Billy Napier wants it, the fans want it, the conference wants it, but a rescheduled Sun Belt Championship is not on the table.
"There's just really no window of time to move, you know that game, there are bowl contracts in place, and those games have been set," said Cajuns athletic director Dr. Bryan Maggard. "And CFP [College Football Playoffs] continues to move forward, right? It's not stopping you know because of this cancellation."
Scheduling Coastal Carolina and Louisiana as a bowl game is also off the table for the same reasons, though, it doesn't sound like the Chanticleers want to go out of their way to replay Louisiana.
"I understand their disappointment. They're tweeting a lot of things out. Part of your bowl experience is putting your brand against other conferences," said Coastal head coach Jamey Chadwell. "From that standpoint, it doesn't make a lot of sense to me."
Chadwell went on to say he didn't see the sense in replaying a team, in a bowl game, that you already beat, either.
Coastal hopes to get its players back in the next week in time for bowl season. What bowl they, or the Cajuns, will play in is out of their hands, now.
While the Sun Belt will recognize both schools as co-champions, the CFP will not, naming Coastal the champions for ranking purposes. Maggard said this is agreed upon before the season as protective measure for the highest ranked team.
Before the cancellation Coastal stood a backdoor at-large bid into the New Years Six bowls, if it would have beat Louisiana, and Cincinnati beat Tulsa in the American Athletic Conference Championship. Now the Chants New Year's Six hopes ride on Cincinnati losing. In all likeliness the Cajuns and Chants are heading to the Cure or Camellia bowls.
In recent years the conference's champion was tied to the New Orleans Bowl, but due to it's December 23rd play date, that was off the table when the schools were scheduled to play just days before.
While a low-level bowl seems disappointing for the Cajuns, who will likely be ranked inside the top-20 come Sunday, Maggard says the team does intend to finish the season.
"We want another opportunity to showcase our program, and we're going to get that opportunity," he said. "In addition to that, we still have a great opportunity to for the second consecutive year have double digit winning season."
Bowls will be bid out Sunday night.
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