2015-2016 College Football Bowl Schedule and my picks.
All games on ESPN unless otherwise noted.
In recent years what makes picking bowl games all the tougher is whether or not teams are motivated to play well in the bowl game. There may be turnover among the coaches or the team feels slighted for not being picked for a "better" bowl game. This is unfortunate, but this is entitled 18 year olds we're talking about. You'd think they'd put out considering the nice trip and all the bowl sway they collect. Hogwash.
12.19 Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl Georgia Dome
Alcorn State (169) loses to North Carolina A&T (152).
Next year this game should be played at Turner Field. Noon on ABC.
12.19 Cure Bowl at the Orlando Citrus Bowl
San Jose State (100, QB27) beats Georgia State (112, QB48) - 3 point underdog (noon on CBSSN).
12.19 Gildan New Mexico Bowl Albuquerque
Arizona (58, QB35) beats New Mexico (105, QB100) - 10 point underdog.
A home game for New Mexico (2 pm).
12.19 Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl
BYU (36, QB46) loses to Utah (24, QB60) - 3 point favorite.
The Cougars lost their head coach, and laid an egg in their bowl game last year. ESPN's Bear picked BYU but I don't know why (3:30 on ABC).
12.19 Raycom Media Camellia Bowl Montgomery
Ohio (93, QB90) loses to Appalachian State (61, QB31) - 8 point favorite (5:30 pm).
12.19 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl Superdome
Arkansas State (70, QB105) loses to Louisiana Tech (78, QB45) - 2 point favorite (9 pm).
12.21 Miami Beach Bowl Marlins Park
Western Kentucky (40, QB6) beats South Florida (53) - 2 point underdog (2:30 pm).
12.22 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl Boise
Akron (99) loses to Utah State (71) - 7 point favorite (3:30 pm).
12.22 Marmot Boca Raton Bowl Florida Atlantic Stadium
Toledo (43, QB91) loses to Temple (45, QB63) – a one point favorite. Temple has a new coach (7 pm).
12.23 San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl
Boise State (51, QB67) beats Northern Illinois (76, QB69) - 8 point underdog (4:30 pm in Qualcomm Stadium).
12.23 GoDaddy Bowl Mobile
Georgia Southern (80) loses to Bowling Green (41, QB18) - 7 point favorite. The Eagles lost their last two games to Georgia and Georgia State.
They'll lose again (8 pm).
12.24 Popeye's Bahamas Bowl Nassau
Middle Tennessee (88, QB15) loses to Western Michigan (67, QB30) - 3 point favorite (noon).
12.24 Hawaii Bowl Honolulu
San Diego State (55, QB93) beats Cincinnati (60, QB 75) – a one point favorite (8 pm).
12.26 St Petersburg Bowl Tropicana Field
Connecticut (90, QB102) loses to Marshall (69, QB90) 11 am.
12.26 Hyundai Sun Bowl El Paso
Miami (44, QB26) upsets Washington State (48) - 3 point favorite.
The Canes have a new head coach (2 pm on CBS).
12.26 Zaxbys Heart of Dallas Bowl Cotton Bowl Stadium
Washington (28, QB62) beats Southern Miss (74) - 8 point underdog
12.26 New Era Pinstripe Bowl Yankee Stadium
Indiana (66, QB19) beats Duke (59, QB49) - 2 point underdog
(3:30 on ABC).
12.26 Camping World Independence Bowl Shreveport
Tulsa (97, QB53) loses to Virginia Tech (46, QB94) - 13 point favorite.
Last game for Hokie head coach Frank Beamer (5:45 pm).
12.26 Foster Farms Bowl Santa Clara's Levis Stadium
UCLA (26, QB32) beats Nebraska (50, QB24) - 7 point underdog.
San Francisco can be a dreary place in late December, the last place a team wants to place – especially when they're used to the sunshine of southern California. Perhaps that's why the Bear picked the Huskers. I'm going against him again (9:15 pm).
12.28 Military Bowl presented by Northrop Grumman Annapolis
Pittsburgh (33, QB40) loses to Navy (30, QB42) - 3 point favorite.
A home game for the Midshipmen. The Panther running back has cancer. Dreary. Navy (2:30 pm).
12.28 Quick Lane Bowl Detroit's Ford Field
Central Michigan (83, QB28) loses to Minnesota (65) - 5 point favorite
(5 pm on ESPN2).
12.29 Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl Ft. Worth
California (34, QB13) beats Air Force (75, QB77) - 7 point underdog (2 pm).
12.29 Russell Athletic Bowl Orlando's Citrus Bowl
North Carolina (12, QB21) beats Baylor (11) - 3 point favorite. Will NC be let down after losing to Clemson? No. Will Baylor be let down after missing out on the Sugar Bowl? Yes. Will they have a healthy quarterback? Maybe. Can the ACC beat the Big 12? Yes. The Heels will stomp the Bears (5:30 pm).
12.29 NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl Tucson
Nevada (101, QB86) loses to Colorado State (91) – 3 point favorite
(7:30 on Campus Insiders Network).
12:29 Advocare V100 Texas Bowl Houston's NRG Stadium
LSU (19, QB56) beats Texas Tech (38, QB9) - 7 point underdog.
After a mid-season slump the Bayou Bengals rallied around beleaguered head coach Les Miles. The game could be a shootout, with the Red Raiders explosive offense keeping it close (9 pm).
12.30 Birmingham Bowl Legion Field
Auburn (37) loses to Memphis (42, QB11) - 2 point underdog.
The Tigers have little to prove, but Memphis does. Perhaps Auburn will defend better without defensive coordinator Will Muschamp, but the team is in a state of flux (noon).
12.30 Belk Bowl Charlotte
NC State (47, QB33) loses to Mississippi State (25, QB10) - 5 point favorite. Will the Bulldogs lose a second straight bowl game they don't want to be in? Perhaps Dak Prescott will shine to pad his NFL resume. The Pack also have an experienced QB. This game could go down to the wire (3:30 pm).
12.30 Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl Nashville
Texas A&M (31, QB57) loses to Louisville (35, QB41) – a one point underdog. Another game to be won by the most motivated team. Both teams will bring fans. The Aggies freshman QB has been up and down, but so have the Cardinals. Look for Bobby Petrino to out-coach Kevin Sumlin (7 pm).
12.30 Holiday Bowl Qualcomm Stadium San Diego
USC (14, QB29) beats Wisconsin (22, QB71) - 3 point underdog.
The Trojans have stunk up some recent bowl games, but look for them to win for their new head coach (10:30 pm).
12.31 Chickfila Peach Bowl Georgia Dome
Houston (27, QB12) loses to Florida State (6) - 7 point favorite.
The Noles will win, but it could be a close game (noon).
12.31 Capital One Orange Bowl Sun Life Stadium Miami Gardens
Oklahoma (2, QB8) beats Clemson (3, QB3) - 4 point underdog.
The Sooners are on a roll, while the Tigers struggled on hang on to win their last three games. They'll be more rested in Miami, but the Dabo's D won't be able to keep Baker and company from outscoring Deshaun's O (4 pm).
12.31 Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic AT&T Stadium in Arlington
Michigan State (9, QB22) loses to Alabama (1, QB37) - 9 point favorite.
The Spartans aren't pushovers and are well coached, but they'll be no match for Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry and company. Some say Bama has holes, but none big enough to worry about – in this game (8 pm).
1.01 Outback Bowl Tampa
Northwestern (32, QB97) loses to Tennessee (17, QB20) - 8 point favorite (noon on ESPN2)
1.01 Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl Orlando
Michigan (15, QB17) beats Florida (20, QB78) - 4 point underdog.
The Gators just don't have the offensive firepower, but their defense will keep it close (1 pm on ABC).
1.01 BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl University of Phoenix Stadium
Notre Dame (8, QB14) loses to Ohio State (4, QB85) - 7 point favorite.
The Buckeyes will take out their frustrations on the Irish, but the game will be close (1 pm).
1.01 Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwest Mutual
Stanford (5, QB5) beats Iowa (13, QB25) - 7 point underdog.
Christian McCaffrey will run wild, showing the nation how wrong they were to snub him in the Heisman race (Pasadena 5 pm).
1.01 Allstate Sugar Bowl Superdome
Oklahoma State (16, QB23) loses to Ole Miss (10, QB4) - 7 point favorite. After a strong start the Cowboys were slowed by strong opponents. The trend continues against the Rebels, who will win with or without their suddenly suspect All-SEC defender. Chad Kelly will have a field day, placing him in the discussion for next year's Heisman (8:30 pm).
1.01 TaxSlayer Bowl Jacksonville
Penn State (49, QB82) loses to Georgia (23, QB39) - 7 point favorite.
UGA will of course be without former head coach Mark Richt. Should be a low scoring game with poor QB play on both sides - though Greyson Lambert will be motivated in his first bowl game. UGA's defense should give supposed NFL prospect Christian Hackenberg trouble (noon).
1.02 AutoZone Liberty Bowl Memphis
Kansas State (54) loses to Arkansas (21) - 11 point favorite (3:20 pm).
1.02 Valero Alamo Bowl San Antonio
Oregon (18, QB16) loses to Texas Christian (7, QB7).
In a pick'em game, the best QB wins (6:45 pm).
1.02 Motel 6 Cactus Bowl Chase Field in Phoenix.
West Virginia (29, QB74) beats Arizona State (39) 10:15 pm.
1.11 College Football Playoff National Championship Game presented by AT&T Oklahoma beats Alabama. University of Phoenix Stadium (8:30 pm).
Legend: number in parenthesis is the team USA Today Saragin rating, followed by the ESPN Total QB Rating.