There is no more purely subjective exercise than putting together any kind of list of the” best” or ”most interesting” bowl matchups. A fan's allegiance, alumni status, and/or dislike of a rival and/or conference will always play into it. The writer of this list makes no claim to be any different, or any better.
The mission in this article is to share with you the five bowl games that are most intriguing to this guy and have yet to be played in this bowl season. By no means should this be construed as saying that these are the only five games that this guy is interested in and anxious to see. Nothing could be further from the truth, but since we are a culture obsessed with numbers that end in 5 and 0, we thought we would share this list down to the five that most intrigued the writer of this article and tell you why these conclusions were come down to. Let's give them to you in reverse order.
5) Boston College v. Arizona- AdvoCare V100 Bowl- (Shreveport, La) Okay, this one falls under the “allegiance” factor for this guy, as he is an alum of one of these institutions. However, in a pure football since it is an excellent matchup. We have two of the nation’s best running backs going against each other in Arizona’s Ka’Deem Carey and Boston College’s Andre Williams. Additionally, we have two coaches: Steve Addazio at BC and Rich Rodriguez at Arizona who have their teams improved significantly in their short tenure thus far. If you like great backs, you can't beat this game on New Year’s Eve.
4) Wisconsin v. South Carolina- Capital One Bowl- (Orlando, FL) First-year coach Gary Anderson has accomplished a smooth transition for the Badgers from the Brett Bielema regime and had Wisconsin on the doorstep of a Big Ten title game appearance, losing a close one to the Buckeyes in Columbus early in the season. Steve Spurrier’s Gamecocks were beaten early by Georgia and came very close to edging out Missouri, a team they beat, for the SEC East title. Even Vegas is having a hard time making up its mind in this one, with the spread being a 1 1/2 as of the time of this writing. Will Jadeveon Clowney close out his career with another New Year’s Day highlight reel performance?
3) Ohio State v. Clemson- Orange Bowl- (Miami, FL) If you like offense, then you have to save yourself: Wow! No bowl game features a matchup of two better quarterbacks than Clemson’s Tahj Boyd and Ohio State’s Braxton Miller. Both teams have high-powered offense of stars that can run, throw, and catch the football. Both teams had their eyes on the BCS title game for much of the season. However, both teams can be had, in my opinion, defensively. The Buckeyes have given up over 1000 yards of combined offense and 75 points in their last two games against Michigan State and Michigan, respectively. This one is going to be close, well played, exciting, and I think the scoreboard is going to get a lot of work.
2) Michigan State v. Stanford- Rose Bowl- (Pasadena, CA) In terms of style, this one is the polar opposite of the Orange Bowl. These two teams are the epitome of hard-hitting and aggressive defense. Neither team is going to try to fool you, just hit you-hard- in the mouth. If you like to hear pads popping, see mouth guards flying, and hear loud grunts of pain and anger from the field microphones, it just isn’t going to get any better than this year’s Rose Bowl. And, for those who appreciate coaches who do not hog all the limelight shining on their programs, you've got to love coaches Dantonio and Shaw.
1) Florida State v. Auburn- BCS Title Game- (Pasadena, CA) Let's not waste precious space or insult your intelligence by explaining why this guy is excited to see this one. It’s for the all the marbles so it’s going to be number one. However, mark me down as one who is not “disappointed” that we don’t have Alabama in the game. The two teams are that are here deserve to be here and, therefore, this is the matchup I want to see. By the way, Auburn is going to keep this tighter than most of the experts do. Just so you know, the writer of this article likes Florida State in a close one, but how in the world can anybody pick against Auburn with confidence after what we’ve seen out of them the past month and a half?
Whether you agree or diasagree with some, or all, of this top five, do VAVEL USA one small favor: Enjoy the rest of the bowl season.