Bowl games to watch this season

Visual+representation+of+the+College+Football+Playoffs.
Visual representation of the College Football Playoffs.

Visual representation of the College Football Playoffs.

Photo provided by Dan Gialluca

Photo provided by Dan Gialluca

Visual representation of the College Football Playoffs.

Joe Perry, Sports Writer

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The holiday season is upon us. This spells an economic boom as people of all ages, races and nationalities go out and spend their money on festive food, decorations and gifts. However, there is another season that is upon us: the college bowl season. Top teams from around the country come and play each other, hoping for hardware to take home after a long, hard season. Whether you are an avid football fan or just simply looking for something fun to do, these are the top games to watch.

 

Foster Farms Bowl: Arizona vs. Purdue

Arizona and Purdue are set to face off for the first time since 2005. Purdue will be seeking their third straight win, while Arizona will look to dual-threat QB Khalil Tate as they try to get their first ever win against the Boilermakers. The Foster Farms Bowl will be played on Dec. 27 at 8:30 p.m. in Santa Clara, California.

 

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic: #8 USC vs. #5 Ohio State

This game features two teams who both were thought to be contenders for the playoffs. However, they were both left out due to blowout losses. This will be a quarterback duel, as both quarterbacks, J.T. Barrett of Ohio State and Sam Darnold of USC, threw for two touchdowns and over 300 yards last week in their conference championship games. The Cotton Bowl will take place Dec. 29 at 8:30 p.m. in Arlington, Texas.

 

TaxSlayer Bowl: Louisville vs. #23 Mississippi State

Louisville and #23 Mississippi are going to play in what is expected to be one of the most balanced bowl game matchups of the year, according to ESPN’s Football Power Index. Last year’s Heisman winner Lamar Jackson will try to build onto his extraordinary resume, which includes over 5000 all purpose yards and 42 total touchdowns. Meanwhile, Mississippi State will have to come up with a new game plan on offense, as Nick Fitzgerald, their starting quarterback, was hurt in their last regular season game, a loss to Mississippi. The TaxSlayer Bowl will be played on Dec. 30 at noon in Jacksonville, Florida.

 

Capital One Orange Bowl: #10 Miami vs. #6 Wisconsin

#10 Miami and #6 Wisconsin both lost last week in their conference championships, losing their chances of getting into the playoffs. Now, they both get another chance at bringing home some hardware. Miami will attempt to bring out the infamous turnover chain against Wisconsin QB Alex Hornibrook, who has already thrown 15 interceptions this year. Wisconsin, on the other hand, will rely on their balanced offense of QB Alex Hornibrook and RB Jonathan Taylor. The Orange Bowl will take place on Dec. 30 at 8 p.m. in Miami Gardens, Florida.

 

Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl: #12 UCF vs. #7 Auburn

Opposites attract, and that couldn’t be any more true in this game. UCF enters this matchup as the only undefeated team left in the FBS, a.k.a. Division 1. Auburn, on the other hand, has three losses, and is the highest ranked three loss team in the nation. Auburn will look to RB Kerryon Johnson on the ground, while UCF’s pass heavy offense will see star QB McKenzie Milton go to work, looking to build off of his 35 passing touchdowns and nearly 4000 passing yards. The Peach Bowl will occur on Jan. 1, 2018 at 12:30 p.m. in the brand new Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia.

 

Citrus Bowl: #14 Notre Dame vs. #17 LSU

#14 Notre Dame will face off with #17 LSU in a rematch of the 2014 Music City Bowl, where Notre Dame won a close game, 31-28. The Fighting Irish will rely upon QB Brandon Wimbush, who has 30 total touchdowns on the year. The Tigers, meanwhile, will try to continue their defensive lockdown, as only twice this season have they given up more than 24 points in a game. These two teams will play in the Citrus Bowl on Jan. 1, 2018 at 1 p.m. in Orlando, Florida.

 

Rose Bowl: #3 Georgia vs. #2 Oklahoma

The first semifinal game for the College Football Playoffs will feature #3 Georgia and #2 Oklahoma. Heisman winner Baker Mayfield will lead a pass-heavy Oklahoma offense against a tough Georgia defense, who limited the then #2 Auburn Tigers to just 7 points. As for Georgia, first team All-SEC RB Nick Chubb and company will take on an inconsistent, overall weak Oklahoma defense that allowed 41 points to a 1-11 Baylor team in Week 4. The winner of this game will proceed to the championship game against the winner of Alabama and Clemson. The Rose Bowl will be played on Jan. 1, 2018 at 5 p.m. in Pasadena, California.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: #4 Alabama vs. #1 Clemson

The next semifinal game for the College Football Playoffs will be a rematch of last year’s championship game, with #4 Alabama taking on #1 Clemson. Alabama’s offense is full of threats, from RB Damien Harris, who averages 8.2 yards per carry, to WR Calvin Ridley, who accounts for just over 40 percent of QB Jalen Hurts’ completions on the season. As for Clemson, Junior QB Kelly Bryant will try to succeed first round pick Deshaun Watson in maiming the Rolling Tide’s hope for yet another national championship. The winner of this game will advance to the championship game against the winner of Oklahoma and Georgia. Alabama and Clemson will clash in the 84th annual Sugar Bowl on Jan. 1, 2018 at 8:45 p.m. in New Orleans, Louisiana.

 

So, for you sports fanatics or for any of you are looking to get out of talking to or being around family, bowl games start on Dec. 16. They run through Jan. 8, where the championship game will be played at 8 p.m. in Atlanta, Georgia. Make sure you watch your team this bowl season as they try to win their postseason matchup.

About the Writer
Joe Perry, sports writer

Joe is a junior at Delphi and is in his second year with Parnassus. He plays tennis, cross country, and baseball, and he is also involved with Bracketology Club. In his free time, he does shooting sports with 4-H. He is passionate about sports, politics, and sleeping. He is currently undecided about his future.

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