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Put Me In Coach: College Bowl Game Picks

December 13, 2012

New Mexico Bowl: Arizona (7-5) vs. Nevada (7-5)- There are a lot about these teams that are similar. They both have the same record, powerful offenses and defenses that just plain don't show up. This should be a shootout out west. I'm going to give Rich Rodriguez and the Arizona Wildcats the edge here.

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Toledo (9-3) vs. No. 22 (Utah State)- Another matchup of high-powered offenses and low-powered defenses. Utah State is having their best season in school history and lost in this exact bowl game last year. Their only bowl game win in seven tries is in the 1993 Las Vegas Bowl. This is going to be bowl game win number two for Utah State.

Poinsettia Bowl: BYU (7-5) vs. San Diego State (9-3)- With this game being at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, BYU doesn't have much going for them in this bowl game outside of the third ranked run defense in the FBS. A defacto home game for San Diego State means a bowl game victory.

Beef O' Brady's Bowl: UCF (9-4) vs. Ball State (9-3)- UCF

New Orleans Bowl: LA Lafayette(8-4) vs. East Carolina (8-4)- These two teams are pretty even statistically with the exception of the Ragin Cajuns runnning attack being superior. East Carolina prefers to get their yards through the air. Look for LA Lafayette to use the home state advantage.

Las Vegas Bowl: No. 19 Boise State (10-2) vs. Washington (7-5)-  Washington quarterbac Keith Price is a talented player, but he doesn't have enough talent around him to be able to overcome Boise State's tough defense.

Hawaii Bowl: SMU (6-6) vs. Fresno State (9-3)- These two teams will be playin on Christmas Eve in paradise and the Bulldogs are rolling under their new coach. This is the year Fresno State will break its bad luck streak in bowl games.

Little Ceasers Pizza Bowl: Bobby Petrino will take over as the coach of Western Kentucky after Willie Taggart left for South Florida. I don't think Petrino will have enough time to prepare for this Bowl game and it is played at Ford Field in Michigan. Advantage Central Michigan.

Military Bowl: Bowling Green (8-4) vs.  No. 24 San Jose State (10-2)- Both teams have turned around from where they were a couple seasons ago. Bowling green had the top MAC defense this season, not that that's saying much. They have the travel advantage, but thats about it. Too much San Jose State.

BELK Bowl: Duke (6-6) vs. Cincinatti (9-3)- Duke started the season 6-2, but has lost four straight as it stumles into its first bowl game since 1994. Cincinatti will want to win one more game before coach Butch Jones leaves for Tennessee and Tommy Tubberville takes over.

Holiday Bowl: Baylor (7-5) vs. UCLA (9-4)- Likely to be one of the more competitive bowl games, Baylor brings a hot streak and the nations highes ppg offense to town against UCLA. UCLA made strides under Jim Mora, but it wont be enough to stop Baylor.

Independence Bow: Louisiana-Monroe (8-4) vs. Ohio (8-4)- Both teams have shown they can play with major programs in the country and both have gone on to solid seasons. Ohio is averaging just over 15.5 points over the last four games of the season while ULM averages over 30. The bigger names on Ohio might cause one to go for the Bobcats, but don't sleep on the Warhawks.

Rusell Athletic Bowl: Virginia Tech (6-6) vs. Rutgers (9-3)- Rutgers blew a chance to win the Big East outright by blowing a game down the stretch while Virginia Tech is another team stumbling into post-season play. Rutgers would be hard pressed to let a 10-win season go by the wayside against a culture that in changing for the worse in Beamerville.

Meineke Car Care Bowl: Minnesota (6-6) vs Texas Tech (7-5)- This will be one ugly bowl game. Minnesota's offense is ranked 114th in the nation. Texas Tech's is not.

Armed Forces Bowl- Rice (6-6) vs. Air Force (6-6)- Air Force is going into their 4th Armed Forces Bowl, but havent historically done well in this game, ironically. Rice is a weak enough opponent that Air Force should be able to come up out on top this year.

Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl: Arizona State (7-5) vs. Navy (7-4)- Navy's porous pass defense does't bode well for an Arizona State offense that features a quarterback that has thrown for over 2000 yards and has 25 touchdowns to 9 interceptions. 

Pinstripe Bowl: Syracuse (7-5) vs. West Virginia (7-5)- This should be a really explosive bowl game with plenty of points on both sides. Geno Smith is the better quarterback in this game and he should be able to lead West Virginia to victory.

Alamo Bowl: Texas (8-4) vs. Oregon State (9-3)- Both of these teams have unstable quarterback situations. Oregon State's is due to injuries and Texas has a performance issue. Texas also has to deal with stopping or containing Oregon State's Markus Wheaton, who is ranked 11th in the nation with receiving yards per game. Advantage Oregon State.

Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Michigan State (6-6) vs. TCU (7-5)- These two schools havent met since 1953 which ended in a Michigan State victory. The Spartans have lost a lot of close games this season while TCU is 61st in the country in points scored where at Michigan State is 112th. TCU will end its year in a victory. 

Music City Bowl: North Carolina State (7-5) vs. Vanderbilt (8-4)- I'll take the SEC team with the better record. Vanderbilt also has the home state advantage.

Sun Bowl: Georgia Tech (6-7) vs. USC (7-5)- How Georgia Tech got into a bowl game with a losing record baffles me. USC should win this game by default.

Liberty Bowl: Iowa State (6-6) vs. Tulsa (10-3)- Iowa State beat Tulsa (Conference USA Champion) 35-23 to open the season. It's a lot harder to bea the same team twice and Iowa State has lost five of its last seven. The Cyclones bring their best football to bowl games however and won't be denied.

Chick- fil-A Bowl: LSU (10-2) vs. Clemson (10-2)- This could very well be the most exciting non-BCS bowl game, but the fact of the matter is a 10-2 SEC team is always going to be better than a 10-2 ACC team. LSU should win in a close one.

Heart of Dallas Bowl: Purdue (6-6) vs. Oklahoma (7-5)- Oklahoma State is better than their record and Purdue (save almost beating Ohio State) probably isn't as good as their record. The Cowboys should get by Purdue pretty easily.

Gator Bowl: Northwestern (9-3) vs. Miss. State (8-4)- Pat Fitzgerald's Wildcats have captured the attention of the Big 10 while Miss. State has put together a solid season in their own right. They actually started their season 7-0. Usually I'd take the SEC team without question, but I think Northwestern has what it takes.

Capital One Bowl: Georgia (11-2) vs. Nebraska (10-3)- Nebraska got embarrased in the Big 10 championship by Wisconsin and will now have to face the team that was 10-yards away from playing in the National Championship Game. Georgia has the advantage here.

Outback Bowl: South Carolina (10-2) vs. Michigan (8-4)- In yet another SEC vs. Big 10 bowl game, Michigan finds itself against a talented team, even without star running back Marcus Lattimore and the Michigan defense hasn't exactly been up to par lately. Look for South Carolina to take this one.

Cotton Bowl: Okalahoma (10-2) vs. Texas A&M (10-2)- Oklahoma got snubbed by the BCS in favor of Northern Illinois. That anger won't be enough to fuel them to victory over Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M.

Compass Bowl: Pitt (6-6) vs. Ole Miss (6-6)- Pitt

Go Daddy.com Bowl: Kent State (11-2) vs. Arkansas State. (9-3)- Too much Kent State MAC offense in this one

Rose Bowl: Stanford (11-2) vs. Wisconsin (8-5)- Wisconsin is the best 8-4 team in the country and they are going to show it by upsetting Stanford's run for the roses.

Orange Bowl: Florida State (11-2) Northern Illinois (12-1)- This is troubling because neither team is really all that good. I think the Huskies could make it close, but the talen gap between the two is just too big. Seminoles Win

Sugar Bowl: Flordia (11-1) vs. Northern Illinois (12-1)- Florida looked less impressive down the stretch, but Louisville played in a weak conference all year. Florida should win pretty easily.

Fiesta Bowl: Kansas State (11-1) vs. Oregon (11-1)- Oregon probably feels that they missed a major chance at playing for a national title with that late-season loss to Stanford and they did. They will get a Fiesta Bowl victory over Purple Kansas.

BCS National Championship: Notre Dame (12-0) vs. Alabama (12-1)- Alabama will play for yet another National Title and this time their opponent is the unbeaten Irish from Notre Dame. This will be an really close game and very defensive and low scoring. I think Manti T'eo will be the difference and prove this is Notre Dame's year.

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