Bowl Projections 2013: Most Thrilling Potential Matchups

Jesse ReedCorrespondent INovember 5, 2013

TALLAHASSEE, FL - OCTOBER 26: Jameis Winston #5 of the Florida State Seminoles throws for a touchdown pass against the North Carolina State Wolfpack during the first half at Doak Campbell Stadium on October 26, 2013 in Tallahassee, Florida.  (Photo by Jeff Gammons/Getty Images)
Jeff Gammons/Getty Images

Heading into Week 11 of the 2013 college football season, there are some incredible potential matchups shaping up for the bowl season coming up at the end of December and into January. 

Though controversy is sure to mark the final season in which the BCS rules supreme, the flawed system has provided us with many an exciting game over the years. 

With just five weeks remaining until the end of the regular season, there are still some huge games on the schedule that will shape the BCS Standings. Oregon and Stanford square off on Thursday, LSU and Alabama will go head to head on Saturday and then 'Bama will take on Auburn in their final game of the year—just to name a few.

As we've seen throughout the season, anything can happen once the whistle blows, and upsets are commonplace. With that in mind, these matchups would make for thrilling bowl games to cap off this season. 


BCS National Championship Game: Oregon vs. Florida State

EUGENE, OR. - SEPTEMBER 28: Quarterback Marcus Mariota #8 of the Oregon Ducks handles the snap during the second quarter of the game against the California Golden Bears at Autzen Stadium on September 28, 2013 in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty
Steve Dykes/Getty Images

As good as Alabama is, I'd much rather see Oregon and Florida State duke it out for the national championship.

And it's not like Alabama going undefeated is a given. LSU and Auburn both have a shot to knock off the champ this year, and the Crimson Tide have only gone undefeated once since Nick Saban took over in 2007.

Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston are two of the most exciting college quarterbacks in the nation—Johnny Manziel notwithstanding—and they lead the No. 2 and No. 3-scoring offenses in the country. 

An Oregon versus Florida State matchup for the national championship has the potential to become one of the classic all-time games in college football history, and it's one I'd gladly pay to see. 


Sugar Bowl: Alabama vs. Fresno State

TUSCALOOSA, AL - OCTOBER 26:  Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide prepares to enter the field with his team prior to facing the Tennessee Volunteers at Bryant-Denny Stadium on October 26, 2013 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Should Alabama lose a game and fall out of the running for the BCS National Championship Game, the Crimson Tide would likely be slotted into this bowl game as the SEC champions. 

Alabama's defense is the tops in the nation, allowing just 9.8 points per game, but it would be incredibly fun to watch the Bulldogs, led by quarterback Derek Carr, work their magic on offense against this unit. 

LINCOLN, NE - SEPTEMBER 10: Derek Carr #4 of the Fresno State Bulldogs directs his offense during their game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Memorial Stadium September 10, 2011 in Lincoln, Nebraska. Nebraska won 42-29.(Photo by Eric Francis/Getty Imag
Eric Francis/Getty Images

Carr has established a legacy at Fresno State, having thrown 91 touchdowns in the past two-plus seasons. He's already thrown 28 touchdowns this year, compared to just four interceptions, and he leads the nation's No. 8-ranked scoring offense, averaging 43.9 points per game.

Many wonder if Carr's skills will translate to the NFL game, or if he'll end up as a career backup like his brother and former No. 1 overall pick, David Carr. A big game against the big, bad Crimson Tide would go a long way toward demonstrating he's worth taking a look at in the 2014 NFL draft. 


Fiesta Bowl: Baylor vs. Northern Illinois

WACO, TX - OCTOBER 19: Bryce Petty #14 of the Baylor Bears drops back to throw a pass against the Iowa State Cyclones on October 19, 2013 at Floyd Casey Stadium in Waco, Texas.  (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Baylor should wrap up the Big 12 title, which would land the Bears in the Fiesta Bowl. Northern Illinois' rise in the BCS Standings has been one of the biggest stories of the season, as the Huskies remain undefeated through Week 10.

Led by quarterback Bryce Petty, Baylor features the nation's top-scoring offense, which averages 63.9 points per game. Petty has thrown 18 touchdowns this year and just one interception, and he has two receivers with eight touchdown catches apiece. 

However, the Huskies have an offensive attack that could potentially match Baylor's. 

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 2:  Jordan Lynch #6 of the Northern Illinois Huskies hands the ball to Joel Bouagnon #28 against the Massachusetts Minutemen in the 1st half at Gillette Stadium on November 2, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Get
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Senior Jordan Lynch leads the nation's No. 7-ranked offense, averaging 44.2 points per game for the Huskies. He's thrown 19 touchdowns this year, adding another 12 touchdowns on the ground. His dual-threat abilities make Northern Illinois difficult to defend against.

The potent offenses featured in this potential matchup would light up the scoreboard and make the Fiesta Bowl one to remember. 


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