2020-01-02 08:10

Almost done.
So far many interesting games, but also many of which I think the motivation of the participating teams (or at least one playing team) was not there, which I don't understand.

Of the last few games, the game between Utah and Texas looked that way, with Utah being on a different planet.
More of that in the reviews.


Tue. Dec. 31
Virginia Tech vs Kentucky

Very open game and this was a 1-point-game when Kentucky scoring that leading TD with 15 ticks left on the clock.
Virginia Tech did try to get into field goal range, but failed to do so in and on 3th and 10 with basically nothing on the clock did they try a hook-and-lateral-play, which was disrupted and unnecessarily (but in that situation understandable, given the emotions and age of the players) returned for a TD.
So Kentucky did win this in a close game.
Overall I hope both teams can rebound from this season, I liked Kentuckys don't-care-you-are-big-attitude last season and of cause I like the Hokies to be contenders, not on-off-maybe-contenders.
Virginia Tech 30 vs Kentucky 37 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 16-10

Florida State vs Arizona State

Arizona State needed a big 4th quarter and a very bad playing Florida State team to win.
They did trail by 5 points when FSU did score the 1st time in the 3rd quarter and did then somehow get their defense back together, held FSU scoreless in the 4th and scored 11 points to win.
FSU had 6! turnovers (4 INTs and 2 lost fumbles) and the Sun Devils did not made much out of it, but enough to win.
A game to forget.
FSU have their new HC and Arizona State might become a bit better next season, so heads up, next season will be (hopefully) better for your teams.
Florida State 14 vs Arizona State 20 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 17-10

#23 Navy vs Kansas State

Navy did look great with their almost-no-passing-offense and I really can't understand how a team like Kansas State did not prepare for that.
I mean ... play one-on-on, put 9 in the box and they are trapped.
But no .... they gave them room, they got fooled by trick plays and they lost.
The Navy QB was again the best runner with 213 yards! and KSU was unable to counter the limited game.
That was bad motivation, or under estimating ... I don't know.
But fine, Kansas State will be better next season, I know that.
For Navy ... their QB is a Senior, so there will be changes, which might become a down year, next season.
#23 Navy 20 vs Kansas State 17 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 17-11

Wyoming vs Georgia State

Wyoming did set the mark and then kept it going.
They did win every quarter and Georgia State was just out of their league here.
I hope for Wyoming to built on that for next year, Georgia State needs some more improvements.
Wyoming 38 vs Georgia State 17 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 18-11

#11 Utah vs Texas

Utah was so bad .... it's unbelievable.
Tackling issues, bad assignments, no energy at all on offense.
THAT team did win the South division of the PAC12?
Is ranked before the game at #11?
That was THE worst motivated team ever.
I don't want to make Texas small here, they did really play with heart and with a lot of pride.
But if Utah wouldn't have let it slide on every play ... this would have been closer.
I think Texas would have won anyway, but this ..... unbelievable.
#11 Utah 10 vs Texas 38 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 18-12

Wed. Jan. 1
#18 Minnesota vs #12 Auburn

That was a very entertaining game, if you are not an Auburn fan.
The Tigers did play sometimes a bit sloppy, had Gophers receivers left uncovered and got beaten more than once with great execution by the Minnesota players.
Auburn did stay in the game, only because of some special team magic and some sloppy plays on Minnesota side.
When Minnesota did score the last go-ahead-TD, Auburn was unable to answer and were then also unable to prevent the clock running down.
I'm happy for the Gophers winning this, they did something big here.
Next season will be interesting for both teams, since both will have their QBs back.
We might see something special of both teams next season.
#18 Minnesota 31 vs #12 Auburn 24 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 18-13

#14 Michigan vs #13 Alabama

The 1st half did look like we would see a good game with the Wolverines at least being able to fight back.
Alabama had some big plays, but Michigan did answer with decent drive, most of the capped with a field goal.
They led 16-14 at the half.
Then ... nothing more from Michigan.
Their best drive came with the end of the 3rd quarter and start of the 4th, but even there they were unable to keep the field position and were forced out of field goal range.
Later they had to play catchup and did on top of that also throw INTs.
No problem, if they would have stopped Alabama also, but the Tide came out of the locker room and scored a TD right on the 1st drive.
And after that big (scoreless Michigan drive) did Alabama score again.
And after the 1st INT.
So at the end we had the result I expected to see, a convincing Alabama win.
Not sure Michigan will put an ultimatum on one of the most expensive coach of college football who did not win their division or their rivalry game, nor a championship or more. I would do that, since otherwise you would expect this mediocrity as OK, but so far nothing can be heard, so it seems he is save for now.
Alabama will try to rebound from their down season, but they eventually need a new QB.
#14 Michigan 16 vs #13 Alabama 35 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 19-13

#6 Oregon vs #8 Wisconsin

The Justin Herbert Ducks won this by 1 point.
Oregon did play very well, but Herbert wanted this win the most and did score as QB 3 rushing TDs.
And not some sneak plays, no, some just keep it and run several yards, tens of yards, to score.
The whole Ducks offense did not look that impressive, the Wisconsin offense was more impressive in fact, but at the end it was enough to win.
Most stunning scene for me was the dropped/lost ball the Badgers punter had when trying to kick the ball.
The ball slipped out of his hands when positioning the ball for the drop to kick and basically fell on the grass, unkicked.
There were 2 Oregon players rushing and crushing the punter then and 1 did pick up the ball and scored a TD.
Momentum shifter.
Overall, Oregon will need a new QB next season, since Herbert will be gone. So maybe we will see a down year next season from the Ducks.
And Wisconsin ... it depends on whether the key offense players, all juniors, will declare for the draft of not.
If not, Wisconsin will play for contention, again.
#6 Oregon 28 vs #8 Wisconsin 27 -> Jacks BOWL Score: 20-13

#5 Georgia vs #7 Baylor

This I will make short.
Georgia did lead 19-0 at the half.
Baylor had no chance until then and little afterwards.
They did come a bit alive in the 3rd, but not enough.
Georgia will try to improve, best would be with their QB, but he might declare for the draft.
Baylor on the other hand do have one of the hottest coaches (heavily asked by the NFL) right now and it's not clear he will be back next season.
It looks like he will and if so, watch out there Texas and Oklahoma, Baylor might be the team to beat next season.
##5 Georgia vs #7 Baylor -> Jacks BOWL Score: 21-13

That was that. Only a few games left and the National Championship game.
So next, the game until the National Championship game, the final I will cover separately.


Thur. Jan. 2
Boston College vs #21 Cincinnati

@Legion Field - Birmingham, AL
Since 2006 is this Bowl played and is fielded at the home of the UAB Blazers.
It's an American vs SEC game. If that does not happen, CUSA or MAC war taken.
And we have a American vs ACC game, again!
Looks like 2016 was the last time a SEC team did show up (and lost).
I'm not a Boston College fan.
And this season they did lose their coach, so we have an interims coach here, which does usually mean we have a disaster or a Cinderrella.
Everything goes.
Cincinnati did look like the team to beat inside the AAC, until they meet Memphis twice in 2 weeks and lost twice in 2 weeks, including the Championship.
BC is 6-6, the Bearcats are 10-3.
Vegas sees Cincinnati ahead by 7.5 points and honestly I think we will either see a Bearcats team winning easily, or we will see some mysterious NOW-OR-NEVER-Eagles game with some major turnarounds and a tearful BC win.
Yes ... I know.
We will see, what will happen, but I do believe Cincinnati will have one for decent game and win this.
Bearcats win.

Indiana vs Tennessee

@TIAA Bank Field - Jacksonville, FL
Since 1946 is this Bowl played, also once known as GATOR BOWL and Taxslayer Bowl, now featuring a mixture of both this season.
It is of cause played in Florida, on the home field of the Jacksonville Jaguars.
At the moment it is a SEC vs Big Ten Bowl, and this season it worked, thanks to the 7-5 Volunteers.
They play against the 8-4 Hoosiers.
Both teams did play mixed seasons, Tennessee a bit under the expectations, Indiana a bit over the expectations.
Tennessee is favored by 2.5 points and should be slightly stronger, but Indiana did play some nasty games this season, so don't underestimate them.
They did beat Nebraska on the road and did almost down Penn State, also on the road.
Tennessee on the other hand did start weak by losing against Georgia State and BYU, but did catch themselves and did from that point on play enough to win the winnable games.
Not the best preconditions for such a game.
I expect Tennessee to play a better game then Indiana, who did at the end of the season just fall to any better team coming.
Volunteers win.

Fri. Jan. 3
Ohio vs Nevada

@Albertsons Stadium - Boise, ID
This was known as the Humanitarian Bowl.
It is played at the University of Boise in Idaho and is worth around 325.000$ for each team.
This Bowl is played since 1997 and it is played at the moment between teams from the MWC and the MAC.
Oh man, what a crappy matchup.
Ohio did play a good season, but stumbled too often to content, finishing 6-6.
And Nevada did play a 7-5 season, but lost against their WEAK rival UNLV in OT on the last gameday.
Ohio is favored by ... 8.0 points.
That's amazing for a MAC team.
I do prefer Ohio also, but 8.0 points for a 6-6 team which did lose basically all important games INSIDE the MAC against a mid level MWC-team?
Well, I'm curious to see what will happen.
Solich, the Ohio coach, is an old fox and we might see some tricks here.
Bobcats win.

Sat. Jan. 4
Southern Mississippi vs Tulane

@Amon G. Carter Stadium - Fort Worth, TX
Since 2003 is this Bowl played and they field it at the moment at the home of the TCU Horned Frogs in Texas.
The Bowl is inviting teams from different conferences, depended on the year and the contracts made with the conferences and with Army as independent.
This season the Big10 vs MWC were aimed to be, but we got the American vs C-USA.
This is typical for the Bowl which did feature not at least one of the wanted participant since 2014.
Each team gets around 675.000$.
Last season the game was the 1st time sold out, I doubt it will happen with this matchup here.
The 6-6 Tulane did start strong (5-1) , but finished bad (1-5, most of them close) and this game here will be eventually another loss.
Because Southern Miss did play a solid 7-5 season with losses only to stronger teams.
Vegas sees the Green Wave ahead, by 7.0 points, which might be realistic.
But how did the losing streak impact the mind of the Tulane players?
Are they down, or did the break help and they are fresh?
Hard to tell.
Here it comes down to motivation.
If Tulane shows up 100%, they should win here easily.
If they do underestimate the opponent or don't care, they will lose.
I think they will somehow get back on track here.
Green Wave win.

Mon. Jan. 6
Louisiana vs Miami (OH)

@Ladd Peebles Stadium - Mobile, AL
Since 1999 is this Bowl played and its played at the home of the South Alabama Jaguars.
Mobile Alabama Bowl, GMAC Mobile Alabama Bowl, GMAC Bowl, Bowl and GoDaddy Bowl, Dollar General Bowl are former names of this 'buy yourself a bowl'-Bowl.
At the moment it is a Sun Belt Conference vs MAC Bowl.
Each team gets around 750.000$.
The Sun Belt Conference Championship loser team vs the MAC Champion.
Louisiana finished 10-3, while Miami (OH) did finish 8-5.
The Ragin' Cajuns are ... hold your breath! 14.0 points favorites here.
That's a lot.
The good news for the game is, Miami was the underdog in the Championship game, too, and won, so maybe we will see a close game.
I personally doubt that Miami will keep up with Louisiana for the 4 quarters, but you never know.
Let's hope for an entertaining game.
Ragin' Cajuns win.

Don’t forget your pick’em picks.

'Til next time

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