Today we will look at the top 10 bowl matchups for the 2016-17 bowl season. I will not be including the playoff games; they are the top 2 matchups. I want to look at the other games that are coming up; there are some very intriguing matchups on the horizon.
1). Rose Bowl Penn State vs. USC
A classic matchup for the Grand Daddy of them all. This is a battle between two of the hottest teams in the country. Young quarterbacks Trace McSorley and Sam Darnold will be fun to watch they are Gunslingers that are not afraid to throw the ball down the field. Nittany Lions running back Saquon Barkley and Trojans do-it-all guy Adoree’ Jackson two of the top players in the country. If the playoffs were eight teams, that way it should be both of these teams would be in the playoffs. Whether it is the playoffs or not this is a great matchup, just remember if Penn State falls behind by a couple of touchdowns early, DO NOT turn the game off!
2). Citrus Bowl LSU vs. Louisville
This is a matchup between the two most exciting players in College Football. Tigers running back Leonard Fournette and Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson. Jackson is the favorite to win the Heisman and Fournette would have been in the running if not for injuries shortening his season.
3). Cotton Bowl Western Michigan vs Wisconsin
Everybody loves a David v.s Goliath matchup, and this is a great one. The Broncos led by coach P.J.Fleck are undefeated and virtually unchallenged this year. Wisconsin is the fourth best team coming out of the Big Ten and blew a big lead in the Big Ten title game. The Badgers are as good as anybody in the country up front on defense. The problem for the Badgers is in the defensive secondary. If the Broncos offensive line can hold up against the Badgers Cinderella just might get that glass slipper.
4). Orange Bowl Michigan vs. Florida State
This is a great matchup as Michigan’s great defense will try to stop Florida State’s stud running back Dalvin Cook. I Can’t wait to see what happens when FSU running back Dalvin Cook and Michigan linebacker Jabrill Peppers meet up in the open field. The Seminoles have had a disappointing season, but have finished strong. The Wolverines, on the other hand, started out fast but have faded at the end of the season losing their last two games.
5). Alamo Bowl Colorado vs. Oklahoma State
Oklahoma State had late-season success rushing the football. Colorado should be a stiff test. Colorado QB Sefo Liufau vs. Oklahoma State QB Mason Rudolph is a fun matchup too.
6). Boca Raton Bowl Western Kentucky vs. Memphis
If you like offense, you will LOVE this game. This game will feature two teams that average over 40 points per game. Memphis just put up 48 in an upset over top 25 Houston while Western Kentucky beat Louisiana Tech 58-44 for the Conference USA championship. There are two awesome receivers to watch here that you will be eventually be watching play on Sunday’s: Memphis’ Anthony Miller (84 catches, 1,283 yards, 11 TDs) and WKU’s Taywan Taylor (89 catches, 1,586 yards, 16 TDs).
7). Music City Bowl Tennessee vs. Nebraska
No doubt this game will draw a packed house as the most overrated team in the SEC battles the most overrated team in the Big Ten. This game could come down to the passing effectiveness of Nebraska QB Tommy Armstrong and Tennessee QB Josh Dobbs.
8). Las Vegas Bowl San Diego State vs. Houston
Houston has lost head coach Tom Herman, but it still has a lot of talent, led by quarterback Greg Ward and freshman defensive tackle Ed Oliver. The Mountain West champion Aztecs are led by star back Donnel Pumphrey, who just passed Ricky Williams for No. 3 all-time in rushing yards. Ward v.s Pumphrey is a great matchup that you won’t want to miss.
9). Sun Bowl North Carolina vs. Stanford
Stanford’s loss to Colorado on Oct. 22 took the Cardinal off the national radar, but they stormed back with a fury and won five straight games. In those five games, running back Christian McCaffrey rushed for no fewer than 135 yards and had two 200-yard rushing games in the final two contests. North Carolina has been hot and cold all year, they lost two of their last 3, but are still a very talented team.
10). Pinstripe Bowl Northwestern vs. Pittsburgh
This is a good matchup, but let’s face it this game made the list because it is at Yankee stadium.