Bowl Projections: Predicting All 35 Matchups – Week 14 Edition
Projecting All 35 College Bowl Games
College Football is winding down in 2013. For some teams across the country, their seasons are already in the books. For others, there are one and maybe even two games left this regular season. But after all the action is in the books two weeks from now, we'll be set for Bowl season.
Bowl season is something else these days. Historically the 'season' has centered around January 1st and the major bowls and national title game. Nowadays, Bowl season kicks off on December 21st and it runs all the way to January 6th.
Even though the playoff system starts in 2014-15, the Bowl system will still play a vital part in the world of college football. There are very few teams that actually have a shot at winning the national title each year, so winning bowl games is a big deal for a lot of programs. A four-team playoff is certainly nothing to write home about, but it's likely to be expanded in the future. That will still leave around 30 regular bowl games for the rest of the country.
Are there too many Bowls? Yes. Are some of the Bowls devalued because there are too many? Yes. Will the powers that be reduce the number of Bowls? No way. There's too much money to be made with the current system that's in place. It's certainly not a great thing to have 6-6 teams duking it out for a winning record in a bowl game in the third week of December, but it could be worse.
So as the CFB season winds down, it's time to take a look at who's slated to play in each game. Here are updated projections for all 35 games as we get set for week 14:
BCS National Title Game - Alabama vs. Florida State
There's still a lot of football to be played, but the Crimson Tide and Seminoles appear to be on a collision course. Alabama's more likely to be derailed on the field, while FSU is more likely to be derailed by off-the-field issues.
Orange Bowl - Clemson vs. Wisconsin
Clemson is likely headed to the Orange Bowl as the No. 2 ACC team, while the Badgers will be hoping for Michigan State to lose so they can gain an at-large bid.
Sugar Bowl - Missouri vs. UCF
As of now, UCF (19th, need to be in BCS top 16) is not eligible for an at-large BCS bid. However, that's likely to change with all the shakeups set to happen in the final two weeks of action. If Missouri wins and Auburn loses, look for the Tigers to get the SEC's place in the Sugar Bowl.
Fiesta Bowl - Oklahoma State vs. Fresno State
If Oklahoma State can take care of their in-state rival in week 14, they'll be in business to head to the Fiesta Bowl. Fresno State is currently 16th in the BCS and just eligible for an at-large bid.
Rose Bowl - Ohio State vs. Stanford
As things are currently set, OSU will be 'forced' to play in the Rose Bowl, while Stanford will be glad to just to have a BCS opportunity.
GoDaddy.com Bowl - Northern Illinois vs. Western Kentucky
Northern Illinois has been good in 2013, but not BCS good. They're currently on pace to head to the GoDaddy.com bowl to likely beat up on the Sun Belt representative.
BBVA Compass Bowl - Houston vs. Mississippi State
This matchup will feature the SEC No. 8/9 versus the American No. 5 or a member of C-USA.
Cotton Bowl - Baylor vs. LSU
With Baylor now out of the National Championship picture, they'll likely be headed to their first Cotton Bowl since 1980.
Outback Bowl - Nebraska vs. Auburn
Auburn figures to fall several spots if they lose to Alabama, while Nebraska will need to take care of business against Iowa on Black Friday for this matchup to happen.
Capitial One Bowl - South Carolina vs. Michigan State
South Carolina could knock off Clemson, while MSU could be reeling from a loss in the Big Ten title game and potentially from being passed up by Wisconsin in the BCS standings.
Heart of Dallas Bowl - North Texas vs. Buffalo
This one could go several different ways, but the technical matchup is Big Ten No. 7 vs. C-USA. However, count on at least one team from Texas being in the HOD Bowl.
Gator Bowl - Iowa vs. Ole Miss
The Gator Bowl can have its pick of several different Big Ten teams for this one. If Iowa beats Nebraska in week 14, they could be heading to Jacksonville for a battle with the Rebels.
Chick-fil-A Bowl - Texas A&M vs. Duke
A&M is out of the major bowl picture, but for Duke, the Chick-fil-A Bowl would be a major accomplishment.
Liberty Bowl - East Carolina vs. Vanderbilt
Here's another one with a lot of different scenarios, but we'll likely see East Carolina taking on Vanderbilt.
Sun Bowl - Virginia Tech vs. USC
The Trojans have come on strong in the second half of 2013. If they finish fourth in the Pac 12, they'll likely have a date with the Hokies.
Independence Bowl - Georgia Tech vs. Arkansas State
SEC No. 10 vs. ACC No. 7 is the technical matchup in the AdvoCare V100 Bowl, but we could easily see a team like Arkansas State or Ohio get thrown into the mix.
Holiday Bowl - Texas Tech vs. Arizona State
The Sun Devils have been rolling as of late and you have to like them in a battle with the Big 12's No. 5.
Alamo Bowl - Oklahoma vs. Oregon
The Alamo Bowl could get a really nice matchup this year if Oklahoma loses to Oklahoma State in week 14.
Music City Bowl - Boston College vs. Georgia
The Bulldogs are going to limp into whatever Bowl their invited to. As for BC, this is one of several options for postseason play.
Armed Forces Bowl - Navy vs. Boise State
Navy versus Boise State would garner quite a bit of attention for the Armed Forces Bowl.
Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl - Michigan vs. Texas
The BWW Bowl could also get one heck of a draw this December. Michigan is falling fast, but you know they're still going to a decent Bowl game. This potential matchup of former college power houses, would no doubt sell tickets.
Russell Athletic Bowl - Louisville vs. Miami
The U could very well take on Teddy Bridgewater and company in the RA Bowl on Dec. 28th.
Belk Bowl - North Carolina vs. Cincinnati
UNC vs. Cincinnati sounds like a basketball matchup, but they will likely be the two participants in this year's Belk Bowl.
Pinstripe Bowl - Notre Dame vs. Rutgers
This would be a big win for the Pinstripe Bowl in New York. Rutgers is close and Notre Dame has one of the best fan bases in all the land.
Fight Hunger Bowl - BYU vs. Washington
BYU awaits the Pac 12 No. 6 in this oddly named but good cause Bowl.
Texas Bowl - Minnesota vs. Kansas State
The Gophers are playing as good as they have in years, while the Wildcats have taken a step back in 2013. The Texas Bowl is a likely meeting point for the Big Ten and Big 12 schools.
Military Bowl - Marshall vs. Maryland
C-USA will clash with one of the lower-tier ACC teams in the Military Bowl on Dec. 27th.
Poinsettia Bowl - Washington State vs. San Diego State
With Army out of the picture in the Poinsettia Bowl, look for SDSU to participate in their backyard once again.
Little Caesars Pizza Bowl - Ball State vs. Pittsburgh
The Fighting Cardinals could be favored over their MAC or ACC opponent.
Sheraton Hawaii Bowl - UNLV vs. Middle Tennessee
UNLV and Middle Tennessee are the likely winners of a great Holiday trip to Hawaii.
Beef O' Brady's Bowl - Toledo vs. Rice
This one could go several different directions, but Toledo is very likely to play in St. Petersburg this December.
New Orleans Bowl - Tulane vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
Louisiana-Lafayette has won eight straight and should make it nine straight in week 14 to earn their spot in the NO Bowl.
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl - Bowling Green vs. Oregon State
A Pac 12 or MWC conference team will likely face Bowling Green in Idaho on December 21st.
Las Vegas Bowl - Utah State vs. UCLA
The Las Vegas Bowl should be entertaining with either UCLA or USC likely to square off against the MWC.
New Mexico Bowl - Colorado State vs. Arizona
The first Bowl of the season could feature an improved Wildcats team taking on a middle of the road MWC team like Colorado State.