Friday Bowl Projections

Iowa will learn its bowl destination on Sunday evening.  We’ll have an even better idea of where Iowa will go bowling late Saturday night after the final regular season games have been played.

Here are some games to keep an eye on that could have an impact on Iowa’s bowl situation…

SEC Title Game:  If LSU beats Georgia, the Bulldogs will likely drop below Michigan in the BCS.  Michigan is currently 16th and teams must be in the Top 14 for BCS at large selection.

Iowa State at Kansas State:  The Wildcats are currently 11th and if they lost to Iowa State, they’d drop below Michigan.

Big Ten Title Game:  Michigan State (13) and Wisconsin (15) are both ahead of Michigan, but somebody has to lose and they’ll fall below the Wolverines.

Texas-Baylor:  Baylor is sitting at 17 and as Mike Hlas points out , a big win over Texas could sway some voters.

Oklahoma at Oklahoma State: The outcome of this game will have an impact on which team Iowa may face in its bowl game.

Conference USA Title Game: Houston vs Southern Miss. If Houston wins, they are in the BCS. If Southern Miss wins then we may not see a BCS buster in this year’s BCS field.

I think LSU will beat Georgia.  With one of the Big Ten teams losing, I believe that will be enough to get Michigan into the Top 14, so I am still picking there to be a ‘Two Up’ scenario in the Big Ten, meaning two teams to the BCS.

ROSE: Wisconsin
BCS: Michigan
CAP ONE: Nebraska
OUTBACK: Michigan State

INSIGHT: This week, the tea leaves are pointing to the Insight Bowl bringing Iowa back for a second straight season. If Michigan gets into the Top 14 of the BCS, that is. If that happens, then it seems more than a 50/50 bet that Iowa goes back to Tempe. Who they will play is what is up for debate. Let’s assume Oklahoma State’s passing offense shreds Oklahoma the way Texas Tech and Baylor’s passing offenses shredded the Sooner defense. Let’s also assume that Kansas State beats Iowa State, Baylor beats Texas and that Houston beats Southern Miss. All of those ‘bets’ are on the favorites, by the way.

Here is the Big 12 bowl picking order and the teams I believe will be in the corresponding bowl:

BCS – Tostitos Fiesta (Oklahoma State)
AT&T Cotton (Kansas State)
Valero Alamo (Oklahoma)

This brings us to the Insight’s Big 12 pick. If Baylor beats Texas, the Bears are 8-4 and the Longhorns 7-5. The Bears have an electrifying Heisman candidate in Robert Griffin III, which is a decent TV draw for them. But they are a small private school and Texas would send more fans to the Insight Bowl than would Baylor and I still believe the TV draw from Texas would eclipse that of Baylor. Texas, not Baylor, has their own television network and that only happens because a lot of people want to watch your games live in Texas and are Longhorn fans.

I’ll go with Iowa vs Texas in the Insight Bowl as long as the Big Ten gets two to the BCS.

If things play out where Michigan gets left out of the BCS mix, here is the direction I’ll go:

ROSE: Wisconsin
CAP ONE: Michigan
OUTBACK: Nebraska
INSIGHT: Michigan State
GATOR: Ohio State
TEXAS: Iowa, likely against Texas A&M

Check back in late Saturday night for the final projection

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