Bowl Bananza

The college bowl season is right around the corner and, as always, some great games are provided. Here are two big bowl games you should take the time to look into. FedEx Orange Bowl-BCS National Championship Game-January 8th Matchup: (1)Oklahoma Sooners vs (2)Florida Gators The Game: The BCS championship game always provides the the marque match up of the bowl season. This year’s matchup of Oklahoma’s high octane offense against Florida’s speed and talent proves to be no different. Oklahoma has dominated the opposition. Scoring 35 points or over in all of their games and recently breaking the record for scoring a jaw-dropping 60 points or more in five consecutive games, the Sooners have shown college football just how powerful they are. However, one cannot overlook the talent of the Gators. Led by “superman” quarterback Tim Tebow, the Gators have also shown their own dominance, handily defeating the Top 25 by an average margin of 32 points, including a commanding win against top-ranked Alabama in the SEC title game. As January approaches, all eyes turn towards Miami, where the Oklahoma Sooners and Florida Gators will duke it out in what could easily be a classic Big 12-SEC brawl for the crystal trophy. Prediction: Tim Tebow is tough. Not only can he throw missiles, but he also has the ability to break it with his feet while decking even the strongest of linebackers in his way. The Gators also possess a high-speed style of play similar to the system run by the Texas Longhorns, who delivered the Sooners their only loss. However, Florida’s Superman and Gator speed will not be enough to counter the Sooners’ all-around offensive ability. QB Sam Bradford and company bring to the table a commanding throwing game which averages over 343 passing yards per game. The Gators, although talented, have a young secondary which can easily be slashed by the Sooner air attack. Not to mention that the Gators have lost many key players on both sides of the ball, which could leave them vulnerable in a high-stakes game such as this. Watch for a close, high-scoring game, but a Sooner breakaway in the 4th quarter. Final Score: 49-35 Oklahoma def. Florida Outback Bowl-January 1st Matchup: Iowa Hawkeyes vs South Carolina Gamecocks The Game- Bouncing from a 2007 season of disappointment, the Hawkeyes find themselves right back in another January bowl game, this time against a stout South Carolina team. On paper, the game seems like an average non-BCS bowl game. However, there are some great matchups that one should look forward to, the most prominent of which is both teams’ stellar defenses. Iowa comes in ranked 8th in the nation in points allowed (13.2 a game) while the Gamecocks come in with an impressive third-ranked pass defense. Prediction: The Hawkeye offensive can be described with one name: Shonn Greene. Iowa’s star running back is the only back in the nation to have rushed for over 100 yards in every game this year while setting a school record of 1,729 yards total rushing. If anything can beat the stout Gamecock defense, it’s Greene. Fortunately for the Hawkeyes, the vulnerability of the Gamecocks is indeed their run defense. Surrendering an average of 128.7 rush yards a game, the Gamecocks will have their hands full with Greene. However, the Gamecocks should not be taken lightly. The South Carolina secondary is brutal against the pass, and Hawkeye QB Ricky Stanzi needs select his passes carefully or suffer the consequences in a potential pick-a-palooza. Nevertheless, expect a strong performance from Greene and an Iowa breakaway in the second half. Final Score: 24-14 Iowa def. South Carolina The Outback and FedEx Orange Bowls provide some of the many great matchups of the upcoming bowl season. However, some aspects of this year’s system are in need of some change. For instance, a two-loss Ohio State team is believed to be more worthy of a BCS berth than a proven, undefeated Boise State team. It seems that nowadays, fan turnout and ticket revenue are more important than the quality of the game itself. Nevertheless, the BCS system is, for now, here to stay, so this holiday season, take the time to enjoy the games rather than hate the system.