The 2012-13 BCS bowl games are a study in the ineptitude of the BCS system.
As an intense college football fan, I am feeling completely slighted. These BCS bowl games, which are supposed to the highlight of the season, are terrible matchups.
Of the five BCS showdowns, only the national championship game will be close, and that is going to be a low-scoring affair not custom-made for excitement. And I'm going against the grain to say that one will be close.
According to Bet Online, as of Dec. 3, Alabama is a 9.5-point favorite in that matchup.
Anyway, let's preview the matchups and take a look at why they are awful.
Orange Bowl: Florida State vs. Northern Illinois
Spread: Florida State -14.5
We've got Northern Illinois as the first MAC representative in a BCS bowl game. While I am thrilled to see smaller schools get a shot on the big stage, this does not set up for a particularly compelling matchup.
Northern Illinois, led by dual-threat quarterback Jordan Lynch, is an offensive power. However, the Seminoles boast the nation's seventh-best scoring defense, and the Huskies offense is little more than Lynch.
The Seminoles will be able to key on him and shut that offense down.
Of all the BCS games, I give this one the sleeper's chance to be great. These young men from Northern Illinois may use this opportunity to fuel them to the performance of their lives, while the Seminoles may look past them.
However, I wouldn't bet on that. Look for Florida State to cover the spread.
Rose Bowl: Wisconsin vs. Stanford
Spread: Stanford -6.5
If you are into such things, run out and place a bet on Stanford. I don't get this spread. It is the closest of all these BCS matchups, and it just might be the most lopsided.
The Badgers enter on a high note by hanging 70 points on Nebraska, but the Cornhuskers were wildly overrated and Wisconsin is just not that good.
They went 7-5 on the season and just 4-4 in a less-than-stellar Big Ten, and it's not like the Badgers have been steadily building momentum. They lost their two games preceding the Big Ten Championship.
Stanford on the other hand, has been building momentum. Its last loss came on Oct. 13 in South Bend on a terrible 4th-and-goal call against Notre Dame. The Cardinal have also won four straight against ranked teams.
They are playing as well as any team in the nation, and Wisconsin isn't even in the top 25 of the BCS standings. The Cardinal will dominate from start to finish.
Sugar Bowl: Florida vs. Louisville
Spread: Florida -14
Florida narrowly missed out on playing in the SEC title game, and Louisville won an awful Big East conference.
There is no comparison between the two conferences, and there is no comparison between these two teams.
Louisville has a decent passing offense, 24th in yards, but little else. Meanwhile, Florida's defense is outstanding, and they have allowed just 5.4 yards per pass and only five touchdown passes.
The Cardinals will get obliterated when they have the ball.
The only compelling angle to this game is whether or not the Gators' offense will be outscored by its defense.
Fiesta Bowl: Kansas State vs. Oregon
Spread: Oregon -9
At least this game will be full of offensive highlights, but it's not going to be close.
Kansas State gave up a whopping 52 points to a speedy Baylor attack, while showing the kind of problems it may have with a similar Oregon attack, and if the Wildcats struggled with Baylor's speed, they will be at a complete loss against the track team that is the Oregon Ducks.
Sure, Collin Klein and the Wildcats offense will have some success, but they will not be able to hang with Oregon all game.
The Ducks will score with increasing ease and run away with this one in the second half.
BCS National Championship: Notre Dame vs. Alabama
All right, finally a game we can hope will be close as the nation's No. 1 scoring defense (Notre Dame) will go against the nation's No. 2 scoring defense (Alabama).
The Crimson Tide are likely a big favorite here as they are far more battle tested playing in the tough SEC.
However, the Alabama defense has been a bit exposed by allowing at least 28 points in two of its last four games.
While the Notre Dame offense is not a world beater by any stretch of the imagination, the Irish have shown a knack for converting when they have to, and I expect their defense to keep them within striking distance.
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