I swear it gets here earlier every year. Not Christmas, no, rather the college football bowl season. It actually begins this Saturday with five games slated for the day. Today I will give you every single prediction for this year’s bowl season outside of two. Some games will just get scores, others will get a few thoughts. Also, neither the Iowa State or Iowa bowl games will be addressed as they will get full blown coverage and what have you.
The first bowl game this year is the Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl between North Carolina A&T and Alcorn State. Don’t know much about either team but Steve McNair went to Alcorn State so let’s go with them winning 24-16.
Utah State and North Texas will clash in the New Mexico Bowl. Again not super up on either team, and I have no NFL ties swimming through my head. Former Iowa State coach Dan McCarney was the guy at North Texas for a while, however, so I’ll pick them to take a 36-24 contest.
The AutoNation Cure Bowl sees Tulane taking on Louisiana. No quips for this one, just give me Tulane, 28-17.
Fresno State and Arizona State will battle in the Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl. This is probably the best bowl game on Saturday. Fresno State won a decent Mountain West Conference this year while Arizona State’s best player might not play. So I’ll take Fresno State by 20, 41-21. Sorry, Herm Edwards.
Georgia Southern will beat Eastern Michigan in the Raycom Media Cameilla Bowl and Appalachian State will take down Middle Tennessee in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl.
UAB will complete their rise from the dead and take the Cheribundi Boca Raton Bowl against Northern Illinois.
The DXL Frisco Bowl should be an interesting one. San Diego State, who has the fourth best run defense in college, will take on Ohio, who has the 10th best running offense in college. Should be like one of our Class A contests. I like Ohio’s run game to get the better of this one in a 17-14 game.
Marshall will continue to extend South Florida’s losing streak after they win the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl. Toledo will best FIU in the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl. BYU will win the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl against Western Michigan. Memphis beats Wake Forest in the Jared Birmingham Bowl.
Houston and Army in the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl lost some of the luster when Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver said he would not play, Oliver a top 10 pick in next year’s NFL draft. Army has put together a great season and will be able to run all over Houston now, taking a 24-10 game.
Buffalo beats Troy in the Dollar General Bowl which might be a good game. Hawaii defends their home in the SoFi Hawai’i Bowl against Louisiana Tech. Boise State takes the SERVER First Responder Bowl against Boston College.
The Quick Lane Bowl between Minnesota and Georgia Tech is the last game in the career of Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson. GT runs the triple option offense so it will be interesting to see if the Golden Gophers can stop it. The Yellow Jackets take a 27-21 contest.
In one of the weirdest named bowl games, the Cheez-It Bowl, TCU takes out California. Temple beats Duke in the Walk-On’s Independence Bowl.
Miami and Wisconsin in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl is a disappointment for both programs this year as they both had higher dreams but fell short of those. Miami might not be used to playing in the cold weather like the Badgers are so the Big 10 school takes this one, 34-27.
Baylor defeats Vanderbilt in the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl. Auburn beats Purdue in the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl, and Syracuse will best West Virginia in the Camping World Bowl as WVU quarterback Will Grier is skipping it to focus on NFL prep.
The Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl has the makings of a good defensive battle between Florida and Michigan. However, I cannot stand Jim Harbaugh so gonna back the Gators in a 21-18 game.
South Carolina bests Virginia in the Belk Bowl. Nevada beats Arkansas State in the NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl. Virginia Tech will get the better of Cincinnati in the Military Bowl Presented by Northrop Grumman. Stanford will take Pittsburg in the Hyundai Sun Bowl. Oregon beats Michigan State in the Redbox Bowl. Oklahoma State gets the better of a former Big 12 school in Missouri in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl.
Utah beats Northwestern in the San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl. Also that bowl wins longest bowl title, I think. NC State will best Texas A&M in the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl. Penn State shuts down Kentucky in the VRBO Citrus Bowl.
UCF proves they belong in the playoffs with a Playstation Fiesta Bowl win against LSU. Ohio State will dismantle an overrated Washington team in the Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual. Texas will show they are BACK in the Allstate Sugar Bowl with a win over Georgia.
The first of the two playoff games takes place in the Cotton Bowl as Clemson and Notre Dame square up. ND hasn’t been challenged much all year with most of the great teams they had scheduled not really being all that great. Clemson has one of the best defensive lines in the country and a good offense. ND will have to pass the ball against a mediocre Tiger secondary, but Clemson wants ‘Bama, Tigers win 45-37.
The Capital One Orange Bowl hosts the other semifinal game as Alabama takes on Oklahoma. Alabama has been really challenged just once this year, by Georgia in the SEC Championship. The Sooners have had to pull some rabbits out of their hat to get this far. I said it back in August, this is Alabama’s world and everyone else lives in it, Tide rolls to a 48-35 win.
Once again we will see the Tide and the Tigers lock up in the National Championship. Their series sits at 1-1 so it’s really a rubber match for the title game. Alabama has too much ability at wide receiver to not put up the points on that Clemson secondary. Best case for Clemson is that Tua Tagovailoa gets hurt, as he has in every single game this year it seems, and Jalen Hurts reverts back to being wildly inaccurate. Otherwise, Alabama wins 38-24.