If you haven’t checked it out yet and you have ten minutes to spare, I think every fan of college football should read my proposed College Championship System. I guarantee my system would consistently provide better match-ups in EVERY bowl game.
Wisconsin(10) vs. Oregon (5)
Monday, January 2nd
5:00 PM EST
This match-up is the result of an unlucky year in scheduling in one conference and a Bowl Ban in another. If Michigan and Wisconsin had a match-up this season, this could be an entirely different game. If USC had not paid Reggie Bush, it could have been an entirely different game.
Coulda, shoulda, woulda.
This is actually middle of the pack for me. I anticipate it will be the third most entertaining bowl of the BCS bunch. Although some expect this game to be a visual instruction of how not to play defense, I think this game could turn out ugly. Wisconsin’s deficiency on defense is playing against speed on the edges, so I think Oregon should score a lot of points. However, Oregon’s defensive deficiency is also on the outside.
I think he’s the best running back in the country, but I question if Montee Ball will be able to keep up with Oregon’s scoring. Russell Wilson will be heavily depended on, but Oregon’s secondary isn’t bad. I think there is a good chance that this is a high scoring game, but I think it’s equally as likely that Oregon runs away with it.
Prediction: Oregon wins 55 to 41.
Player of the Game: RB/PR LaMichael James, Oregon
There are two possibilities for this game. Either Oklahoma State will get over the fact they’re not in the National Championship game and play to their abilities or they won’t, and Stanford will blow them out.
If you had ended up with West Virginia, maybe you could have put less effort into the game, but Stanford offers unique challenges. Stanford has the best offense in the country. Some teams score more points, but no team is more capable of dominating games like Stanford. They can score quickly with Andrew Luck or they can play ball control with Stepfan Taylor and that huge offensive line.
If Stanford is playing ball control, it may be a long day for Oklahoma State. With a month off, I’m not sure Oklahoma State could ever get back into the grove of things if Stanford is successful at sustaining long, time-consuming drives. It may even turn ugly if Oklahoma State comes out still pouting.
Teams that believe they should be somewhere greater often get upset in Bowl Games. Mike Gundy will do his best to make sure that happens, but I don’t know if he can.
Prediction: Stanford wins 34-24
Player of the Game: RB Stepfan Taylor, Stanford
Virginia Tech played well some weeks but also played very poorly in others. In two loses to Clemson, their offense couldn’t muster anything, and their defense couldn’t handle the speed of Tajh Boyd, Andre Ellington, and Freshman phenom Sammy Watkins.
Virginia Tech will once again have their hands full with a quick offense, when they try to match-up with Fitzgerald Toussaint, Junior Hemmingway, and star quarterback Denard Robinson.
This match-up greatly favors Michigan. Michigan’s defense is greatly improved but can be beaten with strength because it is still playing Rich Rodriguez’s smaller recruits. They won’t have to worry about a physical match-up with Virginia Tech’s offense. David Wilson is a great running back, but he doesn’t have a large-enough frame to make me believe he’ll bowl over defenders consistently.
Although both offenses will have some success, I think it comes down to which running quarterback is more successful. Denard Robinson is the last person Virginia Tech’s defense wanted to see, and aside from a few running backs, I don’t know anyone more capable of beating Michigan’s defense than Logan Thomas.
This will be the best match of any bowl game.
Prediction: Michigan wins 31-28
Player of the Game: QB Denard Robinson, Michigan
I think I would have preferred to see Louisville. At least if they had been forced to take Louisville there would be a valid storyline.
Clemson played poorly down the stretch before turning it on to beat Virginia Tech in the ACC Championship game. There is little doubt in my mind that they will show up for this game. West Virginia, on the other hand, had to struggle with all of their might to get to this point after slipping up to Louisville.
On paper, this looks like a good match, but I’m not sure Dabo Sweeney’s kids are as excited about this match-up as Dana Holgorson’s.
Clemson has struggled with down the field passing attacks this season, and I think they will again.
Prediction: West Virginia upsets Clemson 35-24.
Player of the Game: QB Geno Smith, West Virginia
For everyone that said Oklahoma State is not a complete football team, I will say this: look at LSU. You don’t need to be a complete football team to win games, you need to be really talented on one side of the ball and capable on the other.
Louisiana State will win on defense and on Special Teams, and therefore will be able to have the field position on their side most of the game. I don’t expect much from their offense, but I expect them to score more points than they give up. I think at some point they will give up a defensive touchdown to Alabama. However, I don’t think Alabama’s offense will score at all.
Both teams play great defense and mediocre offense. The difference will be special teams.
I’m convinced the honey badger Tyrann Matthieu is the best player in the country. He’s the most dynamic punt returner and on blitzes he is unstoppable. He has to be one of the favorites for the Heisman going into next season. He is invited this year, but I think it’s fair to say he won’t win. Trent Richardson won’t be able to have the success he did in their last meeting. Not with Les Miles having a month to prepare.
Prediction: LSU wins. Again. 16-9
Player of the Game: CB/PR Tyrann Matthieu, LSU