With the 2017 college football regular season and both, conference championship play – and the ensuing bowl season upon us, now is the perfect time to take a look at some of the possible college football playoff matchups that we could be seeing in a month or so. Here is my fun-filled look at four possible bowl game matchups that NCAAF betting enthusiasts and fans, in general, could be watching this bowl season.
College Football Playoff Preview: Predictions for Upcoming Bowl’s
— College Football (@CFB) 16 de noviembre de 2017
- When: Jan. 1, 5 p.m., ESPN
- Where: Rose Bowl, Pasadena, California
- Duel: Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Wisconsin Badgers
Alabama is as powerful as ever under venerable head coach Nick Saban. The Crimson Tide are ranked ninth in rushing (270.8 ppg) and eighth in scoring (39.9 ppg) and I genuinely believe they are playing with the best quarterback in the Saban era in gifted sophomore Jalen Hurts. The Tide is also ranked a stellar second in total defense (253.8 YPG), eighth against the pass (167.0 YPG) and a phenomenal first in points allowed (11.2 ppg).
On the other side of the field, I love fifth-ranked Wisconsin. The Badgers are ranked an impressive 24th in scoring (36.3 ppg), first in total defense (247.6 YPG), seventh against the pass (166.1 YPG), first against the run (81.5 YPG) and third in points allowed (13.4 ppg). While quarterback Alex Hornibrook still has some blemishes, he’s been more than good enough to help his team stay undefeated and has shown poise, even in the face of the few mistakes he’s made this season.
Running back Jonathan Taylor (1,525 yds, 12 TDs) is another star in what has been a long line of elite running backs that Wisconsin has produced over the years and I believe this team can play with anyone despite the fact that they’re not getting the love I feel they should from College Football Playoff and AP voters.
- Total Meetings: 2
- First Meeting: 11/3/1928
- Last Meeting: 9/5/2015
- All-Time Series: Tied 1-1
- Largest Margin of Victory: Alabama 35 – Wisconsin 17
- Longest Win Streak: Alabama/Wisconsin winning 1
- Current Win Streak: Alabama winning 1
Allstate Sugar Bowl
- When: Jan. 1 at 8:45 p.m., ESPN
- Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans
- Duel: Miami Hurricanes vs. Oklahoma Sooners
Unbeaten Miami is ranked a stellar 10th in points allowed (16.6 PPG) and encouraging 39th in scoring (32.6 PPG) and they just look like a team that believes they can beat anyone, including the top-ranked Crimson Tide. The Hurricanes have a bunch of fleet-footed athletes on both sides of the ball that relish the big stage and bright lights and I just don’t see them being overwhelmed by playing on a huge national stage like the College Football Playoff. Redshirt junior quarterback Malik Rosier looks like a future next level player and cornerback Michael Jackson is probably the best defensive back in the nation.
I love high-scoring Oklahoma and right now, I believe the Sooners could very well beat any team in the nation. The Sooners rank fourth in the nation in scoring (44.3 PPG) and quarterback Baker Mayfield is playing out of his mind for the third straight season, completing an incendiary 71.2 percent of his passes for 3,559 yards with 31 touchdowns and just five interceptions. This matchup would be a flat-out thriller no matter how you look at it.
- Total Meetings: 7
- First Meeting: 10/6/1973
- Last Meeting: 10/3/2009
- All-Time Series: Miami leads 4-3
- Largest Margin of Victory: Oklahoma 51 – Miami 13
- Longest Win Streak: Miami winning 3
- Current Win Streak: Miami winning 1
- When: Jan. 1 at 1 p.m., ABC
- Where: Camping World Stadium, Orlando, Florida
- Duel: Clemson Tigers vs. Georgia Bulldogs
Clemson may no longer have superstar quarterback Deshaun Watson at the helm, but right now, the Tigers are almost good as they ever have been, especially on the defensive side of the ball. The Tigers rank a stellar eighth in total defense (297.6 YPG), a solid 20th against the pass (184.9 YPG), an impressive 11th against the run (112.7 YPG) and an outstanding seventh in points allowed nationally (15.0 PPG). Clemson has a phenomenal head coach in Dabo Swinney and has the experience of reach back-to-back national championship games.
Sure, Georgia got blown out of the water by Auburn this past weekend, but the Bulldogs are still about as elite as they come in ranking 29th in scoring 934.6 PPG) and an even more impressive fifth in total defense and fifth in points allowed (14.5 PPG). Running backs Nick Chubb and Sonny Michel will both be playing on Sunday’s in the very near future and head coach Kirby Smart is the architect behind Alabama’s famed defense!
- Total Meetings: 64
- First Meeting: 10/9/1897
- Last Meeting: 8/30/2014
- All-Time Series: Georgia leads 42-4-18
- Largest Margin of Victory: Georgia 55 – Clemson 0
- Longest Win Streak: Georgia winning 10
- Current Win Streak: Georgia winning 1
Capital One Orange Bowl
- When: Dec. 30 at 8 p.m., ESPN
- Where: Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida
- Duel: Penn State Nittany Lions vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
I know Penn State suffered back-to-back losses a few weeks ago to kill their national championship hopes, but the Nittany Lions are still very elite as they rank 18th in scoring (37.7 PPG) and a stellar fourth in points allowed (13.9 PPG). More importantly, Penn State has a pair of next level performers in quarterback Trace McSorley and running back Saquon Barkley, who I genuinely believe is the best all-around player in college football.
I know Notre Dame just got the hell beat out of them by Miami but they’d make for a great matchup against Penn State in the Orange Bowl, seeing as how they’ve still got plenty of talent in dual-threat quarterback Brandon Wimbush (12 TD passes, 13 rushing Tds) and running back Josh Adams (1,231 yds) and a defense that ranks 30th in points allowed (20.7 ppg) and an offense that averages a stellar 38.0 points per game (15th).
- Total Meetings: 19
- First Meeting: 11/7/1913
- Last Meeting: 9/8/2007
- All-Time Series: Tied 9-9 (1 tie)
- Largest Margin of Victory: Notre Dame 44 – Penn State 7
- Longest Win Streak: Both teams winning 3
- Current Win Streak: Penn State winning 1