Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports
When: January 4 at 1 p.m. ET
Thanks to four straight wins after a tough loss against Texas A&M, the Vanderbilt Commodores were able to go 8-4 and grab a spot in the Compass Bowl. They certainly aren't the best team in the SEC, but a 4-4 record in the conference is certainly respectable.
Jordan Matthews is the star player for the Commodores. He is the team's best option at wide receiver, as he's caught 107 passes for 1,334 yards and five touchdowns.
The Houston Cougars looked like they had a shot in the American Conference, but they lost three straight games against conference opponents by just a combined 19 points, which killed those chances quickly. However, the Cougars are still 8-4, and that helped them get into this bowl game.
As a team, the Cougars average 33.9 points per game and allow just 20.2. John O'Korn leads the offense at quarterback, throwing for 2,889 yards, 26 touchdowns and eight interceptions. The combination of Ryan Jackson and Kenneth Farrow has been great in the backfield as well, with the two combining for over 1,100 yards and 11 touchdowns.
The fact that the Cougars lost to some of the better teams in their own conference is concerning, especially when going against an SEC team. Vanderbilt has played well this season against opponents out of its conference, and the Commodores shouldn't have too much trouble taking down Houston.
Prediction: Vanderbilt 30, Houston 23