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Jonathan’s 2001 Bowl Predictions

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New Orleans
North Texas (5-6) vs Colorado St. (6-5)
Colorado State 31 North Texas 21
This would be a much better game if Middle Tennesse was here. But they aren’t and it isn’t. The Rams should be able to control the game and go away with a win.
GMAC Mobile
East Carolina (6-5) vs Marshall (10-2)
Marshall 37 East Carolina 31
This is a matchup between two of the best, unknown QB’s in America. Leftwich of the Herd and Garrard of Carolina will make this game entertaining.
NC State (7-4) vs Pittsburgh (6-5)
NC State 30 Pittsburgh 24
Pitt had to play well to get here at the end of the season, but the Wolfpack was more consistent. And behind QB Rivers, they’ll again in the state of Florida this year (first was against FSU).
Las Vegas
Utah (7-4) vs Southern Cal (6-5)
Utah 28 Southern Cal 24
Utah was nearly in the Liberty Bowl when they fell just short of BYU, while USC upset rival UCLA to claim this spot over the Bruins. A short drive for both teams will make this a fun Christmas Day game.
Jeep Seattle
Stanford (9-2) vs Georgia Tech (7-5)
Stanford 34 Georgia Tech 26
The Cardinal deserve more than this. But, that’s what they’ve got, and they should take advantage of it. GT was horribly overrated this year (especially by me).
Iowa State (7-4) vs Alabama (6-5)
Iowa State 27 Alabama 26
ISU is making it’s second consecutive bowl trip, while the Tide have pulled a near-miracle just to make it to postseason play. ISU has the better team this year though.
Texas A&M (7-4) vs TCU (6-5)
TCU 17 Texas A&M 13
The people in Texas have to love this game. It’s better than could be imagined. Both teams have good defenses and sorry offenses. I guess it makes for a close game.
Music City
Boston College (7-4) vs Georgia (8-3)
Georgia 28 Boston College 20
The Dawgs probably deserved better, but at least their fans are much closer. This is a game Georgia should win, although BC has played well in big games. An SEC has yet to win in this bowl game.
Washington (8-3) vs Texas (10-2)
Texas 34 Washington 23
Applewhile will finally get the start in a big game, and he deserves it. Unfortunately for him and UT, they’d probably be in Pasadena now if they’d made the change sooner. They’ll settle for a bowl victory here though. This should be a good game between two traditional football powers.
Motor City
Toledo (9-2) vs Cincinnati (7-4)
Toledo 34 Cincinnati 24
The battle between the Ohio schools. Kind of an ugly looking game, and it will be. The Rockets will come away with the win in an upset of the larger Bearcats.
Iowa (6-5) vs Texas Tech (7-4)
Texas Tech 41 Iowa 34
QB Klingsbury of TT is a good QB on a mediocre team. Iowa stepped up and played well this season, but it won’t be enough to knock off the Red Raiders in their home state.
Kansas State (6-5) vs Syracuse (9-3)
Syracuse 21 Kansas State 17
After several very good years, the Cats barely made it to the postseason. Now they meet up with the Orangemen, who have surprised many people with a good run after a sluggish start. Another not-so-attractive game.
Louisiana Tech (7-4) vs Clemson (6-5)
Louisiana Tech 42 Clemson 39
The Bulldogs are always good on offense, and they’re glad to be in Boise as the WAC champ. Clemson is lucky to be here. The Tigers’ defense has been bad this year, but Dantzler will keep them in the game. In an upset....
Purdue (6-5) vs Washington State (9-2)
Washington State 35 Purdue 14
Purdue was one of the most overrated teams this year, and they’ll show it here. The Cougars made tremendous improvement this season, and they’ll cap off a great year with a bowl game and a win.
Silicon Valley
Fresno St. (11-2) vs Michigan St. (6-5)
Fresno State 33 Michigan State 27
The Bulldogs had hoped to be in the BCS, but faltered and settled for (basically) home bowl game. MSU is only here because of a clock malfunction (???) against rival Michigan. David Carr shows off his skills as the Dogs finish the season with a W.
Louisville (10-2) vs BYU (12-1)
Louisville 51 BYU 42
If you like offense, you won’t want to miss this game. It is the only non-BCS game that matches up conference champ vs conference champ. Ragone of the Cardinals and Doman of BYU should provide plenty of fireworks. Hawaii showed the nation how to beat BYU (step one was not letting them cheat), and Louisville will take advantage of it.
North Carolina (7-5) vs Auburn (7-4)
North Carolina 24 Auburn 17
Both of these teams were big surprises for a while but then faded out. They both collected a nice seven wins for 2001, and this is a great regional matchup. The GA Dome is always a fun place to play, and the Heels will come out on top just barely.
Oklahoma (10-2) vs Arkansas (7-4)
Oklahoma 24 Arkansas 23
This will be a much closer game than most people think. OU isn’t thrilled about being here, and with the Hogs’ defense, they’re never out of a game. The better Sooners will come out on top in the end, though.
Ohio State (7-4) vs South Carolina (8-3)
South Carolina 19 Ohio State 13
Neither of these teams have great offenses, but USC’s is just a little bit better. That will provide the difference in the game as Ohio State continues to struggle to get back to the top of the college football world.
Florida State (7-4) vs Virginia Tech (8-3)
Virginia Tech 24 Florida State 20
A rematch of the national championship game 2 years ago. FSU has fallen short of expectations, and in a way, so has VT. The Hokies always come up big on defense and special teams. They will in this game as well, and Bobby Bowden will say it just wasn’t the Noles year.
Michigan (8-3) vs Tennessee (10-2)
Tennessee 28 Michigan 24
Both of these teams had other plans for the Holidays, but they were spoiled late in the season. The Vols will have the crowd on their side, and they probably have the better team as well. Neither team looks good, but the Vols come away with a postseason win.
Colorado (10-2) vs Oregon (10-1)
Colorado 38 Oregon 34
This will be a very exciting game to watch. Both of these teams had legitimate shots at the Rose Bowl, especially Colorado. The Buffs have played really well late in the season, while the Ducks just continue to get by. CU will take out their frustration in Tempe and possibly be a co-national champion.
LSU (9-3) vs Illinois (10-1)
LSU 28 Illinois 27
The Tigers shocked everyone by making it to the BCS. Now, in front a rowdy, home crowd of Tiger fans, they’ll win the BCS game, too. Kurt Kitner and the Illini will make it a challenge though. The Tigers use the crowd to their advantage and win the game by a slim margin.
Maryland (10-1) vs Florida (9-2)
Florida 34 Maryland 24
The Terps have impressed everyone in 2001. Upset after upset, they worked their way to an ACC championship by playing good offense and good defense. The UF offense will be too much though, as the Gators pull away in the fourth quarter. Maryland has plenty to build on for the future, while Spurrier has to figure out how to get the Gators to the national championship game again.
Miami (11-0) vs Nebraska (11-1)
Nebraska 28 Miami 24
This was the matchup I was hoping for. Of the possibilities, I thought this would be the most competitive, entertaining game we had to choose from. Miami will make their usual plays while Nebraska does their thing, taking it down the field, running the ball and running the clock. Miami’s big-time DBs don’t have as much of a chance to make the big plays since most of the plays will be running. Even after the Huskers looked down and out after the Colorado loss, they come back, led the Crouch the Heisman winner, and win the 2001 National Championship.

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