Squib Kicks, Bowl Game Edition - Omaha.com
Published Thursday, December 19, 2013 at 10:23 pm / Updated at 10:34 pm
FOOTBALL
Squib Kicks, Bowl Game Edition

World-Herald staff writers Sam McKewon and Dirk Chatelain take an early look at the bowl games.

* * *

Las Vegas Bowl: Fresno State vs. USC

Sam: The Bulldogs pounded the Trojans in the 1992 Freedom Bowl. Look for it again. Fresno State 31-14

Dirk: The Trojans laid an egg in El Paso a year ago. I anticipate a repeat. Fresno State 34-20

Hawaii Bowl: Boise State vs. Oregon State

Sam: The Broncos won't have Chris Petersen coaching them, but their success in bowls continues. Boise State 28-24

Dirk: How will Boise respond without Petersen? My hunch is it's a motivating force. Boise State 38-31

Texas Bowl: Syracuse vs. Minnesota

Sam: Gophers beat a much better 'Cuse team last year in the regular season. Minnesota 24-7

Dirk: The Big Ten doesn't get many easy wins during bowl season. The Gophers grab one here. Minnesota 31-17

Fight Hunger Bowl: BYU vs. Washington

Sam: The Huskies have the big talent edge, but coaching transition coupled with the Cougars' option offense tilts the scales. BYU 31-27

Dirk: I've been on the BYU bandwagon all year, sometimes foolishly. But the Cougs will beat a UW team in transition. BYU 20-17

Pinstripe Bowl: Rutgers vs. Notre Dame

Sam: NFL fans can get a month-early peek at Super Bowl weather for a football game. Rutgers 24-21

Dirk: Get a sneak peek at Rutgers, Husker fans. The Scarlet Knights aren't good enough to upset the Irish. Notre Dame 30-20

Russell Athletic Bowl: Miami vs. Louisville

Sam: Teddy Bridgewater's back in his home state, playing his hometown team. Louisville 38-31

Dirk: The 'Canes rebounded from a three-game skid, but the Cards have the better QB. Louisville 35-24

Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Michigan vs. Kansas State

Sam: A defensive game favors the Wildcats, who do long, punishing drives well. Kansas State 23-20

Dirk: The BWW Bowl chose Michigan over Nebraska. Now the Wolverines need to show up. They will. Michigan 21-13

Music City Bowl: Ole Miss vs. Georgia Tech

Sam: The Rebels will have more fans and more excitement to be in Nashville. GT had a disappointing year. Ole Miss 27-23

Dirk: Paul Johnson is bad in bowl games. And with a month to prepare, Ole Miss can stop the option. Ole Miss 34-20

Alamo Bowl: Oregon vs. Texas

Sam: Mack Brown's farewell game will be a nasty, brutish end at no-huddle pace. Oregon 52-28

Dirk: Brown's last two games are Baylor and Oregon. Ouch. The scoreboard operator will be busy. Oregon 44-27

Holiday Bowl: Arizona State vs. Texas Tech

Sam: If the Red Raiders drop a game in San Diego, Ryan Gosling-lookalike Kliff Kingsbury will have lost six in a row. Arizona State 45-31

Dirk: A miserable November for Tech will carry over to San Diego. Arizona State 56-34

Sun Bowl: Virginia Tech vs. UCLA

Sam: Pac-12 teams tend to struggle with motivation down in El Paso. The Bruins stay on track, though. UCLA 22-21

Dirk: The Bruins have far more talent. And with Jim Mora recommitting to the program, there's good vibes. UCLA 31-20

Chik-fil-A Bowl: Duke vs. Texas A&M

Sam: Johnny Football may not have won back-to-back Heismans, but he will nab a second straight bowl win. Texas A&M 42-31

Dirk: Like Texas, Duke gets no late-season breaks. First Jameis Winston, now Johnny Manziel. He'll go out with a bang. Texas A&M 49-34

Outback Bowl: Iowa vs. LSU

Sam: If the Tigers had a healthy star quarterback, it'd be one thing. But they don't, and the Hawkeyes have the patience to overwhelm. Iowa 24-17

Dirk: A rematch of the '05 Capital One Bowl, when Iowa stunned Nick Saban. A sneaky good encore goes to the Tigers. LSU 28-24

Capital One Bowl: Wisconsin vs. South Carolina

Sam: The Badgers have too many unresolved issues throwing the ball and stopping the passing game. South Carolina 27-20

Dirk: Not sure what to think of Wisconsin after the Penn State loss. But the Big Ten is due for an upset. Wisconsin 24-20

Rose Bowl: Michigan State vs. Stanford

Sam: If the Granddaddy doesn't get you fired up, stop watching college football. Go watch the NBA's Eastern Conference. Michigan State 27-24

Dirk: Buckle your chinstrap. This showdown will be right out of the '80s. Stanford 23-17

Fiesta Bowl: Central Florida vs. Baylor

Sam: Todd McShay tells me UCF's Blake Bortles is a top five NFL draft pick next year. Just in time for a needed ESPN ratings hike. Baylor 34-27

Dirk: Two fresh faces on the BCS scene equals bad TV ratings, but an entertaining game. Baylor 42-35

Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma vs. Alabama

Sam: Tide fixin' to put on a hurting. Alabama 40-17

Dirk: Don't let Bedlam fool you. This OU team isn't ready for Goliath. Alabama 38-14

Orange Bowl: Clemson vs. Ohio State

Sam: Urban Meyer's ego is too big to let the Buckeyes blow the prep for this game. Ohio State 31-17

Dirk: The Buckeyes catch flak for being overrated, but Clemson is the weakest BCS at-large qualifier. Ohio State 38-28

Cotton Bowl: Missouri vs. Oklahoma State

Sam: A Big 12 team hasn't won the Cotton Bowl since ... the Tigers. Missouri 28-21

Dirk: Can't wait to see a couple Big Eight rivals go at it. Can we get guest appearances from Pat Jones and Woody Widenhofer? Oklahoma State 40-35

BCS National Championship: Florida State vs. Auburn

Sam: FSU breaks the SEC fever with gusto. Florida State 45-21

Dirk: How far can good fortune carry Gus Malzahn? One win short, I say. The Seminoles are too good. Florida State 38-24

Last time: Sam 3-4, Dirk 2-5

Overall: Sam 79-35, Dirk 77-37

Contact the writer: Dirk Chatelain

dirk.chatelain@owh.com    |   402-649-1461    |  

Dirk Chatelain is a staff writer for The Omaha World-Herald and covers Nebraska football and general assignments.

Contact the writer: Sam McKewon

sam.mckewon@owh.com    |   402-219-3790    |  

Sam McKewon covers Nebraska football for The World-Herald. Got a tip, question or rant? Good. Email him. Follow him on Twitter. Call him.

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