New Mexico Bowl 2012: Running Backs Will Be Key in Bowl Game

Pete Schauer@@Pete_SchauerCorrespondent IDecember 14, 2012

PALO ALTO, CA - OCTOBER 06: Running back Ka'Deem Carey #25 of the Arizona Wildcats celebrates with wide receiver Dan Buckner #4 after scoring a touchdown against the Stanford Cardinal during the second quarter at Stanford Stadium on October 6, 2012 in Palo Alto, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Jason O. Watson/Getty Images

If you like offense, the 2012 New Mexico Bowl is for you.

The Arizona Wildcats (7-5, 4-5) and Nevada Wolf Pack (7-5, 4-4) will collide in Albuquerque, as these two squads each average at least 30 PPG and boast some of the best rushing attacks in the nation.

The Wildcats are led by sophomore stud Ka'Deem Carey, who rushed for 1,757 yards and 20 touchdowns this season—a yardage mark that ranks second in the nation only to Northern Illinois' Jordan Lynch.

Carey had a mere three games this season where he didn't rush for 100 yards. Nothing stands out more than his dominant performance against Colorado when he rushed for 366 yards and five touchdowns.

Arizona journalist Jared Cohen highlights Carey's season on Twitter:

With his 3 awards from the 4 NCAA-recognized lists that have been announced, Ka'Deem Carey is a consensus All-American for the 2012 season

— Jared Cohen (@JaredPros2Preps) December 11, 2012

As for the Wolf Pack, they sport a deadly rushing attack with the likes of junior Stefphon Jefferson, who amassed 1,703 yards and 22 touchdowns this season. He is ranked tied for second with the most rushing touchdowns in college football.

Jefferson bested Carey's single-game TD mark for the 2012 season, as he rushed for 170 yards and six touchdowns against Hawaii on Sep. 22.

The junior RB was an absolute workhorse for Nevada. His 341 carries were second only to Michigan State's Le'Veon Bell.

RGJ Wolf Pack writer Chris Murray touches on Jefferson's awards for this season via Twitter:

Wolf Pack RB Stefphon Jefferson makes his third All-American team: third team AP; third team CBS; second team Walter Camp.

— Chris Murray (@MurrayRGJ) December 11, 2012

With two of the nation's best running backs playing in the same stadium on Dec. 15, college football fans who love offense—which, let's be honest, is all of us—are in for a real treat here.

Overall, Arizona ranks No. 15 in rushing yards (230.4 YPG) while Nevada ranks No. 7, rushing for 260 YPG.

Clearly the running game is going to be the focal point for both teams on Saturday. Ultimately it's going to come down to which offensive line can get a better push and which opposing defense can somehow put a stop to the consistent attack on the ground.

Don't be surprised if there's a combined 500 rushing yards and 75 points on the board when all is said and done.

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