2008 Poinsettia Bowl
Boise State Broncos (No. 9) vs. TCU Horned Frogs (No. 11)
San Diego, California
Spread: TCU -3
How they got here...
Boise State (12-0, 8-0) won the WAC Championship while making a strong case for a BCS bowl berth. BSU brings their high scoring offense, and probably a little attitude, to San Diego.
TCU (10-2, 7-1) finished second in the Mountain West to Utah. TCU brings one of the nation's best defensive units to the matchup.
Boise State is averaging 39 points a game. The Broncos have won by an average of 27.2 points per game. BSU running back Ian Johnson plays in his final game for the Broncos. Johnson is one of the most beloved Broncos in the history of the program.
TCU has the second ranked scoring defense in the country, giving up an average of only 10.9 points a game. The Horned Frogs also have the top ranked rushing defense in the country, giving up only 48.7 yards per game.
Boise State wins if...
In their last five games BSU has averaged 49 points per game. Led by freshman QB Kellen Moore (3,264 yards passing, with 25 TDs), the Broncos will need to continue that late season surge against the stout TCU defense. If they can keep it up, they should win the game.
TCU wins if...
TCU will need to put pressure on Broncos QB Kellen Moore and force him to make a few mistakes. If TCU defensive end Jerry Hughes can add to his sack total (14 this season) and the TCU defense can slow down the BSU playmakers, they can win this one.
TCU will also need a solid game from QB Andy Dalton. Dalton and the passing game have picked up the pace in the last few games. If Dalton can continue that trend and give his defense some help, TCU will be in good shape.
Many feel that this is the best non-BCS game on the schedule. I would certainly agree with that. I love great defense and TCU certainly has one, but the Broncos bring a pretty good defense into the game as well. I think the combination of BSU's offense and that "pretty good" defense will put Boise State over the top.
Winner: Boise State
Here are your b/r experts' picks as well:
Trey Bradley: TCU
Michael Cline: BSU
Justin Goar: TCU
Lisa Horne: BSU
David Wunderlich: BSU
Brian Scott: TCU