College Football Bowl Predictions 2013: Definitive Guide to Entire Postseason

Josh SchochAnalyst IIIDecember 2, 2012

College Football Bowl Predictions 2013: Definitive Guide to Entire Postseason

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    'Tis the most wonderful time of year: the college football bowl season.

    With 35 bowl games in 24 days, the 2012-13 bowl schedule brings with it the best college football of the season, including the fabled BCS National Championship Game.

    The Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Fiesta Bowl and more are all on display in these three fast and furious weeks, and this is your guide to stay on top of every game.

Gildan New Mexico Bowl

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    Matchup: Arizona Wildcats vs. Nevada Wolf Pack

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012

    Time: 1 p.m. ET

    Venue: University Stadium, Albuquerque, N.M.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Ka'Deem Carey and Arizona's electric running game carried the Wildcats into the postseason, racking up 230.4 yards per game. Carey and quarterback Matt Scott lead the nation's 17th-ranked offense, which scores 37.3 points per game.

    Nevada started the season 6-1 behind its seventh-ranked rushing game, which averaged 260.0 yards per game this season, but stumbled down the stretch and finished at 7-5. Stefphon Jefferson's 1,703 rushing yards and 22 touchdowns paved the way for the Wolf Pack, and he will be key in the Gildan New Mexico Bowl.

    Both teams are going to light up the Gildan New Mexico Bowl scoreboard, but Arizona's balance will be the difference in this affair.

    Prediction: Arizona 63, Nevada 52

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl

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    Matchup: Toledo Rockets vs. Utah State Aggies

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012

    Time: 4:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Bronco Stadium, Boise, Idaho

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Toledo never went down without a fight this season, challenging all 12 of its opponents. The Rockets went 9-3, beating No. 21 Cincinnati, while all three losses came by just seven points. They are going to put it all on the line for a Famous Idaho Potato Bowl victory, and you can bet that this will be an exciting matchup.

    Toledo will take on a Utah State team that came close to going undefeated, losing twice and never by more than three points. The Aggies defense ranks eighth in the country and will be difficult to figure out for Toledo.

    Look for the Utah State defense to win this game for the Aggies.

    Prediction: Utah State 27, Toldeo 21

San Diego County CU Poinsettia Bowl

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    Matchup: BYU Cougars vs. San Diego State Aztecs

    Date: Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012

    Time: 4:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego, Calif.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    BYU barely qualified for a bowl game this season, going 7-5 (including 0-3 against Top 25 teams). However, the team's stingy defense led it to the Poinsettia Bowl by giving up just 14.7 points per game, which ranks sixth in the nation.

    San Diego State rode Adam Muema and its fierce rushing attack that ranks 16th in the nation to a 9-3 record, including a big win over No. 19 Boise State. The Aztecs dropped three of their first five games, but after rattling off seven straight wins they finished tied for first in the Mountain West Conference.

    While normally I like to see more experience against quality opponents, I see the Aztecs' momentum continuing in this game, whereas BYU dropped three of its last six games. Look for Muema to rack up about 130 yards and a pair of scores in this one.

    Prediction: San Diego State 24, BYU 20

Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl

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    Matchup: Ball State Cardinals vs. UCF Knights

    Date: Friday, Dec. 21, 2012

    Time: 7:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Fla.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Ball State went 9-3 this season in the MAC, which might not seem impressive, but its three losses came against great teams. Losing to Clemson, Northern Illinois and Kent State, the team's three losses are excusable, and it also beat No. 25 Toledo during its six-game winning streak to end the season. The Cardinals are rolling and will look to take down UCF to cap the year.

    After losing to Tulsa in the Conference-USA Championship Game, UCF must settle for the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl. The Knights lost to Tulsa twice in their last three games of the season after winning six straight before that. They rank in the top 30 in the nation in points scored and points allowed per game.

    Ball State has played the harder schedule, and despite its defensive woes I see the Cardinals winning a close one.

    Prediction: Ball State 42, UCF 38

R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl

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    Matchup: UL Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns vs. East Carolina Pirates

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012

    Time: Noon ET

    Venue: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, La.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Louisiana-Lafayette has had an unexpected season, going 8-4 to clinch a bowl berth. The Ragin' Cajuns put up a fight against top teams, including No. 6 Florida, thanks to a balanced attack that scores 34.8 points per game.

    East Carolina also went 8-4 behind its passing attack, led by quarterback Shane Carden and wide receiver Justin Hardy, who hooked up for 10 scores this year.

    It's going to be a close game between these two evenly matched opponents, but I see the Carden-Hardy connection going for a couple of scores to lead ECU to victory.

    Prediction: East Carolina 38, UL Lafayette 27

MAACO Bowl Las Vegas

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    Matchup: Boise State Broncos  vs. Washington Huskies

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012

    Time: 3:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Sam Boyd Stadium, Las Vegas, Nev.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Boise State started the season ranked No. 24 in the country, but this was not your typical Boise State team. The Broncos lost the first game to No. 13 Michigan State and once against to San Diego State to give it (*shudder*) two losses. They still went 10-2 and won the Mountain West Conference to move onto the MAACO Bowl , but they could have done so much more had they won both of those games.

    Washington played a tough schedule this season, playing five teams ranked No. 11 or better during the season and going 2-3 against them. If those were the team's only losses it might have made a better bowl, but it also lost to Washington State in overtime to end the season and was blown out by Arizona, and must now settle for the MAACO Bowl.

    Boise State has flirted with a Top 25 ranking for a while and has the talent to take down Washington in this game.

    Prediction: Boise State 24, Washington 20

Sheraton Hawaii Bowl

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    Matchup: SMU Mustangs vs. Fresno State Bulldogs

    Date: Monday, Dec. 24, 2012

    Time: 8 p.m. ET

    Venue: Aloha Stadium, Honolulu, Hawaii

    Watch: ESPN

     

    SMU needed all 12 weeks to secure six victories and squeak into a bowl game, but by beating Tulsa in its final game of the season, it secured a trip to Hawaii. The Mustangs use a balanced attack between rushing and passing to score 29.5 points per game, but that may not be enough against a high-powered Fresno State offense.

    Derek Carr had a whale of a season for the Bulldogs at quarterback. He threw for 36 touchdowns, which is tied with Matt Barkley for fourth in the nation. The Bulldogs won their last five games behind him, as he threw for 17 TDs and just one interception to lead them to first place in the MWC.

    Look for Carr to have another big day as Fresno State takes the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl.

    Prediction: Fresno State 35, SMU 20

Little Caesars Pizza Bowl

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    Matchup: Central Michigan Chippewas vs. Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

    Date: Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012

    Time: 7:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Ford Field, Detroit, Mich.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Central Michigan saved its season in its third game of the year, beating Iowa on the road by a single point. That victory preceded a four-game losing streak, and it was one of exactly six which made the team bowl eligible. The team won its last three games and will look to cap its Cinderella season with a Little Caesars Pizza Bowl victory.

    Western Kentucky ended a three-game skid in its regular-season finale, beating North Texas 25-24. The team is far from its best and I see the Hilltoppers flopping in this one against momentum-heavy CMU.

    Prediction: Central Michigan 24, Western Kentucky 20

Military Bowl

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    Matchup: Bowling Green Falcons vs. San Jose State Spartans

    Date: Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012

    Time: 3 p.m. ET

    Venue: RFK Stadium, Washington, D.C.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    After a rough 1-3 start to the season, Bowling Green won seven of its last eight games with the exception coming against Kent State. The Falcons' tight defense allows just 15.8 points per game, and will try to hold San Jose State to just a couple of touchdowns.

    San Jose State's power passing attack will put up a few scores against a tough D, and the team's solid defense of their own will be the difference-maker, as the Spartans roll.

    Prediction: San Jose State 27, Bowling Green 17

Belk Bowl

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    Matchup: Cincinnati Bearcats vs. Duke Blue Devils

    Date: Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012

    Time: 6:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, N.C.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Cincinnati won its last two games to finish in a four-way tie atop the Big East, but the BCS standings sent the Bearcats to the Belk Bowl instead of the Orange Bowl. Cincy will still be looking to prove that it is a dangerous team behind a balanced offensive attack that averages over 400 yards per game and the No. 12 defense in the nation.

    Duke clinched a trip to a bowl game by beating rival North Carolina by three at home, and winning its sixth game in mid-October. However, the Blue Devils lost four straight to end the season. Duke plays a pretty tough schedule, and when the Blue Devils lose it isn't even close, surrendering 48.1 points per game in losses. However, this game will be much closer than that.

    Cincy's defense will stifle the struggling Blue Devils, and the Bearcats will score just enough to win a close one.

    Prediction: Cincinnati 17, Duke 14

Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl

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    Matchup: UCLA Bruins vs. Baylor Bears

    Date: Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012

    Time: 9:45 p.m. ET

    Venue: Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego, Calif.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    UCLA came up short against Stanford in back-to-back weeks, losing in the regular season finale and the Pac-12 Championship Game. However, the Bruins look to rebound behind their explosive rushing attack in the Holiday Bowl. They are coming in angry and will be firing on all cylinders on game day.

    It looked like Baylor would miss out on the postseason after falling to 4-5 after a loss to No. 12 Oklahoma and having to play No. 1 Kansas State, Texas Tech and No. 23 Oklahoma State in the final three weeks of the season. However, the Bears didn't give up and found a way to shock the Wildcats, squeak out a win against the Red Raiders and top the Cowboys to finish 7-5. The team is hot right now and is looking for another big win.

    Baylor's offense is third in passing and fifth in points, but it won't be enough to beat an angry UCLA team.

    Prediction: UCLA 45, Baylor 35

AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl

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    Matchup: Ohio Bobcats vs. UL-Monroe Warhawks

    Date: Friday, Dec. 28, 2012

    Time: 2 p.m. ET

    Venue: Independence Stadium, Shreveport, La.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Tyler Tettleton, Beau Blankenship and the Ohio Bobcats were off to a roaring start at 7-0, including a Week 1 victory against Penn State in Happy Valley. However, the team stumbled to the finish line, losing its last three games to finish 8-4.

    UL-Monroe has a good aerial attack behind Kolton Browning, but might need more than that to top the Independence Bowl. Despite a win against No. 8 Arkansas to start the season, the team has some bad losses and I'm not sold on the Warhawks.

    However, UL-Monroe has momentum right now, whereas Ohio is struggling and will fall just short in this one.

    Prediction: UL-Monroe 21, Ohio 17

Russell Athletic Bowl

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    Matchup: Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs. Virginia Tech Hokies

    Date: Friday, Dec. 28, 2012

    Time: 5:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Florida Citrus Bowl, Orlando, Fla.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    The season couldn't have ended much worse for Rutgers, losing to Pittsburgh and blowing a lead against Louisville to finish tied for the lead in the Big East and losing what seemed like a sure-fire trip to the Orange Bowl. If the team had won either game it would be playing in Miami instead of Orlando, but that dream is over. Now the fourth-ranked defense in the country looks to secure a bowl win to salvage what could have been an incredible season.

    Virginia Tech closed the season with back-to-back victories to go 6-6 and become bowl eligible, including an overtime victory at Boston College. The Hokies are a solid team but have struggled to beat good opponents, as evidenced by their poor record.

    Rutgers is the type of team that Tech has struggled with this season, and the angry squad from New Brunswick will dominate this contest.

    Prediction: Rutgers 31, Virginia Tech 10

Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas

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    Matchup: Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders

    Date: Friday, Dec. 28, 2012

    Time: 9 p.m. ET

    Venue: Reliant Stadium, Houston, Texas

    Watch: ESPN

     

    It's a good thing Minnesota started off 4-0, because it went 2-6 in Big Ten play to finish at 6-6 and barely squeak into a bowl game. The Golden Gophers have lost back-to-back games entering the Meineke Car Care Bowl, but they have yet to lose against a non-conference foe this season and will look to continue that streak.

    Texas Tech's electric offense averaged over 500 yards and scored nearly 40 points per game this season. However, a poor defense hurt the team, and the Red Raiders finished just 7-5 on the year, including 3-4 against Top 25 teams. Seth Doege and the nation's No. 2 passing game will light up the scoreboard in what is sure to be a high-scoring affair.

    Texas Tech has done well against good teams, while Minnesota has not. Expect the Red Raiders to run away in the Meineke behind Doege.

    Prediction: Texas Tech 48, Minnesota 28

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl

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    Matchup: Air Force Falcons vs. Rice Owls

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012

    Time: 11:45 a.m. ET

    Venue: Amon G. Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, Texas

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Air Force squeaked into a bowl game with a 6-6 record, but you'd expect this team to have done better. The Falcons averaged 328.8 rushing yards per game this season, which ranked second in the country. However, with just 107.2 passing yards per game, they averaged just 28.5 points a contest, compared to allowing 28.7. Nonetheless, they will be playing in Fort Worth.

    Rice also went 6-6, starting the season off at 2-6 before winning four straight. The team turned it on down the stretch with a potent offense that averaged 421.1 yards per game making up for a paltry defense.

    This game is going to be a high-scoring affair, but I see the Falcons' incredible rushing attack prevailing.

    Prediction: Air Force 51, Rice 34

Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl

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    Matchup: Arizona State Sun Devils vs. Navy Midshipmen

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012

    Time: 4 p.m. ET

    Venue: AT&T Park, San Francisco, Calif.

    Watch: ESPN2

     

    Arizona State had one of the toughest four weeks in college football this year, playing, and losing to, Oregon, UCLA, Oregon State and USC in consecutive weeks. However, the Sun Devils won their last two games, including an upset of rival Arizona on the road to end the year. The team's efficient offense that scores 36.4 points per game will try to put up major points against Navy to close out the year.

    The Midshipmen of Navy started the season 0-2 by losing to Notre Dame and Penn State, but they then went 7-2 in their next nine games. They still have their annual game with Army to play, on Saturday, however.

    Navy's incredible rushing attack that averages 285.1 yards per game will run all over ASU as the Midshipmen take the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl.

    Prediction: Navy 45, Arizona State 38

New Era Pinstripe Bowl

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    Matchup: West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Syracuse Orange

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012

    Time: 3:15 p.m. ET

    Venue: Yankee Stadium, Bronx, N.Y.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Geno Smith's West Virginia Mountaineers started the season off hot, going 5-0. However, the team dropped five straight conference games and finished at 7-5. Smith threw for over 4,000 yards and 40 scores on the season, and we can expect more of the same in the Pinstripe Bowl.

    Everything seemed to go right for the Orange over the last month of the season. They upset No. 9 Louisville and won their last three games, while Rutgers and Louisville both lost last week before Louisville beat Rutgers this week to put the Orange in a tie for the Big East championship. However, Syracuse suffered one too many losses, and it ended up in the Pinstripe Bowl instead of stealing a BCS bowl berth.

    This game is going to be a shootout between Smith and Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib, who is also having a record-breaking season. However, Nassib has a problem with interceptions, and that will sink the Orange.

    Prediction: West Virginia 52, Syracuse 37

Valero Alamo Bowl

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    Matchup: Oregon State Beavers vs. Texas Longhorns

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 28, 2012

    Time: 6:45 p.m. ET

    Venue: Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Oregon State is a bit of a mystery. It beat No. 13 Wisconsin and No. 19 UCLA, but fell to No. 14 Stanford and No. 5 Oregon. Heck, the Beavers even lost to Washington. Nevertheless, they will finish the year in the Alamo Bowl, and we will have to wait and see if they show up on game day.

    Texas stumbled its way into the Alamo after losing two straight games to end the season, versus TCU and Kansas State. The old saying that "if you have two quarterbacks, you have no quarterbacks," applies here, as David Ash and Case McCoy have struggled and will likely continue to do so to end the season.

    I see Oregon State stepping up against a Texas team that just can't seem to get anything going, as the Beavers roll in San Antonio.

    Prediction: Oregon State 35, Texas 17

Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl

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    Matchup: TCU Horned Frogs vs. Michigan State Spartans

    Date: Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012

    Time: 10:15 p.m. ET

    Venue: Sun Devil Stadium, Tempe, Ariz.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    TCU's first year in the Big 12 ends with a trip to a bowl game. After playing Baylor, Oklahoma State and five ranked teams to end the season, TCU must be worn down. However, now most opponents are going to seem easy in comparison, including Michigan State.

    It took all 12 games, but thanks to big wins against No. 24 Boise State, No. 15 Wisconsin and on the road against Minnesota to finish the schedule, Michigan State is bowl-bound. Playing in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl might not be what a team with a Top 10 defense envisioned, but it's still a bowl game, and the Spartans will look to take home the victory.

    TCU will finish what has been a great year in its Big 12 debut with a win over the Spartans.

    Prediction: TCU 24, Michigan State 13

Franklin Amer. Mort. Music City Bowl

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    Matchup: North Carolina State Wolfpack vs. Vanderbilt Commodores

    Date: Monday, Dec. 31, 2012

    Time: Noon ET

    Venue: LP Field, Nashville, Tenn.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    After starting the season with a loss to Tennessee, North Carolina State proceeded to be an unpredictable team, beating No. 4 Florida State but losing four times in ACC play. An inconsistent defense is to blame for the team's lack of consistency, but Mike Glennon's 30 passing touchdowns and No. 20 passing attack in the country lifted the Wolfpack to a 7-5 record and a bowl berth.

    Vanderbilt played three teams in the Top 10 this season, and despite losing to all three the team is allowing just 18.3 points per game this season. This is a tough defense to beat, and could pose problems in the Music City Bowl.

    I see Vandy's defense stymieing NC State all afternoon in a low-scoring affair, as the Commodores pull off the victory.

    Prediction: Vanderbilt 21, North Carolina State 13

Hyundai Sun Bowl

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    Matchup: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets vs. USC Trojans

    Date: Monday, Dec. 31, 2012

    Time: 2 p.m. ET

    Venue: Sun Bowl, El Paso, Texas

    Watch: CBS

     

    Georgia Tech fell short against Florida State in the ACC Championship Game and must settle for a New Year's Eve date with the Hyundai Sun Bowl, as opposed to a BCS bowl.

    Matt Barkley and the USC Trojans had a horrible season, starting off ranked No. 1 in the preseason poll and finishing 7-5. Barkley and his receivers Marqise Lee and Robert Woods will look to ease the pain of the season with a bowl victory over Georgia Tech (assuming that Barkley plays after missing the regular-season finale against Notre Dame).

    This game isn't even going to be close. Georgia Tech has a great running game, but the Trojans are more experienced, more talented and angry coming into the contest.

    Prediction: USC 51, Georgia Tech 27

AutoZone Liberty Bowl

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    Matchup: Tulsa Golden Hurricanes vs. Iowa State Cyclones

    Date: Monday, Dec. 31, 2012

    Time: 3:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Liberty Bowl, Memphis, Tenn.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Your Conference USA champion is featured in this game, as Tulsa beat UCF twice in the last three weeks to go 10-3 and secure the title. The team's rushing attack ranks No. 11 in the country with over 240 rushing yards per game. Trey Watts, Alex Singleton and Ja'Terian Douglas give this group a three-headed monster of an attack that will be on display all game.

    Iowa State barely made it to the postseason, going 6-6 in a tough Big 12. The Cyclones are looking to finish strong, but after losing three of their last four (with one win coming against the 1-11 Kansas Jayhawks), it is going to take a great effort.

    Iowa State will struggle to contain Tulsa's backs, and the Golden Hurricanes will take the AutoZone Liberty Bowl.

    Prediction: Tulsa 35, Iowa State 24

Chick-Fil-A Bowl

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    Matchup: Clemson Tigers vs. LSU Tigers

    Date: Monday, Dec. 31, 2012

    Time: 7:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Ga.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Clemson finished second in the ACC Atlantic after falling to Florida State during the regular season, with that one loss being the difference between a chance at a trip to a BCS bowl and a spot in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl. However, the Tigers bring to Atlanta Tajh Boyd and a stellar passing attack that helped them rank sixth in the nation in points per game.

    Despite the loss of Heisman hopeful Tyrann Mathieu before the season, LSU had a great year. While the Tigers did lose to Alabama and Florida, they beat South Carolina, Texas A&M and Mississippi State. The team is giving up less than 17 points per game this season and will try to hold Clemson to similar numbers.

    Clemson has a great offense, but I see LSU's defense doing just enough to win the Tiger Bowl.

    Prediction: LSU 24, Clemson 20

Heart of Dallas Bowl

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    Matchup: Purdue Boilermakers vs. Oklahoma State Cowboys

    Date: Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    Time: Noon ET

    Venue: Cotton Bowl, Dallas, Texas

    Watch: ESPNU

     

    Purdue looked like it would be sitting at home during the postseason after starting the season 3-6 and 0-5 in Big Ten play, but by winning its last three games it secured a bowl berth. The team is hot right now and will look to put its midseason struggles behind it in the Heart of Dallas Bowl.

    Oklahoma State's explosive passing attack (seventh in the nation in passing yards per game and fourth in scoring) proved too little for the Cowboys to be elite this season, finishing 7-5 and 2-3 against Top 25 opponents.

    Luckily for the Cowboys, Purdue is far from elite and is still vulnerable.

    Prediction: Oklahoma State 41, Purdue 24

TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl

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    Matchup: Northwestern Wildcats vs. Mississippi State Bulldogs

    Date: Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    Time: Noon ET

    Venue: EverBank Field, Jacksonville, Fla.

    Watch: ESPN2

     

    After kicking off the season with a 42-41 victory against Syracuse in one of the best games I've seen all year, Northwestern proceeded to start the year 5-0 and enter the Top 25. The Wildcats flirted with a Top 25 ranking for the majority of the season and are one of the more underrated teams in college football. Their incredible rushing attack will be on full display in the Gator Bowl to end the season.

    Mississippi State survived a tough SEC, starting the season 7-0 before finishing 8-4. The team failed to stay competitive against Alabama, LSU and Texas A&M, but still managed to win eight games this season en route to the Gator Bowl.

    While these squads both had good seasons, I'm taking a Northwestern group with a lot to prove against a more worn Mississippi State squad.

    Prediction: Northwestern 38, Mississippi State 31

Capital One Bowl

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    Matchup: Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Georgia Bulldogs

    Date: Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    Time: 1 p.m. ET

    Venue: Florida Citrus Bowl, Orlando, Fla.

    Watch: ABC

     

    Nebraska was stunned by Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game. After going 7-1 in conference play in the regular season, including a win over the Badgers, the Cornhuskers lost 70-31 and gave up more than 500 yards rushing Saturday. They're hungry for a victory, and against just about anyone other than Georgia I would pick the Cornhuskers.

    It was a tough end to the SEC championship for Georgia, with time expiring as the Bulldogs were within the 5-yard line and down by four. However, the 11-2 Bulldogs lost the game and a bid to the BCS National Championship Game. I would not want to be the one standing in the way of an angry Georgia team right now, as it is even more hungry than Nebraska.

    The Bulldogs are going to go to town on Nebraska like Wisconsin did.

    Prediction: Georgia 56, Nebraska 24

Outback Bowl

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    Matchup: Michigan Wolverines vs. South Carolina Gamecocks

    Date: Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    Time: 1 p.m. ET

    Venue: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Michigan had one of the toughest schedules in the country this year, playing both undefeated teams and both teams in the BCS final. The Wolverines went 8-4, but all four losses came against very talented opponents. Denard Robinson and his teammates will be tough to beat in the Outback Bowl.

    The Gamecocks of South Carolina are a hit-or-miss team. They beat Georgia up pretty badly in the Bulldogs' only regular-season loss, winning 35-7. However, they were also embarrassed by Florida just two weeks later. They will take on Michigan in Tampa and will try to improve to 3-2 against Top 25 teams this season.

    After taking down Clemson in a huge victory, I see South Carolina winning a tight Outback Bowl.

    Prediction: South Carolina 30, Michigan 27

Rose Bowl Game

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    Matchup: Stanford Cardinal vs. Wisconsin Badgers

    Date: Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    Time: 5 p.m. ET

    Venue: Rose Bowl, Pasadena, Calif.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    After beating No. 17 UCLA twice in two weeks to win the Pac-12 North and then the Pac-12 title, Stanford is riding a seven-game winning streak into the Rose Bowl and will look to its stingy defense that allows just 17.5 points per game to lift it to a title.

    Wisconsin finished third in the Big Ten Leaders division, but with both Ohio State and Penn State facing postseason bans, the Badgers got a trip to the Big Ten championship. The Badgers won that game behind their explosive running game, which totaled 539 yards and eight touchdowns against Nebraska to move on to Pasadena.

    While the Badgers are good enough to beat Nebraska, they won't be able to handle Stanford and will fall short in the Rose Bowl.

    Prediction: Stanford 35, Wisconsin 17

Discover Orange Bowl

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    Matchup: Florida State Seminoles vs. Northern Illinois Huskies

    Date: Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Sun Life Stadium, Miami Gardens, Fla.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Florida State is back in the Orange Bowl for the first time since 2006, and the Seminoles look good. They rank in the Top 10 in the country in both points scored and points against per game, and have topped teams better than Northern Illinois.

    On the other hand, Northern Illinois was just two points away from an undefeated season. The Huskies lost to Iowa, 18-17, to start the season before winning 12 straight, capped off by a double-overtime victory over Kent State for the MAC championship. They are still the No. 1 team in the MAC and secured a BCS bowl berth behind their No. 9 rushing attack and No. 9 offense.

    This is going to be one of the worst BCS bowls this season, with the Seminoles going ahead early and continuing to build on that lead, as Northern Illinois loses without head coach Dave Doeren, who is taking over at North Carolina State.

    Prediction: Florida State 31, Northern Illinois 21

Allstate Sugar Bowl

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    Matchup: Florida Gators vs. Louisville Cardinals

    Date: Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2013

    Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, La.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    The Florida Gators finished the season at 11-1 but third in the SEC. They didn't play in the SEC Championship Game, but that may have been a good thing, as now the Gators are still in a BCS bowl. The nation's third-best defense carried the Gators to this point and will be key in this monumental bowl game.

    The Cardinals beat Rutgers in what essentially became a Big East Championship Game in the last week of the season and won a four-way tie in the Big East. Behind Teddy Bridgewater, the Cards soared to a BCS bowl this season.

    This game isn't even going to be close, as Florida absolutely demolishes Louisville.

    Prediction: Florida 42, Louisville 17

Tostitos Fiesta Bowl

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    Matchup: Kansas State Wildcats vs. Oregon Ducks

    Date: Thursday, Jan. 2, 2013

    Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: U. of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Ariz.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    By beating No. 18 Texas and bouncing back from a loss to Baylor that cost the team a trip to the BCS National Championship Game, Kansas State won the Big 12 and still clinched a BCS bowl berth. Collin Klein and the nation's No. 10 offense looks to improve upon its 5-0 record against ranked opponents this season.

    The high-powered offense of Oregon came up just short of the No. 1 overall ranking by losing to Stanford in overtime, ultimately falling behind Stanford in the Pac-12 North.

    The Ducks missed out on both the BCS National Championship and Rose Bowl, but they will still partake in the Fiesta Bowl against Kansas State. Kenjon Barner leads the No. 3 rushing attack and No. 2 offense in the nation to Glendale, and he will look to finish the season with a bang.

    In what could be the best BCS bowl, I expect Oregon to edge Kansas State in a thriller in Glendale. This could have been the BCS National Championship Game if a few things had gone right.

    Prediction: Oregon 41, Kansas State 38 (OT)

AT&T Cotton Bowl

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    Matchup: Oklahoma Sooners vs. Texas A&M Aggies

    Date: Friday, Jan. 4, 2013

    Time: 8 p.m. ET

    Venue: Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, Texas

    Watch: Fox

     

    Oklahoma did what it could to secure a Big 12 Championship, but its only conference loss came at the hands of Kansas State, and that single game cost the team a BCS Bowl berth.

    The Cotton Bowl is a nice consolation prize. Landry Jones and Co. will look to avoid a losing record against Top 25 opponents this year by beating Texas A&M.

    Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M shocked the world this season, going 10-2 and making the Cotton Bowl. The team is scoring 44.8 points per game behind the freshman, and “Johnny Football” is now a Heisman favorite. Look for the Aggies to come out strong in this one.

    In a matchup between two teams that got screwed out of BCS bowl berths, I see Johnny Football and Texas A&M topping Jones in his final game.

    Prediction: Texas A&M 38, Oklahoma 33

BBVA Compass Bowl

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    Matchup: Ole Miss Rebels vs. Pittsburgh Panthers

    Date: Saturday, Jan. 5, 2013

    Time: 1 p.m. ET

    Venue: Legion Field, Birmingham, Ala.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    In just about any other conference, a 6-6 record is nothing to be proud of. In the SEC, however, it is something special. Ole Miss survived a difficult schedule to make the postseason, and it will be looking to utilize Bo Wallace and the passing game to win the Compass Bowl.

    It's a near-miracle that Pittsburgh is even bowl eligible this season after falling to 4-6 and having to play No. 16 Rutgers and at South Florida in the final two weeks, but the Panthers somehow pulled it off. Now the team's stingy defense that allows less than 20 points per game has one more test to make this season a success.

    Ole Miss has been playing against much stiffer competition than Pitt, and that will be the difference in this game.

    Prediction: Ole Miss 24, Pittsburgh 16

GoDaddy.com Bowl

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    Matchup: Arkansas State Red Wolves vs. Kent State Golden Flashes

    Date: Sunday, Jan. 6, 2013

    Time: 9 p.m. ET

    Venue: Ladd-Peebles Stadium, Mobile, Ala.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Arkansas State's 21st-ranked rushing attack wasn't enough to beat Oregon or Nebraska, but the team won its final seven games to finish the season 9-3 and atop the Sun Belt conference. The team's offense is its best aspect by far, and it will have to put up a lot of points against Kent State to win its bowl game.

    Kent State ran away with the MAC East division and entered a MAC Championship Game against Northern Illinois on a 10-game winning streak, including a road win against No. 15 Rutgers.

    The Golden Flashes eventually fell to Northern Illinois in double-overtime to finish second in the conference, but they will be looking for a victory to close out the season.

    Kent State is simply the better team in this one, and it is going to win this game by a solid margin.

    Prediction: Kent State 35, Arkansas State 24

BCS National Championship

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    Matchup: Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. Alabama Crimson Tide

    Date: Monday, Jan. 7, 2013

    Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

    Venue: Sun Life Stadium, Miami Gardens, Fla.

    Watch: ESPN

     

    Notre Dame started the season outside of the Top 25, but coach Brian Kelly has brought this team to the top, beating seven rivals and four ranked opponents en route to a 12-0 season and the No. 1 overall rank in the country.

    Alabama is the reigning national champ, and Nick Saban's group went 11-1 before topping No. 3 Georgia in the SEC Championship Game to secure the No. 2 rank and a trip to Miami.

    In a game that features the nation's top two defenses, offense will be at a premium. A.J. McCarron and Alabama's incredible rushing attack of Eddie Lacy and T.J. Yeldon are good enough to put up a few touchdowns against Notre Dame, and the defense will give the Crimson Tide back-to-back titles.

    Prediction: Alabama 23, Notre Dame 13

Complete TV Schedule

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    Bowl Schedule

    Note: All times are ET and p.m. unless noted otherwise. All games (except for the Sun Bowl and Cotton Bowl) can be streamed live at WatchESPN

    Bowl Team 1 Team 2 Stadium: Location Date: Time TV
    New Mexico Nevada Arizona University Stadium: Albuquerque, NM 12/15: 1:00  ESPN
    Famous Idaho Potato Toledo Utah State Bronco Stadium: Boise, ID 12/15: 4:30 ESPN
    Poinsettia BYU San Diego State Qualcomm Stadium: San Diego, CA 12/20: 8:00 ESPN
    Beef 'O' Brady's Ball State UCF Tropicana Field: St. Petersburg, FL 12/21: 7:30 ESPN
    New Orleans East Carolina Louisiana-Lafayette Superdome: New Orleans, LA 12/22: Noon ESPN
    Las Vegas Boise State Washington Sam Boyd Stadium: Las Vegas, NV 12/22: 3:30 ESPN
    Hawaii SMU Fresno State Aloha Stadium: Honolulu, HI 12/24: 8:00 ESPN
    Little Caesars Central Michigan Western Kentucky Ford Field: Detroit, MI 12/26: 7:30     ESPN
    Military Bowling Green San Jose State RFK Stadium: Washington, DC 12/27: 3:00 ESPN
    Belk Duke Cincinnati Bank of America Stadium: Charlotte, NC 12/27: 6:30 ESPN
    Holiday Baylor UCLA Qualcomm Stadium: San Diego, CA 12/27: 9:45 ESPN
    Independence Lousiana-Monroe Ohio Independence Stadium: Shreveport, LA 12/28: 2:00 ESPN
    Russell Athletic Virginia Tech Rutgers Florida Citrus Bowl: Orlando, FL 12/28: 5:30 ESPN
    Meineke Car Care Minnesota Texas Tech Reliant Stadium: Houston, TX 12/28: 9:00 ESPN
    Armed Forces Rice Air Force Amon G. Carter Stadium: Fort Worth, TX 12/29: 11:45 a.m. ESPN
    Pinstripe Syracuse West Virginia Yankee Stadium: Bronx, NY 12/29: 3:15 ESPN
    Kraft Navy Arizona State AT&T Park: San Francisco, CA 12/29: 4:00 ESPN2
    Alamo Texas  Oregon State Alamodome: San Antonio, TX 12/29: 6:45 ESPN
    Buffalo Wild Wings TCU Michigan State Sun Devil Stadium: Tempe, AZ 12/29: 10:15 ESPN
    Music City NC State Vanderbilt LP Field: Nashville, TN 12/31: Noon ESPN
    Sun Georgia Tech USC Sun Bowl: El Paso, TX 12/31: 2:00 CBS
    Liberty Tulsa Iowa State Liberty Bowl: Memphis, TN 12/31: 3:30 ESPN
    Chick-fil-A Clemson LSU Georgia Dome: Atlanta, GA 12/31: 7:30 ESPN
    Gator Northwestern Mississippi State Everbank Field: Jacksonville, FL 1/1: Noon ESPN2
    Heart of Dallas Oklahoma State Purdue Cotton Bowl: Dallas, TX 1/1: Noon ESPNU
    Outback Michigan South Carolina Raymond James Stadium: Tampa, FL 1/1: 1:00 ESPN

    Capital One

    Nebraska Georgia Florida Citrus Bowl: Orlando, FL 1/1: 1:00 ABC
    Rose Stanford Wisconsin Rose Bowl: Pasadena, CA 1/1: 5:00 ESPN
    Orange Northern Illinois Florida State Sun Life Stadium: Miami, FL 1/1: 8:30 ESPN
    Sugar Florida Louisville Superdome: New Orleans, LA 1/2: 8:30 ESPN
    Fiesta Oregon Kansas State U. of Phoenix Stadium: Glendale, AZ 1/3: 8:30 ESPN
    Cotton Oklahoma Texas A&M Cowboys Stadium: Arlington, TX 1/4: 8:00 FOX
    Compass Pittsburgh Ole Miss Legion Field: Birmingham, AL 1/5: 1:00 ESPN
    GoDaddy.com Kent State Arkansas State Ladd-Peebles Stadium: Mobile, AL 1/6: 9:00 ESPN
    BCS National Championship Notre Dame Alabama Sun Life Stadium: Miami, FL 1/7: 8:30 ESPN