I decided to go a little more ambitious this year. I will write about all of the bowl games! Yikes, seems like a crazy task, but here we go…all betting lines from Bovada.
Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl–December 15th at Noon
Alcorn State (9-3) vs. North Carolina A&T (9-2)
Favorite: North Carolina A&T (-7.5)
My Take: This is the only FCS Bowl Game played by the MEAC and SWAC champions. For those of you with good memories, Tarik Cohen came from A&T and I think a few years ago in this bowl game had an incredible run to win it. Anyways, A&T has a great defense, while Alcorn State a fantastic offense. My gut tells me that North Carolina A&T wins, but I am not sure they cover the spread. I would also take the under.
Cure Bowl–December 15th at 1:30 p.m.
Tulane (6-6) vs. University of Louisiana-Lafayette (7-6)
Favorite: Tulane (-3.5)
My Take: I think the Ragin’ Cajuns are the better team here. I would take them in the upset. I would take the under in this one. I can see this being a 28-21 type game.
New Mexico Bowl–December 15th at 2:00 p.m.
North Texas (9-3) vs. Utah State (10-2)
Favorite: Utah State (-8.5)
My Take: I like Utah State in this one. Their only losses came to Michigan State and Boise State. I wonder if they had won the MWC Championship game, would they have been mentioned for a much bigger bowl game than what Boise state received? My only concern would be the fact that the head coach left for Texas Tech (I would love to know the record of teams in bowl games whose coach left for another job). I think this will be a fairly high scoring affair, so I am taking the over and Utah State to cover the spread.
Las Vegas Bowl–December 15th at 3:30 p.m.
Arizona State (7-5) vs. #21 Fresno State (11-2)
Favorite: Fresno State (-4.0)
My Take: The Bulldogs should handle the Sun Devils. ASU is not all that good…yet. I would take Fresno State and the over.
Camellia Bowl–December 15th at 5:30 p.m.
Georgia Southern (9-3) vs. Eastern Michigan (7-5)
Favorite: Georgia Southern (-1.0)
My Take: I am fairly high on the Sun Belt this season. I think Georgia Southern wins this one, but I would take the under. I think this is a low scoring game, maybe 20-17.
New Orleans Bowl–December 15th at 9:00 p.m.
Middle Tennessee State (8-5) vs. Appalachian State (10-2)
Favorite: Appalachian State (-7.0)
My Take: I think App State wins this one pretty easily. I would be concerned about Satterfield leaving for Louisville, but something tells me this team will be ready for MTSU. I would take the points, but the under. I am thinking something like 30-14.
Boca Raton Bowl–December 18th at 7:00 p.m.
University of Alabama-Birmingham (10-3) vs. Northern Illinois (8-5)
Favorite: UAB (-2.5)
My Take: Take UAB for the win and the points. I think it ends up being close, my guess is 28-24.
Frisco Bowl–December 19th at 8:00 p.m.
San Diego State (7-5) vs. Ohio University (8-4)
Favorite: Ohio (-3.0)
My Take: San Diego State actually beat some teams this year. They fell apart at the end of the year, but I think they are good enough team to beat Ohio. I would also take the over. I see this being a shootout, like 42-35.
Gasparilla Bowl–December 20th at 8:00 p.m.
Marshall (8-4) vs. South Florida (7-5)
Favorite: Marshall (-2.5)
My Take: At one point USF was undefeated and it looked like the AAC may have a few pretty awesome teams. Remember, they started the year by beating Georgia Tech and Illinois. They finished the year with five straight losses. I think Marshall is too much for them. Take the over here. My guess is 38-30.
Bahamas Bowl–December 21st at 12:30 p.m.
Florida International University (8-4) vs. Toledo (7-5)
Favorite: Toledo (-6.0)
My Take: This is a weird one. I think FIU players may have a slight advantage here. Traveling to the Bahamas and playing in that weather could affect a team from Toledo. I will take Toledo for the win, but FIU to cover. Also, I am going for the over. I see a last second field goal winning this one. 35-34.
Potato Bowl–December 21st at 4:00 p.m.
Western Michigan (7-5) vs. BYU (6-6)
Favorite: BYU (-12.0)
My Take: BYU beat Wisconsin, Arizona, and gave Utah a good game. They lost Cal, Washington, Boise State, and Utah State. I have no clue how good they are, but Western Michigan does not impress me. I think BYU wins this one, but I do not think they cover the points. Take the under.
Birmingham Bowl–December 22nd at Noon
Wake Forest (6-6) vs. Memphis (8-5)
Favorite: Memphis (-5.0)
My Take: Memphis can score points. I am not sure if Wake Forest can stop them, or keep up with them. I think Memphis wins it by a touchdown and they hit the over. I could see this game being 45-35.
Armed Forces Bowl–December 22nd at 3:30 p.m.
Army (10-2) vs. Houston (8-4)
Favorite: Army (-3.0)
My Take: Army is legit good. I think they defeat Houston by a touchdown. Army held Oklahoma to 28 points and that game went to overtime. Take Army and the under. I am thinking 28-21.
Dollar General Bowl–December 22nd at 7:00 p.m.
Troy (9-3) vs. Buffalo (10-3)
Favorite: Buffalo (-2.5)
My Take: The Bulls destroyed Rutgers and a bunch of their MAC opponents, except for Ohio and Northern Illinois. They also got crushed by Army. Troy beat Nebraska, but lost horribly to Boise State. They also defeated their Sunbelt opponents easily, minus App State. I think this ends up being a good game. I will take Troy for the upset and the under because I think both defenses keeps it low.
Hawai’i Bowl–December 22nd at 10:30 p.m.
Louisiana Tech (7-5) vs. Hawai’i (8-5)
Favorite: Hawai’i (-1.0)
My Take: I love the Hawai’i Bowl. It is usually entertaining and pretty high scoring. I will take Hawaii to win it (obviously to cover the points, haha) and I would say take the over. I am guessing 41-35.
First Responder Bowl-December 26th at 1:30 p.m.
Boston College (7-5) vs. #25 Boise State (10-3)
Favorite: Boise State (-3.0)
My Take: Boise State was my non-power five conference pick to go undefeated. Boston College looked pretty good at times (although, I am not sure how good the ACC is this year), but then they got crushed by Syracuse. I think Boise State wins this one and covers the three points. I would take the over. If it is close, I see Boise State winning a shootout. Or I see the Broncos winning by two touchdowns. Either way, they probably score 40.
Quick Lane Bowl–December 26th at 5:15 p.m.
Georgia Tech (7-5) vs. Minnesota (6-6)
Favorite: Georgia Tech (-4.0)
My Take: The Golden Gophers were a frustrating team this season. They beat some good teams (Fresno State, Wisconsin, Purdue), but lost to some oddities (Nebraska, Illinois, Maryland). Georgia Tech can score points so I would take the over. I am going to take Georgia Tech for the win, but I would also take Minnesota to cover. Yeah, I know, hedging my bets there, haha.
Cheez-It Bowl–December 26th at 9:00 p.m.
TCU (6-6) vs. California (7-5)
My Take: I really thought TCU would be much better this year. I thought their defense was good, but that Ohio State game proved that theory wrong. Cal is not very good. Yuck. What a crappy bowl game. I will take TCU and the under. My guess is 17-13.
Independence Bowl–December 27th at 1:30 p.m.
Duke (7-5) vs. Temple (8-4)
Favorite: Temple (-3.0)
My Take: Temple got off to a rough start this year, but then turned things around with wins against Maryland, Cincinnati, and Houston. Duke had some big wins as well, taking down Northwestern, Georgia Tech, and Army. I think Temple wins this one, but it is a close game. I would take the over, my guess is 34-31.
Pinstripe Bowl–December 27th at 5:15 p.m.
Wisconsin (7-5) vs. Miami (7-5)
Favorite: Miami (4.0)
My Take: A rematch of last year’s Orange Bowl. Wisconsin defeated Miami 34-24. My how two mighty teams have fallen in one year. I think the Badgers run the ball fairly well against the Hurricanes. I will take Wisconsin to cover and the under.
Texas Bowl–December 27th at 9:00 p.m.
Baylor (6-6) vs. Vanderbilt (6-6)
Favorite: Vanderbilt (-3.5)
My Take: Vandy’s signature win was probably a close loss to Notre Dame. Or beating Tennessee, but honestly, I am not impressed with that one. Baylor beat Texas Tech and Oklahoma State. Again, not sure that is impressive. Both teams were beat up pretty handily by the good teams in their conferences. I am going with Baylor here. I would take the under though. I am saying 28-24.
Music City Bowl–December 28th at 1:30 p.m.
Purdue (6-6) vs. Auburn (7-5)
Favorite: Auburn (-3.5)
My Take: Purdue could have easily been 9-3 this year. They lost their first three games by a total of eight. Those three losses were also on stupid mistakes at the end of the game. They also crushed Ohio State. Auburn defeated Washington and lost a close one to LSU. They lost to Tennessee though, yikes. I am taking Purdue here. I think they have more to prove. I would take the under on this one, probably 24-23.
Camping World Bowl–December 28th at 5:15 p.m.
#20 Syracuse (9-3) vs. #16 West Virginia (8-3)
Favorite: West Virginia (-1.5)
My Take: WVU will score points. Will Grier needs a huge game to impress those NFL scouts. Neither team plays much defense. Syracuse is good at running the ball, which could help slow the tempo down a little bit. I think WVU wins this one and covers. Take the over, probably 42-35.
UPDATE: I just learned that Will Grier is skipping the game. I still think WVU wins it, but I am not so sure they hit those points. Maybe take the under here.
Alamo Bowl–December 28th at 9:00 p.m.
#24 Iowa State (8-4) vs. #13 Washington State (10-2)
Favorite: Washington State (-3.5)
My Take: Washington State lost to a bad USC team early in the year. Then they lost to their rivalry game to Washington. Iowa State did their thing, you know losing to Oklahoma, Iowa, and Texas. But then they beat Oklahoma State and WVU. They ended their season by almost losing to Drake (not the rapper). I am going to take the Cougs to cover. However, I am taking the under here. I think this is a blowout, like 35-10. WSU has something to prove.
Peach Bowl–December 29th at Noon
#10 Florida (9-3) vs. #7 Michigan (10-2)
Favorite: Michigan (-7.5)
My Take: I thought Michigan was one of the top four teams most of the year. That loss to Notre Dame was the first game of the year. Unfortunately, they got crushed by Ohio State. I think Harbaugh has the Wolverines ready for the Gators. I think we have a low scoring game, I am thinking 21-10.
Belk Bowl–December 29th at Noon
Virginia (7-5) vs. South Carolina (7-5)
Favorite: South Carolina (-4.0)
My Take: Honestly, I never watched either team this year. I remember Virginia being ranked at some point. Then they lost a few games. I think the Cavaliers cover the four points. Not saying an upset, but that it ends up a close one. Take the under, I am thinking 24-21.
Arizona Bowl–December 29th at 1:15 p.m.
Nevada (7-5) vs. Arkansas State (8-4)
Favorite: Arkansas State (-1.0)
My Take: How cool is it that Arkansas State is the best school in the state (are there more schools in Arkansas than ArkSt and Arkansas)? I think the Sun Belt has another win here. Take the over, 38-35 ArkState (do people call them that?).
Military Bowl–December 31st at Noon
Virginia Tech (6-6) vs. Cincinnati (10-2)
Favorite: Cincinnati (-5.0)
My Take: The Hokies had a rough year and I honestly do not think it ends much better. The Bearcats were pretty good all year with their only losses coming to Temple and UCF. I think they beat VaTech 28-14.
Sun Bowl–December 31st at 2:00 p.m.
Pittsburgh (7-6) vs. Stanford (8-4)
Favorite: Stanford (-6.5)
My Take: If Bryce Love is healthy and plays, I think he runs all over Pitt. I see both teams running the ball easily. I think the Cardinals win by two scores. 27-17. However, if Love skips it, then perhaps we have a different game. Pitt could cover in that case and maybe get the win. So yeah, a lot of ifs here. I would take the under in any case.
Redbox Bowl–December 31st at 3:00 p.m.
Michigan State (7-5) vs. Oregon (8-4)
Favorite: Oregon (-3.0)
My Take: The Ducks should win this one pretty easily. I think Justin Herbert could use a big game to really cement that top QB draft position. I would take the under though, I think this one ends up 24-10.
Liberty Bowl–December 31st at 3:15 p.m.
Oklahoma State (6-6) vs. #23 Missouri (8-4)
Favorite: Missouri (-7.5)
My Take: Drew Lock vs. Taylor Cornelius. Yep, this should be a quarterback battle. Lots of points. I think Oklahoma State covers the points, but Mizzou pulls out the win. Take the over! 48-45.
Holiday Bowl–December 31st at 7:00 p.m.
#22 Northwestern (8-5) vs. #17 Utah (9-4)
Favorite: Utah (-7.0)
My Take: I feel like Wildcats like to keep games fairly close. They can stay competitive with almost anyone (not Ohio State). The Utes were all over the place this season. I think they can win, but Northwestern covers the spread. Also, take the under because Utah wins it 23-20.
Gator Bowl–December 31st at 7:30 p.m.
North Carolina State (9-3) vs. #19 Texas Agricultural & Mechanical University (8-4)
Favorite: Texas A&M (-5.0)
My Take: I would take the SEC over the ACC in just about all matchups. The Wolfpack looked like a good team until they started playing decent teams. I think the Aggies win easily. Take the under though. 35-21.
Outback Bowl–January 1st at Noon
Iowa (8-4) vs. #18 Mississippi State (8-4)
Favorite: Mississippi State (-6.5)
My Take: The Hawkeyes are another weird team. They should be much better than they are. Joe Moorehead has plenty of time to prepare for them and his familiarity with them should be an advantage. Mississippi State wins by a touchdown, 28-21.
Fiesta Bowl–January 1st at 1:00 p.m.
#11 LSU (9-3) vs. #8 University of Central Florida (12-0)
Favorite: LSU (-7.5)
My Take: I am rooting for UCF here. I think if Milton were playing, this would be a different game. Unfortunately, I think LSU will be too much for the Golden Knights. I think the Tigers win it 24-14.
Citrus Bowl–January 1st at 1:00 p.m.
#14 University of Kentucky (9-3) vs. #12 Penn State University (9-3)
Favorite: Penn State (-6.5)
My Take: WE ARE!!! Come on, do you really have to ask? Okay, I think the Nittany Lions win this one pretty easily. I think Trace will be back to 100% and the offense will be ready to entertain the Penn State fans in attendance. I think it ends up 38-21.
Rose Bowl–January 1st at 5:00 p.m.
#9 Washington (10-3) vs. #6 Ohio State (12-1)
Favorite: Ohio State (-7.0)
My Take: The Huskies have a repeat of last year. Ohio State is just way too much for them (as was Penn State last year). Take the Buckeyes to cover and the over. 52-24
Sugar Bowl–January 1st at 8:45 p.m.
#5 Georgia (11-2) vs. #15 Texas (9-4)
Favorite: Georgia (-11.0)
My Take: I hate this matchup. I get that the Rose Bowl has to be Big Ten vs. Pac-12, but I would much rather see Ohio State vs. Georgia. Instead, the Bulldogs get an okay Longhorn team. Blah, I think this is an easy one for Georgia, but they do not hit the over. 38-14.
And now, the moment you have all been waiting for…The College Football Playoffs!!!
Cotton Bowl–December 29th at 4:00 p.m.
#3 Notre Dame (12-0) vs. #2 Clemson (13-0)
Favorite: Clemson (-11.0)
My Take: I just do not think the Irish have the firepower to score against or stop Clemson. Take the Tigers to cover. The total is a different story. I can see this game getting out of hand. I will take the under here. My guess is 28-7.
Orange Bowl–December 29th at 8:00 p.m.
#4 Oklahoma (12-1) vs. #1 Alabama (13-0)
Favorite: Alabama (-14.0)
My Take: This should be an exciting game. I think the Crimson Tide are the better, but there is this small part of me that thinks if it turns into a shootout, the Sooners have a shot. Like if it gets to the just throw bombs on first down point, like most Big 12 games turn into, then ‘Bama could be in trouble. I do not think it gets to that point. I am taking Alabama for the outright win, the Sooners to cover, and the over. 48-38.