We’re closing in on Christmas and the bowls are rolling along with 13 more games between now and Friday, after 10 this past week. From week 1 through yesterday, I’ve picked about 80% of these games correctly, so I’m feeling myself a little. Of course, I can just look at my 58% rate on NFL games if I start feeling myself too much. We’ve already seen some nice stories – UAB getting their first-ever bowl win, App State rolling on despite losing their coach, Frank Solich continuing to prosper in Athens, Ohio. Some more may be on tap this week. Let’s see what’s on tap:
Birmingham Bowl (Birmingham, AL): Memphis vs Wake Forest – If any bowl game has a chance to end 78-76 in 8 overtimes, this is it. The over/under is 73. That sounds about right. As is my custom, I rely on the inferiority of ACC play to be a big factor. Memphis 40, Fake Forest 30 
Armed Forces Bowl (Fort Worth, TX): Houston vs Army – Speaking of great stories, that would be Army. They were down for so many decades, it’s good to see them back. Houston’s best player, who hates his coach, is skipping the game to prep for the NFL combine. That makes his team’s chances to stop this rushing attack even more remote. Army 34, Houston 10 
Dollar General Bowl (Mobile, AL): Troy vs Buffalo – I’m not sure why anyone thought putting a bowl game in Mobile was a good idea. But if they’re gonna put one there, Dollar General is the perfect sponsor for it. The winning team gets a trophy you can find on aisle 9 for about $4.99. That’s what you get for losing your conference title game to Northern Illinois. Buffalo 31, Troy 23 
Hawaii Bowl (Honolulu): Louisiana Tech at Hawaii – A team from snowy Ohio in the Bahamas. There’s no way they will have any idea how to act. Fortunately for them, their opponent is a middling, inconsistent Conference USA team. Hawaii 30, LTU 24 
December 26
First Responder Bowl (Dallas): Boston College vs Boise State – So this is the new bowl to replace the Heart of Dallas Bowl. While I am a big believer in the inferiority of ACC play, I realize you can’t hope just for that with this wildly inconsistent Blue Field team, especially when they’re playing on a green field. Boston College 27, Boise State 16 
Quick Lane Bowl (Detroit): Minnesota vs Georgia Tech – They’ve been trying to stage successful bowl games in Detroit for years. In the 80s, they had one called the Cherry Bowl. This one has the nostalgia angle with Paul Johnston retiring from GT, then Coach Row The Boat on the other side. I think a good ol’ fashioned Big 14 crew can handle a gimmicky offense. Gophers 27, Techies 23 
Cheez-It Bowl (Tempe, AZ): TCU vs Cal – The BEST bowl name this year. My wife & I still refer to the ad campaign with the tagline, “Cheez-It – Get your own box.” Both of these teams rely on defense and neither has a very prolific offense. Bears tell Frogs to get their own box. Cal 19, TCU 14 
December 27
Independence Bowl (Shreveport, LA): Temple vs Duke – The one thing we know about Duke from their season is that whenever they played a team that was remotely decent, they not only lost but got blown out (Northwestern being the exception). Also, while Cutcliffe has managed to make bowl games a regular occurrence, the never win them – well, he has won ONE of them. So my expectations for them in bowl season are very low. Temple 28, Duke 21 
Pinstripe Bowl (New York): Miami vs Wisconsin – One thing I know for certain: There ain’t no surf near Yankee Stadium. Wisconsin 21, Miami 17 
Texas Bowl (Houston): Baylor vs Vanderbilt – Two teams that barely squeaked into bowl eligibility. One of them is playing a hundred miles from their own stadium, and that will certainly make a difference. Baylor 30, Vandy 24 
December 28
Music City Bowl (Nashville): Purdue vs Auburn – My guys think they have solved the world’s problems by firing the OC. Many fans think the HEAD coach is the problem. I don’t agree with that, but I do agree the odds of a bowl victory for my guys isn’t very good. Pur-don’t 29, war eagle 23 
Camping World Bowl (Orlando): Syracuse vs West Virginia – Hey, look, it’s an old Big East game. And I’m betting this game has more points than at least a half-dozen Big East basketball games in 2019. Mountaineers 42, Orange Things 38 
Alamo Bowl (San Antonio): Iowa State vs Washington State – This game is usually a barn-burner, and the setup is perfect for another one. Both of these teams can light it up. And I expect they will. I also expect WSU to be angry after blowing the Pac 12 North. WSU 41, ISU 37 
Last week’s record: 7-3
Season: 114-28