ACC Bowl Predictions: Can Georgia Tech Still Make it to the Orange Bowl?
Last week, I made my BCS bowl predictions. This week, myself and Michael Gartman (AKA: Sportscaster007) are going through each and every conference and predicting the bowl games using our knowledge of the BCS and his mad prediction skills.
Today, we start with the ACC and Big 10. Throughout the week we'll also cover the Big 12, Big East, Pac-10, SEC, MWC, and the WAC. We would do the MAC and C-USA, but they don't get enough bids to really have a list.
On to the predictions then.
Orange Bowl (ACC Champion vs. At Large)—Jan. 5, Miami, Florida
The ACC Champion will be decided this weekend. Clemson and Georgia Tech will battle it out once again to claim the ACC title. And it has major BCS implications. Both teams lost this weekend. Both to unranked, average teams. Georgia Tech to Georgia, and Clemson to South Carolina.
Whoever loses will lose their shot at an at large bid in the BCS.
That said, I think Georgia Tech will win. So they get to move on to the Orange Bowl on Tuesday, Jan. 5.
They face off against an at large team. Boise is most likely going to the Fiesta Bowl against Iowa.
That leaves TCU to go to the Orange Bowl. TCU is an underrated team, and their defense is one of the best in the nation. I don't think they've been this good since LaDainian Tomlinson—they might even be better now.
TCU will barely miss a shot at the title, unless Texas loses. But I think Texas will beat Nebraska despite being put on upset alert—Colt McCoy is too good.
TCU has a great defense, a top 10 Quarterback, and some pretty tight uniforms if I might add. Georgia Tech won't be able to produce as they have let their fire cool off since the beginning of the year. Not to mention the ACC is terrible in BCS games.
TCU 31, Georgia Tech 14
Chick-Fil-A Bowl (ACC two vs. SEC five)—Dec. 31, Atlanta, Georgia
Clemson obviously is the number two ACC, if they lose to Georgia Tech. Otherwise, it looks like home cookin' for the Yellow Jackets. But they'll win, sending the Tigers south to Atlanta.
Facing Clemson will be Tennessee. It was tough figuring it out (I actually owe this bit to Michael), but it turns out Tennessee is number five.
Tennessee is an underrated team, in the hardest conference in college football—the SEC.
They don't put up the best numbers, have the best players or the best coach, but they stay in or win just about every game. They can challenge decent teams like Clemson. In fact, I daresay they could beat Clemson.
Mark your calenders for the Chick-Fil-A bowl, people; this could be a great game. I'm putting Clemson on the infamous "Upset Alert."
Clemson 31, Tennessee 30
Gator Bowl (ACC three vs. Big 12 five OR Big East two)—Jan. 1, Jacksonville, Florida
In third place for the ACC is Virginia Tech. The Hookies have had a great run at the end of the year, but won't be good enough for a shot at a BCS game. They actually are better than Clemson, too bad they don't play in the same division.
Against them is the Big 12 five team—Missouri. This was another tough one to figure out, but the Tigers are fifth best (No! Not another Tigers team!).
Missouri is an average team, and hasn't really impressed me at all this year. They got blown out by Nebraska, Oklahoma State, and Texas in succession. They also got beat by Baylor, the worst team in their conference.
Not to mention they barely beat Bowling Green, Kansas, and Iowa State.
Virginia Tech will continue their winning streak, opening up a can of whoop-a on the Tigers.
The other possibility is that they play West Virginia as the Big East two team. What a game that would make! West Virginia has been through a wild and crazy year, and they could upset Virginia Tech. But I doubt it.
In any case, hope for that game because if the Hookies play the Tigers, it'll be a blowout for sure.
Virginia Tech 42, Missouri 7—OR Virginia Tech 28, West Virginia 26
Champs Sports Bowl (ACC four vs. Big Ten five)—Dec. 29, Orlando, Florida
In fourth place for the ACC is the Miami Hurricanes. They did get beat by North Carolina, but then the Tar Heels fell apart against the rival Wolfpack, pushing them below Miami.
The Hurricanes will play against Wisconsin, having lost to Northwestern this last weekend. The Badgers have had a roller coaster of a year, and it isn't over yet. I never put Wisconsin higher than 19 in my poll, and I finally am proving my point with that Wildcat loss.
Miami has their swagger back, as Michael said, and it's true. Look for them to rip the Badgers apart, with Wisconsin having one hot quarter.
Miami 37, Wisconsin 24
Meineke Car Care Bowl (ACC five vs. Big East three OR Notre Dame)—Dec. 26, Charlotte, North Carolina
North Carolina gets home field advantage in the Car Care Bowl. Maybe they planned the whole thing, and their loss this weekend was a conspiracy to get a bowl game at home...
Anyways, North Carolina has upset teams, and been upset. Facing off against them will be Pittsburgh. Pitt will miss out on the Gator after ending the season on a two game losing streak to West Virginia and Cincinnati. This means sweet revenge for the Panthers.
Pittsburgh 31, North Carolina 21
Emerald Bowl (ACC six vs. Pac-10 four)—Dec. 26, San Francisco, California
Finishing sixth place in the ACC will be Boston College. They haven't impressed me at all either, and it baffles me as to how they ended up with an 8-4 record. They killed two FCS teams, and it was all downhill from there.
Among the pathetic season of the Eagles were four near losses to Wake Forest, Florida State, Virginia, and now Maryland. They lost to a pathetic Notre Dame team for god's sake!
Against them will be a strong Pac-10 team. Whoever that is...things could go many ways. Oregon should win the Civil War. When that happens, the Beavers practically drop off the map. USC will go to the Holiday Bowl, and they can't go to the Sun Bowl again. That being the case, they beat Stanford so they go to the Emerald Bowl.
Oregon State should go to the Holiday Bowl as the second Pac-10 team. But instead they get ripped off and end up here.
The Beavers will shred apart the Eagles, it won't even be close.
Oregon State 52, Boston College 13
Music City Bowl (ACC seven vs. SEC six)—Dec. 27, Nashville, Tennessee
In seventh place for the ACC is Florida State. Bobby Bowden has one last year in a bowl game, and it'll be a good one even if it isn't a "big" game. They'll take on 7-5 Arkansas, a lethal Arkansas mind you.
LSU just about lost it to Arkansas, who just couldn't get it done in the end. The Razorbacks will be bloodthirsty, seeking revenge for missing out on a better game.
Arkansas has the tools, and has gone unnoticed this year. They could probably be a top 25 team in any other conference. But playing in the SEC has it's downsides.
Florida State will be headed into its last game with Bowden. There won't be anything but heart and soul from the kids out there. It'll be an emotional game on both sides, and this one could go either way. But in honor of their coach leaving, I think Florida State can pull it together one last time.
Florida State 38, Arkansas 31 (OT?)
There's the ACC predictions. Comment as you wish, no matter how hateful or loving. Please though, do give some credit to Sportscaster007, who was a big part of this.
Here's the Big 10 predictions by Sportscaster007.
Tomorrow...out come the Big East and Big 12 predictions by us once more. Followed by the Pac-10 and SEC picks on Wednesday, ending with the MWC and WAC picks on Thursday.
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