Friday, December 22, 2006

New Orleans Bowl Preview

Can we please have a bowl game that is not a blow out? So far college football’s second season is 0 for 2 on keeping my attention throughout an entire game with two 30 point blowouts. While the New Orleans Bowl may not be attractive at first a second look should reveal two teams thatare more evenly matched than what we have seen in the first two bowls.

Both Rice and Troy have 7-5 records and finished the season on hot streaks. The Trojans finished the regular season winning six of their last seven games. This isn’t your grandma and grandpa’s Rice Owls team and the Trojans are still fairly new to Division I. Troy didn’t make the jump to college football’s elite division until 2002 and are appearing in their second bowl game.

2006 Rice Schedule/Results2006 Troy Schedule/Results
Houston L 30-31Alabama State W 38-0
at UCLA L 16-26at (9) Florida State L 17-24
(8) Texas L 7-52at Georgia Tech L 20-35
at (18) Florida State L 7-55at (23) Nebraska L 0-56
at Army W 48-14at UAB L 3-21
at Tulane L 24-38Louisiana-Monroe W 24-19
UAB W 34-33North Texas W 14-6
at UCF W 40-29Louisiana-Lafayette W W 48-28
at UTEP W 37-31at Florida Atlantic W 24-17
at Tulsa W 41-38Arkansas State L 26-33
East Carolina W 18-17at Middle Tennessee W 21-20
SMU W 31-27at Florida International W 26-13

Three Reasons to Watch the New Orleans Bowl
1. Each bowl game has some sort of streak riding on it but none like this one. The Rice Owls haven’t been bowling since 1961 and haven’t won a post season game since 1954.

2. Owls receiver Chase Clement has caught 82 passes for 1,176 yards and 20 touchdowns. He has also caught a touchdown pass in 14 consecutive games.

3. This is the first bowl game in New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina.

My Prediction
So far I have given you two correct winners but have been way off on the scores. This game will feature little, if any, defense and I think will make up for the blow-outs in the first two bowl games. I’m taking Troy to win 33-30 in overtime.