Ranking The 2012-2013 Bowls - The Lousy
Washington QB Keith Price
Washington QB Keith Price
Posted Dec 8, 2012

Before they start, the ranking of the bowls and how entertaining they should be.

2012-2013 Bowl Matchups

The Lousy 

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The 2012-2013 Pre-Bowl Rankings
- The Can't Miss - The Top 5  
- The Excellent - No. 6 to No. 10 
- The Solid - No. 11 to No. 15
- Just Bowls. No More, No Less - No. 16 to No. 20
- The Mediocre - No. 21 to No. 25
- The Lousy - No. 26 to No. 30 
- Seriously? - No. 30 to No. 35  

30. BBVA Compass 

Ole Miss vs. Pitt

Birmingham, AL Legion Field
Jan. 5, 1:00 pm, ESPN

Three Reasons Why You Have To Watch This Bowl

1. The two teams are going to want it. Ole Miss is back and with a new fire under head coach Hugh Freeze, able to get here after blowing away Mississippi State in the game the team needed to have. Pitt has been on a bowl push for a few weeks, winning its last two to slip in by the skin of its teeth.

2. The Pitt defense has become fantastic. Paul Chryst is known for being a strong offensive head coach, but his D is why the team is bowling, allowing six points or fewer in three of the last six games. On the year, the Panthers have allowed more than 17 points just five times.

3. Watch out for the fantastic Ole Miss pass rush. Freeze has made his name on offense, but his defense has turned amazing right away finishing second in the SEC in both sacks and tackles for loss. Pitt was last in the Big East in tackles for loss.

And Why You Shouldn't Care A Lick: The bowl is only six years old – it used to be called the PapaJohns.com – but it's traditionally been a dog. Pitt had something to do with the last two, blowing away Kentucky two years ago and stinking it up against SMU last season. Only one of the six bowls has been decided by under ten points.

Three Names To Drop To Make Every Man Want You And Every Woman Fear You

1. QB Bo Wallace, Soph. Ole Miss – Freeze gets big things out of his quarterbacks, and Wallace is the new start. Picks are a problem, but he's a good runner who also bombed away with five scoring passes against Mississippi State.

2. RB Ray Graham, Sr. Pitt – It's the final game of Graham's good career. The coaching staff has relied on him to carry the offense, and he has come through with 94 yards or more in four of the last five games with six touchdowns over the span.

3. LB Denzel Nkemdiche, Fr. Ole Miss – One of the best young defensive playmakers in the SEC, he has been a steady force against the run and has done a nice job of getting into the backfield with 12 tackles for loss with three against Alabama.

Gut-Reaction Pick That Might Change In The Next Few Days On A Whim: Ole Miss 28 … Pitt 17

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29. Little Caesars Pizza

Central Michigan vs. Western Kentucky

Detroit, MI Ford Field
Dec. 26, 7:30 pm, ESPN    

Three Reasons Why You Have To Watch This Bowl

1. The two teams are going to try. It's not every day that Western Kentucky and Central Michigan get to bowl games, so there's no whine factor about wishing they were some place better. This is a really, really big deal for two programs that have risen up from some bad, bad seasons.

2. The two coaches are starting to generate a little bit of a buzz. Central Michigan's Dan Enos isn't exactly Brian Kelly quite yet, but he has a good offensive mind and has his team on a roll winning four of its last five games. WKU's Willie Taggart is destined for a step-up job soon after putting together a tremendous rebuilding job.

3. The Little Caesars has produced some of the best bowl games over the last few years. The last five have been fantastic with all decided by five points or fewer.

And Why You Shouldn't Care A Lick: The Hilltoppers are limping into the bowl losing three of the last four including an inexcusable gaffe against Florida Atlantic. Yes, CMU has won three straight and four of the last five, but the wins have come against some of the worst teams in college football like Akron and UMass.

Three Names To Drop To Make Every Man Want You And Every Woman Fear You

1. RB Antonio Andrews, Jr. WKU – The nation's leader in all-purpose yards, he's coming into the game with 468 rushing yards in his last two games. He's also a great receiver out of the backfield and an elite kick and punt returner.

2. RB Zurlon Tipton, Jr. Central Michigan – On fire, he has rushed for 100 yards or more in the last six games with 13 touchdowns over the span. He has rushed for 1,396 yards and 19 scores on the year.

3. DE Quanterus Smith, Sr. WKU – Want to win a bar bet? Ask who leads the nation in sacks. Smith has been dominant with 12.5 sacks on the season with five coming in the win over FIU and three against Arkansas State.

Gut-Reaction Pick That Might Change In The Next Few Days On A Whim: WKU 34 … Central Michigan 30

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28. Belk

Duke vs. Cincinnati
Charlotte, NC Bank of America Stadium
Dec. 27, 6:30 pm, ESPN 

Three Reasons Why You Have To Watch This Bowl

1. Two teams in the 1992 Final Four are now battling in a bowl game that has surprisingly become terrific over the last several years. The matchups might not have always seemed scintillating, but the Belk – formerly the Meineke Car Care and Continental Tire – has come up with four straight games decided by a touchdown or less and five of the last six.

2. This is Duke's first bowl game since losing to Wisconsin in the 1995 Hall of Fame, and it's just the third post-season appearance since 1960. The team might have died down the stretch, but it still managed to come up with the wins needed to finally get back over the hump.

3. Cincinnati was really, really close to being the Big East representative in the BCS losing to Louisville in overtime and to Rutgers by seven. The Bearcats destroyed the rest of the Big East, winning all of its five conference games by double digits.

And Why You Shouldn't Care A Lick: Cincinnati comes into the game winning four of its last five helped by one of the nation's best defenses. The Bearcats haven't allowed more than 17 points since early November. Meanwhile, Duke has lost its last four games and five of its last six thanks to a defense that that hasn't allowed fewer than 42 points since mid-October.

Three Names To Drop To Make Every Man Want You And Every Woman Fear You

1. RB George Winn, Sr. Cincinnati – The team needed a steady star to carry the offense, and Winn became it with five 100-yard games on the way to 1,204 yards and 12 touchdowns.

2. WR Jamison Crowder, Soph. Duke. – Connor Vernon is the bigger name, but Crowder had the better year. On fire by the end of the season, he caught seven passes for 167 yards against Clemson and closed out with eight grabs for 203 yards and two touchdowns against Miami.

3. LB Greg Blair, Sr. Cincinnati – One of the Big East's most underappreciated players, the sure-thing tackler came up with 19 stops against Louisville and finished up the season with 123 tackles. He's the best player on a strong defense.

Gut-Reaction Pick That Might Change In The Next Few Days On A Whim: Cincinnati 41 … Duke 17

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27. Franklin American Mortgage Music City

Vanderbilt vs. NC State
Nashville, TN LP Field
Dec. 31, 12:00 pm, ESPN 

Three Reasons Why You Have To Watch This Bowl

1. NC State might be in a transitional phase with Dave Doeren leaving a BCS team – Northern Illinois – for the big paper from the Wolfpack. Meanwhile, there's a chance James Franklin could be up for one of the big job openings after working wonders with the Commodores. These are two sound teams that will each come out strong.

2. It's strength on strength. Mike Glennon and the NC State passing game is one of the most efficient and effective in college football, while Vanderbilt is fifth in the nation in pass efficiency defense. Both teams can get into the backfield – Vandy is fifth in the nation in tackles for loss, and NC State is tenth.

3. The Commodores are red hot, winning six straight and seven of its last eight. NC State was the one who ruined Florida State's national title dream before Florida slammed that door shut. The Wolfpack came up with an improbable late comeback to beat the Noles, and while the team has been inconsistent, it has shown the ability to explode.

And Why You Shouldn't Care A Lick: Can offensive coordinator Dana Bible keep the NC State ship afloat until Doeren takes over? Vanderbilt might be too strong and too well coached for the Pack to be able to make much of a dent unless the offense gets hot early.

Three Names To Drop To Make Every Man Want You And Every Woman Fear You

1. QB Mike Glennon, Sr. NC State – One of the high-rising names on the draft boards, Glennon needs to come up with one final big game to wow the scouts even more. He threw for 493 yards and five scores in the shootout loss to Clemson, and he tossed for 467 yards and five touchdowns against North Carolina.

2. RB Zac Stacy, Sr. Vanderbilt – This isn't like previous seasons when the Commodore offense had a running game and nothing else, but Stacy is the best option. He closed with 180 yards and two scores against Wake Forest to put him over the 1,000-yard mark.

3. CB David Amerson, Jr. NC State – Ripped by some after a tough first game against Tennessee, the preseason All-American and pickoff artist finished with a nice year making five interceptions with 54 tackles. He got better as the season went on.

Gut-Reaction Pick That Might Change In The Next Few Days On A Whim: Vanderbilt 38 … NC State 20

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26. MAACO Las Vegas

Washington vs. Boise State
Las Vegas, NV Sam Boyd Stadium
Dec. 22, 3:30 pm, ESPN 

Three Reasons Why You Have To Watch This Bowl

1. Shhhhhh. Very, very quietly, Boise State came up with yet another ten-win season and now has a chance to make it a strong 11-win campaign. This isn't being done with offense – the defense has been a rock allowing just 305 yards and 15 points per game.

2. Can Washington be as much fun – or as bad defensively – as it was in last year's Alamo Bowl shootout against Baylor? No, but the offense has started to gear it up over the last month and is starting to find itself. Okay, okay, so the Huskies rolled against Utah and Colorado, but it's improving.

3. Bad punting = good field position. Normally, this wouldn't be that big a deal, but if you believe that bowl games are more fun with more scoring, the mediocre punting games for both teams should give the respective offenses more of a shot against each others' strong defenses.

And Why You Shouldn't Care A Lick: This bowl has been AWFUL over the last few years. How bad? Six of the last seven have been decided by ten points or more, and it's partly Boise State's fault with two straight wins over now-Pac-12 teams by a combined score of 82 to 27.

Three Names To Drop To Make Every Man Want You And Every Woman Fear You

1. QB Keith Price, Jr. Washington – Some Husky fans were arguing last offseason that Price should be in the Heisman discussion after going toe-to-toe with RG3 in the Alamo, but he has been a disappointment. However, with one good game, he'll be back on the radar for big things again this offseason.

2. RB D.J. Harper, Sr. Boise State – He's not Doug Martin, but for a mediocre offense he has been a godsend, especially over the final two games with 237 yards and three scores. He's also a terrific receiver.

3. RB Bishop Sankey, Soph. Washington – One of the nation's best unsung backs, he has torn off 1,234 yards and 15 touchdowns with two scores in four of the last five games. A workhorse, he's able to handle the ball 25 times without an issue.

Gut-Reaction Pick That Might Change In The Next Few Days On A Whim: Boise State 27 … Washington 13

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