Bowl Predictions 2013: Thrilling Potential Matchups as Week 14 Approaches

Jesse ReedCorrespondent INovember 25, 2013

COLLEGE STATION, TX - SEPTEMBER 14:  Johnny Manziel #2 of the Texas A&M Aggies celebrates after throwing a first quarter touchdown during a game against the Alabama Crimson Tide at Kyle Field on September 14, 2013 in College Station, Texas.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

With just a couple more weeks until the end of the 2013 college football regular season, there are some exciting potential bowl games shaping up for the holiday season. 

Week 14 provides fans with a few incredible finales, which could certainly turn the BCS on its head.

Alabama (1) and Auburn (4) will clash in the 2013 Iron Bowl, and the winner of this game has won the national championship three years in a row. 

South Carolina (10) and Clemson (6) are also slated to go head to head, Texas A&M (21) will take on Missouri (5), and Stanford (8) will host Notre Dame (25).

Obviously, upsets in these contests—and others—will have a major impact on which bowl games teams will be matched up with. Until then, however, it's fun to dream about what may happen come late December and through the winter holiday season.

Here's a look at a few potential bowl games that would provide fans with a thrilling on-field product, along with a final prediction for those contests.


Cotton Bowl: Baylor vs. LSU

ARLINGTON, TX - NOVEMBER 16:  Bryce Petty #14 of the Baylor Bears celebrates a touchdown against the Texas Tech Red Raiders at AT&T Stadium on November 16, 2013 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Baylor's incredible undefeated season came crashing to a sudden halt in Week 13 when Oklahoma State shocked the Bears with a 49-17 blowout win. Not surprisingly, the Bears plummeted from the No. 4 spot in the BCS Rankings all the way down to No. 9 after the embarrassing loss. 

However, the season wasn't lost with that defeat. With a record of 9-1, Baylor is still in line for a prestigious bowl appearance, and a matchup against LSU would be a terrific test for the Bears to close out the 2013 campaign.

The Tigers have lost three games this season, but this team has been extremely competitive all year long. LSU has taken down the likes of TCU, Florida and most recently Texas A&M—all of which were ranked teams when they played. 

BATON ROUGE, LA - NOVEMBER 23:  Quarterback Johnny Manziel #2 of the Texas A&M Aggies is sacked by defensive end Danielle Hunter #94 of the LSU Tigers at Tiger Stadium on November 23, 2013 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Sean Gardner/Getty Images

LSU features an extremely balanced roster on both sides of the ball. The Tigers can run the ball, pass the ball and have the personnel on defense to stop teams from doing the same. 

But Baylor's offense is far from ordinary, averaging 56.8 points per game this year, even after scoring just 17 last weekend. 

This means Zach Mettenberger would need to have a phenomenal showing against Baylor's defense to keep up with Bryce Petty and his merry band of offensive weapons. 

Should these two teams meet, then a high-scoring affair would almost certainly commence. In the end, it's hard to bet against Baylor's explosive offense.

Predicted Score: Baylor wins 42-38.


Capital One Bowl: Michigan State vs. Texas A&M

TEMPE, AZ - DECEMBER 29:  Defensive end William Gholston #2 of the Michigan State Spartans celebrates after a sack against the TCU Horned Frogs during the fourth quarter of the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl at Sun Devil Stadium on December 29, 2012 in Tempe, Ar
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

We've seen Johnny Manziel have big games against tough defenses the past two years, but a monster performance leading to a victory over Michigan State would be his most brilliant feat to date. 

Michigan State features one of the nation's most imposing defenses. The Spartans rank No. 7 in the nation in pass defense, allowing just 177.3 yards per game, and rank No. 1 in the nation against the run, allowing a mere 59.4 yards per game.

It's no wonder teams are scoring just 12.5 points per game this year against Michigan State.

Manziel was amazing earlier this year against Alabama, though, which features a similarly dominant defense. In a losing cause, he totaled 562 yards and scored five touchdowns, single-handedly keeping the Aggies within striking distance of the repeat national champs. 

It's possible that Manziel will leave school after the season to head to the NFL draft, meaning this could be his final college game. Needless to say, this contest will be must-see television, and it's hard to imagine Manziel won't finish on a high note.

Predicted Score: Texas A&M wins 35-24.


Alamo Bowl: Oklahoma vs. Oregon

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - SEPTEMBER 7: Marcus Mariota #8 of the Oregon Ducks looks to throw a pass against the Virginia Cavaliers during the game at Scott Stadium on September 7, 2013 in Charlottesville, Virginia. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Not counting Oregon's losses to Stanford and Arizona, the Ducks have scored no less than 42 points this season, and they have scored 55-plus points an astonishing six times.

Oklahoma's defense is pretty good, but the Sooners don't have the personnel to shut down Oregon's offense like the Cardinal and Wildcats, which held Oregon to just 36 points in two games.

Any time Oregon's offense is clicking, it's must-see television.

No team in the nation has the ability to strike as quickly as the one Marcus Mariota runs—big plays are a given when Oregon takes the field.  

Oklahoma's offense has the firepower to make it an interesting game, though. 

Featuring a potent rushing attack, led by senior Brennan Clay, the Sooners average 242.3 yards on the ground per game and score 31.7 points per contest. The past two games, Oklahoma has eclipsed 40 points against Iowa State and Kansas State.

Should these two teams compete in the Alamo Bowl, you can count on multiple offensive scores to account for an extremely exciting experience. 

Projected Score: Oregon wins 49-42.


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