No wasting time today: We’re jumping right into your previews and open thread for the bowl games. It’s Iowa from New York at 4:15 and Purdue from Santa Clara at 7:30, with some other stuff on the TV too, if you’re interested! Hooray for beating Delaware State!
The Other Bowls:
Walk-On’s Independence Bowl
Southern Miss Golden Eagles (8-4) vs. Florida St Seminoles (“6-6”)
12:30pm | ESPN | FSU -14 | O/U 49
Independence Stadium, Shreveport, LA
Florida State isn’t even technically eligible for this bowl game. I declare the Buffalo Bulls the retroactive (pre-retroactive? proactive?) winners. Go Bulls.
ESPN Pick: 74% Florida State
My Pick: Mostly to spite FSU, Southern Miss, 27-24. (12 points confidence)
Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl
Texas Longhorns (6-6) vs. Missouri Tigers (7-5)
8pm | ESPN | Mizzou -3 | O/U 61
NRG Stadium, Houston, TX
We all know we want Mizzou to win this game. Let’s not waste any time pretending otherwise.
ESPN Pick: 55% Mizzou
My Pick: Mizzou, 42-35 (21 points confidence)
Iowa Hawkeyes (7-5) vs. Boston College Eagles (7-5)
4:15pm | ESPN | Iowa -2.5 | O/U 45
Yankee Stadium, The Bronx, NY
Pick: Iowa, 10-2
ESPN Pick: 82% Iowa
My Pick: This game could be over in about 2:30 if these teams combine to run the ball at least 90 times. I think there’s a very fair chance they do that. I got to watch the BC rout of Florida State this year, and while the excitement around the Eagles is fun, they’ll need to add a passing wrinkle to beat the Hawks, because run-run-pass-punt is Kirk’s game, Steve, and no amount of football dudery is gonna help you today.
45 is a ridiculously-high O/U, by the way. Iowa, 21-14 (25 points confidence)
Aaron Yorke: The ability of Nathan Stanley to throw the ball down the field looks like the difference in a game between two teams with great rushing attacks and solid defenses. However, the wild card is backup Boston College quarterback Darius Wade. After starter Anthony Brown was lost for the season due to an injury in the North Carolina State game, Wade had a breakout performance against Syracuse with 248 passing yards and a touchdown on just 20 passes. This game will depend on whether or not Wade can give the Eagles offense a second dimension. Iowa 20, Boston College 14.
Thomas Speth: Iowa because they're better. Actually I have no idea. I watched exactly 0 minutes and 0 seconds of Boston College football. I assume Iowa is better because Boston College has been terrible lately. Also remember when Iowa was Wisconsin's first ranked win? What the hell are you guys doing in New York?
LPW: I also don't know much about BC, but I don't see a reason for Iowa to lose to them.
WhiteSpeedReceiver: Hey! Look! It's a matchup of teams that like to run the ball (in spite of only really having 1 RB) and play defense (offer not valid vs. Notre Dame, Clemson, Florida State, wisconsin, or Iowa State). I don't think either team is really that great, and I'm going to try to avoid this game so I don't need to gouge my eyes out later.
Iowa gets my nod because, and you may not have heard this but, they beat Ohio State. Badly.
BRT: Well, Iowa finally went and got themselves a bowl opponent who won't beat them by 40 points, which is nice for them, if deeply disappointing for the rest of us. I don't know much of anything about Boston College, but I do know that Iowa should win this game, and if they don't, they deserve derision.
Stewmonkey13: Can Iowa be out-Ferentz'd? BC has a really good defense and a strong running game on the back of a giant, bruising, freshman tailback (A.J. Dillon). Iowa has an even better defense, with a shifty, senior RB. I think Iowa is a bit more predictable, but I think they're also the better team. Gimme Iowa to get a bowl win after way, WAY, too long.
WHO’S GONNA WIN ALL THE PINSTRIPES
This poll is closed
FOOTBALL DUDES [RUNS FULLBACK DIVE]
/stoically chews gum, runs fullback dive
Foster Farms Bowl
Purdue Boilermakers (6-6) vs. Arizona Wildcats (7-5)
7:30pm | FOX | AZ -3.5 | O/U 65
Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, CA
(Actually read that. It is well worth your time, because babaoreally remains a goddamn genius.)
SU: PICK, 6-6 | ATS: Purdue, 9-3
ESPN Pick: 79% Arizona
My Pick: I made a cottage industry out of hating on Purdue this year, and Arizona QB Khalil Tate gives me some reason to believe that the Wildcats will jump all over the Boilermakers.
HOWEVER. I was impressed by the way the Boilers came out this season and hung with Louisville and Lamar Jackson, and that leads me to believe that the prep time is what helps Purdue make up the talent gap. Elijah Sindelar hits Anthony Mahoungou for two scores as the Boilers pass all over a Wildcats defense ranked 121st in the nation in total yards and 81st in pass efficiency D. Purdue, 38-31.
Aaron: The Heisman hype for Khalil Tate earlier this season was real, as he rushed for more than 130 yards in each of his first six starts. However, late in the season, Tate and the Wildcats were slowed down by both Oregon and Arizona State, two teams not known for their defenses. I'm not a big "time to prepare" guy, but with so much time to prepare, Purdue's co-defensive coordinators Nick Holt and Anthony Poindexter ought to figure out the Arizona rushing attack. Purdue 30, Arizona 24.
Speth: Still on board the Purdue bandwagon (bandtrain?). Just like everyone at OTE predicted Purdue is going to win a bowl game. Wait, I'm being told no one predicted it. College football is a strange game, man.
LPW: I like what Brohm is doing in West Lafayette, but I don't think he's ready to beat RichRod's desert cats.
WSR: I don't know what to say about this game, but I think it'll be fun. Arizona has always been a bit chaos-y under RichRod, and Purdue is a bit in the same vein, but they played defense in spots over the course of the year. Khalil Tate is the best player in the game, so I'll give an ever-so-slight edge to Arizona, but I could be wrong here. Of the two B1G games today, this should be the one you try to see.
Stew: I have no idea. This is my 2 point pick in my confidence picks. After averaging a bunch of spreads together, I ended up with Arizona as a 0.06 point favorite.
Looking at matchups, Purdue's rush defense was really good this year, but they also haven't seen an attack much like this outside of Louisville in the first game. So, I guess I'll use that as my blueprint and take Arizona in a squeaker.
BRT: See, the thing about bowl season is I don't pay much attention to teams not in the Big Ten during the year. I know that's a horrifying look behind the curtain of OTE and you're shocked because we all seem SO knowledgeable about football, but it's the truth. Sorry.
All this to say, I also know very little about Arizona. They seem like maybe they should beat Purdue, but the Boilermakers have been one of my favorite storylines this season, so I'll go with my heart and give Purdue the bowl win.
That's the hard-hitting football analysis you all come here for, I know.
Who wins all of Foster’s Farms?
This poll is closed
Here’s your open thread for today’s football games, you filthy animals. Try not to burn the place down.