BCS Bowl Predictions 2013: Projecting Top Matchups After Rankings Release
The initial BCS standings have been released, and it's now a perfectly acceptable time to begin looking toward the BCS bowl games.
1st BCS Standings: 1) Alabama 2) Florida St. 3) Oregon 4) Ohio St. 5) Missouri 6) Stanford 7) Miami 8) Baylor 9) Clemson 10) Texas Tech— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 21, 2013
There weren't all that many surprises at the top of the rankings, and there will certainly be some exciting bowl games at the end of the season. With so many high-scoring offenses and dominant defenses in the top-10, the college football scene will be well represented when the bowl season gets under way.
Now, for what you've all been waiting for—projections for some the best bowl matchups of the season.
BCS National Championship Game
It's best to start off with the game that will likely have the largest following. The BCS title game will likely be a matchup against Alabama and Oregon—arguably the two top teams in the nation.
Alabama has been nearly untouchable this season. Aside from a close game against Texas A&M, Alabama has easily disposed of its opponents.
This matchup will be a battle from the very beginning. Quarterbacks AJ McCarron and Marcus Mariota will square off in just one of the game's most intriguing matchups. Arguably the most intriguing matchup, though, will be Alabama's strong defensive unit against Oregon's strong offense.
The Crimson Tide allow just 9.7 points per game—first in the nation. Oregon scores 57.6 points per game—second in the nation. Something's gotta give in this matchup.
A title game between Alabama and Oregon would be the best scenario for college football. It would be easily the most competitive game of the season—in theory. Oregon should be able to give Alabama a run for their money.
Prediction: 34-31, Alabama
Missouri and the University of Central Florida would be another exciting matchup of offense and defense in the Sugar Bowl.
Mizzou has the No. 8 ranked offense in the NCAA, while UCF ranks No. 20 in the nation defensively. While not the battle of extremes that will likely be featured in the title game, such a matchup in the Sugar Bowl would be entertaining to watch.
UCF's lone loss this season came to No. 12 South Carolina, and it was just a three-point loss. They more than made up for it after defeating No. 8 Louisville by three this past week.
Mizzou has a spotless record, on the other hand, highlighted by wins against Georgia and Florida. The two teams will make for a great matchup given the teams they've beaten this season and their strong all around units.
Quarterbacks James Franklin and Blake Bortles will be in a shootout from the start, but the game will more than likely come down to which defense can force the most mistakes.
Given UCF's defensive ranking and overall talent on that side of the football, a matchup between these two teams would likely result in a UCF victory.
Prediction: 27-17, UCF
The only offense in the nation that's more potent than Oregon comes from Baylor. The Bears score an absolutely absurd 64.7 points per contest—a mark that is nearly eight points better than Oregon.
The undefeated Bears have scored 70 points on four occasions—one other game ended with them scoring 69 points—and there has yet to be a defense able to stop their attack. Kansas State held them to a mere 35 points, but they absolutely dismantled Iowa State 71-7.
Fresno State has quite the offense as well, though, and it'll surely be a shootout for the ages if the two teams are pit against each other in the Fiesta Bowl. Ranked No. 5 in the nation offensively, Fresno State has yet to score less than 38 points in a game.
Both teams are 6-0 and have a great chance at making it to the Fiesta Bowl. While this matchup would pale in comparison to the BCS title game, the Fiesta Bowl should draw a ton of viewers given the likelihood of some big offensive numbers.
It just doesn't seem like anybody will be stopping Baylor, though. Not even Fresno State's offense will be able to keep up with them.
Look for Bryce Petty and Lache Seastrunk to have great games to lead the Bears to the bowl victory.
Prediction: 52-38, Baylor
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