Thursday, December 22, 2016

Here are my predictions for this coming week's slate of college bowl games

The college football bowl season is well underway, and we’ve seen several good, close bowl games already.

New Mexico beat UT-San Antonio by just three points on Saturday, and later that day Southern Miss squeaked by Louisiana-Lafayette by a touchdown.

By the time The Courant comes out this week, eight bowl games will have been played, and 16 more will be played between today (Thursday) and next Thurs., Dec. 29. Here’s how I see those games shaking out.

Later today at 6 p.m., Colorado State will play Idaho in the Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise, Idaho (ESPN). I look for Colorado State to win that one by a couple of touchdowns.

Three bowls are on tap for tomorrow (Friday). At noon, Eastern Michigan will play Old Dominion in the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl in Nassau (ESPN). At 3:30 p.m., Louisiana Tech will play Navy in the Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth, Texas (ESPN). At 7 p.m., Troy will play Ohio in the Dollar General Bowl in Mobile (ESPN). I look for Eastern Michigan, Navy and Troy to win those three games.

The only bowl game set for Saturday is the Hawaii Bowl, which will feature Hawaii and Middle Tennessee. That game will kick off at 7 p.m. in Honolulu (ESPN), and I look for Hawaii to win that one.

Three games are scheduled to be played on Monday. At 10 a.m., Mississippi State will play Miami-Ohio in the St. Petersburgh Bowl in St. Petersburgh, Fla. (ESPN). At 1:30 p.m., Maryland will play Boston College in the Quick Lane Bowl in Detroit (ESPN). At 4 p.m., North Carolina State will play Vanderbilt in the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, La. (ESPN2). I look for Mississippi State, Boston College and North Carolina State to win those three.

Next Tuesday fans will get to enjoy four bowl games. At 11 a.m., Army will play North Texas in the Heart of Dallas Bowl in Dallas (ESPN). At 2:30 p.m., Temple will play Wake Forest in the Military Bowl in Annapolis, Md. (ESPN). At 6 p.m., Minnesota will play Washington State in the Holiday Bowl in San Diego (ESPN). At 9:15 p.m., Boise State will play Baylor in the Cactus Bowl in Phoenix (ESPN). I predict that Army, Temple, Washington State and Boise State will win those games.

Last, but not least, there are four bowl games set for this coming Wednesday. At 1 p.m., Pitt will play Northwestern in the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, N.Y. (ESPN). At 4:30 p.m., West Virginia will play Miami in the Russell Athletic Bowl in Orlando (ESPN). At 7:30 p.m., Indiana will play Utah in the Foster Farms Bowl in Santa Clara, Calif. (FOX). At 8 p.m., Texas A&M will play Kansas State in the Advocare V100 Texas Bowl in Houston (ESPN). I look for Pitt, West Virginia, Utah and Texas A&M to win those games.

If those games aren’t enough to satisfy your appetite for football, don’t worry. There is more to come. Between Thurs., Dec. 29, and Mon., Jan. 2, there are 14 more bowl games, and that’s not to mention the National Championship Game the following week.

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