For anyone following myself and Sportscaster007's predictions here, this is day three of our conference-by-conference preview.
The ACC, Big 10, Big 12, and Big East predictions are out. Tonight, I make my Pac-10 predictions (again, like version 2.0) while SC makes the SEC predictions.
Wow. It's been a while, a very long while, since the Ducks and Beavers Civil War game meant this much.
It will decide who goes to the Rose Bowl, and the toilet bowl...er, the Las Vegas Bowl, against BYU.
Only the top six teams get in, the rest are left in the dark. Let's see where each team is most likely headed.
Rose Bowl (Pac-10 Champion vs. Big 10 Champion)—January 1st, Pasadena, California
Oregon will go here, after beating out the Beavers in a Civil War for the ages. OSU will have to go all the way down to the Vegas Bowl to play lowly BYU.
But for the Ducks, they take on a hard team in the Ohio State Buckeyes. Another OSU team, how about that.
And they'll have just as much success. With Jeremiah Masoli and LaMichael James plowing the way, it'll be a high-scoring, thrilling game that might just come down to the final minutes of the fourth quarter.
However, the Buckeyes can't stand up to the powerful Ducks offense, even if they do put up five touchdowns.
Oregon 41, Ohio State 35
Holiday Bowl (Pac-10 two vs. Big 12 three)—December 30th, San Diego, California
In second place (although the Beavers deserve it) are the USC Trojans. That is, assuming they can take care of Arizona this weekend.
USC has had one of its worst years ever in history, suffering their two biggest losses in Pete Carol's history, and both are in the top five worst losses ever for USC.
That being said, they have a good team. The rest of the Pac better soak it up now, because you know he'll be back and Matt Barkley will be better than ever; and he'll only improve every year.
Against the Trojans will be the third place finish from the Big 12—Oklahoma State. Oh, snap! They've accepted a Cotton Bowl bid. That results in Nebraska coming here guaranteed.
Nebraska is a strong team, especially on defense, led by freshman Ndamukong Suh. They are capable of pulling off a win.
However three of those wins came against Florida Atlantic, Arkansas State, and Louisiana-Lafayette. Complete butt-hole-of-college-football teams.
The 'Huskers lost to Iowa State in a pathetic 9-7 game, just after getting blown out by Texas Tech 31-10.
I think USC will hang on for the win, but barely. I mean it really should be a close, defensive game.
USC 24, Nebraska 21 (OT?)
Sun Bowl (Pac-10 three vs. Big 12 five)—December 31st, El Paso, Texas
Now on to the Sun Bowl with the third place finish in the Pac-10, Cal.
I know, what the heck, right? That's how messed up the Pac-10 standings are. Assuming there are no upsets, this is how it finishes.
Oregon, USC, Cal, Stanford, Oregon State, Arizona...and then the losers of the Pac-10.
See, USC beat Cal, who beat Stanford, and Oregon State is down there because they can't go to a Sun Bowl again. That pushes them down to the Las Vegas Bowl.
In any case, the most likely candidate for the Sun Bowl is Cal right now. They match up against the fifth place finish for the Big 12. This is Oklahoma. And wow, talk about a roller coaster!
In the pre-season polls they were ranked among the top three in the nation. Then they became the first team since I've been alive to be 2-2 in the top 25. Ridiculous.
They have fallen so far below expectation it's incredible. Yet, seemingly out of the blue, they curbstomp Oklahoma State 27-0.
You don't know what to expect out of either of these teams.
Cal was looking like a potential Rose Bowl, or better, candidate until being punished by Oregon 42-3. Then they got creamed again by USC 30-3. Their season was practically over.
They lost once more to Oregon State 31-14 before earning some respect back with victories over Arizona and Stanford.
I just don't think Cal has the guns to shut down Oklahoma. Traditionally the Sooners win big, or lose by a little. Cal gets shut out, or ends up in a shootout.
Oklahoma will "upset" the Golden Bears and, yes, in shootout fashion.
Oklahoma 38, Cal 28
Emerald Bowl (Pac-10 four vs. ACC six)—December 26th, San Francisco, California
Stanford is next in line and will go to the Emerald Bowl. The Cardinal have really impressed me and the rest of the college football nation, being ranked as high as 14th at one point this year.
Now I know in my ACC predictions I had OSU here. However, for whatever reason, I'm assured by several sites (CBS, ESPN, and Scout.com) that they won't land here and rather Stanford will.
That said, my ACC pick stays the same. Boston College comes out all the way from, well, Boston, obviously. Stanford has home field advantage and they'll use it.
Boston College, as stated Monday, is not impressive. After a "great" start against some unimpressive teams they really have been pathetic. They lost to Notre Dame, and barely escaped Wake Forest, Florida State, Virginia, and Maryland.
Stanford will run away with this one and never look back.
Stanford 48, Boston College 16
Las Vegas Bowl (Pac-10 five vs. MWC champ)—December 22nd, Las Vegas, Nevada
BYU is a lock for the Las Vegas Bowl. All they need to do is make it public.
Against them will be a hardcore, pissed off, talented Oregon State team. They've been cheated out of every bowl before them since losing to Oregon in the Civil War.
BYU will have never seen so much rage and hatred channeled into defeating them.
Jacquizz Rodgers will have a field day; James Rodgers will get some good yardage through the air as well.
BYU may talk tough, and they looked good, I'll admit, after beating Utah. But there's just no way the Cougars can win this one.
There isn't much to it. Oregon State is Holiday, Sun, or Emerald Bowl caliber. They would win any one of those. But they get ripped off, and end up here.
Oregon State 35, BYU 20
Poinsettia Bowl (Pac-10 six vs. MWC two)—December 23rd, San Diego, California
In second place for the Mountain West (with TCU going to a BCS bowl game) is Utah. They would be "first" if they hadn't lost the Holy War to BYU.
That said, they match-up against Arizona, assuming they lose this weekend to USC.
Arizona has been up and down all year, being ranked as high as 16th in some polls. Then they fell on a losing streak, and actually played a superb game against Oregon on College Gameday, going into double overtime—but they still lost.
Utah has a stronger offense, more weapons, and a more solid team, I feel. Arizona got up there but as I said before, let's be real—they aren't that good.
Utah 44, Arizona 38
Look for the Mountain West and WAC picks tomorrow!