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Thursday, December 29, 2011
It's game day at the Florida Citrus Bowl

By Matt Fortuna

ORLANDO, Fla. — Greetings from the Sunshine State, where Notre Dame and Florida State will take the field in the Champs Sports Bowl just less than an hour from now.

The game certainly has a different feel for a December bowl. It is a sellout, for one. Fans from both schools packed the parking lots from the early-afternoon on, an impressive showing for a mid-week, late-afternoon contest.

The game also has seemed to draw more interest than its sister bowl, the Capital One Bowl, to be played here Tuesday between Nebraska and South Carolina.

Notre Dame is officially the home team, and the Irish players are wearing their blue jerseys with names on the back for just the third time in school history, after doing it in the 2008 Hawaii bowl and 1973 Orange Bowl.

The seats are filling up as fans take in a pair of pee-wee games on the field right now. Don't go anywhere, as we'll have complete coverage from the main event throughout the evening.