The college bowl season has arrived! Today, the first course will be served up in the form of Bulldogs, Cowboys, Knights, and um, Scarlet Knights. While no one expects the Nielsen ratings to jump through the roof, some good football ought to be played today. Here’s some things to look for in today’s games.
New Mexico Bowl. 1:30pm PST. Fresno State vs. Wyoming
Who Will Be Watching: 1.5 million people. Fresno State dominates the Fresno area, which is populated by about 1,000,000 people, but there’s not much of a following throughout the rest of California, with the exception of alumni. Wyoming, however, is the predominant university in the state, which has a population of a little over 500,000.
Who To Watch: Ryan Matthews. The Bulldogs’ RB was quietly one of the best in the nation, leading the country in yards per game at 151 per contest. He’ll be playing for a draft slot, as many people will be seeing him play for the first time.
Who Will Win: Fresno State. The Bulldogs finished the season 8-4, but they played a slightly tougher conference schedule, and also put up a better fight in their losses at Wisconsin and at Cincinnati, and their other two losses were to undefeated Boise State and a pretty underrated Nevada team in Reno. Wyoming, on the other hand, finished 6-6. Of their six losses, four were against ranked teams, and the other two were on the road at tough opponents’ stadiums. They were shut out by Colorado, Air Force, and BYU, and were only able to muster a total of 30 combined points in losses to Texas, Utah, and TCU. Expect Wyoming to put a few more points on the board, but they likely won’t have the resources to contain Matthews.
St. Petersburg Bowl. 5:00pm PST. Rutgers vs. Central Florida
Who Will Be Watching. 750,000 people. Don’t expect anyone outside of Northern New Jersey and the Orlando area to care much about this one. Although, there may be a few scattered fans throughout the country just looking for a football fix.
Who To Watch: Brynn Harvey, UCF, and Tim Brown, Rutgers. Harvey carried the ball 248 times for 1,077 yards and 14 TDs. What’s more impressive? 0 fumbles. As for Brown, while donning a great receiver’s name, he pulled in 51 catches for an average of 20.6 per reception. He’s only 5’8″ 165 lbs, so expect to see a couple deep passes and possibly some fireworks.
Who Will Win: Rutgers. The two teams have identical 8-4 records, but Rutgers plays in a better conference. Although it will be a virtual home game for UCF, the Scarlet Knights are the better team.