So far two bowl games are in the books and I stand at 1-1. There are too many bowl games to be sure. On to the predictions...
Poinsettia Bowl: This one has Brigham Young vs hometown San Diego State. The folks over at BYU have delusions of grandeur it seems and want to be seen in the same light as Notre Dame. Not likely. The team is well coached but just does not appear to have much talent. SDSU started slow but came on strong at the end of the season with the signature win being over Boise State. I will go with the Aztecs here.
Beef O'Brady Bowl: The what? Anyway this legendary game has Ball State pitted against UCF. Both teams had commendable seasons but one of them is the better team. I think is the MAC schoo. Go with Ball State for the win.
New Orleans Bowl: Don't confuse this one with the Sugar but the game between the Ragin Cajuns and East Carolina has potential. I would go with the Cajuns here. Without some boneheaded calls by the coaching staff near the end of the Florida game we would have seen the Louisiana team beat the vaunted Gator squad. ECU is not that good of a team.
MAACO Bowl: Washington vs Boise State should be a no brainer. Go with the Broncos here. Even though it is a rebuild season and the Huskies can, at times, be dangerous it is doubtful that they will be able to keep pace with the Broncos. Go with Boise State.
Hawaii Bowl: Fresno State vs SMU probably won't be a good game. SMU has not done near what they should have been capable of and Fresno State is a dangerous team for anybody. Go with the Bulldogs.
Little Caesars Bowl: How a pizza joint can sell pies for five bucks and still have enough to sponser a bowl is beyond me. "Portion control" my friend says. Be that as it may this game is between Western Kentucky and Central Michigan. WKU's coach left for "greener pastures" and he is being replaced by none other than Petrino. Hard to fathom. This could be a toss up and I will go with the Hilltoppers here.
Military Bowl: The second best team in the WAC takes on another MAC squad. San Jose State has been a surprise this season and should have what it takes to beat Bowling Green. Go with the Spartans.
Belk Bowl: Cincinnati vs Duke may or may not be a good game. Duke comes in at 6-6 which is a darn good season for Duke football. The Cats are a decent Big East team and nothing more. That being said I would go with Cincinnati in perhaps a close one.
Holiday Bowl: This second tier bowl is one of the most interesting match ups of the bowl season. Baylor has come on strong in the second half of the season with the signature win being over the then number one KSU Wildcats. Baylor is playing top 10 football right now. UCLA is perhaps up and coming in the PAC 12. They may be a force to reckon with in the next year or two. I will go with Baylor in a pretty good game.
Independence Bowl: This game between ULM and Ohio will be pretty good. I think that Ohio is better coached but both teams have very good second tier Division I QBs. ULM may have the whole offensive package down a bit better so, while this could be close, and I will go with the Louisiana team. This game is interesting in that Louisiana Tech was supposedly invited but chose to wait to make the decision. The administration balked at playing ULM I suppose. Bad blood. Now Louisiana Tech sits out the post season with a 9-3 record. Someone who was "deserving" of a bowl was going to lose out with the NCAA decision to allow Georgia Tech to compete in the post season with a losing record. Ridiculous!!. Oh the game? Did I already mention that I would put my money on ULM?
Russel Athletic Bowl: The what? Another ho hum, who cares, bowl game between Rutgers and Virginia Tech. Hokie fans seem to think that they are always deserving to be in the hunt for the BCS "National Championship" but Beamer just ain't the guy to take them there. Wonder when they will figure that one out. I would go with Rutgers here. They are a marginally better ball team.
Meineke Car Car Bowl: This one is stupid. Minnesota with a 6-6 record comes in to play a very average Texas Tech squad. There will be some fans at the game and money spent in the Houston area as TTU has a loyal following in these hyah parts. I guess that is the point to some of these ridiculous games. I would go with the Red Raiders here. I wonder if Jerry Kill wishes he had stayed at Northern Illinois yet? I think we all know the answer to that one.
Armed Forces Bowl: Rice came on strong late and salvaged a season but, come on, they still have a 6-6 record. Air Force is not as good as they usually seem to be or, to be more accurate, they are just a bit worse than normal. I would go with the Owls here in a close one. David Bailiff's job may depend on it.
Pinstrip Bowl: WVU vs Syracuse will not be worth watching. I would go with WVU to take this although it is probably a toss up. Other than USC, WVU is perhaps the biggest disappointment of the 2012 college season. Well there is Arkansas but I think most of us (except AP "sports writers" apparently) knew that the Hogs were not going to amount to much.
Fight Hunger Bowl: The what? Navy is fairly good for an Academy team and Arizona State is fairly good for the PAC 12. I suppose that I will go with the Sun Devils.
Alamo Bowl: A decent mid level bowl with a fairly intriguing match up. Texas, for the second season in a row, has not settled the QB question. Oregon State is a pretty good PAC12 football team. I will go out on a limb here and predict an OSU victory. It may be a very close game.
Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: C'mon. At least one team is pretty good. TCU should have little trouble with Michigan State. Well MSU does have an NFL caliber RB. It won't be enough. Go with the Frogs.
Music City Bowl: Vanderbilt has had a very good season as far as such things go. Well coached and would be able to compete for a conference crown in quite a number of other conference not named Southeastern. They will be able to beat NC State if they are on their "A" game. I will go with the Commodores here.
Sun Bowl: This old line mid level bowl should not even be played. Georgia Tech is a losing team and petitioned the NCAA to be able to compete post season. Pathetic that the NCAA granted such. At least this game will make USC look like a good team. Go with the Trojans.
Liberty Bowl: Another mid level bowl with a storied past. I actually saw Bo Jackson run all over the Hogs back in the day in this one. This game is a rematch and has potential to be a good one. Early on Iowa State won and I think they will edge the Golden Hurricane again. Go with ISU.
Chick Fil A Bowl: Clemson and LSU is a good match up. SEC teams have some trouble with quickness it seems and Clemson will give them all they can handle. I will go out on a limb and predict the Tigers (LSU) to hold off the Tigers (Clemson). It really could go either way but I will stay with the Louisiana team.
Gator Bowl: This used to be one of the big ones but is now just above a mid level bowl game. The match up is not very interesting. Mississippi State had a decent year (good by MSU standards) and Northwestern is either up or down. This one also could go either way but I think Northwestern will find a way to win. They better watch out for the Bulldog running game though. Either way it should be a rather close one.
Heart of Dallas Bowl: Never heard of it. Have you? Oklahoma State will pummel Purdue likely. OSU has potential to be very very good. They also have proven that can be pretty darn inept. Purdue is just not a good team and will lose here.
Outback Bowl: South Carolina should be able to handle Michigan here. It is almost (but not quite) a given that an SEC team will win when pitted against a Big Ten school.
Capital One Bowl: If Nebraska shows up to play it could be a decent game. If not it will get ugly. Go with Georgia here.
Rose Bowl: Wisconsin did not play up to potential this season (except perhaps for their last game with the Huskers). Stanford is a good, but not great team. Still they should have enough in the tank to beat the Badgers. Should be a good game.
Orange Bowl: Northern Illinois may be able to give the Seminoles a lot of problems. Or not. I will go with FSU to win here by at least two touchdowns. NIU does have a potent offense though and will score some points to be sure. It won't be enough.
Sugar Bowl: This match up is more interesting that it appears on paper. Louisville is not a great team by any stretch but Florida is over rated. They will have trouble with the Cardinals quickness and lose. It may or may not be a close game.
Fiesta Bowl: Both Kansas State and Oregon are good teams and it will come down to who has the better defense likely. The Duck defense is rather inept while KSU has a good one. Problem is Oregon is a quick play, quick score offense, while KSU is workman like. If KSU can negate the fast pace then they will win. If not, well it could get ugly. KSU was dismal when facing a fast paced group earlier in the year. Oregon will bring the same and more. I will go with the Ducks here.
Cotton Bowl: Texas A&M right now is the best team in the country. None better. Oklahoma is loaded with talent but Stoops may no longer be the man to lead a team to a national title. I will go with the Aggies here.
FCS Championship Game: Yep this one counts as a bowl game in my book. The two teams involved are better than more than a few Division I teams that are in post season play. The Championship for IAA is determined the right way and will feature Sam Houston State and North Dakota State. I figured this game would come down to Georgia Southern and EWU but.....I will go with the team from North Dakota here. The game is a toss up though to be certain.
BBVA Compass Bowl: The what? Ole Miss is a better team than some think and will be a factor in the SEC in the next year or two. Pitt is not real powerful but did almost upset Notre Dame earlier in the season. Shame they didn't. That being said I would go the with Rebs here.
GoDaddy.Com Bowl: Arkansas State is a very good albeit under the radar team. Of course the coach has left for greener pastures. Can't really blame him for taking the job at Auburn though. Kent State is a good MAC team and this one should be a fun game to watch. I will go with ASU to win a close one.
Maybe Danica Patrick will give us a beaver shot at halftime or something. Would be worth tuning in for.
BCS "National Championship" Game: I am not convinced that Notre Dame belongs here. The only problem that Bama will likely have is with the big play capability of the young ND QB. He makes plenty of mistakes though and the Irish have not faced anything like the Crimson Tide defense. ND will score some but Alabama will likely run over the Irish defense. Could be wrong but I'm not.
It has been a fun and interesting season and some of these bowl games are really worth watching. Others? Not so much.
Have a safe and happy holiday season.