Tuesday, December 31, 2013

eBay Audit

Things you shouldn't tell your accountant dept: As many things as I keep track of (mpg, what we eat for dinner, etc) I never kept track of what I sold on eBay. Last week I made a list and tonight I made up a spreadsheet that I can use going forward, Over $1700 this year and over $1300 in 2012. This month I really pushed and sold almost $600. A total of 97 items, about half in each year. Jerseys, bobbleheads, t-shirts - Olympic volunteer shirts don't sell for much. I have a lot of stuff around the house I plan on selling. Next year I need to post one item per day. Hopefully I'll run out of stuff to sell.
Highlights from Christmas week: Will was very helpful in getting the CRV packed and us on the road. Matthew sat up front with me and C, A, W, and Barney all sat in the back seat. Finally figured out how to drive the CRV to get good gas mileage. On the way back from SC we got 34.2 mpg.

We opened presents, cleaned up, got ready for lunch with 23 others. took pictures, the 12 grandkids sang the 12 days of Christmas. They are really getting theatrical. Cleaned out my emails and ordered M a phone cover. Mine had broke, so I ordered one for me as well. Still not hungry for leftovers. I have plenty of writing projects planned, also lots of reading. No naps, but not much on TV.

Ceil, her brother, and two cousins all married and had three kids. That's 20, plus Ceil's parents and uncle and aunt. We have even more at the beach: more relatives and other friends from town. So my three kids have nine cousins on Ceil's side of the family. Will has three male cousins his age, plus two more slightly older. They play golf and go duck hunting. Add in us four dads, we had some good touch football games. Anna has three girl cousins right around her age. When we go to Jefferson they do everything together. Matthew doesn't have anyone, but sometimes he hangs out with the girls.

Thursday C took Anna and her three cousins up to the mall in Charlotte. I got M out of the house, to Bojangles, Target, and two thrift stores. Should’ve bought a Carlos Boozer bobblehead, but didn’t. Made it back just in time for spaghetti. With so much to do (writing and reading, mostly) a good deal of the time I wasn’t in the mood to do much.  

Saturday it was nice to be back in my own house for a change. Watched some bowls games, ate popcorn, and Will hooked up Apple TV. Matthew and Sarah went to see a movie and Ceil went to the grocery, then cooked chili. Took Sarah home – a long drive in the pouring rain.

Sunday we went down to Macon. On the drive down traffic was TERRIBLE the whole way, but not bad coming back. Could’ve taken Barney, but it would’ve meant a crowded back seat again. Ceil fixed spaghetti and meatballs and salad. Back home we had leftover chili. After the long day I went upstairs to read. Finished my baseball book.

Working Monday, Thursday, and Friday. Will goes to the Chickfila Bowl Tuesday night, then has to return to Athens late Wednesday.    

My Yahoo email is where all the junk email hits, because I use that email address when I enter sweepstakes. I try to go through and delete the junk emails with the hopes of one day finding a notification that I actually won something. Since we traveled Friday and Sunday I really didn’t get to check the Yahoo email until Monday morning.


Thursday Uncle Lennie took Matthew and Ceil out to the old graveyard on his property. Tombstones from the 1840's.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Man in the Mirror

One of these days I will realize that people are never going to be like I want them to be. Family members, friends, co-workers, etc. I cannot change them no matter how many years I try.

Until I accept this I am only distancing myself from my family. No one wants to hang around someone who is always voicing a contrary opinion.

Either I can love them the way they are or I will live alone without them. Already my kids don't call me as much as they call Ceil. Until I start loving them for who they are and stop lecturing them for every mistake they make, they are going to avoid spending time with me.

I can get so stressed when things don't go perfectly. Most people don't care. But the stress boils over and I strike out at the people I should be loving the most - usually my wife and family. It is so hard for me to not be selfish. It is so hard for me to put others before myself. But I should.

Last week Dic Dac said something concerning relationships that resonated in my mind: either I can be right or I can have peace. I'm keeping my new year's resolutions simple this year, but that's got to top the list. Only with God's help can I change.

Are you like this? What are you going to do about it?

Muck Shoes

Uncle Lennie and Aunt Corine have been sporting Muck Shoes, similar to the pair above. Interesting, but not enough to buy a new pair. Perhaps I'll check eBay. These very well could be the shoes worn by Jase Robertson. Mucks come in camo, and look quite similar to those worn on Duck Dynasty.

Friday, December 27, 2013

December 19

Another wacky evening Thursday night. Just like Wednesday, late Thursday afternoon Ceil called. Matthew was going ice skating down at Atlantic Station with friends. They were to meet at six. Will was busy, and Anna didn't need to fight downtown rush hour traffic. Ceil was cooking dinner, and had been on the go all week getting ready for Christmas. That left me.

I left work at 4:20 and got home shortly after five. On the drive home I had called, making sure M would be ready. Got home and still had to wait five minutes. Traffic wasn't too bad most of the way, thought we caught almost every light. Traffic slowed at Northside Drive. I exited on the HOV ramp at 5:55 but saw a line of red lights headed into town on Northside. I looped back onto 75 South only to discover the two right lanes blocked. Fortunately it was just a 5 minute delay, and we made it to Atlantic Station by 6:10.

Didn't find Matthew's friends until almost 6:30. Left and crossed Northside to hit Howell Mill. There was a line of cars turning on Chattahoochee Ave. Then traffic was gridlocked going both ways. 75 had been ok, but now all the cars headed north were stopped. I took Collier to Defoors Ferry over to Atlanta Road, and up to 285. Grabbed some Wendys. Drove up to the Big Chicken to a store I never get to.

By then it was 8 pm. No use going home. Grabbed a drink at Racetrac and drove back downtown. Worked on eBay and caught up on some reading. When we got back close to home I let Matthew drive through the neighborhood. Got home after 11 pm.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Bowl Picks by QB Rating

After making my bowl picks I remembered how several weeks ago I made the correlation between successful teams and a highly rated quarterback. Perhaps the team with the highest rated QB would win the bowl game most of the time. I decided to test my theory.

Here are the bowl match-ups, along with each team's QB rating. There are obvious exceptions: USC was going to beat Fresno State, whose entire team is basically QB Derek Carr. Washington State completely collapsed at the end of the New Mexico Bowl, in part thanks to their higher-rated QB. Some quarterbacks didn't even make the Total QB Rating List. UGA and LSU's highly ranked senior QB's are injured, but both teams have able backups. Throw out the two exceptions and I've started the bowl season 4-1. 

Not a bad way to pick bowl games, huh?

New Mexico Bowl: Washington St (57) vs Colorado St (93) WRONG - thanks to a late game Cougar collapse. 0-1

Las Vegas Bowl: Fresno State (21) vs. USC (41) NOT APP - a good QB was all Fresno State had. 0-1
Idaho Potato Bowl: Buffalo (100) vs. SD State (102) TOSSUP - QB's almost equally ranked. 0-1
New Orleans Bowl: Tulane (117) vs La Lafayette (105) CORRECT 1-1
Beef O’Bradys Bowl: East Carolina (35) vs Ohio (80) CORRECT 2-1
Hawaii Bowl: Boise State (200) vs Oregon State (29) CORRECT 3-1

Pizza Bowl: Pittsburgh (55) vs. Bowling Green (44) CORRECT - even with Pitt's starting QB out. 4-1
Poinsettia Bowl: Utah State vs. Northern Illinois (38) WRONG - Heisman runner-up Lynch shut down. 4-2
Military Bowl: Marshall (33) vs. Maryland (74) CORRECT 5-2
Texas Bowl: Syracuse (71) vs. Minnesota (52) WRONG 5-3
Fight Hunger Bowl: BYU (42) vs. Washington (40) CORRECT 6-3
Pinstripe Bowl: Rutgers (110) vs. Notre Dame (138) NOT APP - Irish won anyway. 6-3
Belk Bowl: Cincinnati (24) vs. North Carolina (16) CORRECT 7-3
Russell Athletic Bowl: Miami (18) vs. Louisville (15) CORRECT 8-3
Buffalo Wild Wing Bowl: Michigan (XX) vs Kansas St (65) CORRECT - Michigan's starter was out. 9-3

Armed Forces Bowl: Navy (95) vs. Middle Tenn (77) NOT APP - Navy runs the option. 9-3
Music City Bowl: Ole Miss (34) vs. Georgia Tech (92) CORRECT 10-3
Alamo Bowl: Oregon (2) vs. Texas (47) CORRECT 11-3
Holiday Bowl: Arizona State (19) vs Texas Tech (20) TOSSUP - almost equally ranked. 11-3

AdvoCare V100 Bowl: Arizona (30) vs. Boston College (46) CORRECT 12-3
Sun Bowl: Virginia Tech (78) vs. UCLA (9) CORRECT 13-3
Liberty Bowl: Rice (107) vs. Mississippi State (17) CORRECT 14-3
Chickfila Bowl: Duke (39) vs. Texas A&M (6) CORRECT 15-3

Gator Bowl: Nebraska (129) vs. Georgia (4) CORRECT - UGA's starter was out. 16-3
Heart of Dallas Bowl: UNLV (69) vs. North Texas (131) WRONG 16-4
Capital One Bowl: Wisconsin (76) vs. South Carolina (23) CORRECT 17-4
Outback Bowl: Iowa (58) vs. LSU (5) CORRECT - LSU's starter was out. 18-4 
Rose Bowl: Stanford (12) vs. Michigan State (56) WRONG 18-5
Fiesta Bowl: Baylor (3) vs. Central Florida (28) WRONG 18-6

Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma (36) vs. Alabama (7) WRONG 18-7
Orange Bowl: Clemson (14) vs. Ohio State (8) WRONG 18-8
Cotton Bowl: Oklahoma State (10) vs. Missouri (22) WRONG 18-9
Compass Bowl: Vanderbilt (81) vs. Houston (89) CORRECT 19-9
GoDaddy Bowl: Arkansas State (73) vs. Ball State (31) WRONG 19-10
BCS National Championship: FSU (1) vs. Auburn (11) CORRECT 20-10

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Letter

Our family wishes you a very Merry Christmas and hopes you had a great year. Not too much has changed with us, except for our children’s activities.

This fall Matthew turned 15 and was quite excited to get his Learner’s Permit. He even wore a bowtie to get his license picture taken. Over the summer Matthew blossomed from a young into a more confident teenager, making a point to dress and groom nicely in public. He towers over his mother and sister and is about the same height as his older brother. In June at Camp Highland Matthew was voted the Most Courageous Camper, an award presented to him by Will. Matthew is active in the youth ministry at church, and continues to improve as a student. His guitar skills are also improving. Interestingly, he is practicing more often. Matthew is a freshman at the Veritas School in Alpharetta.

I cannot believe Anna is 17, and a junior in high school. The advanced placement classes at Veritas keep Anna busy, though she enjoys spending time with friends as well. Concerts Anna attended included Ed Sheeran, Phillip Phillips, and Hillsong United. Every Sunday Anna teaches young children in Sunday School, and she serves on a select youth leadership committee as well. She and Matthew attended church camps in Daytona Beach and north Georgia. Her art teacher promoted Anna from taking lessons to teaching them. This year Anna relieved Ceil of some of the day-to-day driving. Prom was the highlight of her spring.

Will (20) is now a junior at Georgia. Majoring in Biology, he continues to make great grades. This year Will is working as a Resident Assistant in brand new Rutherford Dormitory. During the summer Will returned to Camp Highland to serve as a counselor and later gained experience as an apprentice in medical clinics near home. In the spring Will helped coach a local high school baseball team in Athens and in the fall flew out to Oklahoma to visit Mary-Clayton. His intramural football team advanced deep into the playoffs.

Ceil flew out to Jackson Hole to attend a wedding. She increased her workload at Veritas while continuing to shuttle the kids to their various appointments. She loves working with little children in Sunday School. Ceil took Matthew to three concerts (Switchfoot twice and Fiction Family once) and enjoys visiting Will in Athens. She even went to a game between the hedges. At night she enjoys having our 70 pound dog Barney leap up into her lap.

Dave read more, wrote more, attended more Braves games, sold more on eBay, ate more yogurt and air-popped popcorn, and drank less Diet Coke (and more water). And still gained weight. He continues to hoard shoes and bobbleheads.

It is our wish that your family has a blessed Christmas season. Perhaps next year we’ll finally add a family picture.

Merry Christmas!

December 18

We have a high bed, but our big dog Barney can jump on the bed. First he stretches, then he can perform a standing high jump – jumping onto the bed from a standing still position in one big leap. When he goes up and down the stairs Barney waits until everyone else has cleared the stairwell area, then bounds up the stairs taking three or four steps at a time. We'll see what happens when he gets old and creaky. Several years ago Bobby Cremins bought a one-story house because his dogs were too old to climb steps.
Last Wednesday at work two different vendors brought in treats, so of course I ate too much. Late yesterday afternoon Ceil called, telling me about the birthday party for Margaret Ewing Gaither that started at 7 pm. I had missed so many events lately that I wanted to go. She called me again on the way home, saying to hurry because traffic would be bad. I got home at 6:10, but we didn't leave until after 6:40. Then I learn the party is actually a gathering at Marlows Tavern in the Prado. I drove back roads to avoid traffic, so we weren't too late.

M and A sat with George and Jimmy Ewing. Jim Ewing was sick, so we sat with Jim's sister, right behind Margaret and her husband Will. There were five tables full of people, most with young kids. Jim Voyles' oldest daughter was there with her husband. Ceil had a grilled chicken sandwich. She devoured it. Anna had a salmon salad – I brought the leftovers for lunch today. M and I had burgers. Ceil got to hold both Jimmy and Margaret's babies, so she was happy.

Near the end of the evening Margaret's husband stood up and thanked everyone for coming. He presented a large present to Margaret: a framed collage of items pertaining to NYC. Then he told her that they were flying out on a New York City vacation in the morning (today). Some present! Jimmy told me that now that he was a family man, he was considering coming back to SPdL. Better tell Dock.

On the way home C needed to stop at Target. She stayed inside for almost 45 minutes. I went and gassed up the CRV. We didn't get home until after ten. By then I had learned of the Phil Robertson/Duck Dynasty/CQ interview controversy, so I fired off an email to the A&E Network in support of Phil. In their statement they said what Phil said did not reflect the views of the Duck Dynasty show. I'm not sure that is true.

College Bowl Schedule 2013-14

The college bowl schedule, with each team’s USA Today/Sagarin ranking:

New Mexico Bowl: Washington State (30) lost to Colorado State (88)    
Las Vegas Bowl: Fresno State (52) lost to USC (20) 
Idaho Potato Bowl: Buffalo (67) lost to SD State (94)
New Orleans Bowl: Tulane (85) lost to Louisiana Lafayette (90)  
Beef O’Bradys Bowl: East Carolina (57) beat Ohio (116)

Hawaii Bowl: Boise State (45) lost to Oregon State (36)
Pizza Bowl: Pittsburgh (60) "upset" Bowling Green (27)  
Poinsettia Bowl: Utah State (46) beat Northern Illinois (48) 
Military Bowl: Marshall (64) beat Maryland (72)
Texas Bowl: Syracuse (68) "upset" Minnesota (51)

Fight Hunger Bowl: BYU (29) lost to Washington (12)
Pinstripe Bowl: Rutgers (102) lost to Notre Dame (25)
Belk Bowl: Cincinnati (62) lost to North Carolina (47)   
Russell Athletic Bowl: Miami (39) lost to Louisville (24)
Buffalo Wild Wing Bowl: Michigan (37) lost to Kansas State (26)

Armed Forces Bowl: Navy (59) beat Middle Tennessee (97) 
Music City Bowl: SEC's Ole Miss (33) beat the ACC's Georgia Tech (31)
Alamo Bowl: Oregon (4) vs. Texas (35)
Holiday Bowl: Arizona State vs. Texas Tech (49)
AdvoCare V100 Bowl: Arizona (22) vs. Boston College (58)

Sun Bowl: Virginia Tech (34) vs. UCLA (13)
Liberty Bowl: Rice (70) vs. Mississippi State (40)
Chickfila Bowl: Duke (41) vs. Texas A&M (18)
Gator Bowl: Nebraska (50) vs. Georgia (19)
Heart of Dallas Bowl: UNLV (91) vs. North Texas (69)

Capital One Bowl: Wisconsin (10) vs. South Carolina (17)
Outback Bowl: Iowa (28) vs. LSU (15)
Rose Bowl: Stanford (3) vs. Michigan State (7) 
Fiesta Bowl: Baylor (5) vs. Central Florida (38)
Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma (21) vs. Alabama (2)

Orange Bowl: Clemson (16) vs. Ohio State (11)
Cotton Bowl: Oklahoma State (14) vs. Missouri (9)
Compass Bowl: Vanderbilt (44) vs. Houston (43)
GoDaddy Bowl: Arkansas State vs. Ball State (65)
BCS National Championship: FSU (1) vs. Auburn (6)

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

The Lone Ranger Story

One of my favorite Christmas traditions has been watching Jay Thomas visit the Letterman show and tell his Lone Ranger story. Every year it gets better and better. I missed it this year, but this year John McEnroe filled in and did an admirable job telling the story. He may have even added a few of his own characters and twists. 

We went to a service at the Presbyterian church. About 25 people. In all my years here in Jefferson I had never been inside that church. Then we ate at Ceil's brother's house. Chicken/dressing casserole, grilled green beans and asparagus, salad, and chocolate cobbler.

Friday we ate covered dish with our small group: pigs in a blanket, ham in rolls, dips, fruit, pumpkin pie, and other goodies. Big crowd - about 25.

Saturday I did some shopping, mailed some eBay packages, and got the oil changed. Then I did some housework and laundry. My back has been hurting, so I had to take some breaks. Watched some bowl games. After shopping most of the day, Ceil cooked burgers.

Went to the 12:30 service at PCC with Ceil on Sunday. Will went to Cartersville and Anna headed out with friends.

Monday morning I delivered an eBay package, mailed another, and bought myself three pair of pants and two T shirts. Back home I fixed myself a chicken salad sandwich. 

Spent Tuesday writing an essay on the Phil Robertson debate. Also read and mailed another eBay package. Traded one bobblehead for two.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Ranking the Bowls

Bowl games ranked by the sum of both team’s USA Today/Sagarin ranking. This shows which bowls have the best matchups, and which have the worst.

007 BCS National Championship: FSU (1) vs. Auburn (6)
010 Rose Bowl: Stanford (3) vs. Michigan State (7) 
023 Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma (21) vs. Alabama (2)
023 Cotton Bowl: Oklahoma State (14) vs. Missouri (9)
027 Orange Bowl: Clemson (16) vs. Ohio State (11)

027 Capital One Bowl: Wisconsin (10) vs. South Carolina (17)
039 Alamo Bowl: Oregon (4) vs. Texas (35)
041 Fight Hunger Bowl: BYU (29) vs. Washington (12)
043 Fiesta Bowl: Baylor (5) vs. Central Florida (38)
043 Outback Bowl: Iowa (28) vs. LSU (15)

047 Sun Bowl: Virginia Tech (34) vs. UCLA (13)
057 Holiday Bowl: Arizona St (8) vs. Texas Tech (49)
059 Chickfila Bowl: Duke (41) vs. Texas A&M (18)
063 Russell Athletic Bowl: Miami (39) vs. Louisville (24)
063 Buffalo Wild Wing Bowl: Michigan (37) vs. Kansas St (26)

064 Music City Bowl: Ole Miss (33) vs. Georgia Tech (31)
069 Gator Bowl: Nebraska (50) vs. Georgia (19)
072 Las Vegas Bowl: Fresno State (52) vs. USC (20) 
080 AdvoCare V100 Bowl: Arizona (22) vs. BC (58)
081 Hawaii Bowl: Boise State (45) vs. Oregon St (36)

087 Compass Bowl: Vanderbilt (44) vs. Houston (43)
087 Pizza Bowl: Pittsburgh (60) vs. Bowling Green (27)  
094 Poinsettia Bowl: Utah St (46) vs. Northern Illinois (48)     
109 Belk Bowl: Cincinnati (62) vs. North Carolina (47)   
110 Liberty Bowl: Rice (70) vs. Mississippi State (40)

118 New Mexico Bowl: Wash St (30) vs. Colo St (88)
119 Texas Bowl: Syracuse (68) vs. Minnesota (51)
127 Pinstripe Bowl: Rutgers (102) vs. Notre Dame (25)
134 Military Bowl: Marshall (64) vs. Maryland (72)
156 Armed Forces Bowl: Navy (59) vs. Middle Tenn (97) 

160 Heart of Dallas Bowl: UNLV (91) vs. North Texas (69)
161 Idaho Potato Bowl: Buffalo (67) vs. SD State (94)
173 Beef O’Bradys Bowl: East Carolina (57) vs. Ohio (116)
175 New Orleans Bowl: Tulane (85) vs. LA Lafayette (90)  
179 GoDaddy Bowl: Arkansas St (114) vs. Ball St (65)

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Greatest Ending Ever

Last game of the season.

78th meeting of the most intense interstate college football rivalry.  

Winner goes to the SEC Championship game.

Highest-ranked Iron Bowl in history.

Number one Alabama.

Number four Auburn.

National television audience.

Fourth quarter.

One second left on the clock.

Tie score.

After three unsuccessful field goal tries by senior kicker Cade Foster, Alabama sends out freshman Adam Griffith to attempt a game-winning 57 yard field goal. Should he make it, Alabama wins perhaps the greatest Iron Bowl finish in history. Should he miss, the game goes to overtime. No one could imagine a more exciting ending.

The field goal attempt comes up short. At this point the channel on the TV I am watching is changed. Only later did I learn what happened next.

But low, Auburn defensive back Chris Davis stood deep in the end zone, keeping watch over his flock of players in the night. And suddenly from the heavens the ball dropped into Davis’ hands. Davis proceeded to sprint 109 yards past Griffith and nine slow-footed Alabama linemen for the game-winning touchdown. Then Davis is surrounded by the heavenly host: his Auburn teammates and fans flooding the field.

Fan or not, this had to be the greatest-ever finish to a game in college football history – rivaling only the Immaculate Reception as the greatest ending ever. Thinking about this play, I had to type out the details to save.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Bowl Predictions Part 2

Holiday Bowl: Arizona State (8/2/10-3) beats Texas Tech (49/45/7-5). After their sixth loss of the year, no one will think Texas Tech is over-rated any more. WRONG 10-8

AdvoCare V100 Bowl: Arizona (22) beats Boston College (58). Andre Williams will gain 100 yards, but not two hundred. In the second half the Eagles will have to abandon the run in a futile effort to catch the Wildcats. CORRECT 11-8 

Sun Bowl: Virginia Tech (34) loses to UCLA (13). Once again this season the Hokies and their tight end-turned-QB will be exposed against a big-time opponent. CORRECT 12-8

Liberty Bowl: Rice (70) loses to Mississippi State (40). The game will be closer than it should be, as the spoiled Bulldog athletes find it hard to be motivated to play Rice in Shreveport. CORRECT 13-8  

Chickfila Bowl: Duke (41) loses to Texas A&M (18). The Georgia Dome will be filled with Aggies. In his last college game, Johnny Football puts on a show. CORRECT 14-8

Gator Bowl: Nebraska (50…60) loses to Georgia (19…9). Hutson Mason goes to 2-0 as a starter. By winning the bowl game, the Bulldog nation won’t have as much to complain about during the off-season. WRONG 14-9

Heart of Dallas Bowl: UNLV (91…97) loses to North Texas (69…116). I was quite impressed with North Texas when I saw them play Georgia. Playing in their state’s largest city will be a big deal to them. UNLV is good, but just good enough to keep the game close. CORRECT 15-9

Capital One Bowl: Wisconsin (10) loses to South Carolina (17). With time to get healthy, Shaw and Clowney will be primed to put on a New Year’s Day show. CORRECT 16-9

Outback Bowl: Iowa (28…41) loses to LSU (15…27). This could be the year the SEC wins all their bowl games. The Bayou Bengals will win even without Zack Mettenberger. Look for LSU in the 2014 preseason top five. CORRECT 17-9

Rose Bowl: Stanford (3…4) beats Michigan State (7…56). I am impressed by the Spartans defense, but I’m picking Stanford to win a close, low-scoring game. Four of the five BCS bowls will show off eight of the best-looking uniforms in college football. Cardinal and Kelly green will look magnificent in the granddaddy of them all. WRONG 17-10

Fiesta Bowl: Baylor (5) beats Central Florida (38). UCF has had to overcome repeated offensive failures in their past three games, against three ordinary opponents. The Knights’ defense has not faced an offense as potent as Baylor’s. In their first-ever BCS Bowl, some Bears’ fans are complaining that their opponent is not a more recognizable name. For that they should be thankful. Regardless, their fans will celebrate this Fiesta Bowl win as though they had beaten a name opponent. By then I will be fast asleep. WRONG 17-11

Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma (21) loses to Alabama (2). Saban seeks redemption after coming out on the short end of a miracle play. The Sooners were lucky to beat rival Oklahoma State and secure the Sugar Bowl bid. They won’t be so lucky in New Orleans. The score may be close early, but AJ McCarron will pull the Tide away in the second half. A matchup of two great-looking uniforms. WRONG 17-12

Orange Bowl: Clemson (16) loses to Ohio State (11). This could very well be the game when the Tigers turn it around and beat a top opponent on a big stage (though it could be my own extreme dislike of Ohio State). The Buckeyes squeaked past Michigan then saw their winning streak end against Michigan State. Since they won’t be wiping the field with FSU, Auburn, or Alabama there’s a good chance Urban’s student-athletes fail to take the Tigers seriously. Dabo will have his team fired up. Clemson’s key will be the first series on offense and defense. This will set the tone for the entire game. If Tajh Boyd can move the offense down the field the first time he has the ball, the Tigers can have a big night on offense. And if the defense can limit the Ohio State offense on the first series, this can be a big night for the orange and white. My pick: once again Ohio State gets lucky, and wins a close game. The talented Buckeye playmakers will be too much for Clemson. Another bowl with two great-looking uniforms. WRONG 17-13  

Cotton Bowl: Oklahoma State (14/39/10-2) loses to Missouri (9/31/11-2). How did the Cotton Bowl get such a great date and time slot? The work of the evil Fox Sports and Jerry Jones, to be sure. But back to the game: After having their BCS hopes dashed by rival Oklahoma’s last-send touchdown pass, Oklahoma State will not be ready for Mizzou’s high-powered offense. The Tigers almost matched score for score with the best team in the country in the SEC Championship Game, and right now they’re probably licking their chops for the chance to put away another opponent in Jerry World. CORRECT 18-13   

Compass Bowl: Vanderbilt (44…54) beats Houston (43…76). Though the teams aren’t far apart statistically, the Commodores will be able to easily handle Houston. In the days when spoiled athletes don’t play hard in third-rate bowl games, Vandy is an exception. CORRECT 19-13  

GoDaddy Bowl: Arkansas State (114/125/7-5) loses to Ball State (65/141/10-2). The absolute worst bowl matchup is played on perhaps the second most preferred date. WRONG 19-14

BCS National Championship: FSU (1…63) is outscored by Auburn (6…20). Should be a great game – perhaps the highest scoring BCS Championship in history. FSU is great, but Auburn’s offense is clicking on all cylinders. The Tiger D will be able to stop Jameis Winston more often than the Seminoles will be able to stop Nick Marshall and Tre Mason. Two great kickers. Two good-looking uniforms: Auburn in white and FSU in garnet and gold. By the end of the game the media will be talking about Auburn repeating next year. WRONG 19-15