Sugar Bowl 2012: 6 Players to Watch for in Michigan vs. Virginia Tech

Dr. SEC@thedrsecAnalyst IIJanuary 3, 2012

Sugar Bowl 2012: 6 Players to Watch for in Michigan vs. Virginia Tech

0 of 6

    The 2012 Sugar Bowl is one of the most intriguing matchups of the bowl season.

    It's also one of the most controversial. There are critics who believe that neither team deserves to be in a BCS bowl and only made it because of their drawing power in rankings.

    With a chip on their shoulder and a need to prove they belong, this could become an epic battle.

    In my opinion, these six players will determine who wins this ball game and who proves they belong.

DE James Gayle: Virginia Tech

1 of 6

    If the Hokies are going to win the Sugar Bowl, they’re going to need to contain and bring down Robinson as much as possible.

    For this to happen, James Gayle is going to need a big game. The 6’4" and 257-pound defensive end has been solid all season but will need to be great in this game.

    Gayle has 34 tackles and seven sacks this season despite being hampered by nagging injuries.

DT Mike Martin: Michigan Wolverines

2 of 6

    If the Wolverines are going to win this game, they are going to have to win the battle against the Virginia Tech offensive line.

    As a result, 6’2" and 300-pounder Mike Martin will need to have a big game.

    Martin was an All-Big Ten selection with 54 tackles and three sacks. If Martin can have a big game and demand a double team, the Hokies offense is going to be in for a long night. 

    For Martin, it will not be about stats but how much attention he commands from the Virginia Tech offensive line.

QB Logan Thomas: Virginia Tech

3 of 6

    Logan Thomas has quietly put together a fine season.

    He has amassed over 3,200 total yards and 29 total touchdowns. Thomas has done a good job of not turning the ball over as he has only totaled nine interceptions on the season.

    Thomas has not played on the big stage before in his career, and this will be a big test for him. If he's able to step up to the plate, Virginia Tech will win this football game.

    However, if he is unable to keep the pressure on the Wolverines defense, it will be a second straight defeat for the Hokies.

RB Fitzgerald Toussaint: Michigan Wolverines

4 of 6

    Denard Robinson gets most of the ink for the Wolveriens offense, but Fitzgerald Toussaint has had a solid season.

    The sophomore running back eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark last game and will need to add to it in the Sugar Bowl. 

    Toussaint has rushed 174 times for 1,011 yards and nine touchdowns.

    In his last five games, he has eclipsed the 120-mark four times. The only game he did not rush for over 100 yards during that span, they were defeated.

    If Toussaint can find success, it will take a great deal of pressure off Robinson.

RB David Wilson: Virginia Tech

5 of 6

    In my opinion, David Wilson is the most underrated running back in college football.

    The junior from Danville, VA, has rushed for 266 times for 1,627 yards and 10 total touchdowns.

    Wilson has been solid all season except in the Hokies' defeat last week where he only rushed 11 times for 32 yards.

    If Virginia Tech is going to win, they are going to have to establish the run.

    Failure to do so will lead to an embarrassing defeat.

QB Denard Robinson: Michian Wolverines

6 of 6

    Denard Robinson is one of the most electric players in football and is becoming a very good quarterback as well.

    Robinson has 3,219 offensive yards and 34 total touchdowns headed into the Sugar Bowl.

    The Hokies have been solid on defense this season but have given up several big plays.The defense is allowing a stingy 17.2 points per game.

    However, if Robinson is able to find a rhythm early, the Wolverines will be able to find success.