way in Atlanta, an SEC-dominated market that already hosts the SEC Championship Game. The SEC, meanwhile, is already fairly familiar with the set-up in Arlington, as LSU opened the 2011 season here against Oregon while Alabama will square off with Michigan at the end of the month.
Winning the bid would be the latest feather in the cap for Jerry Jones, who has already won the right to host many of the most high-profile sporting events in the world (Super Bowl, Final Four, NBA All-Star Game championship boxing fights) since his newest toy was opened in 2010.