College Football Bowl Games: Preview of the Insight Bowl and Champs Sports Bowl

Chris Faig@@ULuminaryCorrespondent IDecember 28, 2010

College Football Bowl Games: Preview of the Insight Bowl and Champs Sports Bowl

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    With nine games down out of the 35 bowl games this year, there are two exciting matchups to enjoy today in the Insight Bowl and Champs Sports Bowl.

    The first game of December 28th will consist of Geno Smith and the West Virginia Mountaineers battling it out against Russell Wilson and the North Carolina State Wolfpack in the Champs Sports Bowl.

    The second game of the day is between the 12th-ranked Missouri Tigers and the Iowa Hawkeyes, led by quarterback Ricky Stanzi, in the 22nd annual Insight Bowl.

    Take a look at a preview for both the Champs Sports Bowl and the Insight Bowl, which are guaranteed to be a pair of competitive and thrilling games.

Champs Sports Bowl

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    Matchup: 22nd-ranked West Virginia (9-3) vs. North Carolina State (8-4)


    Venue: Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida


    Time: 6:30 EST on December 28, 2010


    Coverage: ESPN and


    Weather Forecast: High: 58 degrees Fahrenheit; Low: 32 degrees Fahrenheit; zero percent chance of precipitation

The Quarterback Duel

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    No. 12 Geno Smith, West Virginia Mountaineers

    Season Stats: 219-of-333, 2,597 yards, 65.8 CMP%, 23 touchdowns, six interceptions and a 149.71 QB rating

    Geno Smith has been a beast the last four games of this season for the Mountaineers, throwing for a total of eight touchdowns and one interception.

    After struggling against Syracuse and Connecticut, losing two very close games, Smith and West Virginia finished out the season strong, winning the last four games of the year.


    No. 16 Russell Wilson, North Carolina State Wolfpack

    Season Stats: 280-of-482, 3,288 yards, 58.1 CMP%, 26 touchdowns, 14 interceptions and a 127.39 QB rating

    Russell Wilson has played quite well towards the end of this season, throwing for a total of six touchdowns and three interceptions in his last three games. He also ran for four touchdowns in those two games, which can provide some versatility for the Wolfpack against a very talented West Virginia defense.

    Wilson is very dangerous on the ground, running for a total of nine touchdowns over the course of the 2010 college football season.

Playmakers at Wide Receiver

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    No. 13 Owen Spencer, NC State Wolfpack

    Receiving: 57 receptions for 868 yards and four touchdowns

    No. 5 Jarvis Williams, NC State Wolfpack

    Receiving: 46 receptions for 636 yards and four touchdowns

    No. 6 T.J. Graham, NC State Wolfpack

    Receiving: 23 receptions for 309 yards and four touchdowns



    RB No. 1 Tavon Austin, WVU Mountaineers (leading WVU receiver)

    Receiving: 53 receptions for 757 yards and eight touchdowns

    No. 9 Jock Sanders, WVU Mountaineers

    Receiving: 64 reception for 670 yards and four touchdowns

    Rushing: 13 attempts for 75 yards and one touchdown

    No. 2 Brad Starks, WVU Mountaineers

    Receiving: 19 receptions for 317 yards and four touchdowns

    Rushing: One attempt for 53 yards and one touchdown

    No. 10 Stedman Bailey, WVU Mountaineers

    Receiving: 20 receptions for 256 yards and three touchdowns

Accuracy of Kickers

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    When a football game is on the line in the final seconds, it is heartbreaking when the team you're rooting for loses the contest because of a missed field goal or extra point.

    Take a look at the kicking accuracy of NC State's Josh Czajkowski and West Virginia's Tyler Bitancurt.


    No. 36 Josh Czajkowski, NC State Wolfpack

    Season Stats: 17-of-22 FGM/FGA (77.3 PCT); 40-of-41 XPM/XPA; total of 91 points


    No. 40 Tyler Bitancurt, West Virginia Mountaineers

    Season Stats: 10-of-15 FGM/FGA (86.7 PCT); 40-of-40 XPM/XPA; total of 70 points

Comparing the Rushing Attack of Each Team

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    No. 7 Noel Devine, West Virginia Mountaineers

    Rushing: 201 rushing attempts for 886 yards and six touchdowns

    Receiving: 30 receptions for 237 yards and one touchdown

    No. 32 Ryan Clarke, West Virginia Mountaineers

    Rushing: 80 carries for 291 yards and eight touchdowns

    Receiving: Two receptions for 16 yards



    No. 33 Mustafa Greene, North Carolina State Wolfpack

    Rushing: 131 attempts for 584 yards and four touchdowns

    Receiving: 29 receptions for 256 yards and one touchdown

    No. 16 Russell Wilson, North Carolina State Wolfpack

    Rushing: 129 carries for 394 yards and nine touchdowns

    No. 29 Dean Haynes, North Carolina State Wolfpack

    Rushing: 83 attempts for 320 yards and three touchdowns

    Receiving: 13 receptions for 118 yards and one touchdown

Insight Bowl

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    Matchup: 12th-ranked Missouri Tigers vs. Iowa Hawkeyes


    Venue: Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona


    Time: 10:00 PM EST


    Coverage: ESPN


    Weather Forecast: High: 68 degrees Fahrenheit; Low: 46 degrees Fahrenheit; 15 percent chance of precipitation

The Quarterback Duel

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    No. 11 Blaine Gabbert, Missouri Tigers

    Season Stats: 260-of-418, 2,752 yards, 62.2 CMP%, 15 touchdowns, seven interceptions and a 126.00 QB rating

    The 6'5" junior struggled towards the end of the season, throwing a total of three touchdowns and three interceptions in his final three games, but Gabbert still managed to lead his team to victory in all three games, rushing for a total of two touchdowns on the ground.


    No. 12 Ricky Stanzi, Iowa Hawkeyes

    Season Stats: 210-of-324, 2,804 yards, 64.8 CMP%, 25 touchdowns, four interceptions and a 160.50 QB rating

    Senior Ricky Stanzi has had an outstanding season, recording the 10th-highest QB rating throughout the entire nation. Stanzi is also among the elite quarterbacks in touchdowns thrown, being ranked 19th overall with 25 total passing touchdowns.

Running Back Matchup

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    No. 26 De'Vion Moore, Missouri Tigers

    Rushing: 93 rushing attempts for 485 yards and eight touchdowns

    Receiving: Three receptions for seven yards

    No. 41 Henry Josey, Missouri Tigers

    Rushing: 74 carries for 425 yards and four touchdowns

    Receiving: Four receptions for 19 yards


    No. 34 Marcus Coker, Iowa Hawkeyes

    Rushing: 81 carries for 403 yards and one touchdown

    Receiving: Two receptions for 23 yards

Performance Against Ranked Teams

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    Both teams have fared pretty well against ranked teams this season, facing some intense competition.

    The currently 12th-ranked Missouri Tigers have beaten the No. 1-ranked Oklahoma Sooners by a score of 36-27. The Tigers also beat the No. 24-ranked Kansas State Wildcats, 38-28.

    Missouri only lost once to superior competition, losing by a score of 31-17 against the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

    The Iowa Hawkeyes have faced a total of five ranked teams this season, beating two and losing to three. Iowa came away with loses against the No. 24-ranked Arizona Wildcats, No. 13-ranked Wisconsin Badgers and No. 9-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes.

    The two ranked teams the Hawkeyes beat were the No. 22-ranked Penn State Nittany Lions, 24-3, and No. 5-ranked Michigan State Spartans, 37-6.

Accuracy of Kickers

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    No. 95 Grant Ressel, Missouri Tigers

    Season Stats: 16-of-18 FGM/FGA (88.9 PCT); 42-of-44 XPM/XPA; total of 90 points


    No. 96 Michael Meyer, Iowa Hawkeyes

    12-of-15 FGM/FGA (80.0 PCT); 28-of-30 XPM/XPA; total of 64 points