"If we didn't have that one more ball game, I guess I'd be jumping up and down and hollering," Bowden said.
"We've had some stuff bounce our way this season, and we hope it keeps bouncing our way," Osborne said.
What happens if Nebraska or Florida State lose? Here are some possible championship games, based on rankings in the bowl coalition poll, which determines the major bowl matchups.
* Florida State beats Florida, Nebraska loses to Oklahoma, and No. 4 West Virginia beats Boston College. Result: Florida State vs. West Virginia in the Fiesta Bowl.
* Nebraska beats Oklahoma, Florida State loses to Florida, and West Virginia beats Boston College. Result: Nebraska vs. West Virginia in the Orange Bowl.
* West Virginia wins, and Florida State and Nebraska lose. Result: West Virginia vs. Notre Dame in the Fiesta, Florida in the Sugar or Texas A&M in the Cotton.
* Florida State, Nebraska and West Virginia lose. Result: Notre Dame vs. Florida in the Sugar or Texas A&M in the Cotton.
The last two scenarios aren't completely clear because they depend on the outcome of the Southeastern Conference championship game, Florida vs. Alabama, on Dec. 4 and today's Texas-Texas A&M game.
FATHER-SON TITLE? The wild card in the championship picture is Auburn (11-0), which completed its season Saturday with a 22-14 victory over Alabama.
The Tigers are barred from postseason play because of NCAA probation, but they could win the Associated Press poll championship if they're the only undefeated team after the bowls. Auburn isn't eligible in the coaches' poll.
Auburn coach Terry Bowden, son of Bobby Bowden, wants to split the national title with his father.
"I'd like to see it end that way," Terry Bowden said. "I want to be a national champion and I want Florida State to be the other one."
COTTON BOWL ON THE LINE. Texas doesn't need added inspiration for today's showdown at No. 8 Texas A&M at College Station. A Cotton Bowl trip is on the line. But there's more.
The Longhorns still have vivid memories of last year's taunting dance after Texas A&M's 34-13 victory in Austin.
"You can't say in print what I want to say," Texas safety Van Malone said. "You don't go to somebody's house and stand on the furniture. They came in my house and stood in the sink."
A group of Aggies performed a chorus-line dance in front of the Texas side of Memorial Stadium that drew derisive jeers from Longhorn fans.
"That was just over-reacting by some of the guys," A&M cornerback Aaron Glenn said. "I don't think you'll see it again. Coach Slocum made it clear he didn't like it very much. It was just a few guys that got carried away."
The Aggies lost hope of a national championship with a 44-14 loss to Oklahoma on Sept. 11, but still can gain prominence by beating the Longhorns for their third straight Southwest Conference title.
LOOKING EAST. Getting ready to play football in Japan is one thing. Wisconsin, though, should be ready.
The Badgers are busy learning all the cultural aspects for their game Dec. 4 against Michigan State in the Tokyo Dome. Wisconsin doesn't care what insults it inflicts on the Spartans, but wants to be careful about offending the Japanese.
The players have been required to take a course on Japanese culture. Monday, they participated in an event at the student union titled "Sights and Sounds of Japan."
The team learned useful information, such as looking out for doorways.
It's all part of the bizarre atmosphere in which Wisconsin will play its biggest game in 30 years more than 7,000 miles from Madison. If the Badgers beat Michigan State, they will make their first Rose Bowl appearance since the 1962 season.
Wisconsin is starting its preparations early. The Badgers are planning to hold practices progressively later in the day, ultimately going at 10 p.m. on Monday. Then the team will board a bus for Chicago, where it will stay overnight before leaving Tuesday afternoon for Tokyo.
The Badgers want the players to sleep as late as they can on that day to help them adjust to the jet lag and 15-hour time difference.
MICHIGAN TO HALL OF FAME. Michigan accepted an invitation to play in the Hall of Fame Bowl in Tampa, Fla., on New Year's Day.
The 23d-ranked Wolverines will play North Carolina State.
Both teams are 7-4 overall.
Michigan rebounded from a disappointing start to win its final three regular-season games and finish 5-3 in the Big Ten.
THE HOLIDAY WEEKEND GAMES:
Texas (5-4-1) at Texas A&M (9-1), today: Texas A&M has won 21 consecutive SWC games and a victory would make the Aggies the first team to go through three consecutive SWC seasons unbeaten.
West Virginia (10-0) at Boston College (8-2), tomorrow: Mountaineers starting quarterback Jake Kelchner is still hobbled by a hamstring pull that sidelined him against Temple. The Eagles are still soaring about their victory over Notre Dame last week.
Oklahoma (8-2) at Nebraska (10-0), tomorrow: Is this game a lock? In 1987, No. 1 Nebraska fell to No. 2 Oklahoma, 17-7. In 1985, No. 2 Nebraska lost to No. 5 Oklahoma, 27-7. And in 1984, the top-ranked Cornhuskers were beaten by No. 4 Oklahoma, 17-7.
Florida State (10-1) at Florida (9-1): For Florida State to keep its title hopes alive, the Seminoles must do something no team has done in the last four years - beat Florida in Gainesville. The Gators have won 23 straight at Florida Field, the nation's second-longest home winning streak. The latest team to beat Florida at home was Florida State, 24-17, in 1989.
Memphis State (6-4) at Miami (8-2): Out of the hunt for the national championship, Miami has only its 56-game home winning streak on the line. The Tigers are assured of their first back-to-back winning seasons since the late 1970s, and a rare national TV appearance.
Penn State (8-2) at Michigan State (6-3): The Nittany Lions need a victory in their first Big Ten season finale to clinch what most likely will be a bid to the Citrus Bowl. Penn State is third in the conference, with Michigan State right behind it.