College Football Bowl Mania Preview 2009-2010

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New Mexico Bowl
Fresno State vs. Wyoming
December 19th 4:30 pm
Fresno State has an explosive rushing offense and Wyoming has one of the worst rushing defenses in the nation. Not too many options here.
Pick: Fresno State, 29

St. Petersburg presented by Beef ‘O’ Brady’s
UCF 8-4 vs. Rutgers 8-4
December 18th 8 pm
Central Florida has one of the worst passing defenses in the nation which will mean big things for true freshman QB Tom Savage and wideouts Tim Brown and Mohamed Sanu
Pick: Rutgers, 30

R+L Carriers New Orleans
Southern Miss vs. Middle Tennessee
December 20th 8:30 pm
Neither of these two teams really played any powerhouses this season although Southern Miss did hold close with the high powered Houston offense. Middle Tennessee State rolled through the Sun Belt conference with just one loss but I think the experience gained playing in Conference USA is the difference in this game.
Pick: Southern Miss, 15

MAACO Las Vegas
Oregon State vs. BYU
December 22nd 8 pm
BYU QB Max Hall is one of the most efficient QBs in the nation but Oregon State has two many options on offense with Sean Canfield and the Rodgers’ brothers.
Pick: Oregon State, 28

S.D. County Credit Union Poinsettia
Utah vs. Cal
December 23rd 8 pm
Utah doesn’t lose bowl games, they’ve won their last 8 in a row. The Utes hung tough against Oregon and BYU before losing heartbreakers to each of them and I think the experience will help them a lot in this game against the up and down Golden Bears.
Pick: Utah, 19

Sheraton Hawaii
Nevada vs. SMU
December 24th 8 pm
The Wolfpack average 362 yards a game on the ground and had 3 players go over 1000 yards for the season. The Mustangs won’t be able to slow down the workhouse that is the Wolfpack backfield, this game should be a blowout.
Pick: Nevada, 26

Little Caesars
Marshall vs. Ohio
December 26th 1 pm
I don’t have much information to base a prediction on for this game. Ohio hung with UConn in an early season game and Marshall was blown out in their only game against a ranked opponent.
Pick: Ohio, 5

Meineke Car Care
Pittsburgh 9-3 vs. North Carolina 8-4
December 26th 4:30 pm
Pittsburgh is coming off of a heartbreaking loss to Cincinnati in which they gave up 300 yards passing. The Pittsburgh defense is a lot stronger than they showed against Cincinnati and they should be able to handle the up and down T.J. Yates. Look for Dion Lewis to continue his remarkable season as well.
Pick: Pittsburgh, 6

Emerald
Boston College 8-4 vs. USC 8-4
December 26th 8 pm
USC is playing in an unfamiliar place after playing 7 consecutive BCS bowl games. Boston College had won 8 of their 9 bowl games this decade and have a dynamic RB in Montel Harris the type of player USC normally struggles with. There should be no question who has the better athletes and I think that will be the difference in this game.
Pick: USC, 27

Gaylord Hotels Music City
Kentucky vs. Clemson
December 27th 8:30 pm
Clemson RB CJ Spiller is one of the most dynamic players in the nation and I don’t think Kentucky will have a way to stop him, look for Spiller to top 250 total yards of offense in leading the Tigers to victory
Pick: Clemson, 10

AdvoCare V100 Independence
Texas A&M 6-6 vs. Georgia 7-5
December 28th 5 pm
Georgia defensive coordinator Willie Martinez and two other defensive coaches were recently fired so expect Mark Richt to spend a lot more time on defense than normal and I think that could hurt the Bulldogs in this game. Look for Jerrod Johnson to show h’s ready to take over as an elite QB in the Big 12. Texas A&M should get the victory here
Pick: Texas A&M, 2

EagleBank
UCLA 6-6 vs. Temple
December 29th 4:30 pm
This is one of the worst matchups of the bowl season in my opinion. The owls can have success running the football but their passing offense is not very good look for the Bruins to roll at RFK stadium.
Pick: UCLA, 25

Champs Sports
Miami 9-3 vs. Wisconsin 9-3
December 29th 8 pm
QB Jacory Harris will need to return to his first half of the season form for the Hurricanes to win this game. Wisconsin is averaging 200 yards on the ground and flew under the radar this season with Penn State, Ohio State and Iowa getting all the attention in the Big Ten. There may not have been a more up and down team this season than Miami. When they’re up they’re extremely tough to beat when they’re down they can lose to anyone. I think Randy Shannon will have his ‘canes ready for this game.
Pick: Miami, 8

Roady’s Humanitarian
Bowling Green vs. Idaho
December 30th 4:30 pm
The Bowling Green Falcons are led by one of the best QB-WR tandems in FBS with Tyler Sheehan and Freddie Barnes. Barnes led the nation with 138 catches including games of 22, 17 and 15. Against a team that struggled to stop the pass look for those two to put up big numbers on the smurf turf.
Pick: Bowling Green, 17

Pacific Life Holiday
Arizona 8-4 vs. Nebraska 9-4
December 30th 8 pm
Quarterback Nick Foles has had a great season thus far and Arizona has a good offensive line that should keep Ndamukong Suh off of his back. If the Nebraska d-line gets past the Arizona o-line Foles is not real mobile and that could cause problems. Nebraska probably won’t put up many points, but they probably won’t have to.
Pick: Nebraska, 7

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces
Houston vs. Air Force
December 31st Noon
This will be a matchup of a team who would prefer to throw the ball 70 times (Houston) versus a team who would love to run the ball 70 times (Air Force). This will be a great matchup of two completely different offenses but look for Houston to come out on top.
Pick: Houston, 12

Brut Sun
Oklahoma 7-5 vs. Stanford 8-4
December 31st 2pm
Injuried to Oklahoma players Jermaine Gresham and Sam Bradford derailed Oklahoma’s title hopes but an injury to Stanford QB Andrew Luck will keep him out of this game and that will be the difference maker in this game. Toby Gerhardt will have to deliver a Heisman performance to give Stanford a chance.
Pick: Oklahoma, 11

Texas
Navy vs. Missouri
December 31st 3:30 pm
Navy has always prided themselves on being able to run the football but Blaine Gabbert and the explosive Danario Alexander should keep Missouri in the game and get them a victory.
Pick: Missouri, 4

Insight
Minnesota vs. Iowa State
December 31st 6 pm
If Minnesota still had Eric Decker I would be pretty confident in a Minnesota win, especially going against Iowa State’s 99th ranked defense, but without Decker I think the Minnesota offense gets just enough points to beat the Cyclones
Pick: Minnesota, 3

Chick-fil-A
Virginia Tech 9-3 vs. Tennessee 7-5
December 31st 7:30 pm
The emergence of Ryan Williams gave the Hokies some of the balance they had been lacking on offense the past few seasons and allowed Tyrod Taylor to become a passing QB rather than the entire running game as well. Tennessee safety Eric Berry should help keep Ryan Williams in check and Jonathan Crompton should do enough to give the Vols the win.
Pick: Virginia Tech, 13

Outback
Northwestern vs. Auburn
January 1st 11 am
Northwestern QB Mike Kafka will need to have his best performance of the season to give the Wildcats a chance. The Wildcats did not have a player on their team rush for 300 total yards this season. The Auburn offense is one of the best rushing offenses in the league and that should lead the Tigers to an Outback Bowl victory
Pick: Auburn, 16

Capital One
Penn State 10-2 vs. LSU 9-3
January 1st 1 pm
This is a matchup of what appears to be the two best teams not in an FBS bowl. Darryl Clark and Evan Royster will need to play a much better game than they did last year when they didn’t show up against USC in their bowl game. A big issue for LSU is the plethora of injuries at running back, they had 4 guys with at least 45 carries. Darryl Clark has struggled against big defenses this year, against Iowa and Ohio State he had just 1 TD and 4 INT while completing just 40% of his passes. The LSU defense will be the difference maker.
Pick: LSU, 20

Konica Minolta Gator
West Virginia 9-3 vs. Florida State 6-6
January 1st 1 pm
For 14 consecutive years the ‘Noles finished in the top 5, it’s impossible to put into words what Bowden has meant not only to Florida State but to college football in general. Florida State is also playing in their 28th consecutive bowl game but none of those stats will matter against the offensive firepower the Mountaineers posess. Noel Devine averages 108 yards per game rushing and it will be very difficult for the FSU defense to slow him down
Pick: West Virginia, 23

Rose Bowl Game presented by Citi
Ohio State 10-2 vs. Oregon 10-2
January 1st 4:30 pm
LaMichael James caught a break this season with the suspension of LeGarette Blount otherwise he would have been stuck on the bench most of the season. Terrelle Pryor may be the most talented quarterback in the nation but he’s very inconsistent. I expect Ohio State and their ferocious defense to shut down the Oregon offense.
Pick: Ohio State, 22

Allstate Sugar
Florida vs. Cincinnati
January 1st 8:30 pm
As much as I dislike Tim Tebow I don’t see any way he loses his final college football game. I expect a speech about how much he appreciates Gator nation and I expect him to say God Bless at least 40 times in it. The Gators are a much more athletic team than the Bearcats and I don’t expect this to be close.
Pick: Florida, 34

International
South Florida vs. Northern Illinois
January 2nd Noon
Northern Illinois is a good football team but they will be overmatched at every position against South Florida and this should be a blowout.
Pick:  South Florida, 33

Papajohns.com
South Carolina 7-5 vs. UConn 7-5
January 2nd 2 pm
Stephen Garcia has rebounded from a rough 2008 to become one of the most improved players in 2009, but the offense has struggled to find a balance and only outscored their opponents by 16 points this year. UConn has lost 5 games this season by a combined 15 points. UConn doesn’t have any well known players on the roster like they did with Donald Brown last year, but the most important player, may still be someone who is no longer on the team, slain cornerback Jasper Howard. Randy Edsall has done an exceptional job of keeping his team together through tragedy and they should pull this one out with some help from Jazz.
Pick: UConn, 14

AT&T Cotton
Oklahoma State 9-3 vs. Ole Miss 8-4
January 2nd 2 pm
This will be the battle of two teams who had top 10 talent but disappointed this season. Dexter McCluster and Jevan Snead lead a high scoring offense up against Zac Robinson and the high scoring Oklahoma State offense who will be without all world receiver Dez Bryant who is suspended for speaking to Deion Sanders. Jevan Snead led the nation in interceptions (17) but I think the balanced offense will be too much for the Cowboys.
Pick: Ole Miss, 18

AutoZone Liberty
Arkansas vs. East Carolina
January 2nd 5:30 pm
Arkansas QB Ryan Mallett is one of the most efficient in the nation and I don’t see how East Carolina has an answer for him. I expect Arkansas to have this game won by halftime
Pick: Arkansas, 24

Valero Alamo
Michigan State vs. Texas Tech
January 2nd 9 pm
Michigan State just had 8 of their players suspended for this game because of an on campus fight. Two of them, playmaking wide receivers, good luck Spartans.
Pick: Texas Tech, 31

Tostitos Fiesta
Boise State 13-0 vs. TCU 12-0
January 4th 8 pm
No surprise that the BCS has these two teams playing each other, if they played a powerhouse and won like Boise State did a few years ago it would make the BCS look even worse. TCU has a top 6 offense as well as a top 6 defense and I don’t see any way that Boise State can hang with the Horned Frogs. Andy Dalton from TCU may be the most unrecognizable QB in the nation but after this game everyone should know who he is.
Pick: TCU, 32

FedEx Orange
Iowa vs. Georgia Tech
January 5th 8 pm
Kirk Ferentz is one of the best coaches in the nation when he has extra time to prepare. Iowa will have 15 practices to prepare for Georgia Tech and a healthy Ricky Stanzi against a weak Georgia Tech pass defense. Paul Johnson and Georgia Tech also struggled against the run late in the season giving up 300 yards on the ground to both Georgia and Clemson. Looks for Iowa to put some points against Georgia Tech
Pick: Iowa, 9

GMAC
Central Michigan vs. Troy
January 6th 7 pm
Central Michigan is led by the best person no one has ever heard of in Dan LeFevour. LeFevour led the Chippewas not only in passing but also in rushing and became the most prolific scoring in FBS history with 147 TDs. If Troy still had DeMarcus Ware I’d give them a shot, but I like Central Michigan a lot in this matchup, especially in a near home game.
Pick: Central Michigan, 21

Citi BCS National Championship Game
Texas 13-0 vs. Alabama 13-0
January 7th 8 pm
Everyone likes to talk about how inconsistent the Texas offense has been against good defenses but the most overlooked aspect of Texas is their defense. It has been incredibly consistent the entire year. The Alabama offense has also been just as consistent with a slightly up and down defense. The only reason I’m picking Texas in this game is because Heisman trophy winners almost never win national championship games.
Pick: Texas, 1

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