With just four weeks remaining in the 2013 NCAA football schedule, it’s about time to look ahead to who will be playing in each of this year’s 35 FBS bowl games. Our expert college football staff has played out all the remaining FBS games from Week 12 through Week 15, and we’ve sorted out every prediction into the appropriate bowl matchup.
For example, the Sun Bowl pits the #4 ACC program against the #4 Pac-12 finisher, so we’ve placed our ACC and Pac-12 4th place finishers there. The only changes made are if a conference does not have enough qualifying teams as it has placements (in which case an at-large school will be selected).
As you take a look at our BCS bowl projections and FBS bowl projections, you’ll notice we’ve done our best to create as many enticing games as possible while not breaking rules. For example, the Cotton Bowl and Outback Bowl each have a tie-in with the SEC and their 3rd and 4th-place teams. We split Missouri and Auburn (our 3rd and 4th-place SEC teams) in a way to create more appealing bowl games and pairings.
A few notes of interest, whether you disagree or not:
- We project Oklahoma State to win the Big 12. Baylor travels to OK State 11/23, and we think the white-hot Cowboys will hand Baylor its first loss – and thereby win the Big 12 via tiebreaker, heading to the BCS.
- Boise State will defeat Fresno State in the MWC Championship Game, spoiling the Bulldogs’ BCS dreams – but sending Northern Illinois back to the BCS in their place.
- The Michigan Wolverines will defeat Ohio State on the last day of the regular season, but OSU will still make a trip to the Rose Bowl.
- Alabama will run the table, last defeating the South Carolina Gamecocks in the SEC Championship Game (as Mizzou loses to Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M in their final regular season game).
- Over all other BCS-eligible teams (Missouri, Auburn, Baylor, etc.), the Sugar Bowl committee just can’t pass up the opportunity to pair Texas A&M and Oregon in a ratings bonanza.
Here’s how SidelineMOB sees the 2013-14 FBS and BCS bowl picture shaking out. Whether or not you agree, we want to hear your opinion – so leave a comment below!
2013-14 BCS bowl projections: Week 12
Rose Bowl (VIZIO): Ohio State Buckeyes (BCS/Big Ten) vs. Stanford Cardinal (BCS/Pac-12)
Discover Orange Bowl: Clemson Tigers (BCS/ACC) vs. Central Florida Knights (BCS/AAC)
Allstate Sugar Bowl: Texas A&M Aggies (BCS/SEC) vs. Oregon Ducks (BCS/At Large)
2013-14 FBS bowl projections: all other bowl games
GoDaddy.com Bowl: Buffalo vs. Arkansas State
BBVA Compass Bowl: Vanderbilt vs. Cincinnati
Cotton Bowl: Baylor vs. Missouri
Major curb appeal in this Cotton Bowl, which lands a former Big 12 team in Mizzou to play Baylor – not to mention two high-powered offenses and BCS contenders.
Outback Bowl: Wisconsin vs. Auburn
Capital One Bowl: Michigan State vs. South Carolina
Stout defenses and tough running games will be the signature of this game, which will likely be low-scoring but a must-watch for fans of strong defensive football.
Heart of Dallas Bowl: Iowa vs. Rice
Gator Bowl: Nebraska vs. LSU
The Gator Bowl will be thrilled to get two schools with huge traveling fan bases and rich football traditions as the Cornhuskers and Tigers collide.
Chick-fil-A Bowl: Virginia Tech vs. Georgia
Liberty Bowl: North Texas vs. Toledo
Sun Bowl: Duke vs. Washington
A fun, potentially high-scoring Sun Bowl (which seems to go on more often than not in Sun Bowl games) featuring two programs on the rise.
Independence Bowl: Tennessee vs. Syracuse
Holiday Bowl: Arizona State vs. Texas Tech
Alamo Bowl: Texas vs. UCLA
The Alamo Bowl gets one of the marquee bowl matchups of the year as the Longhorns and Bruins square off in a battle of 2 of the nation’s most prestigious programs.
Music City Bowl: Boston College vs. Ole Miss
Armed Forces Bowl: San Diego State vs. Navy
Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Oklahoma vs. Michigan
Much like the Alamo Bowl, it doesn’t get much more prestigious than “Oklahoma Sooners vs. Michigan Wolverines”. A major score for the B-Dubs Bowl.
Russell Athletic Bowl: Louisville vs. Miami (FL)
Perhaps a step down from where both programs wanted to be, as both were in the AP top 10 during the season. But the Cardinals and ‘Canes will make for an outstanding contest.
Belk Bowl: Houston vs. Georgia Tech
Pinstripe Bowl: West Virginia vs. Rutgers
Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl: Arizona vs. BYU
You want defense and hard-nosed rushing? You’ve got it in this one, as QB Taysom Hill leads BYU vs. Ka’Deem Carey and the Wildcats.
Texas Bowl: Kansas State vs. Minnesota
Military Bowl: Maryland vs. Marshall
Poinsettia Bowl: Fresno State vs. Notre Dame
If Derek Carr and the Bulldogs lose the MWC Championship Game, this is one heck of a consolation prize: a bowl date with the Fighting Irish will be appointment television.
Little Caesars Bowl: Ball State vs. Western Kentucky
Hawai’i Bowl: San Jose State vs. East Carolina
Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl: Ohio vs. MTSU
New Orleans Bowl: Louisiana-Lafayette vs. Tulane
No, this may not be the Greatest Game Ever Played, but pitting Louisiana-Lafayette against Tulane (two Louisiana schools) in New Orleans is genius marketing strategy. Make it happen.
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Bowling Green vs. Colorado State
Las Vegas Bowl: Boise State vs. USC
Two programs that defined the last 2000s in college football meet on admittedly not the grandest stage of them all, but it’s a game that, even if it should’ve happened in 2006, will be enjoyable.
New Mexico Bowl: Utah State vs. Oregon State
- Bowl projections: ‘Deserves ain’t got nothing to do with it’ (thegazette.com)
- 2013 College Football Rankings: Week 12 (Nov. 11, 2013) (sidelinemob.com)
- Updated Bowl Projections (bowlbound.wordpress.com)