The SEC Bowl games start this coming Sunday night as Alabama faces Colorado. I’ll save my Independence Bowl pick for later since it involves the team I love so much. Here we go:
GAYLORD HOTELS MUSIC CITY BOWL
Kentucky vs. Florida State
This is a pretty easy choice if you ask me. Florida State will now be missing 36 players due to injuries and that nasty cheating scandal. (seriously, how will the NCAA handle this compared to how they dealt with a now dead booster paying Lynn Lang to get Albert Means to play for Alabama? I doubt they’ll get much of anything, just like USC will get next to nothing because of Reggie Bush). Kentucky can run with the best of them on offense, and FSU will certainly provide us with an anemic offense. From what I saw of Florida State earlier in the season, I imagine UK should get the victory, although FSU might get a few pity points.
Score: Kentucky 38, Florida State 10
AUTOZONE LIBERTY BOWL
Mississippi State vs. Central Florida
For all of the Alabama fans complaining about going to Shreveport, I still believe it is better than the alternative. Central Florida is a dangerous team, and the risk of losing to another smaller conference this season isn’t something we need right now (yes, I am not afraid to admit this). Mississippi State handled Felix Jones and Darren McFadden pretty well, so I imagine this RB named Kevin Smith won’t rush for 300+ yards like he did against Tulsa. Still, he should be a handful. The Bulldogs biggest concern should be their offensive production, which is abysmal. They won plenty of games because of dumb turnovers by the opposing teams, but really can’t seem to get their pass and run games going at the same time. Still, MSU will have a soft UCF defense to go against, so I’ll stick with the Bulldogs.
Score: Mississippi State 27, Central Florida 21
Auburn vs. Clemson
This should be an interesting game since Auburn is bringing in a new offense. A lot of Auburn fans have been talking about Tommy’s new toy in Tony Franklin, who has been installing a bare-bones version of his offense (with a little West Coast) to get a jump start for next season. Auburn will bring another solid defense with Muschamp staying around for at least one more season. They’ll need it since Clemson has been known to score plenty of points. But, there seems to be a deal with Tommy Bowden where he messes up a game that you originally think he might win (see Georgia Tech this season). I don’t think the SC Tigers are huge favorites over the AL Tigers, but you never know with this guy. He should attack that Auburn secondary in order to open up the run for his two big time RBs. The big X factor in this game is the new spread for Auburn. I really want to pick Clemson, but Auburn has this ability to win games you don’t expect them to win. So, I’m picking the Auburn Tigers.
Score: Auburn 24, Clemson 20
AT&T COTTON BOWL
Arkansas vs. Missouri
Arkansas, (Our partners in taking away NFL coaches from bad situations), is coming into this game with an interim head coach. That’s yet another comparison between 2006 Alabama and 2007 Arkansas, but we’re here to talk about a bowl game. Missouri should be in a BCS bowl game, but got screwed after Kansas got picked for the Orange Bowl. I respect Reggie Herring as a defensive mind (although he ran man-to-man way too much in my opinion), but I don’t think he can handle calling a complete game and trying to take down Chase Daniel. Missouri did allow a butt load of points to Oklahoma (butt load= a ton….. what? you doubt me?). But, a majority of the Arkansas coaches have Oxford on their minds, so I’m going with the Tigers.
Score: Missouri 28, Arkansas 17
Tennessee vs. Wisconsin
David Cutcliffe is going to Durham, Tennessee has 6 players out for poor academic performances, and they have to play the Wisconsin Badgers (winners of 40 games in 4 years). What a strange off season for Tennessee. I know we SEC fans don’t like the Big 10, but Wisconsin is capable of beating a the runner up in the SEC with that monster sized O-line (see Arkansas last season). With the amount of turmoil in Knoxville, this should be a challenge for Fulmer and company. Still, Wisconsin is capable of giving up a large amount of points depending on how they feel, and Tennessee is capable of scoring plenty of points depending on how Erik Ainge feels. I tend to think that this Tennessee team is one of the most up & down teams of the season, so I’ll pick the Vols.
Score: Tennessee 24, Wisconsin 17
CAPITAL ONE BOWL
Florida vs. Michigan
It’s the last game for the old Michigan, and the first game for Tim Tebow as Mr. Heisman. I know people are expecting a blowout victory for the Gators, but I don’t see that happening. I certainly expect Florida to win, but I doubt you’ll see Michigan allow themselves to lose by 20 to 30 points since this is Lloyd Carr’s last game. I’m not much of a “win one for the Gipper” kind of guy, but his retirement has to be a motivating factor for this program somehow. Still, I don’t think they’ll have enough in them to get it done since a lot of the assistant coaches might be a little depressed after being fired by Rich Rodriguez. The Wolverines hate to defend the Spread, and the Gators are good at it.
Score: Florida 34, Michigan 20
All-State Sugar Bowl
Georgia vs. Hawai’i
The Bulldogs probably have the best argument for the teams left out of the BCS title game. Still, they best not rest on their laurels, or else Hawaii could give them an “L” in New Orleans. Colt Brennan is a good QB, but he and the Warriors seem to have issues whenever they approach the Mississippi River. I was witness to this in Tuscaloosa last season, although Hawaii was able to move the ball fairly well. Still, the Bulldogs have two big time threats of offense themselves (Moreno and Stafford). I say Georgia wins, upsetting half of the personalities on ESPN.
Score: Georgia 38, Hawai’i 28
BCS National Championship Game
I’ll save this one for another day. It’s LSU vs. Ohio State, and deserves its own post.
So, do you agree with me or not? Feel free to leave a comment in order to praise me or call me an SEC homer.