What a match up this would be. Last week the Gators suffered their first loss and were taken out of title contention. Their record indicates a Capital One birth and would cap off an immensely successful season for Will Muschamp and the Gators.
Michigan, on the other hand, has a very favorable remaining schedule. With a season finale win against Ohio State, the Wolverines may be able to salvage their 5-3 season and clinch a spot in the Capital One Bowl game.
This is a big ticket Big Ten v SEC showdown. Jarvis Jones leads Georgia’s stingy defense against John Clay and the Wisconsin offense. Both Ohio State and Penn State are ineligible so the Big Ten lead falls to Wisconsin. This will be an extremely difficult match up for the Badgers as the Georgia Bulldogs are dangerous on both sides of the ball this year. I would have loved to see Ohio State take on Georgia in this match up but that is simply not possible this year.
An ACC v. SEC showdown for the ages. Clemson has great success in their passing game with two very dynamic receivers in Sammy Watkins and DeAndre Hopkins and a Heisman Caliber QB in Tajh Boyd. Mississippi State has been a pleasant surprise this year as they sit at 7-1. I predict both teams to accumulate one more loss as Mississippi State will take on LSU and Clemson faces South Carolina in their season finale.
Texas Tech has been dominant passing the ball this year with QB Seth Doege already passing for 30 TDs. Putting up the 12th most points per game, this team is hard to keep up with and will give Stanford’s defense headaches all day. On the other side of the ball, Stanford has been an all around solid team. Winning close games and staying disciplined has given this statistically average team a 6-2 record. It would be interesting to see how Stanford, a running team, would keep up with Texas Tech which seems to be able to put up points in bunches.
It has been a disappointing season for Michigan State as they sit at 5-4. By winning out, I predict them to face south Carolina in the Gator Bowl. It is optimistic to put South Carolina here though after taking a devastating blow last week when they lost their on and off field leader, Marcus Lattimore. The sure first round pick suffered one of the most gruesome leg injuries that I have personally seen on a football field. This could be a match up to watch for as both teams will look to cap disappointing seasons with a bowl game victory.
With USC losing last week to Arizona, the Trojans are all but eliminated from returning to a BCS bowl game. The Trojans high powered offense though will surely test the Texas defense in what would surely be an exciting holiday bowl match up. What is different this year though for Texas is their reliance on the offense to win games. Historically a defense minded team, the Longhorns this year are #8 in the country in points scored per game. This would be a rematch of one of the most exciting games in college football history, the 2006 Rose bowl which featured Matt Lienart taking on Vince Young.
Geno Smith and the West Virgina Mountaineers were once considered a top 5 team in the nation. This no longer holds true though as they have tallied two losses and were absolutely blown out by Kansas State. Northwestern has been quite the surprise this year but may face their toughest test of the year if they make it to this bowl. I would expect that West Virginia would be heavily favored and my money would be on the Heisman caliber QB in Geno Smith and his Mountaineers.
Rutgers finally lost that perfect record with a loss last week so they are mostly certainly out of BCS bowl game contention. This should be no worry to the team as a Russell Athletic bowl birth would cap an amazingly successful season. North Carolina State has also had great success this year with the emergence of the passing game. At 5-3 they have a good chance of winning out with their lone test on the road at #13 Clemson. This should play out to be a very close game and one that will most likely be won or lost in the closing moments.