Bowl Predictions Part 2

In Jacksonville on January 2nd the Urban Meyer bowl will take place, how do Gator fans feel about him coming back to coaching?

Military Bowl- Air Force 38, Toledo 35

Two teams with conflicting styles, but both can move the ball and have trouble stopping it. Air Force should control the clock if they want to win this, but Toledo can score and score fast. This should be a shootout that goes either way, and it will come down to Toledo’s defense and whether or not it can stop Air Force’s option attack. I say probably not.

Holiday Bowl- Texas 17, California 14

Both teams are known to produce some impressive talent and are going through a tough year, but Texas’ defense has been pretty impressive throughout the year. California can score at times, but against this tough defense I figure Texas to have the upper hand.

Champs Sports Bowl- Florida State 24, Notre Dame 21

This is an intriguing game not because it features two powerhouse programs, but because it should be a close game. Florida State has been stronger all year on the defensive side, while Notre Dame has showed more life on offense. Florida State has a very poor running game, but if they can get it going at all, then they will be able to control this one. I expect the Noles to give enough problems to the Irish and pull this out in Orlando.

Alamo Bowl- Baylor 38, Washington 28

Led by Heisman winning quarterback Robert Griffin III, the Bears have had one of their best seasons in a long time. They are very scary on offense but have had trouble on defense. The Huskies also provide a strong offense but their defense is quite troublesome as well. This should be a higher scoring affair and I’ll take the better of the two offenses in Baylor to win this one.

Armed Forces Bowl- BYU 35, Tulsa 28

Tulsa and BYU both come into this game hot having won most of their games since early season falters. Tulsa might have a bit more offensive firepower, but the Cougars defense dwarfs the Golden Hurricanes. I expect a good game with some scoring, but look for the Cougars to win out on this one.

Pinstripe Bowl- Iowa State 24, Rutgers 21

On paper you’d think Rugters should win this one. They are playing in their backyard and have had a better season. Iowa State though has come on late in the season, showing some signs of a potent offense, and an improving defense. Rutgers could very well win this one, but I think the Cyclones come to New York and pull the upset.

Music City Bowl- Mississippi State 31, Wake Forest 17

The Bulldogs have had a disappointing season, but they still have some talent that should show in this one. Wake Forest has overachieved this season but started struggling down the stretch. The Deacons defense will have problems stopping Mississippi State and will fall in Nashville.

Insight Bowl- Oklahoma 31, Iowa 14

Oklahoma has fallen hard from their preseason #1 ranking and that can be solely blamed on their inconsistency, especially on defense. On week the Sooners look like world beaters, the next they lose to someone they have no business losing to. Iowa has been up and down, but those highs have been much lower. Iowa struggles to score at times and their offense doesn’t matchup well with Oklahoma.

Meineke Care Care Bowl of Texas- Texas A&M 34, Northwestern 28

Texas A&M has come just short of big wins many times this year with a prolific offense. The defensive struggles have been the downfall and should rear their head in this game too. Northwestern has been much better the second half of the season after a 2-5 start, but look for the Aggies to finally pull out a close one.

Sun Bowl- Utah 24, Georgia Tech 21

Georgia Tech is clearly the better team but they have one big problem, the triple option is a lot easier to stop when you have a month to prepare. The Yellow Jackets’ struggles in bowl games is no secret and I look for that to continue against an improving Utah team who came on late in the year.

Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl- UCLA 28, Illinois 21

Well these two teams are struggling and both fired their coaches after the season. UCLA’s project under ole Rick failed as he couldn’t figure out a way to win games, while Zooker lost six in a row to end the year after a surprising 6-0 start. UCLA isn’t playing well, but at least they aren’t in the full nose dive the Illini are in.

Liberty Bowl- Vanderbilt 27, Cincinnati 20

Call this an upset special. Vanderbilt has been impressive under first year coach Franklin and they are peaking at the right time. The program is on the rise and they are facing an overrated Cincinnati team from the Big East. Smells of upset to me.

Chick Fil A Bowl- Virginia 21, Auburn 20

Auburn comes in without their two coordinators and a struggling offense. Virginia has been a surprise in 2011 and bases their offense on pounding the ball on the ground. If the Cavs can get the running game going and stifle Auburn on the ground they will escape with a bit of a surprise in Atlanta.

Ticketcity Bowl- Penn State 31, Houston 28

With all the problems going on at Penn State it hasn’t been easy for them to focus on the field. Houston came up just shy of playing in a BCS game and will be out to prove they belonged. I think Penn State wins this one in a close matchup with Houston’s defense failing them again.

Gator Bowl- Florida 17, Ohio State 14

The Urban Meyer Bowl should be exciting this year, but he won’t be on the sidelines coaching the Buckeyes just yet. The Gators have been struggling all year on offense like Ohio State but look for the location advantage to put the Gators over the top in close low scoring affair.

Outback Bowl- Georgia 28, Michigan State 21

A couple of interesting teams this year, as the Bulldogs rattled off 10 in a row, and Michigan State looked like they could flirt with something better. The actuality of it is, they both might have had struggled with being overrated. Georgia won 10 games in a row but they did it against a surprisingly easy SEC schedule, then got trashed in the SEC Championship. Michigan State looked good against Wisconsin, but got blown out by Notre Dame and Nebraska, two teams overrated themselves this year. In the end Georgia wins this one, but Michigan State shows up better than last year’s debacle with Alabama

Capital One Bowl- South Carolina 20, Nebraska 13

South Carolina has struggled offensively much of the year, while Nebraska has been up and down on both sides of the ball. The Gamecocks will come out and pound the ball against a below average Nebraska D, but look out for Steve Spurrier’s terrible bowl record, this game could go south on the Cocks if they make some mistakes early and get down. Their passing game has problems, and if Nebraska can somehow get the ball downfield against the Gamecocks secondary they have a chance. I don’t see this happening though, and the Gamecocks will take this one in a low scoring battle.

 

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