Bowl Season Cranks Up: With four more bowls between now and Saturday night, college football junkies will have plenty to watch. Even though only one ranked team is in action, the match-ups are compelling and fairly difficult to predict.
Poinsettia Bowl, San Diego, Dec. 20:
BYU (7-5) vs. San Diego St. (9-3): BYU lost four of its five games by a total of 13 points to tough teams. San Diego State has won seven games in a row, including a win over Boise St. I had originally gone with BYU in this one, but after looking at it more closely I have decided to go with the Aztecs, who will be playing at home. This could be a very close game and should be entertaining as well. SDSU 27 BYU 21.
Beef O'Brady's Bowl, St. Petersburg, Fla., Dec. 21:
Ball State (9-3) vs. UCF (9-4): Ball St. has won six games in a row. UCF's only losses in the last nine games have come to Tulsa, the last one in overtime in the Conference USA championship game. Ball St. played in a very underrated conference and because of that I am going to go with them in this game. UCF cruised thorough a weak schedule, while Ball St. slugged its way to nine wins. Ball St. 31 UCF 27.
New Orleans Bowl, New Orleans, Dec. 22:
East Carolina (8-4) vs. University of Lousiana-Lafayette (8-4): This is another difficult pick, but Conference USA was so weak this season it's tough to figure out what an 8-4 record means in that league. Both teams scored a lot of points against inferior opponents. Neither one pulled an upset over BCS opponents. Regardless of the outcome, this could be a very good game. ULL will be playing close to home and that's why I give them the edge. ULL 34 ECU 31.
MAACO Bowl, Las Vegas, Dec. 22:
Washington (7-5) vs. Boise State (10-2): Boise St. is the only ranked team playing over the weekend. They should be the clear favorite, and they are. However, Washington is a program on the rise and has motivation coming off an overtime loss to their chief rival, Washington St. Boise St. has one of the best bowl records in recent memory, especially against BCS conference opponents. That points to coaching, so I will give them the edge here in what could be another close one. Boise St. 27 Washington 24.