Devin and Shawn give us four Bowl Game predictions. Although 2020 has been rough for a lot of us, these four games are a great way to build momentum heading into 2021.
Photo: Orlin Wagner, AP
Liberty Flames (9-1) vs #12 Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (12-0)
Location: Orlando, Florida
Spread: Coastal Carolina -7
Shawn: The Chanticleers are undefeated and arguably look like one of the best teams in the entire Nation! Meanwhile, The Flames only loss was at #23 NC State by one point. Soon enough, redshirt freshman QB Grayson McCall will be a household name. Although both teams have stellar defenses, I expect McCall to lead the Chanticleers to a close victory over the Flames.
Coastal Carolina wins 31 - 26
Devin: Coastal Carolina has a defense that is centered around the play of two tough linebackers, and an offense that centers around the rushing attack of Marable. In Liberty, you find a familiar face in Hugh Freeze, who utilizes a dual-threat quarterback in Malik Willis who leads the team in both passing and rushing yards on the season. This match-up provides plenty of offense on both sides of the ball, it will be interesting to see whose front seven is able to put pressure on the opposing teams rushers and quarterback early on. While Coastal Carolina has jumped out to big leads this year, they have shown signs of letting off the gas in the second half in several contests. Even with big wins over both Appalachian State and BYU this year, I think there is more magic for the Chanticleers in the tank, Myrtle Beach may be known for more than just golf after this one.
Coastal Carolina wins 28 - 20
Photo: Al Diaz/Miami Herald via AP
#21 Oklahoma State Cowboys (7-3) vs #18 Miami Hurricanes (8-2)
Location: Orlando, Florida
Spread: Oklahoma State -2.5
Shawn: I think Vegas is taking these teams' most recent games as too much of a factor. Miami just got blown out by UNC 62-26 while OSU just destroyed Baylor 42-3. Although things fell apart for the Hurricanes against UNC, that's actually only their second loss of the season (their other loss coming against Clemson). As for the Cowboys, they've lost every other game over the last two months. I believe that this pattern will continue with 2021 Heisman hopeful D'Eriq King leading Miami to an upset victory.
Miami wins 37 - 34
Devin: In one of the more competitive matchups, the Cowboys are showing up during Hurricane season, forecast? One Tough Football Game. Oklahoma State opens up as 2.5 pt favorites, it’s easy to see why when you look at the Cowboys rushing attack. Chuba Hubbard the Big 12 POY opted out of the rest of the 2020 season as he declared for the NFL draft, leaving the door open for Dezmon Jackson and LD Brown, with one of those two averaging 175 yards per game rushing over the last three games of the season. Meanwhile, Miami is led by D’Eriq King, the transfer from Houston led the Canes passing attack with over 2,500 yards this season, and took care of the football while doing it by throwing only 5 interceptions. This game will boil down to a shootout, pun intended, Cowboys put this one away late.
Oklahoma State wins 45 - 35
Photo: NHLI Via Getty Images
#7 Florida Gators (8-3) vs #6 Oklahoma Sooners (8-2)
Location: Arlington, Texas
Spread: Florida -3
Shawn: Florida has lost two straight games, although they put up quite the fight against Alabama in the SEC Championship game last week. Meanwhile, the Sooners have won seven straight games and just secured their sixth straight Big 12 Championship. Both teams average 42 points a game while Florida gives up 29 and OU gives up 22 to their opponents. My deciding factor: Kyle Pitts. Expected to be a top 10 draft pick, the Florida TE has decided to opt out of this game.
Oklahoma wins 35 - 32
Devin: In the Cotton Bowl, we have two powerhouses who face off for only the second time in their program's histories, with Florida winning the last game in 2009 24-14. You have to feel like Florida is playing with a chip on their shoulder heading into this one, coming off back-to-back heartbreaking losses to LSU and Alabama in the conference championship. Although Florida’s team has been decimated by early departures, Trask has been able to find Kyle Pitts who is arguably the best Tight End in the nation and playing like it right now. On the other side, you have Spencer Rattler, who after a sluggish start and losses to Kansas State and Iowa State, has been putting together a season of redemption as he’s lead the Sooners to 7 straight wins including a win in the Big 12 Championship game against Iowa State. This one is going to be a high-scoring affair, you’re going to see Oklahoma in the win column “sooner” than later.
Oklahoma wins 48 - 42
Photo: Twitter - @SanJoseStateFB
Ball State Cardinals (6-1) vs #22 San Jose State Spartans (7-0)
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Spread: San Jose State -9.5
Shawn: Ball State is looking for their first Bowl win EVER while the Spartans are looking for their first victory since 2015. The Cardinals have won six straight, which was capped off with a very impressive 38-28 win in the MAC championship against Jaret Patterson and the Buffalo Bulls. As for the Spartans, they finished the regular season undefeated by beating Boise State in the Mountain West championship 34-20. SJSU's largest victory margin this year was 17 points. I find it hard to believe that the Cardinals will lose by 10 or more.
San Jose State wins 30 - 24
Devin: The Arizona Bowl at Arizona Stadium, while this bowl lacks creativity, it does not lack exciting up and coming programs. The MAC is back with Ball State, who are averaging a whopping 30 points a game and putting up 450 yards of total offense per contest. Don’t get me wrong I had to go look up their logo, which looked like it had been completed with WordArt, but these Cardinals are no joke after finishing the season with a signature win over Buffalo in the conference championship. If you haven’t heard what Brent Brennan is doing down at SJSU you’ve been living under a rock, ending the season with signature wins against both Nevada and Boise State, the Spartans look to solidify this season as one for the books going 8-0 with a bowl victory against Ball State. I have San Jose State completing the magical season, one fitting for a Disney movie they will make in 6-8 years about this team probably with a tag line of “We Are Sparta” but PG-13.
San Jose State wins 28 - 21